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The Software IP Detective’s Handbook: Measurement, Comparison, and Infringement Detection by Bob Zeidman

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3. Source Code

Computers execute tasks that they are directed to execute by a computer program. A computer program consists of as many as millions of instructions, each instruction causing a fairly small operation such as adding two numbers. The instructions are represented by ones and zeros stored in memory. A single one or zero is called a “bit.” Eight bits together are called a “byte.”1 Several bytes are called a “word,” though the number of bytes in a word depends on the particular processor that is used to execute the instructions.

To make these instructions easier for a human to create and understand, computer programs can be written using higher-level instructions that look like English.2 These high-level, English-like instructions are ...

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