EXHIBIT III-1: THE ROLES OF APPLICATIONS AND MIDDLEWARE IN COMPUTER PLATFORMS

This diagram shows the interrelationships between consumers, applications, operating systems, middleware, OEMs, and ISVs. The relationships are:

  • Consumers use applications.
  • Applications perform tasks by "calling" applications programming interfaces (APIs).
  • APIs are exposed by the operating system.
  • The operating system controls and allocates the resources of the computer provided by the computer manufacturer (OEM).
  • Computer manufacturers preinstall applications.
  • Middleware inserts itself between the operating system and the applications.
  • Independent software vendors (ISVs) develop middleware applications.
  • ISVs provide middleware applications to computer manufacturers (OEMs).

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