Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
In computing, a client is a system that accesses a (remote) service on another computer by some kind of network. The term was first applied to devices that were not capable of running their own stand-alone programs, but could interact with remote computers via a network. These dumb terminals were clients of the time-sharing mainframe computer.
The client-server model is still used today on the Internet, where a user may connect to a service operating on a remote system through the internet protocol suite. Web browsers are clients that connect to web servers and retrieve web pages for display. Most people use e-mail clients to retrieve their e-mail from their ISP's mail storage servers. Online chat uses a variety of clients, which vary depending on the chat protocol being used.
Increasingly, these days, more and more large client applications are being switched to websites, making the browser a sort of universal client. This avoids the hassle of downloading a large piece of software onto any computer you want to use the application on. An example of this is the rise of webmail.
The contents of this article is licensed from www.wikipedia.org under the GNU Free Documentation License. Click here to see the transparent copy and copyright details