data processing

data processing or information processing, operations (e.g., handling, merging, sorting, and computing) performed upon data in accordance with strictly defined procedures, such as recording and summarizing the financial transactions of a business. In automatic or electronic data processing the operations are performed by a computer. In distributed data processing some or all of the operations are performed in different locations at computer facilities connected by telecommunications links.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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