Updated: 03/10/2024 by Computer Hope

Reader may refer to any of the following:

1. A reader is a hardware device that captures or scans data from another device or object. For example, a magnetic card reader is used to retrieve data or information that is stored on a magnetic card.

Other examples of hardware readers

  • Barcode reader - A machine used to read, scan, and interpret a barcode.
  • Braille reader - A device that allows a person to feel braille and translate what's displayed on a screen.
  • Fingerprint reader - A machine used to identify a person by their fingerprint.
  • Flash card reader - A device that connects to the computer and allows it to read memory cards, like an SD card.
  • Optical reader - The component in a scanner that captures the information on paper.
  • Palm reader - A device that identifies someone by the palm of their hand.
  • POST reader - A card placed in a computer to identify a POST (power-on self-test).
  • Punch card reader - A machine used to reach punch cards.
  • Scanner - A device that scans any physical object (e.g., a piece of paper) and makes an electronic version of it.

2. With software, a reader is a program capable of interpreting and displaying a file. For example, Adobe Acrobat Reader is a program used to read PDF (Portable Document Format) files.

Other examples of software readers

  • News reader - Software used to read Usenet newsgroups.
  • OCR - An OCR (optical character recognition) program reads a scanned document or other image with text, and then translates it to text usable by a computer.
  • RSS reader - A program that reads RSS (Really Simple Syndication).
  • Screen reader - Software that reads what is displayed on the screen to a user.

3. With a human, a reader is a person who enjoys reading books, eBooks, or other publications like scientific journals or poetry.

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