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Computing (FOLDOC) dictionary (also found in English - Vietnamese, English - English (Wordnet), )
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1. communications An abstraction referring to any flow of
data from a source (or sender, producer) to a single sink (or
receiver, consumer). A stream usually flows through a channel
of some kind, as opposed to packets which may be addressed
and routed independently, possibly to multiple recipients.
Streams usually require some mechanism for establishing a
channel or a "connection" between the sender and receiver.
2. programming In the C language's buffered input/ouput
library functions, a stream is associated with a file or
device which has been opened using fopen. Characters may be
read from (written to) a stream without knowing their actual
source (destination) and buffering is provided transparently
by the library routines.