Without software, computers are little more than pricey decorations. Software is what allows computers to function; what transforms them into life-altering tools.
Software comes in many forms. It's the operating systems (Windows, etc.) that serve as an essential base. It's the games that we play (who doesn't love the occasional game of Solitaire?). It's the programs that allow us to maintain order in our working lives.
There are very few businesses that don't rely on software these days. From time attendance software to billing software, computer programs make work easier and allow businesses to expand their reach and grow their profits. Software performs complex tasks (such as doing complicated calculations instantaneously), but it also performs the mundane tasks that used to require low-skilled workers. Take medical billing software, for example. Submitting and following up on claims to medical insurance companies can be very tedious, but software allows for many steps of the process to be automated.
Without computer software, the world of art and entertainment would be a lot different. Design software has drastically changed the world of movies, television and the Internet. Without software, we wouldn't have computer-animated movies like Shrek, effects-heavy films like Transformers and there would certainly be no video games or Internet.
One of the neat things about software is that it doesn't exist physically. Your computer's hard drive is a physical thing, but the software that's installed on it exists only in the world of ones and zeroes. This makes it possible to obtain software in many different ways. You can go to your local computer store and buy a computer program on CD, but it's also possible to go online and download software straight to your computer.
Downloading software is also a great option because you are often able to download trial or demo versions of programs to try out before you buy them. If you don't like the program, you don't have to spend any money on it.
Downloading software is the most convenient option, but be sure to remember to only download software from reputable sources. You wouldn't want your computer to get infected with a virus or spyware. If you do get a virus, though, you can simply download antivirus or spyware removal software.