Glossary Entry: Dummy out

Quick Definition

Software, at its most basic, is merely a series of instructions that computers perform in sequence. It's possible for an instruction to be "turned off" so that the computer will ignore it when the software runs, and these deactivated portions are said to have been "dummied out".

There is more than one way to "turn off" instructions, and a common method is to insert a new instruction that simply tells the computer to skip over the unwanted section. While this works, it also means that the deactivated code remains in the program. In cases like this, people that know what they are doing can edit their copies of the software to re-activate the hidden code. This usually results in some neat easter egg-like surprises for gamers, but sometimes what was found led to outrage and scandals.

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