O'Connor v. Commonwealth, 16 Va. App. 416, 430 S.E.2d 567 (1993) (full-text).
Factual Background Edit
Defendant executed a contract with MicroSystems Technologies for the development of a computer software program. Upon execution of the contract, and in exchange for a copy of the contract and the attached specification, the defendant gave MicroSystems a check for $25,350 which was uncollectable. Defendant was convicted for obtaining computer software by false pretenses. Defendant appealed.
Appellate Court Proceedings Edit
Computer software is defined as:
|“||[A] set of computer programs, procedures and associated documentation concerned with computer data or with the operation of a computer, computer program, or computer network.||”|
A computer program is defined as:
|“||[A]n ordered set of data representing coded instructions or statements that, when executed by a computer, causes the computer to perform one or more computer operations.||”|
The documents received by the defendant were not a computer program because they could not be executed by a computer. Although the document described a computer program proposed to be created, they did not relate to a program in existence and were not documentation associated with a set of computer programs or procedures.