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component object model

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n. (COM, abbr.) ~ An open standard that defines digital objects with interfaces that allow other software to access their features, especially for use in cross-platform, client/server environments.

Notes: 

Developed and promoted by Microsoft, COM has been extended to include the Distributed Component Object Model (DCOM) and COM+ standards. Distinguish from computer output microfilm and technology-related senses that are also abbreviated COM.