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Like a specification, a datasheet (or data sheet) can be defined in different ways depending on its use: it may be formal, architectural, functional, program-specific, action-specific, or a mix of these and other aspects. For manufacturers of computer hardware, for example, a datasheet is defined as "a manufacturer's specification of the parameters of a device or integrated circuit, its functions, and its pin connections."[1] The Occupational Safety and Health Administration provides very specific datasheets called "safety data sheets" that clearly identify the toxicity and hazards associated with a product.[2] And parts datasheets — standardized in part by the International Electrotechnical Commission — is a "technical fact sheet" that provides key information on ratings, characteristics, and mechanical and environmental data about a part.[3]

For the purposes of this wiki, we generally use the word "datasheet" to refer to a set of operational requirements and features for a software system. For example, the Alfresco Community datasheet represents a researched compilation of many system requirements and features, including over 100 individual specifications. For the purposes of this wiki, when a single requirement is described for a system, we use the word "specification."


  1. Daintith, John (2004). "data sheet". A Dictionary of Computing. Retrieved 28 April 2015. 
  2. "Safety Data Sheets (Mandatory) - 1910.1200 App D". Occupational Safety and Health Administration. 26 March 2012. Retrieved 28 April 2015. 
  3. Das, Diganta; Pecht, Michael (2005). "Chapter 4 - Using the Part Datasheet". Parts Selection and Management. John Wiley & Sons. pp. 37–56. ISBN 9780471723875. Retrieved 28 April 2015.