I need to write about a technology which works with another in parallel.

What is a single word which means something like "something which works in parallel" or "works in parallel"?

  • 1
    Do you mean that your sentence would read "X is a Y technology" and Y is a word that means "something that works in parallel with other things"? Feb 10, 2011 at 6:11
  • 2
    Just throwing some words out there to stimulate thinking on this: compatible, symbiotic, cooperative, coordinated, synergistic, concurrent, synchronized, shared, ... Feb 10, 2011 at 6:15
  • actually I want a noun word .. well, I have a .net project which works in parallel with an asp.net project. So I needed to name that .net project in this way ".net collaboration" in an email .. (btw, collaborate would do :)) Feb 10, 2011 at 13:10
  • Parallel means "beside other." It comes from the Greek words para allio-sis which means "beside other."
    – user32981
    Dec 31, 2012 at 13:43
  • @Ana, thank you very much for your valuable information :) Dec 31, 2012 at 14:09

7 Answers 7


I'd say that usually you'd need to specify "X works in parallel with Y".

Although you could say "X is a concurrent technology" if you qualified earlier what a concurrent technology was.


Being a developer, the first word I'd think of would be concurrent, however you can also use:

  • parallel
  • synchronous
  • simultaneously

Since you mentioned "writing about technology", I'd say that concurrent and synchronous would technically be the most correct in this situation.

wrt. Tom's answer, I really wouldn't feel the need to explain the meaning of concurrent (unless it was an introductory manual), because most developers (sysadmins, etc.) would already know what that meant.

  • Did you mean synchronous instead of asynchronous (@Jez's answer)?
    – Tragicomic
    Feb 10, 2011 at 10:01
  • Yeah. My bad. Fixed.
    – aviraldg
    Feb 10, 2011 at 10:02
  • 1
    In a technical sense I don't think you could use the words synchronous and concurrent interchangeably. 'synchronous' would usually be used to describe a technology that relies on a clock signal to trigger events. Feb 10, 2011 at 23:43
  • Tom: concurrent is still the best here, as I've mentioned.
    – aviraldg
    Feb 11, 2011 at 1:22
  • Actually, asynchronous may be the correct word in a programmer's sense. An asynchronous task can work independently of the main task, not needing to stop and synchronize. A synchronous or blocking task might spend long periods waiting for another task and thus not be operating in the most parallel manner.
    – Wayne
    May 17, 2011 at 16:28

The most befitting word for your situation is "collateral", see below for derivation

Collateral derives from the Latin roots

col- = "together with/in"

later- = "side"

Therefore, it literally means "together at the side, or parallel"

Web definitions:

col·lat·er·al Adjective /kəˈlatərəl/ /kəˈlatrəl/

  1. Additional but subordinate; secondary E.g. the collateral meanings of a word

  2. Situated side by side; parallel E.g. collateral veins


Jez: "synchronous" means together in time" (syn + chron + ous)

Potatoswatter: "complementary" would vaguely suggest the connotation of "supporting"

Tom & Aviral: "concurrent" could fit the bill, as it literally means "running together with" (con + curr + ent)

Alex: "simultaneous" doesn't quite convey the deliberation that "collateral" and "concurrent"
do. Such a deliberation is necessary when talking of something that "works together
with something."

  • hey thats significant :) more elaborated .. I have accepted concurrence :) Feb 10, 2011 at 15:11

Maybe "simultaneously" fits perfectly?

  • if its technology I would rather choose .. Concurrence or collaborated etc :) so I have accepted the same answer .. anyways thanks for the useful discussion :) Feb 10, 2011 at 15:13

Complementary is the most likely choice, but we might need more context.

  • well I have chosen Concurrence .. which suits more incase of technologies :) thanks for useful discussion.. Feb 10, 2011 at 15:12
  • @infant: Concurrence means two things happen at the same time, simultaneously. Complementary means they benefit each other. The meanings are quite different, so be sure to choose what you mean. Feb 11, 2011 at 6:08

'Something which is synchronous'?

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