Before entering fully into the meaning of the term commutation, let’s proceed to discover its etymological origin. Specifically, it derives from Latin, from “commutatio”, which is the result of the sum of two clearly differentiated parts such as:
-The prefix “with”, which means “together” or “union”.
-The verb “mutare”, which can be translated as “change”.
The notion of commutation refers to the act and consequence of commuting : replacing or changing something. The term has several meanings according to the context.
In the field of telephony, switching refers to determining the path that links two users during the development of a communication. Switching thus enables a signal to arrive at its destination after leaving its origin.
According to abbreviationfinder.org, the computer uses the idea of packet switching to refer to some form of data transmission. A set of data that has two parts is called a packet: the information itself and the information that indicates which route the packet must follow in the network until it reaches its destination. Packet switching looks for the right way for information to be transmitted as quickly as possible.
In order to learn more about packet switching, it is worth discovering the advantages and disadvantages of it. In this case, among its most positive aspects we can highlight the fact that it increases the profitability of the network, offers interactive communication, increases the flexibility of the network and that if there is an error it only affects one packet and not the rest.
With regard to its contrary aspects, we can point out that there may be cases of duplication of packets, that greater difficulty is required in what refers to intermediate switching equipment and that, on occasions and in certain specific circumstances, there is a decrease in what is the throughput of the channel.
Another use of commutation appears in the field of chemistry. In this case, commutation is the process that leads an element to have a single oxidation state after having had two different states. In this way, switching causes the same element to be reduced and, at the same time, oxidized, all in the same reaction.
At the judicial level, it is known as commutation of sentence to a partial pardon that benefits a convicted person, modifying his punishment. The commutation supposes to leave without effect a punishment to adopt a more benevolent one. A person who was sentenced to two years in prison for a crime may benefit from a commutation of sentence that allows him to obtain probation while doing community service.
In the area of Criminal Law, this commutation of sentences takes center stage, which we can establish can be of various types. Thus, it can assume what is a reduction in the duration of the aforementioned sentence or it can refer to what is the quality of the sentence itself. An example of the latter would be for a person to have their death sentence replaced by life imprisonment.