Meaning – A computer word is a fixed size piece of data that is handled as a unit by the hardware of the processor.
Simply put, a computer word is the number of bits a particular computer’s CPU can deal with in one go.
Modern processors, including those in embedded systems, usually have a word size of 8, 16, 24, 32, or 64 bits.
The size of a computer word will sometimes differ from the expected value, due to the backwards compatibility of the system in question. If there is a family of processors, that share a common instruction set, but different word sizes, their documentation becomes that much more complex.
Example of usage – “When a computer architecture is designed, the choice of a word size is of substantial importance. There are design considerations which encourage particular bit-group sizes for particular uses , and these considerations point to different sizes for different uses.”