If you open a program this time, then you might want to open it again next time, so the start menu keeps a list of all your recent programs. Press the start button to open recent programs instead of clicking through all programs.
My recent programs are Paint, Notepad, Minesweeper, and Solitaire.
This completes recent programs.
Open a recent program like Notepad.
It opens Notepad.
This completes opening a recent program.
Every time you open a program, the start menu adds it to your recent programs.
I just want to open Internet Checkers for now, I don't want to play it right now.
Internet Checkers is a recent program.
The next time I want to play Internet Checkers, I can open it from recent programs instead of clicking through all programs and games.
I just realized that I'm never going to connect Windows XP to the internet so I'm never going to play internet checkers. Remove it from recent programs.
I never play Minesweeper or Solitaire so remove them from recent programs, too.