Standards are a set of technical definitions and guidelines that function as instructions for designers, manufacturers, operators, or users of equipment. Standards are often written by professional associations for use by those in the field. They ensure a common language is being used relating to products and practices, and protect the public from potentially unsafe designs, products, practices and/or services.
Codes are laws or regulations that specify minimum standards to protect health and safety. Codes are often written by a non-governmental organization and then adopted into law in a state or municipality and must be followed by those who design and build housing, business and industrial buildings, and other structures in that state or municipality.
Technical reports are a form of scholarly communication that provide the results of comprehensive subject research but are not published in scholarly journals. Often, these reports are produced by government agencies for use by researchers in institutions, company research and development departments, and other governments who are also working in the same specialized field.