Access provider or ISP
- An access provider is the company
that provides you with Internet access and in some cases, hosting
of a website on their server or network.
- A Microsoft
developed technology designed to help developers build multimedia and interactive
applications for the World Wide Web. Applications developed with the
ActiveX technology are usually called ActiveX objects, ActiveX controls, or ActiveX
components. Some refer to ActiveX as a competitor of Sun's
- An acronym for Asymmetric Digital
Subscriber Line. ADSL is a method of transmitting data over traditional copper telephone
lines at speeds higher than are currently available. Data can be downloaded
at speeds of up to 1.544 megabits per second and uploaded at speeds
of 128 kilobits per second.
- An agent is a type of software
program that is instructed to go out onto the Internet and perform
a specific function on behalf of a user. The most common type of agents are programs
called spiders and worms, which roam the Internet, collecting and indexing its content and
creating their own searchable databases of the content found.
- A nickname that refers to a person or
group of people on a network. Similarly, the address
"email@example.com" usually found on WWW sites, is an
alias for the person responsible for maintaining that site. All e-mail
sent to this address will be routed accordingly.
- In HTML, anchors
mark the start and end of hypertext links. Example:
would create the following: Link
- Animated GIFs are bitmapped
images compiled into a single picture animation. The GIF89a format of saving graphics
allows you to save several images into one file that is displayed by the Web browser one after another, creating the animation.
- A method of logging into an Internet FTP server with the account name
"anonymous" to retrieve files that are available to the public. The server may
use your e-mail address as the password.
- This small Java
program or "Application" is often embedded in HTML pages.
These are usually small programs that perform things like animation, sound, etc.
- Software that uses file names or
sub-strings to search for files at anonymous FTP sites.
- A collection of files stored on a
computer network - often retrievable by FTP.
- American Standard Code for
Information Interchange. The world standard for 128 codes that computers use to display
all the letters, punctuation marks, and numbers in Western languages. Each code can be
represented by a seven-digit binary number.
- A file which is attached to, and then
sent along with, an e-mail message. Any kind of computer file can be
attached but some attachments may not be recognized by the recipients computer.
- An addition to an HTML
tag that extends or qualifies its meaning. For example you can extend the <IMG> (image) tag by including the
"ALIGN" attribute which lets you further specify how you want a block of text to
line up with an image. With the ALIGN attribute you can align text to the left, right,
center, top, middle or bottom of an image.
- A security measure for checking a network user's identity.
- An avatar is a graphic facsimile that
you can use in chat rooms. It lets you role play and interact with
people you meet online.
- The Internet's
high speed data highways that serve as major access points to which other networks connect.
- The amount of data you can send
through a network connection. Bandwidth is usually measured in
- Modem speeds are
measured by their baud rate, the rate at which they send and receive bits
- (Bulletin Board System). A dial-up computerized meeting and announcement system for carrying on
discussions, uploading and downloading
files, and generally obtaining online information and services.
- A beta is test release of a software
package, to a limited group of people (beta testers). While the product is "in
beta," it is usually not supported by the maker.
- A file that contains more than plain
text (i.e. photos, sounds, a spreadsheet, or a formatted word-processing document). In
contrast to ASCII files, which contain only characters (plain text),
binary files contain additional code information. A binary file is made up of
machine-readable symbols that represent 1s and 0s. Binary files include sound files,
graphics files, and software, and are frequently called binaries.
- Short for binary digit, a bit is the
smallest unit of data a computer can handle. Bits are used in various combinations to
represent different kinds of data. Each bit has a value of 0 or 1. See also Byte.
- A bitmapped image is one made out of
an array of dots rather than continuous lines or areas.
- Abbreviation for Bits-Per-Second and
a measurement of how fast data is transmitted. BPS is usually used to describe modem speeds or the speed of a digital connection. See ISDN;
T1 Line and T3 Line.
- Used as a noun or verb. A bookmark is
an address of an Internet site saved by your Web browser so the site can be quickly loaded and displayed. Also called Favorites
in Microsoft's IE.
- Unit of data that usually represents
a single character. There are generally eight bits in each byte of
- Transmission medium of copper wire or
optical fibre wrapped in a protective cover.
- Temporary storage space. Web pages
you access are stored in your browser's cache directory (on your
hard drive). So, when you return to a Web site you've recently accessed, your browser
calls it up from the cache rather than the original server.
- Common Gateway Interface, the
interface program that enables an Internet server
to run external programs to perform a specific function. Also referred to as Gateway or CGI "scripts," these
programs generally consist of a set of instructions written in a programming language like
C or PERL that process requests from a browser,
execute a program and format the results in HTML, so they can be displayed in the browser.
CGI is a defacto-standard for interfacing external application such as a database server
or an order-entry system with a Web server.
- Often seen in the URL of a Web page
generated after you hit a Submit button on a Web site form, cgi-bin refers to the most
common Web server directory which stores CGI programs and scripts.
- Term for a "real-time"
keyboard conversation on the Internet. You type in your message
and someone else reads it as you type. "Chatting" takes place in a "chat
room," a virtual meeting place created by chat software, like IRC
- A program that uses the services of
another program. The client is the program used to contact and obtain data or request a
service from the server.
- A networking system in which one or
more file servers (Server) provide services; such as network management, application and
centralised data storage for workstations (Clients).
- A cookie is a file sent to a web browser by a web server that is used to record
one's activities on a website. The cookie is stored on your hard drive so that when the
server requests additional information, the cookie information is sent back to the server.
Cookies can be set up to store many kinds of information such as your password, so you
don't have to re-enter it each time you visit the site. A cookie can also store your
preferences, so the next time you return to a site, you can be presented with customized
- Sophisticated, multi-part software
program that turns a high-performance work-station into a World Wide Web site capable of
handling online transactions and related functions including database and inventory
management, order taking, billing, security and customer service.
- Central Processing Unit. The heart of
a computer which processes instructions.
- To post a message to several newsgroups simultaneously - an action usually frowned on in the Internet culture.
- The process of securing private
information that is passed through public networks, by
mathematically scrambling (i.e. encrypting) it in a way that
makes it unreadable to anyone except the person or persons holding the mathematical
"key" that can unscramble (decrypt) it.
- A term coined by author William
Gibson in his novel "Neuromancer". Cyberspace is currently used to refer to the
digital world constructed by computer networks, in particular the Internet.
- A structured format for organizing
and maintaining information that can be easily retrieved. A simple example of a database
is a table or a spreadsheet.
- A type of account available for
connecting to the Internet. Having an account on a computer system
means you have a login name and a password that lets you access some
parts of that system. A dial-up account through an Internet Service
Provider allows you to use your modem to make a connection to your provider's system.
- A digital certificate is mechanism to
identify individuals on the Internet. A digital certificate can also be used to "authenticate" each member in a digital transaction. Also
know as Digital ID.
- A system that your computer uses to
organize files. Directories can be organized hierarchically so that you may view your
files in many ways. they can be organized alphabetically by name or by type, etc.
- When working with a computer display
system that supports 8-bit color (or fewer colors), the video card can display only 256
different colors at one time. Dithering is a technique to simulate the display of colors
that are not in the current color palette of a particular image. It accomplishes this by
arranging adjacent pixels of different colors into a pattern which simulates colors that
are not available to the computer.
- The unique name that identifies an
Internet site. The Internet is made up of hundreds of thousands of
computers and networks, all with their own domain name or unique
address. Domain names always have two or more parts separated by dots. A given server may have more than one domain name, but a given domain name
points to only one server.
- To copy a file from a remote computer
to your computer. You can download a whole program which you would then install on your
computer, or you may simply download a Web page which displays in your browser
- Electronic Data Interchange. Private,
proprietary electronic networks first used in the 1960s and 1970s to connect large
corporations and their primary trading partners, now moving to the Internet and corporate
Electronic Commerce or E-Commerce
Or Internet Commerce
- Trade of goods and services through
computer networks such as the Internet, as well as related pre- and post-sale activities.
Includes business-to-business transactions and sales of merchandise or information
products to consumers. Also called Internet commerce.
- Short for Electronic Mail, e-mail
consists of messages, often just text, sent from one user to another via a network. E-mail can also be sent automatically to a number of
- A computer mailing address to which
electronic mail may be sent. You can spot an email address because it has a @ sign in the
center, and ends with a domain name, like firstname.lastname@example.org. E-mail addresses are different
from URLs, which are web addresses and always begins with http://.
- A method of providing secure
communications by scrambling the message or information file so that it cannot be read by
anyone other than its intended recipient. This enables you to perform secure transactions.
- Refers to the human executing
applications on the workstation.
- A common protocol
used on all kinds of computers for exchanging data across LANs (local
area networks). It is the most widely used LAN access method. Ethernet speeds reach almost
- A generally large intranet
used by corporations and other organizations that is open to selected individuals outside
the organization, such as customers, suppliers, and partners.
- An acronym for Frequently Asked
Questions. FAQs are online documents that list and answer the most
common questions on a particular subject.
- A way of reducing the size of a file,
or files, so that they don't take up a lot of space on a server or
hard drive and can travel faster over a network. File compression
is accomplished with software that uses mathematical equations (algorithms) to condense
repeated data into smaller codes. you need software to decompress the data, and restore it
to its original form.
- When you place files on a server you can assign the files various levels of permission,
specifying who can access them, and what type of access they can have.
- A computer connected to the network
that contains primary files/applications and shares them as requested with the other
computers on the network. If the file server is dedicated for that purpose only, it is
connected to a client/server network. An example of a
client/server network is Windows NT or Novell
Netware. All the computers connected to a peer-to-peer network are capable of being
the file server.
- A combination hardware and software
technology that placed between a company's internal networks and
the Internet that allows only specific kinds of messages from the
Internet to flow in and out of the internal network. A firewall protects the internal
network from intruders.
- An angry remark or message on a newsgroup or mailing list, often aimed at a user who has violated netiquette in some way.
- Forms are web pages comprised
"fields" for a users to enter information. Forms are usually processed into a database or e-mail message.
- A high-speed switching protocol for wide area networks (WANs). It is also used for remote LAN to LAN
- A set of HTML
tags that allow you to construct a web page with multiple pages in a frameset. Often used
as a navigational devise.
- Free software available on the Internet that can be redistributed.
- Front Page is a Microsoft product,
which enables end-users to construct and maintain Web Pages from the Microsoft Windows
- An acronym for File Transfer Protocol. FTP is a very common method of transferring one or more
files from one computer to another. FTP is a specific way to connect to another Internet site to retrieve and send files.
- A computer system for exchanging
information across incompatible networks that use different protocols. For example, many commercial services have e-mail gateways for sending messages to Internet
- Acronym for Graphics Interchange
Format. This graphics file format uses a compression scheme originally developed by CompuServe. Because they are compressed, the file
sizes can be quickly and easily transmitted over a network. That's
why it is the most commonly used graphics format on the World Wide Web.
- One billion bytes of information. One
- Gopher is an application that was
developed at the University of Minnesota to help organize files on the Internet.
Named after the school's football mascot, Gopher is a subject-based menu-driven guide to
finding and retrieving directories of information on the
- Graphical User Interface.
- Slang term for a technically advanced
computer user who enjoys accessing computer systems and programs without permission and
sometimes against the law.
- A six-digit code used to specify
colors to be displayed in a Web browser. The code requires a
"#" sign followed by a six-digit number, all within quotation marks. White, for
example, is "#ffffff" and black is "#000000".
- In the context of the WWW,
it refers to the act of accessing an HTML document on a server.
- The first page on a Web site that
acts as the starting point for navigation.
- A computer that acts as a server.
- Every computer that is directly
connected to the Internet has a numerical identification, called
an IP address, and a name, called a host name. Most people using
the internet don't need to know the host name of a computer in order to link to it because
we use the URL to do this on the Internet.
- Electronic transaction services
provided by third-party service bureaus. Hosting includes everything from creating and
maintaining a companys commercial Web site to providing order tracking, fulfilment
- HyperText Markup Language. The
language used to describe WWW pages so that font size and color, nice
backgrounds, graphics, and positioning can be specified and maintained (though users can
change how these are actually displayed by their own browsers). Files in HTML format are
viewed with a Web browser.
- A hardware device that contains
multiple independent but connected modules of network and internetwork equipment. Hubs can
be active (where they repeat signals sent through them) or passive (where they do not
repeat but merely split signals sent through them).
- Text in a HTML
document that is linked to another portion of that document or another document. Hypertext
is easily identified by its color and because it is usually underlined. It also changes
the shape of your mouse cursor when you move it over the hypertext or (link).
- An image map is a graphic divided
into regions or links. Most image maps are JPEG or GIF
format. When a particular region is clicked, it links you to another Web page.
- A kind of GIF that gradually
increases in overall resolution as it is downloaded.
Non-interlaced GIFs, by contrast, load one line at a time.
- A global collection of computer networks that exchange information by the TCP/IP
suite of networking protocols.
It allows for electronic mail and the accessing and retrieval of information from remote
- Similar to the Internet except that
the servers and networks are protected and
private. An Intranet that is accessible by others outside of the organization is called an
- The Internet Protocol
address, A numeric code that uniquely identifies a particular computer on the Internet.
- Internet Relay Chat.
A protocol used to enable real-time chatting on the Internet. IRC consists of "channels," which usually are
devoted to specific topics. Anyone can create a "channel" and any message typed
in a given channel is seen by all others in the channel.
- Integrated Services Digital Network.
A WAN-oriented data communication service provided by telephone
companies. ISDN is generally available in multiples of 64kbps
bandwidth (e.g. 64K, 128K, 192K, 256K, etc.) and is typically used for permanent Internet
connections for commercial use.
- Short for Internet Service Provider,
also know as Access Provider. The remote computer system to
which you connect your personal computer and through which you connect to the Internet.
- Java is an object-oriented
programming language developed by Sun Microsystems, Inc.
to create executable content (i.e self-running applications) that can be easily
distributed through networks like the Web. Developers use Java to
create special programs called applets that can be incorporated in a
web page to make it interactive. A Java-enabled web browser like
Sun's HotJava is required to interpret and run the Java applets.
used to create dynamic content on Web pages.
- Acronym for Joint Photographic
Experts Group, an industry committee that developed a compression standard for still
images. JPEG refers to the graphics file format that uses this compression standard. You
will find JPEG files on the Internet with the file extension .jpg.
- A thousands bytes
- Kilobits per second. A rate of
transfer of information over the Internet. An example is the fastest modems that are
- Acronym for Local Area Network, it refers to a local network of computers that are located on
the same floor or in the same building or nearby buildings. See WAN.
- The most common kind of Internet
- An Operating system based on a command line interface. It
has extensive networking abilities and is used by a large number of ISP
throughout the world.
- The account name used to access a
computer system. It is the way people identify themselves to their online
service or Internet access provider. Also called User ID, User
Name, or Account Name. To login is to connect or enter your password to connect to a
- A way of having a group discussion by
e-mail. Also used to distribute announcements to a large number of
people. A mailing list is very much like a conference on a bulletin board
system, except the conversation comes to you automatically in your e-mail box.
- A measure of computer memory or hard
disk storage; a little more than a million bytes or 1000 Kbps (actually 1,048,576 bytes).
- Megabits per second. A rate of
transfer of information over the Internet. See Kbps
- Musical Instrument Digital Interface.
A protocol used to exchange musical information between computers,
synthesizers, and instruments. MIDI files are often responsible for the music that
automatically loads when you come to a Web site.
- Multipurpose Internet
Mail Extension. MIME allows e-mail programs to include attachments of
non-ASCII, non-text data.
- An Internet server that provides copies of the same files as another server. Used
when an Internet site is so popular that the volume of users accessing it keeps others
from getting through. A mirror site provides an alternate way to access the same files.
- Modulator/Demodulator. Devices that
convert digital and analog signals. Modems allow computer data (digital) to be transmitted
over voice-grade telephone lines (analog).
- Acronym for Moving Pictures Experts
Group, an industry committee that is developing a set of compression standards for moving
images (i.e. film, video and animation) that can be downloaded and viewed on a computer.
- "Netiquette" is network etiquette, the do's and don'ts of online
communication. Netiquette covers both common courtesy online and the informal "rules
of the road" of cyberspace. See the Netiquette Home Page for more information.
- Two or more computers connected to
each other so that information can be exchanged. The Internet is a
"network of networks," where anyone with a PC and access to the Internet can
freely and easily exchange information.
- Electronic discussion groups devoted
to the discussion of a certain subject that are posted to a news server which then
distributes them to other participating servers or individual e-mail addresses.
- Application software for reading and
posting articles to newsgroups.
- End point of a network connection.
Nodes include any device attached to a network such as file servers, printers, or
- An server operating system that is orientated towards network file and printer sharing.
- A programming technique that speeds
the development of programs and makes them easier to maintain through the re-use of
"objects" that have behaviors, characteristics, and relationships associated
- A computer program designed to interface between the computers hardware and the user.
- When a user is connected to a network, they are described as being online.
- Parsing data refers to the process by
which data input is broken into smaller, more distinct peaces of data that can be more
easily read and processed.
- A secret combinations of letters and
other symbols needed to login to a computer system.
- Personal Digital Assistant. A small,
hand-held, battery-operated, microprocessor-based device that is expected to do things
- Store telephone numbers, addresses,
- Send and receive email
and faxes (wirelessly)
- Receive pages (just like an
- Recognise handwriting
- An acronym for Portable Document
Format. A file type created by Adobe Systems Inc. that allows fully formatted,
high-resolution, postscript documents to be easily transmitted
across the Internet and viewed on any computer that has Adobe
Acrobat Reader software, available for free at the Adobe
- Practical Extraction and Reporting
Language. A programming language frequently used for creating CGI
programs. It can read and write binary files, and it can process large files. PERL does
not need to be compiled.
- Pretty Good Privacy. PGP actually
gives you more than pretty good privacy. PGP is a high-security encryption
application used to ensures the privacy and authentication of electronic communication.
- The individual dots used to display
images on computer monitors. The number of pixels per inch (ppi) determines the resolution
of an image.
- A small, add-on program used to
enhance a larger software program. Most commonly encountered with Web browsers.
Browser plug-ins allow the browsers to display special kinds of documents and multimedia
POP (Post Office Protocol)
- Post Office Protocol. This is the protocol used by mail clients to retrieve messages from a mail
POP (Point of Presence)
- The communications equipment located
in (for example) a multi-tenant building that provides an alternative communications
service. Connection to this point of presence could then provide communication service
using (for example) the local cable TV providers coaxial cable or fibre-optic cable
(presumably at lower cost), rather than the local telephone companys facilities.
- Verb: To transfer or translate
data or program files from one computer platform to another (i.e. from PC to Macintosh).
- Noun: Connector on the
computer to which peripheral devices (like a printer or modem) are attached.
- Created by Adobe Systems Inc., PostScript is a page-description
language for printing and displaying both fonts and images.
- Point-to-Point Protocol
is a communications protocol used to transmit network data over
telephone lines. It allows you to connect your computer to the Internet
itself, rather than logging on through an Internet Service Provider's
host computer. It is part of the TCP/IP suite of programs necessary
to connect to and use the Internet.
- A protocol is the standard or set of
rules that two computers use to communicate with each other. Also known as a
communications protocol or network protocol, this is a set of
standards that assures that different network products or programs can work together. Any
product that uses a given protocol should work with any other product using the same
- Push refers to all the technologies
which "push" information (usually customized) to individuals rather than waiting
for them to come to it.
popular multimedia extension that is used to create many of the video clips seen on the
- The process by which a web client requests specific information from a web server,
based on a character string that is passed along. A query typically takes the form of a database search for a particular keyword or phrase. The keyword is
entered into the search field of an Internet directory and then
passed onto the web server.
Networks' popular streaming audio plug-in used to listen to
sound recordings on the Web. Streaming audio plays as it downloads
rather than waiting to play after it downloads.
- Resolution is the term used for the
sharpness of an image, expressed in pixels per inch for monitors,
scanners, or image files.
- A programs that are designed to
automatically go out and explore the Internet for a variety of
purposes. Robots that record and index all of the contents of the network
to create searchable databases are sometimes called Spiders or
Worms. WebCrawler and Lycos are popular examples of this.
- Hardware (or software) that can
connect a local network to the Internet.
Routers spend all their time looking at the destination addresses of the packets passing
through them and deciding which route to send them on.
- A small program that has a set of
instructions for another application or utility to use.
- A program that searches for
information and Web sites on the Internet. Example: AltaVista
- A Web browser
that uses a secure protocol, like SSL, to
access a secure Web server. A secure browser allows users to conduct
secure transactions on a secure server.
- A computer connected to the Internet which stores and provides information. The Web pages you are
now viewing are on a server. A server is also called a host.
- A plug-in
developed by Macromedia that is used to view
interactive animation on Web pages.
- Information attached to the bottom of
an e-mail message or newsgroup posting that
gives contact information about the sender.
- Serial Line Internet Protocol. Similar to PPP. Used to make Internet connections over phone lines.
- Plastic card similar to a credit card
with embedded electronics that store cash in encrypted form to be used with
PCs, telephones, ATMs, and other devices with built-in card readers.
- An acronym for Simple Mail Transfer Protocol, SMTP is the protocol used for routing e-mail
across the Internet.
- A derogatory term for postal mail.
Used to emphasize the time it takes for conventional mail to reach its destination
compared to e-mail.
- This term is used to describe the
practice of blindly posting commercial messages or advertisements to a large number of
unrelated or uninterested newsgroups or individual e-mail addresses. The Internet's version of junk
- A high-speed digital connection
capable of transmitting data at a rate of approximately 1.544Mbps per
second. A T1 line is typically used by small and medium-sized companies with heavy network traffic.
- A high-speed connection capable of
transmitting data at a rate of 44.736Mbps. This represents a bandwidth equal to about 672 regular voice-grade telephone lines,
which is wide enough to transmit full-motion real-time video, and very large databases over a busy network.
- A tag is the code used to format HTML documents for the WWW. There are both single and compound tags. For
example, the single code for a line break is <br>, whereas for bold text, the compound tag that wraps
around the text you want to be bold is:
- Copying all the data and programs of
a computer system on magnetic tape. On tape, data is stored sequentially. When retrieving
data, the tape is searched from the beginning of tape until the data is found.
- Transmission Control Protocol
A component of the communications protocol of the Internet. TCP is the Internets
connection-oriented layer 4 (also called transport) protocol, which provides an error-free
connection between two cooperating programs, which are typically on different computers.
- The Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) and the Internet Protocol(IP) are protocols
that let different types of computers communicate with each other. The Internet
is based on this suite of protocols.
- A command and program used to access
information and resources on a remote computer.
- A series of related newsgroups, BBS, or e-mail
messages on a given subject, including the original message and the subsequent replies.
- An acronym for Uniform Resource
Locator. URL is the address for a resource or site (usually a directory or file) on the World Wide Web and what web browsers use for
locating files and other remote services.
- Often confused with download, uploading a file means loading it from your computer onto a
- Usenet refers to the collection of newsgroups and a set of agreed-upon rules for distributing and
- Same as your login.
This is the name by which you and your electronic mailbox are identified online.
Also called User ID and Account Name.
- An acronym for Very Easy Rodent
Oriented Netwide Index to Computerized Archives. Veronica is a network
utility that lets you search all of the world's gopher servers by key key words.
- Viruses are small programs designed
to copy themselves and play havick on your computer deleting file or other bad things.
- Virtual Reality Modeling Language.
The language used to create 3-D graphics for the Web.
- WAIS is an acronym for Wide Area
Information Servers. It is a network
information retrieval service that you can use to search for key words or phrases in
specially indexed files.
- A kind of sound file. Wav files are
end with .wav.
- An acronym for Wide Area Network. A network that connects computers over long distances via telephone
lines or satellite links. In a wide area network, the computers are physically and
sometimes geographically far apart. See LAN.
- The person responsible for
administering a Web site.
- The standard programs used to connect
to the Internet and other networks by
- The World Wide Web is the most
popular portion of the Internet. It allows you to navigate through
all kinds of graphical information.
- A popular standard for file
compression on the PC. You can recognize it by the .zip file extension.