Glossary ...

Acquisition
Directly related to trial, acquisition is what marketers call it when you try something and like it. When you click on a banner offering a discount on CDs at CDNow, that's a trial. If you buy something after clicking, you've been acquired. If you're lucky, you'll start receiving great deals on the music you love (also known as "conversion").
 
Action
One reason dynamic HTML (dHTML) is called dynamic is its ability to heighten the interactive experience. Because dHTML can utilize each action of the user (a mouseclick, a rollover, a keystroke), it provides a rich and transparent way to process this data. Before dHTML, form attributes would specify \"actions\" for a common gateway interface (CGI) program to process. One of the powerful abilities of dHTML is to pass JavaScript through a browser as a part of a form. For example, when a user checks a box within an HTML form, that click of the mouse can be the action that launches a new window to give or receive further data.
 
Apache
Apache is Unix-based, open-source Web server that is used to host about half the sites on the Internet. Originally, Apache was a Unix product, but now versions for Windows, OS/2 and other platforms exist. As with most open-source projects, there are numerous add-ons and tailored versions of the server available, which are created using the Apache module API. The name comes from its origins as a series of "patch files."
 
API
The application program interface (API) is a set of building blocks for programmers. It is made up of routines, protocols, and tools. Most operating environments provide an API so that programmers can write applications consistent with that environment. For example, developing software using the Windows API ensures that your user interface will be consistent with other Windows applications, making it easier for users to learn your new programs.


Archie
Derived from the word archive, Archie is a Net-based service that allows you to locate files that can be downloaded via FTP.

Architecture
In Web design, architecture means the arrangement of a Web site's components. Taking the analogy of a physical building, if a Web site's individual pages are rooms, its architecture is the hypertextual relationship between the rooms within the structure.
 
Array
An array is an indexed collection of data values. If an array is named monkey and i is an integer, then monkey[i] is one element of the array; monkey[2] is the third element in the array, since arrays always begin counting on zero. An array's value in JavaScript can refer to other arrays, objects, or functions. Arrays that are indexed by strings instead of integers (for example, monkey[matt] as opposed to monkey[2]) are called associative arrays.


ASCII
(pronounced "Ask-ee") An acronym for American Standard Code for Information Exchange, ASCII is an international standard in which numbers, letters, punctuation marks, symbols and control codes are assigned numbers from 0 to 127. Easily transferred over networks, ASCII is a plain, unadorned text without style or font specifications.
 
ASP
Active server pages is a Microsoft technology similar to CGI that is used to create dynamic Web pages. Pages using ASP are created with VBScript, Perlscript or JavaScript, and integrated with the HTML of a page. The ASP code is then compiled on-the-fly by the server and outputs standard HTML. ASP is typically used to perform database access or other interactive functions that are interpreted by Microsoft’s Internet information server (IIS). Read Webmonkey's Introduction to ASP for a more opinionated look at this Microsoft tech.


Asychronous Connection
The type of connection a modem makes over a phone line, this connection is not synchronized by a mutual timing signal or clock.

 

AU Sounds
This is an audio format developed for Sun workstations and often used to distribute sound clips via the Web.

Awareness
Awareness is how well-known a company, brand, or product is. Companies will typically set a goal for awareness (say, 80 percent of their target audience will recognize the brand name), and then spend as smartly as they can towards that goal.
 
Bandwidth
The range of transmission frequencies a network can use. The greater the bandwidth the more information that can be transferred over that network at one time. The term bandwidth also broadly includes throughput, meaning the amount of data sent.

 

BinHex
A file conversion format that converts binary files to ASCII text files.

 

Bit
A contraction of binary digit, a bit is the smallest unit of information that a computer can hold. Eight bits is equivalent to a byte. The speed at which bits are transmitted or bit rate is usually expressed as bits per second or bps.

 

Browser
A type of software that allows you to navigate information databases; examples are Netscape Navigator and NCSA Mosaic.

 

Byte
The number of bits used to represent a character.

 

Client
A computer that has access to services over a computer network. The computer providing the services is a server. Note: in an X-11 environment, the meanings of client and server are reversed.

 

Client-Server Architecture
An information-passing scheme that works as follows: a client program, such as Mosaic, sends a request to a server. The server takes the request, disconnects from the client and processes the request. When the request is processed, the server reconnects to the client program and the information is transferred to the client. This architecture differs from traditional Internet databases where the client connects to the server and runs the program from the remote site. Note: in an X-11 environment, the meanings of client and server are reversed.

 

Configuration
This is a general-purpose computer term that can refer to the way you have your computer set up. It is also used to describe the total combination of hardware components that make up a computer system and the software settings that allow various hardware components of a computer system to communicate with one another.

 

Configure
The act of changing software or hardware actions by changing the settings.

 

Dial-up Connection
The most popular form of Net connection for the home user, this is a connection from your computer to a host computer over standard telephone lines.

 

Direct Connection
A permanent connection between your computer system and the Internet. This is sometimes referred to as a leased-line connection because the line is leased from the telephone company.

 

DNS
An acronym for Domain Name Server, DNS refers to a database of Internet names and addresses which translates the names to the official Internet Protocol numbers and vice versa.

 

Document
When used in reference to the World Wide Web, a document is any file containing text, media or hyperlinks that can be transferred from an HTTP server to a client program.

 

Download
To transfer to your computer a copy of a file that resides on another computer.

 

DS3
DS3 service is a digital, dedicated private-line service giving you high capacity for any combination of data, voice or video applications. The versatility of DS3 makes it ideal for data-intensive users with large backbone applications or private networks requiring channelized transport. The point-to-point structure of DS3 Service affords greater economies of scale by combining 28 DS1s or 672 separate 64 Kbps channels onto one communications path.

 

FAQ
This is the acronym for Frequently Asked Questions. A common feature on the Internet, FAQs are files of answers to commonly asked questions. Read FAQs before wasting electrons asking obvious questions. Saves you from receiving flames.

 

Firewall
This term refers to security measures designed to protect a networked system from unauthorized or unwelcome access.

 

FTP
File Transfer Protocol is a protocol that allows the transfer of files from one computer to another. FTP is also the verb used to describe the act of transferring files from one computer to another.

 

GIF
This acronym stands for Graphic Interchange Format, a commonly used file compression format developed by CompuServe for transferring graphics files to and from online services.

 

Gopher
A menu-oriented tool used to locate online resources developed at the University of Minnesota.

 

Home Page
The document displayed when you first open your Web browser. Home Page can also refer to the first document you come to at a Web site.

 

Host
A computer acting as an information or communications server.

 

HTML
An acronym for HyperText Markup Language, HTML is the language used to tag various parts of a Web document so browsing software will know how to display that document's links, text, graphics and attached media.

 

HTML Document
A document written in HyperText Markup Language.

 

HTTP
The abbreviation for Hypertext Transfer Protocol, HTTP is used to link and transfer hypertext documents.

 

Hypertext
This term describes the system that allows documents to be cross- linked in such a way that the reader can explore related documents by clicking on a highlighted word or symbol.

 

Inline Images
These are the graphics contained within a Web document.

 

IP
The abbreviation for Internet Protocol, IP refers to the set of communication standards that control communications activity on the Internet. An IP address is the number assigned to any Internet-connected computer.

 

JPEG
The acronym for Joint Photographic Experts Group, JPEG is an image compression format used to transfer color photographs and images over computer networks. Along with GIF, it's one of the most common ways photos are moved over the Web.

 

Links
These are the hypertext connections between Web pages. This is a synonym for hotlinks or hyperlinks.

 

MIME
An acronym for Multipurpose Internet Mail Extensions, MIME is a messaging standard that allows Internet users to exchange e-mail messages enhanced with graphics, video and voice. MIME file types are also used in Mosaic.

 

MPEG
The acronym for Moving Pictures Expert Group, MPEG is an international standard for video compression and desktop movie presentation. A special viewing application is needed to run MPEG files on your computer.

 

NCSA
This is the abbreviation for National Center for Supercomputing Applications at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign.

 

NFS
The abbreviation for Network File System, NFS is a protocol suite developed and licensed by Sun Microsystems that allows different makes of computers running different operating systems to share files and disk storage.

 

NIC
The abbreviation for Network Information Center, NIC is an organization responsible for supplying information for component networks that comprise the Internet.

 

NIC Handle
When you register a domain with InterNIC, they give you a special ID called a handle. When you register subsequent sites it's a good idea to use the initial NIC handle, or else they'll assign you another one. It only matters when you want to update registration information, it allows you to make changes in one place instead of having to change the registration individually for every domain you have.

 

NOC
The abbreviation for Network Operations Center, NOC is the organization responsible for the day-to-day operations of the Internet's component networks.

 

Node
A device attached to a network. A node uses the network as a means of communication and has an address on the network.

 

OC3
Our OC3 service is a super high speed service with 155 megabits per second (compare with a T1 at 1.5 megabits per second, or T3 at 45 megabits per second). OC3 is equivalent to 100 T1s or three T3s.

 

POP
An acronym for Point of Presence, POP is a service provider's location for connecting to users. Generally, POPs refer to the location where people can dial into the provider's host computer. Most providers have several POPs to allow low-cost access via telephone lines.

 

PPP
The abbreviation for Point-to-Point Protocol, PPP is an Internet connection where phone lines and a modem can be used to connect a computer to the Internet.

 

Protocol
A set of standards that define how traffic and communications are handled by a computer or network routers.

 

Router
A communications device designed to transmit signals via the most efficient route possible.

 

Search Engine
This term refers to a program that helps users find information in text-oriented databases.

 

Server
A computer system that manages and delivers information for client computers. Note: in an X-11 environment, the meanings of client and server are reversed.

 

Socket
This is a communication mechanism originally implemented on the BSD version of the UNIX operating system. Sockets are used as endpoints for sending and receiving data between computers.

 

TCP-IP
The basic protocols controlling applications on the Intn the Internet; it stands for "transmission control protocol/Internet protocol."

 

URL
This is the abbreviation for Uniform Resource Locator, the addressing system used in the World Wide Web and other Internet resources. The URL contains information about the method of access, the server to be accessed and the path of any file to be accessed.

 

WAIS
The abbreviation for Wide Area Information Service, WAIS is a Net-wide system for looking up specific information in Internet databases.

 

WAIS gateway
This term refers to a computer that is used to translate WAIS data so it can be made available to an otherwise incompatible network or application. Mosaic must use a WAIS gateway.

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