Technology Tutorials - Glossary

Acceptable Use Policy
A legally binding document signed by online users which regulates the rules of Internet use at a school, business, or home.
Bookmark list A personal list of favorite Web addresses, organized in a single list. All Web browsers allow users to create bookmarks so users can return to their favorite Web sites. Also known as Hotlists.
Browser (See Web Browser)
Bulletin Board Service
A forum for users to browse and exchange information. BBSs are accessible by telephone via a personal computer and a modem. Many BBSs are small operations run by a single person that allow only several users to logon at the same time. Some are much larger and allow hundreds of users to login simultaneously to use the system. Huge, commercial examples are America Online and Prodigy.
Commercial online service A company that, for a fee, allows computer users to dial in via modem to access its information and services, which now includes indirect access to the Internet. Examples are America Online, Prodigy, and Compuserve.
Database A computer holding large amounts of information that can be searched by an Internet user. A storehouse of information on the Net.
Dialup Internet connection
(PPP connection)
Lets a user dial into an Internet Service Provider using a modem and telephone line to access the Internet.
Download/upload To download is to transfer (retrieve) a file from another computer to the user's computer. To upload is to send a file to another computer.
Email Allows users to send and receive messages to each other over the Internet and through commercial online services like America Online and Prodigy.
Emoticons Smileys and other character art used to express feelings in email communication, such as :-) and :-(
Flame To send a harsh, critical email message to another user, usually someone who has violated the rules of netiquette by spamming.
Frequently Asked Questions 
FAQ files answer Frequently Asked Questions on thousands of Internet-related topics. They're freely available at many locations on the Net. This ftp site holds every FAQ on the Net.
Ftp site A publicly-available Internet file transfer site. Ftp sites look like through an Internet browser like Netscape.
Gopher A menu-based system for browsing Internet information. Gopher sites look like gopher:// through an Internet browser like Netscape.
Graphical user interface Software designed to allow the user to execute commands by pointing and clicking on icons or text to navigate the Internet.
Home page The first Web page a user sees when visiting a World Wide Web site. Akin to a table of contents or main menu to a Web site. For example, click here to link to Classroom Connect's home page.
Hotlist A personal list of favorite Web addresses, organized in a single list. All Web browsers allow users to create hotlists so users can return to their favorite Web sites. Also known as Bookmarks.
(Hypertext Markup Language)
Programming "language" of the World Wide Web. HTML turns a text document into a hyperlinked World Wide Web page.
Hyperlink A highlighted word or graphic in a Web document that, when clicked upon, takes the user to a related piece of information on the Internet.
Hypertext The mechanism that allows Internet users to browse through information on the Web. Web pages are created with hypertext (HTML), and contain links to other Web documents or resources located on Internet computers.
(or mailbot) 
An email address that automatically returns information requested by the user. Akin to a real world faxback service.
Internaut Anyone who uses the Internet.
Internet The global "network of networks" that connects more than four million computers in 160 countries. The Internet is the virtual "space" in which users send and receive email, login to remote computers (telnet), browse databases of information (gopher, World Wide Web), and send and receive programs (ftp) contained on these computers.
Internet account Purchased through an Internet service provider, the account assigns a password and email address to an individual or group, and access to the Internet at large.
Internet Relay Chat
Interactive, real-time discussions between Internauts using text messages. Users logon via telnet to designated Internet computers and join discussions already in progress, or create conversations of their own.
Internet server A computer that stores data that can be accessed via the Internet.
Internet Service Provider
Any organization that provides access to the Internet. Many ISPs also offer technical assistance to schools looking to become Internet information providers by placing their school's information online.
Internet site A computer connected to the Internet containing information that can be accessed using an Internet navigation tool.
Java   Java is a general purpose programming language similar to C and C++. It can be used to create any type of computer software that will run on Macintosh, Windows, and UNIX computers. With Java, you can produce large-scale, stand-alone programs such as word processors or image editing programs, or smaller programs that can run on a Web page. These small Web-based programs are called Java apps, which is short for applications.
Keyword A word or words which can be searched for through the Internet's search engines or directories.
Logon To sign on to a computer system.
Mailing lists There are more than 4,000 topic-oriented, email-based discussion groups that can be read and posted to. Internet users subscribe to the lists they want to read and receive messages via email. Also known as discussion groups or listservs.
Modem An electronic device that attaches to a computer and links that computer to the online world via a phone line. Modems are available for any computer, can be internal or external, and come in several speeds, known as the baud rate. The higher the baud rate, the faster the modem. The most popular modem was 28,800 baud but 33,600 baud modems are now the standard. Most Internet service providers allow you to dial into their systems at 28,800, or even 33,600 baud. Modems running at 57,600 baud are only now becoming available. No standard for this ultra-fast modem has been established, so users would do well to hold off on purchasing a 57.6 modem until a single standard has been agreed upon.
Netiquette The rules of conduct for Internet users. Violating netiquette could result in flaming or removal from a mailing list. Some service providers will even cancel a user's Internet account, denying him or her access to the Net, if the violation is severe enough.
Net surfer Someone who navigates the Internet in search of information.
Netscape Navigator Available for both Mac and Windows, Netscape is the most powerful, easy-to-use Internet browser on the Internet. This software is already in use by thousands of schools worldwide, and has become the de facto Web browser for millions of Internet users.
Network A group of computers that are connected in some fashion. Most school networks are known as LANs, or Local Area Networks, because they are networks linking computers in one small area. The Internet could be referred to as a WAN, or a Wide Area Network, because it connects computers in more than one local area.
Online/Offline When you are logged onto a computer through your modem, you are said to be online. When you're using your computer but are not connected to a computer through your modem, you're said to be working offline.
Posts Email messages sent to a mailing list or Usenet newsgroup to be read by subscribers or others on the Internet.
Signature file Return address information such as name, phone number, and email address that users put at the bottom of email messages.
Telnet Allows users to access computers and their data at thousands of places around the world, most often at libraries, universities, and government agencies.
(Uniform Resource Locator)
The address and method used to locate a specific resource on the Internet. A URL beginning with http:// indicates that the site is a WWW resource and that a Web browser will access it.
Usenet newsgroups More than 13,000 topic-oriented message bases that can be read and posted to. Also called newsgroups.
Web Browser 
(Also known as Internet Browser or Browser)
Software that allows computer users to access and navigate the contents of the Internet. Commercial online services like America Online and Prodigy have their own graphical Internet browsers. Users who access the Internet directly primarily use the Netscape Internet browser to get around online.
Web Page A single Internet document containing information that can be accessed over the World Wide Web.
World Wide Web
(WWW or Web)
A revolutionary Internet browsing system that allows for point-and-click navigation of the Internet. The WWW is a spiderweb-like interconnection of millions of pieces of information located on computers around the world. Web documents use hypertext, which incorporates text and graphical "links" to other documents and files on Internet-connected computers.




Copyright ©2000 The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania

Internet Jargon 1

Developed by Montgomery County Intermediate Unit for the Link to Learn Professional Development Project

Internet Jargon

Some Internet Services Example Software

Browser Software program used as interface to the

Internet. Displays documents coded in html.

Usually referred to as “surfing.”


Netscape Navigator

Microsoft Internet Explorer

Text: Lynx

Sometimes plug-ins are

required to expand a browser’s


Example: Shockwave is a

plug-in that allows a browser

to play multi-media.

FTP File Transfer Protocol. Used for transferring

files on the Internet (uploading and

downloading). Files may contain text or binary

data. Files are made public with anonymous

FTP, which doesn’t require a login name or


Mac: Fetch

PC: Trumpet Winsock

Try using “Anonymous” as

password at login.

Gopher An Internet protocol linking a network of

gopher servers that store files, directories and

searchable databases. It is a menu-based file

index. You need client software on your

computer to access gopherspace.


Email Electronic Mail. Mail sent electronically, not

voice or paper. Messages are stored on the

server until the user accesses the system.

Download them to the client computer and read

the mail.


Microsoft Outlook

NewsGroups Message-based discussion groups operating as

bulletin boards. Users leave messages for the

entire group.


Netscape Navigator

Telnet Allows a computer to log onto another

computer over the Internet. You actually leave

the Internet and work on the other system.

Telnet access is used to search databases and

libraries worldwide.

NCSA Telnet

2 Internet Jargon

Developed by Montgomery County Intermediate Unit for the Link to Learn Professional Development Project

ListServ Mailing lists on the Internet usually dealing

with a special interest. Messages delivered

through subscription (free).

Any email program

Must subscribe to receive

messages. Unsubscribe when

you no longer wish to receive.

On the Net Example Software

Internet An international electronic network connecting

government, military, commercial and

educational networks.


Netscape Navigator

Microsoft Internet Explorer

Text: Lynx

WWW World Wide Web. Part of Internet. Formed by

HTTP servers with formatted pages, which can

be downloaded to browsers upon request.


Netscape Navigator

Microsoft Explorer

Text: Lynx

URL Uniform Resource Locator. Identifies the

location of a resource on the Internet. Specifies

the server and path information.

The URL for a document published by the

World Wide Web Consortium describing the

format of URLs is:


Web Site A group of Web pages presenting information

on the WWW.

FAQ Frequently Asked Questions. Sites list answers

to common questions.

HTTP Hypertext Transfer Protocol. A text-based

protocol that serves as the official language of

the World Wide Web. Allows browsers to

communicate with Web servers.

HTML Hypertext Markup Language. A text-based,

page-description language that uses tags to

describe formatting of documents created for

Web pages.

Claris Home Page

Microsoft FrontPage


Internet Jargon 3

Developed by Montgomery County Intermediate Unit for the Link to Learn Professional Development Project

On the Net Example Software



Files reduced in size to make transfer easier. PC or Mac:

Stuffit Expander


Used to decompress files after


DNS Domain Name Service. The online database that

correlates Internet IP addresses, e.g.,, to human-readable domain names

such as Database is distributed

through thousands of name servers throughout

the Internet.

CGI Common Gateway Interface. Means for

transferring information users have typed into

forms found on Web pages to scripts, that run

on a Web server. One common use is for doing

database searches.



Programs that will search the Internet for

relevant sites. Examples: Yahoo, Infoseek, and

Web Crawler.

Reached through web browser.

GIF Graphics Interchange Format. An image file

format used on the Internet. Usually used for

non-photographic images.

JPEG Joint Photographic Experts Group. An image

file format used on the Internet. Usually used

for photographs.

Upload Sending a file from one computer to a remote


Download Receiving and saving files through a

telecommunications system.

4 Internet Jargon

Developed by Montgomery County Intermediate Unit for the Link to Learn Professional Development Project

Getting On the Net


PPP Point-to-Point Protocol. Allows a computer to connect directly to the Internet

through a telephone line and a high-speed modem.

IP Internet Protocol. Responsible for transmitting packets of data over the Internet

and routing them to their destinations. Plays the role of the Post Office allowing

networks and routers to talk to each other as the packet finds its way to the


TCP Transmission Control Protocol. Provides reliable stream delivery service to

Internet applications. Allows an Internet client to open a virtual connection to

another Internet client and then transmit data. Guarantees delivery in the same

order in which data was sent.

POP Post Office Protocol. Text-based protocol used to send and retrieve Internet

email messages. Provides way for mail programs to interact with virtual

mailboxes where messages wait until retrieved.

SMTP Simple Mail Transfer Protocol. The text-based TCP IP protocol used to exchange

mail messages on the Internet. Used primarily to transfer messages between mail


MIME Multipurpose Internet Mail Extensions. A protocol for sending non-ASCII data

(sound, video, graphics) over the Internet using text-based transport protocols

such as POP and SMTP.

NNTP Network News Transfer Protocol. Used to transmit Usenet messages across the


Internet Jargon 5

Developed by Montgomery County Intermediate Unit for the Link to Learn Professional Development Project

General Terms

ISP Internet Service Provider. Organizations providing connection to the Internet for

a monthly or hourly fee.

T1 A leased line providing high-speed connections to the Internet. 1.544-Mbps

(megabits per second)

BPS Bits per Second. The speed of modem transmission. Example: 2400 bps,

14,4000 bps and 28,800 bps (usually written 28.8 Kbps)



Connecting to an Internet Service Provider through a modem and a telephone line.

Can be PPP or terminal emulation.

Connect Time The amount of time a computer is connected to a telecommunications service.

Client/Server The client is the local computer where the browser operates. The server is the

remote computer.

Intranet A network internal to an organization that uses Internet protocols. Usually used

to deliver database information and news within an organization.

LAN Local Area Network. A system of interconnected computers usually located

within one building.

Modem MOdulator-DEModulator. A computer peripheral that enables computers to

transmit information over telephone lines.



Software used to “emulate” a terminal so that a mainframe computer can

communicate with a desktop computer on the Internet.

Not required for PPP connections.


Prosise, Jeff. “Internet Acronyms,” PC Magazine. May 27, 1997, pp 207–208.

The Language of the Internet. The Florida Center for Instructional Technology, 1997.

Glossary of Internet Terms

Copyright (c) © 1994-2004 by Matisse Enzer.
You may copy and redistribute this Glossary only under the terms of one of the following two licenses:

The Creative Commons "Attribution-ShareAlike" license, version 1.0
Creative Commons License
The terms of this license are summarized at and set forth in full at
The Open Content License
The terms of this license are set forth at


The URL of this document is: which is where you can look for the latest, most complete version. Feel free to make links to that URL.

Last update: March 27 2004

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ADN -- (Advanced Digital Network)

Usually refers to a 56Kbps leased-line.

See also: Leased Line


ADSL -- (Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line)

A DSL line where the upload speed is different from the download speed. Usually the download speed is much greater.

See also: DSL, SDSL


Anonymous FTP

See also: FTP



A small Java program that can be embedded in an HTML page. Applets differ from full-fledged Java applications in that they are not allowed to access certain resources on the local computer, such as files and serial devices (modems, printers, etc.), and are prohibited from communicating with most other computers across a network. The common rule is that an applet can only make an Internet connection to the computer from which the applet was sent.

See also: HTML, Java



A tool (software) for finding files stored on anonymous FTP sites. You need to know the exact file name or a substring of it. By 1999 Archie had been almost completely replaced by web-based search engines.

Back when FTP was the main way people moved files over the Internet archie was quite popular.

See also: FTP


ARPANet -- (Advanced Research Projects Agency Network)

The precursor to the Internet. Developed in the late 60's and early 70's by the US Department of Defense as an experiment in wide-area-networking to connect together computers that were each running different system so that people at one location could use computing resources from another location.

See also: Internet (Upper case I), Network, WAN


ASCII -- (American Standard Code for Information Interchange)

This is the defacto world-wide standard for the code numbers used by computers to represent all the upper and lower-case Latin letters, numbers, punctuation, etc. There are 128 standard ASCII codes each of which can be represented by a 7 digit binary number: 0000000 through 1111111.


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A high-speed line or series of connections that forms a major pathway within a network. The term is relative as a backbone in a small network will likely be much smaller than many non-backbone lines in a large network.

See also: Network



How much stuff you can send through a connection. Usually measured in bits-per-second. A full page of English text is about 16,000 bits. A fast modem can move about 57,000 bits in one second. Full-motion full-screen video would require roughly 10,000,000 bits-per-second, depending on compression.

See also: Bit, bps, T-1



In common usage the baud rate of a modem is how many bitsit can send or receive per second. Technically, baud is the number of times per second that the carrier signal shifts value - for example a 1200 bit-per-second modem actually runs at 300 baud, but it moves 4 bits per baud (4 x 300= 1200 bits per second).

See also: Bit, Modem


BBS -- (Bulletin Board System)

A computerized meeting and announcement system that allows people to carry on discussions, upload and download files, and make announcements without the people being connected to the computer at the same time. In the early 1990's there were many thousands (millions?) of BBS?s around the world, most are very small, running on a single IBM clone PC with 1 or 2 phone lines. Some are very large and the line between a BBS and a system like AOL gets crossed at some point, but it is not clearly drawn.



Information consisting entirely of ones and zeros. Also, commonly used to refer to files that are not simply text files, e.g. images.



Binhex -- (BINary HEXadecimal)

A method for converting non-text files (non-ASCII) into ASCII. This is needed because Internet e-mail can only handle ASCII.



Bit -- (Binary DigIT)

A single digit number in base-2, in other words, either a 1 or a zero. The smallest unit of computerized data. Bandwidthis usually measured in bits-per-second.

See also: Bandwidth, Bit, bps, Byte, Kilobyte, Megabyte


BITNET -- (Because It's Time NETwork (or Because It's There NETwork))

A network of educational sites separate from the Internet, but e-mail is freely exchanged between BITNET and the Internet. Listservs®, a popular form of e-mail discussion groups, originated on BITNET. At its peak (the late 1980's and early 1990's) BITNET machines were usually mainframes, often running IBM's MVS operating system. BITNET is probably the only international network that is shrinking.

See also: Internet (Upper case I), Listserv ®, Network


Blog -- (weB LOG)

A blog is basically a journal that is available on the web. The activity of updating a blog is "blogging" and someone who keeps a blog is a "blogger." Blogs are typically updated daily using software that allows people with little or no technical background to update and maintain the blog.

Postings on a blog are almost always arranged in chronological order with the most recent additions featured most prominently.


bps -- (Bits-Per-Second)

A measurement of how fast data is moved from one place to another. A 56K modem can move about 57,000 bits per second.

See also: Bandwidth, Bit



A Client program (software) that is used to look at various kinds of Internet resources.

See also: Client, Server, URL, WWW


BTW -- (By The Way)

A shorthand appended to a comment written in an online forum.

See also: IMHO



A set of Bits that represent a single character. Usually there are 8 Bits in a Byte, sometimes more, depending on how the measurement is being made.

See also: Bit


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CATP -- (Caffeine Access Transport Protocol)

Common method of moving caffeine across Wide Area Networks such as the Internet

CATP was first used at the Binary Cafe in Cybertown and quickly spread world-wide.

There are reported problems with short-circuits and rust and decaffinated beverages were not supprted until version 1.5.3

See also: Internet (Upper case I), IRC, WAN



Certificate Authority

An issuer of Security Certificates used in SSL connections.

See also: SSL


CGI -- (Common Gateway Interface)

A set of rules that describe how a Web Server communicates with another piece of software on the same machine, and how the other piece of software (the ?CGI program?) talks to the web server. Any piece of software can be a CGI program if it handles input and output according to the CGI standard.

See also: Server, WWW



The most common name of a directory on a web server in which CGIprograms are stored.

See also: CGI



A software program that is used to contact and obtain data from a Server software program on another computer, often across a great distance. EachClient program is designed to work with one or more specific kinds of Server programs, and each Server requires a specific kind of Client. A Web Browser is a specific kind of Client.

See also: Browser, Client, Server



Most often used to refer to having a server that belongs to one person or group physically located on an Internet-connected network that belongs to another person or group. Usually this is done because the server owner wants their machine to be on a high-speed Internet connection and/or they do not want the security risks of having the server on thier own network.

See also: Internet (Upper case I), Network, Server



The most common meaning of "Cookie" on the Internet refers to a piece of information sent by a Web Server to a Web Browser that the Browser software is expected to save and to send back to the Server whenever the browser makes additional requests from the Server.

Depending on the type of Cookie used, and the Browsers' settings, the Browser may accept or not accept the Cookie, and may save the Cookie for either a short time or a long time.

Cookies might contain information such as login or registration information, online "shopping cart" information, user preferences, etc.

When a Server receives a request from a Browser that includes a Cookie, the Server is able to use the information stored in the Cookie. For example, the Server might customize what is sent back to the user, or keep a log of particular users' requests.

Cookies are usually set to expire after a predetermined amount of time and are usually saved in memory until the Browser software is closed down, at which time they may be saved to disk if their "expire time" has not been reached.

Cookies do not read your hard drive and send your life story to the CIA, but they can be used to gather more information about a user than would be possible without them.

See also: Browser, Server



CSS -- (Cascading Style Sheet)

A standard for specifying the appearance of text and other elements. CSS was developed for use with HTML in Web pages but is also used in other situations, notably in applications built using XPFE. CSS is typically used to provide a single "library" of styles that are used over and over throughout a large number of related documents, as in a web site. A CSS file might specify that all numbered lists are to appear in italics. By changing that single specification the look of a large number of documents can be easily changed.

See also: HTML, Web page, XPFE



Cyberpunk was originally a cultural sub-genre of science fiction taking place in a not-so-distant, dystopian, over-industrialized society. The term grew out of the work of William Gibson and Bruce Sterling and has evolved into a cultural label encompassing many different kinds of human, machine, and punk attitudes. It includes clothing and lifestyle choices as well.

See also: Cyberspace



Term originated by author William Gibson in his novel Neuromancer the word Cyberspace is currently used to describe the whole range of information resources available through computer networks.

See also: Cyberpunk


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DHTML -- (Dynamic HyperText Markup Language)

DHTML refers to web pages that use a combination of HTML, JavaScript, and CSS to create features such as letting the user drag items around on the web page, some simple kinds of animation, and many more.

See also: CSS, HTML, JavaScript, Web page



The digital version of literati, it is a reference to a vague cloud of people seen to be knowledgeable, hip, or otherwise in-the-know in regardsto the digital revolution.


DNS -- (Domain Name System)

The Domain Name System is the system that translates Internet domain names into IP numbers. A "DNS Server" is a server that performs this kind of translation.

See also: Domain Name, IP Number, Server


Domain Name

The unique name that identifies an Internet site. Domain Names always have 2 or more parts, separated by dots. The part on the left is the most specific, and the part on the right is the most general. A given machine may have more than one Domain Name but a given Domain Name points to only one machine. For example, the domain names:

can all refer to the same machine, but each domain name can refer to no more than one machine.

Usually, all of the machines on a given Network will have the same thing as the right-hand portion of their Domain Names ( in the examples above). It is also possible for a Domain Name to exist but not be connected to an actual machine. This is often done so that a group or business can have an Internet e-mail address without having to establish a real Internet site. In these cases, some real Internet machine must handle the mail on behalf of the listed Domain Name.

See also: IP Number, TLD




Transferring data (usually a file) from a another computer to the computer your are using. The opposite of upload.

See also: Upload


DSL -- (Digital Subscriber Line)

A method for moving data over regular phone lines. A DSL circuit is much faster than a regular phone connection, and the wires coming into the subscriber's premises are the same (copper) wires used for regular phone service. A DSL circuit must be configured to connect two specific locations, similar to a leased line (howeverr a DSL circuit is not a leased line.

A common configuration of DSL allows downloads at speeds of up to 1.544 megabits (not megabytes) per second, and uploads at speeds of 128 kilobits per second. This arrangement is called ADSL: Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line.

Another common configuration is symmetrical: 384 Kilobits per second in both directions.

In theory ADSL allows download speeds of up to 9 megabits per second and upload speeds of up to 640 kilobits per second.

DSL is now a popular alternative to Leased Lines and ISDN, being faster than ISDN and less costly than traditional Leased Lines.

See also: ADSL, Bandwidth, ISDN, Leased Line, SDSL


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Email -- (Electronic Mail)

Messages, usually text, sent from one person to another via computer. E-mail can also be sent automatically to a large number of addresses.

See also: Listserv ®, SMTP



A very common method of networking computers in a LAN.

There is more than one type of Ethernet. By 2001 the standard type was "100-BaseT" which can handle up to about 100,000,000 bits-per-second and can be used with almost any kind of computer.

See also: Bandwidth, FDDI, LAN



An intranet that is accesible to computers that are not hysically part of a companys' own private network, but that is not accessible to the general public, for example to allow vendors and business partners to access a company web site.

Often an intranet will make use of a Virtual Private Network. (VPN.)

See also: Intranet, Network, VPN


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FAQ -- (Frequently Asked Questions)

FAQs are documents that list and answerthe most common questions on a particular subject. There are hundreds of FAQs on subjects as diverse as Pet Grooming and Cryptography. FAQs are usually written by people who have tired of answering the same question over and over.


FDDI -- (Fiber Distributed Data Interface)

A standard for transmitting data on optical fiber cables at a rate of around 100,000,000 bits-per-second (10 times as fast as 10-BaseTEthernet, about twice as fast as T-3).

See also: Ethernet, T-3



An Internet software tool for locating people on other Internet sites. Finger is also sometimes used to give access to non-personal information, but the most common use is to see if a person has an account at a particular Internet site. Many sites do not allow incoming Finger requests, but many do.


Fire Wall

A combination of hardware and software that separates a Network into two or more parts for security purposes.

See also: Network



Originally, "flame" meant to carry forth in a passionate manner in the spirit of honorable debate. Flames most often involved the use of flowery language and flaming well was an art form. More recently flame has come to refer to any kind of derogatory comment no matter how witless or crude.

See also: Flame War


Flame War

When an online discussion degenerates into a series of personal attacks against the debators, rather than discussion of their positions. A heated exchange.

See also: Flame


FTP -- (File Transfer Protocol)

A very common method of moving files between two Internet sites.

FTP is a way to login to another Internet site for the purposes of retrieving and/or sending files. There are many Internet sites that have established publicly accessible repositories of material that can be obtained using FTP, by logging in using the account name "anonymous", thus these sites are called "anonymous ftp servers".

FTP was invented and in wide use long before the advent of the World Wide Web and originally was always used from a text-only interface.

See also: Login, WWW


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The technical meaning is a hardware or software set-up that translates between two dissimilar protocols, for example America Online has a gateway that translates between its internal, proprietary e-mail format and Internet e-mail format. Another, sloppier meaning of gateway is to describe any mechanism for providing access to another system, e.g. AOL might be called a gateway to the Internet.


GIF -- (Graphic Interchange Format)

A common format for image files, especially suitable for images containing large areas of the same color. GIF format files of simple images are often smaller than the same file would be if stored in JPEG format, but GIF format does not store photographic images as well as JPEG.

See also: JPEG, PNG



1000 or 1024 Megabytes, depending on who is measuring.

See also: Byte



Invented at the University of Minnesota in 1993 just before the Web, gopher was a widely successful method of making menus of material available over the Internet.

Gopher was designed to be much easier to use than FTP, while still using a text-only interface.

Gopher is a Client and Server style program, whichrequires that the user have a Gopher Client program. Although Gopher spread rapidly across the globe in only a couple of years, it has been largely supplanted by Hypertext, also known as WWW (World Wide Web). There are still thousands of Gopher Servers on the Internet and we can expect they will remain for a while.

See also: Client, FTP, WWW


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As used in reference to the World Wide Web, ?hit? means a single request from a web browser for a single item from a web server; thus in order for a web browser to display a page that contains 3 graphics, 4 ?hits? would occur at the server: 1 for the HTML page, and one for each of the 3 graphics.

See also: Browser, HTML, Server


Home Page (or Homepage)

Several meanings. Originally, the web page that your browser is set to use when it starts up. The more common meaning refers to the main web page for a business, organization, person or simply the main page out of a collection of web pages, e.g. "Check out so-and-so's new Home Page."

See also: Browser, WWW



Any computer on a network that is a repository for services available to other computers on the network. It is quite common to have one host machine provide several services, such as SMTP (email) and HTTP (web).

See also: Network, SMTP


HTML -- (HyperText Markup Language)

The coding language used to create Hypertext documents for use on the World Wide Web. HTML looks a lot like old-fashioned typesetting code, where you surround a block of text with codes that indicate how it should appear.

The "hyper" in Hypertext comes from the fact that in HTML you can specify that a block of text, or an image, is linked to another file on the Internet. HTML files are meant to be viewed using a "Web Browser".

HTML is loosely based on a more comprehensive system for markup called SGML.

See also: Browser, Hypertext, WWW



HTTP -- (HyperText Transfer Protocol)

The protocol for moving hypertextfiles across the Internet. Requires a HTTP client program on one end, and an HTTP server program on the other end. HTTP is the most important protocol used in the World Wide Web (WWW).

See also: Client, Hypertext, Server, WWW



Generally, any text that contains links to other documents - words or phrases in the document that can be chosen by a reader and which cause another document to be retrieved and displayed.

See also: HTML, HTTP


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IMAP -- (Internet Message Access Protocol)

IMAP is gradually replacing POP as the main protocol used by email clients in communicating with email servers.

Using IMAP an email client program can not only retrieve email but can also manipulate message stored on the server, without having to actually retrieve the messages. So messages can be deleted, have their status changed, multiple mail boxes can be managed, etc.

IMAP is defined in RFC 2060

See also: Client, Email, POP, RFC, Server



IMHO -- (In My Humble Opinion)

A shorthand appended to a comment written in an online forum, IMHO indicates that the writer is aware that they areexpressing a debatable view, probably on a subject already under discussion. One of many such shorthands in common use online, especially in discussion forums.


internet (Lower case i)

Any time you connect 2 or more networks together, you have an internet - as in inter-national or inter-state.

See also: Internet (Upper case I), Network


Internet (Upper case I)

The vast collection of inter-connected networks that are connected using the TCP/IP protocols and that evolved from the ARPANET of the late 60's and early 70's.

The Internet connects tens of thousands of independent networks into a vast global internet and is probably the largest Wide Area Network in the world.

See also: internet (Lower case i), Network, WAN




A private network inside a company or organization that uses the same kinds of software that you would find on the public Internet, but that is only for internal use. Compare with extranet.

See also: Extranet, internet (Lower case i), Internet (Upper case I)


IP Number -- (Internet Protocol Number)

Sometimes called a dotted quad. A unique number consisting of 4 parts separated by dots, e.g.

Every machine that is on the Internet has a unique IP number - if a machine does not have an IP number, it is not really on the Internet. Many machines (especially servers) also have one or more Domain Names that are easier for people to remember.

See also: Domain Name, Server, TCP/IP


IRC -- (Internet Relay Chat)

Basically a huge multi-user live chat facility. There are a number of major IRC servers around the world which are linked to each other. Anyone can create a channel and anything that anyone types in a given channel is seen by all others in the channel. Private channels can (and are) created for multi-person conference calls.

See also: Server


ISDN -- (Integrated Services Digital Network)

Basically a way to move more dataover existing regular phone lines. ISDN is available to much of the USA and in most markets it is priced very comparably to standard analog phone circuits. It can provide speeds of roughly 128,000 bits-per-second over regular phone lines. In practice, most people will be limited to 56,000or 64,000 bits-per-second.

Unlike DSL, ISDN can be used to connect to many different locations, one at a time, just like a regular telephone call, as long the other location also has ISDN.

See also: DSL



ISP -- (Internet Service Provider)

An institution that provides access to the Internet in some form, usually for money.


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Java is a network-friendly programming language invented by Sun Microsystems.

Java is often used to build large, complex systems that involve several different computers interacting across networks, for example transaction processing systems.

Java is also becoming popular for creating programs that run in small electronic devicws, such as mobile telephones.

A very common use of Java is to create programs that can be safely downloaded to your computer through the Internet and immediately run without fear of viruses or other harm to your computer or files. Using small Java programs (called "Applets"), Web pages can include functions such as animations,calculators, and other fancy tricks.

See also: Applet, JDK




JavaScript is a programming language that is mostly used in web pages, usually to add features that make the web page more interactive. When JavaScript is included in an HTML file it relies upon the browser to interpret the JavaScript. When JavaScript is combined with Cascading Style Sheets(CSS), and later versions of HTML (4.0 and later) the result is often called DHTML.

See also: HTML


JDK -- (Java Development Kit)

A software development package from Sun Microsystems that implements the basic set of tools needed to write, test and debugJava applications and applets

See also: Applet, Java


JPEG -- (Joint Photographic Experts Group)

JPEG is most commonly mentioned as a format for image files. JPEG format is preferred to the GIF format for photographic images as opposed to line art or simple logo art.

See also: GIF, PNG


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A thousand bytes. Actually, usually 1024 (210) bytes.

See also: Byte


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LAN -- (Local Area Network)

A computer network limited to the immediate area, usually the same building or floor of a building.

See also: Network, VPN, WAN


Leased Line

Refers to line such as a telephone line or fiber-optic cable that is rented for exclusive 24-hour, 7-days-a-week use from your location to another location. The highest speed data connections require a leased line.

See also: DSL, ISDN



A widely used Open Source Unix-like operating system. Linux was first released by its inventor Linus Torvalds in 1991. There are versions of Linux for almost every available type of computer hardware from desktop machines to IBM mainframes. The inner workings of Linux are open and available for anyone to examine and change as long as they make their changes available to the public. This has resulted in thousands of people working on various aspects of Linux and adaptation of Linux for a huge variety of purposes, from servers to TV-recording boxes.

See also: Open Source Software, Unix


Listserv ®

The most common kind of maillist, "Listserv" is a registered trademark of L-Soft international, Inc. Listservs originated on BITNET but they are now common on the Internet.

See also: BITNET, Internet (Upper case I), Maillist



Noun or a verb.

Noun: The account name used to gain access to a computer system. Not a secret (contrast with Password).

Verb: the act of connecting to a computer system by giving your credentials (usually your "username" and "password")

See also: Password


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(or Mailing List) A (usually automated) system that allows people to send e-mail to one address, whereupon their message is copied and sent to all of the other subscribers to the maillist. In this way, people who have many different kinds of e-mail access can participate in discussions together.

See also: Email, Listserv ®



A million bytes. Actually, technically, 1024 kilobytes.

See also: Byte, Kilobyte


Meta Tag

A specific kind of HTML tag that contains information not normally displayed to the user. Meta tags contan information about the page itself, hence the name ("meta" means "about this subject")

Typical uses of Meta tags are to include information for search engines to help them better categorize a page.

You can see the Meta tags in a page if you view the pages' source code.

See also: HTML, Search Engine, SEO



MIME -- (Multipurpose Internet Mail Extensions)

Originally a standard for defining the types of files attached to standard Internet mail messages. The MIME standard has come to be used in many situations where one cmputer programs needs to communicate with another program about what kind of file is being sent.

For example, HTML files have a MIME-type of text/html, JPEG files are image/jpeg, etc.

See also: HTML, JPEG




Generally speaking, "to mirror" is to maintain an exact copy of something. Probably the most common use of the term on the Internet refers to "mirror sites" which are web sites, or FTP sites that maintain copies of material originated at another location, usually in order to provide more widespread access to the resource. For example, one site might create a library of software, and 5 other sites might maintain mirrors of that library.

See also: FTP, WWW


Modem -- (MOdulator, DEModulator)

A device that connects a computer to a phone line. A telephone for a computer. A modem allows a computer to talk to other computers through the phone system. Basically, modems do for computers what a telephone does for humans.


MOO -- (Mud, Object Oriented)

One of several kinds of multi-user role-playing environments.

See also: MUD



The first WWW browser that was available for the Macintosh, Windows,and UNIX all with the same interface. Mosaic really started the popularity of the Web. The source-code to Mosaic was licensed by several companies and used to create many other web browsers.

Mosaic was developed at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA), at the Univeristy of Urbana-Champange in Illinois, USA. The first version was released in late 1993.

See also: Browser, WWW



MUD -- (Multi-User Dungeon or Dimension)

A (usually text-based) multi-user simulation environment. Some are purely for fun and flirting, others are used for serious software development, or education purposes and all thatlies in between. A significant feature of most MUDs is that users can create things that stay after they leave and which other users can interact within their absence, thus allowing a world to be built gradually and collectively.

See also: MOO


MUSE -- (Multi-User Simulated Environment)

One kind of MUD - usually with little or no violence.

See also: MUD


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The etiquette on the Internet.



Derived from the term citizen, referring to a citizen of the Internet,or someone who uses networked resources. The term connotes civic responsibility and participation.



A WWW Browser and the name of a company. The Netscape (tm) browser was originally based on the Mosaic program developed at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA).

See also: Mosaic



Any time you connect 2 or more computers together so that they can share resources, you have a computer network. Connect 2 or more networks together and you have an internet.

See also: internet (Lower case i)



The name for discussion groups on USENET.

See also: USENET


NIC -- (Network Information Center)

Generally, any office that handles information for a network. The most famous of these on the Internet was the InterNIC, which was where most new domain names were registered until that process was decentralized to a number of private companies. Also means "Network Interface card", which is the card in a computer that you plug a network cable into.

See also: Domain Name, Network


NNTP -- (Network News Transport Protocol)

The protocol used by clientand server software to carry USENET postings back and forth over a TCP/IP network. If you are using any of the more common software such as Netscape, Nuntius, Internet Explorer, etc. to participate in newsgroups then you are benefiting from an NNTP connection.

See also: Client, Server, TCP/IP



Any single computer connected to a network.

See also: Network


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Open Content

Copyrighted information (such as this Glossary) that is made available by the copyright owner to the general public under license terms that allow reuse of the material, often with the requirement (as with this Glossary) that the re-user grant the public the same rights to the modified version that the re-user received from the copyright owner.

Information that is in the Public Domain might also be considered a form of Open Content.

See also: Open Source Software



Open Source Software

Open Source Software is software for which the underlying programming code is available to the users so that they may read it, make changes to it, and build new versions of the software incorporating their changes. There are many types of Open Source Software, mainly differing in the licensing term under which (altered) copies of the source code may (or must be) redistributed.

See also: Open Content


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Packet Switching

The method used to move data around on the Internet. In packet switching,all the data coming out of a machine is broken up into chunks, each chunk has the address of where it came from and where it is going. This enables chunks of data from many different sources to co-mingle on the same lines, and be sorted and directed along different routes by special machines along the way. This way many people can use the same lines at the same time.

You might think of several caravans of trucks all using the same road system to carry materials.

See also: Internet (Upper case I), Router




A code used to gain access (login) to a locked system. Good passwords contain letters and non-letters and are not simple combinations such as virtue7. A good password might be:


But don't use that one!

See also: Login


PDF -- (Portable Document Format)

A file format designed to enable printing and viewing of documents with all their formatting (typefaces, images, layout, etc.) appearing the same regardless of what operating system is used, so a PDF document should look the same on Windows, Macintosh, linux, OS/2, etc. The PDF format is based on the widely used Postcript document-description language. Both PDF and Postscript were developed by the Adobe Corporation.



To check if a server is running. From the sound that a sonar systems makes in movies, you know, when they are searching for a submarine.



A (usually small) piece of software that adds features to a larger piece of software. Common examples are plug-ins for the Netscape® browser and web server. Adobe Photoshop® also uses plug-ins.

See also: Browser, Server


PNG -- (Portable Network Graphics)

PNG is a graphics format specifically designed for use on the World Wide Web. PNG enable compression of images without any loss of quality, including high-resolution images. Another important feature of PNG is that anyone may create software that works with PNG images without paying any fees - the PNG standard is free of any licensing costs.

See also: GIF, JPEG


POP -- (Point of Presence, also Post Office Protocol)

Two commonly used meanings:
Point of Presence and Post Office Protocol.

A Point of Presence usually means a city or location where a network can be connected to, often with dial up phone lines. So if an Internet company says they will soon have a POP in Belgrade, it means that they will soon have a local phone number in Belgrade and/or a place where leased lines can connect to their network.

A second meaning, Post Office Protocol refers to a way that e-mail client software such as Eudora gets mail from a mail server. When you obtain an account from an Internet Service Provider (ISP) you almost always get a POP account with it, and it is this POP account that you tell your e-mail software to use to get your mail. Another protocol called IMAP is replacing POP for email.

See also: Client, Email, IMAP, ISP, Server



3 meanings. First and most generally, a place where information goes into or out of a computer, or both. E.g. the serial port on a personal computer is where a modem would be connected.

On the Internet port often refers to a number that is part of a URL, appearing after a colon (:) right after the domain name. Every service on an Internet server listens on a particular port number on that server. Most services have standard port numbers, e.g. Web servers normally listen on port 80. Services can also listen on non-standard ports, in which case the port number must be specified in a URL when accessing the server, so you might see a URL of the form:


This shows a gopher server running on a non-standard port (the standard gopher port is 70).


Finally, port also refers to translating a piece of software to bring it from one type of computer system to another, e.g. to translate a Windows program so that is will run on a Macintosh.

See also: URL



Usually used as a marketing term to described a Web site that is or is intended to be the first place people see when using the Web. Typically a "Portal site" has a catalog of web sites, a search engine, or both. A Portal site may also offer email and other service to entice people to use that site as their main "point of entry" (hence "portal") to the Web.



A single message entered into a network communications system.


PPP -- (Point to Point Protocol)

The most common protocol used to connect home computers to the Internet over regular phone lines.

Most well known as a protocol that allows a computer to use a regular telephone line and a modem to make TCP/IPconnections and thus be really and truly on the Internet.

See also: Modem, SLIP, TCP/IP



On the Internet "protocol" usually refers to a set of rules that define an exact format for communication between systems. For example the HTTP protocol defines the format for communication between web browsers and web servers, the IMAP protocol defines the format for communication between IMAP email servers and clients, and the SSL protocol defines a format for encrypted communications over the Internet.

Virtually all Internet protocls are defined in RFC documents.



Proxy Server

A Proxy Server sits in between a Client and the "real" Server that a Client is trying to use. Client's are sometimes configured to use a Proxy Server, usually an HTTP server. The clients makes all of it's requests from the Proxy Server, which then makes requests from the "real" server and passes the result back to the Client. Sometimes the Proxy server will store the results and give a stored result instead of making a new one (to reduce use of a Network). Proxy servers are commonly established on Local Area Networks

See also: Client, HTTP, LAN, Network, Server


PSTN -- (Public Switched Telephone Network)

The regular old-fashioned telephone system.


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RDF -- (Resource Definition Framework)

A set of rules (a sort of language) for creating descriptions of information, especially information available on the World Wide Web. RDF could be used to describe a collection of books, or artists, or a collection of web pages as in the RSS data format which uses RDF to create machine-readable summaries of web sites.

RDF is also used in XPFE applications to define the relationships between different collections of elements, for example RDF could be used to define the relationship between the data in a database and the way that data is displayed to a user.

See also: RSS, Web page, WWW, XML, XPFE, XUL


RFC -- (Request For Comments)

The name of the result and the process for creating a standard on the Internet. New standards are proposed and published on the Internet, as a Request For Comments. The proposal is reviewed by the Internet Engineering Task Force (, a consensus-building body that facilitates discussion, and eventually a new standard is established, but the reference number/name for the standard retains the acronym RFC, e.g. the official standard for e-mail message formats is RFC 822.



A special-purpose computer (or software package) that handles the connection between 2 or more Packet-Switched networks. Routers spend all their time looking at the source and destination addresses of the packets passing through them and deciding which route to send them on.

See also: Network, Packet Switching


RSS -- (Rich Site Summary or RDF Site Summary or Real Simple Syndication)

XML-based summary of a web site, used for syndication, etc. There are RSS "feeds" which are sources of RSS information about web sites, and RSS "readers" which read RSS feeds and display their content to users.

See also: RDF, XML


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SDSL -- (Symmetric Digital Subscriber Line)

A version of DSL where the upload speeds and download speeds are the same.

See also: ADSL, DSL


Search Engine

A (usually web-based) system for searching the information available on the Web.

Some search engines work by automatically searching the contents of other systems and creating a database of the results. Other search engines contains only material manually approved for inclusion in a database, and some combine the two approaches.

See also: WWW


Security Certificate

A chunk of information (often stored as a text file) that is used by the SSL protocol to establish a secure connection.

See also: SSL


SEO -- (Search Engine Optimization)

The practice of designing web pages so that they rank as high as possible in search results from search engines.

There is "good" SEO and "bad" SEO. Good SEO involves making the web page clearly describe its subject, making sure it contains truly useful information, including accurate information in Meta tags, and arranging for other web sites to make links to the page. Bad SEO involves attempting to deceive people into believing the page is more relevant than it truly is by doing things like adding inaccurate Meta tags to the page.

See also: Meta Tag, Search Engine



A computer, or a software package, that provides a specific kind of service to client software running on other computers. The term can refer to a particular piece of software, such as a WWW server, or to the machine on which the software is running, e.g. "Our mail server is down today, that's why e-mail isn't getting out."

A single server machine can (and often does) have several different server software packages running on it, thus providing many different servers to clients on the network.

Sometimes server software is designed so that additional capabilities can be added to the main program by adding small programs known as servlets.

See also: Client, Network, Servlet



A small computer program designed to be add capabilities to a larger piece of server software.

Common examples are "Java servlets", which are small programs written in the Java language and which are added to a web server. Typically a web server that uses Java servlets will have many of them, each one designed to handle a very specific situation, for example one servlet will handle adding items to a "shopping cart", while a different servlet will handle deleting items from the "shopping cart."

See also: Java, Server, Web


SLIP -- (Serial Line Internet Protocol)

A standard that was popular in the early 1990's for using a regular telephone line (a serial line) and a modem to connect a computer as a realInternet site. SLIP has largely been replaced by PPP.

See also: PPP


SMDS -- (Switched Multimegabit Data Service)

A standard for very high-speed data transfer.


SMTP -- (Simple Mail Transfer Protocol)

The main protocol used to send electronic mail from server to server on the Internet.

SMTP is defined in RFC 821 and modified by many later RFC's.

See also: Email, RFC, Server


SNMP -- (Simple Network Management Protocol)

A set of standards for communication with devices connected to a TCP/IP network. Examples of these devices include routers, hubs, and switches.

SNMP is defined in RFC 1089

See also: Network, RFC, Router, TCP/IP


Spam (or Spamming)

An inappropriate attempt to use a mailing list, or USENET or other networked communications facility as if it was a broadcast medium (which it is not) by sending the same message to a large number of people who didn?t ask for it. The term probably comes from a famous Monty Python skit which featured the word spam repeated over and over. The term may also have come from someone?s low opinion of the food product with the same name, which is generally perceived as a generic content-free waste of resources. (Spam® is a registered trademark of Hormel Corporation, for its processed meat product.)

See also: Maillist, USENET


SQL -- (Structured Query Language)

A specialized language for sending queries to databases. Most industrial-strength and many smaller database applications can be addressed using SQL. Each specific application will have its own slightly different version of SQL implementing features unique to that application, but all SQL-capable databases support a common subset of SQL.

A example of an SQL statement is:

    SELECT name,email FROM people_table WHERE contry='uk'


SSL -- (Secure Socket Layer)

A protocol designed by Netscape Communications to enable encrypted, authenticated communications across the Internet.


Sysop -- (System Operator)

Anyone responsible for the physical operations of a computer system or network resource. For example, a System Administrator decides how often backups and maintenance should be performed and the System Operator performs those tasks.


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A leased-line connection capable of carrying data at 1,544,000 bits-per-second. At maximum theoretical capacity, a T-1 line could move a megabyte in less than 10 seconds. That is still not fast enough for full-screen, full-motion video, for which you need at least 10,000,000 bits-per-second. T-1 lines are commonly used to connect large LANs to theInternet.

See also: Bit, Internet (Upper case I), LAN, Leased Line, Megabyte



A leased-line connection capable of carrying data at 44,736,000 bits-per-second. This is more than enough to do full-screen, full-motionvideo.

See also: Internet (Upper case I), LAN, Leased Line


TCP/IP -- (Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol)

This is the suiteof protocols that defines the Internet. Originally designed for the UNIX operating system, TCP/IP software is now included with every major kind of computer operating system. To be truly on the Internet, your computer must have TCP/IP software.

See also: Internet (Upper case I), Packet Switching, Unix



The command and program used to login from one Internet siteto another. The telnet command/program gets you to the login: prompt of another host.

See also: Host, Login



1000 gigabytes.

See also: Gigabyte



A device that allows you to send commands to a computer somewhere else. At a minimum, this usually means a keyboard and a display screen and some simple circuitry. Usually you will use terminal software in a personal computer - the software pretends to be (emulates) a physical terminal and allows you to type commands to a computer somewhere else.


Terminal Server

A special purpose computer that has places to plug in many modemson one side, and a connection to a LAN or host machine onthe other side. Thus the terminal server does the work of answering thecalls and passes the connections on to the appropriate node. Mostterminal servers can provide PPP or SLIP services if connectedto the Internet.


TLD -- (Top Level Domain)

The last (right-hand) part of a complete Domain Name. For example in the domain name ".net" is the Top Level Domain.

There are a large number of TLD's, for example .biz, .com, .edu, .gov, .info, .int, .mil, .net, .org, and a collection of two-letter TLD's corresponding to the standard two-letter country codes, for example, .us, .ca, .jp, etc.

See also: Domain Name


Trojan Horse

A computer program is either hidden inside another program or that masquerades as something it is not in order to trick potential users into running it. For example a program that appears to be a game or image file but in reality performs some other function. The term "Trojan Horse" comes from a possibly mythical ruse of war used by the Greeks sometime between 1500 and 1200 B.C.

A Trojan Horse computer program may spread itself by sending copies of itself from the host computer to other computers, but unlike a virus it will (usually) not infect other programs.

See also: Virus, Worm


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UDP -- (User Datagram Protocol)

One of the protocols for data transfer that is part of the TCP/IP suite of protocols. UDP is a "stateless" protocol in that UDP makes no provision for acknowledgement of packets received.

See also: Packet Switching, TCP/IP



A computer operating system (the basic software running on a computer, underneath things like word processors and spreadsheets). Unix is designed to be used by many people at the same time (it is multi-user) and has TCP/IP built-in. It is the most common operating system for servers on the Internet.

Apple computers' Macintosh operating system, as of version 10 ("Mac OS X"), is based on Unix.

See also: Linux, Server, TCP/IP



Transferring data (usually a file) from a the computer you are using to another computer. The opposite of download.

See also: Download


URI -- (Uniform Resource Identifier)

An address for s resource available on the Internet.

The first part of a URI is called the "scheme". the most well known scheme is http, but there are many others. Each URI scheme has its own format for how a URI should appear.

Here are examples of URIs using the http, telnet, and news schemes:

See also: URL, URN


URL -- (Uniform Resource Locator)

The term URL is basically synonymous with URI. URI has replaced URL in technical specifications.

See also: URI, URN


URN -- (Uniform Resource Name)

A URI that is supposed to be available for along time. For an address to be a URN some institution is supposed to make a commitment to keep the resource available at that address.

See also: URI



A world-wide system of discussion groups, with comments passed among hundreds of thousands of machines. Not all USENET machines are on the Internet. USENET is completely decentralized, with over 10,000 discussion areas, called newsgroups.

See also: Newsgroup


UUENCODE -- (Unix to Unix Encoding)

A method for converting files from Binaryto ASCII (text) so that they can be sent across the Internet via email.

See also: ASCII, Binary, Email


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Veronica -- (Very Easy Rodent Oriented Net-wide Index to Computerized Archives)

Developed at the University of Nevada, Veronica was a constantly updated database of the names of almost every menu item on thousands of gopherservers. The Veronica database could be searched from most major gophermenus.

Now made obsolete by web-bases search engines.

See also: Gopher, Search Engine



A chunk of computer programming code that makes copies of itself without any concious human intervention. Some viruses do more than simply replicate themselves, they might display messages, install other software or files, delete software of files, etc.

A virus requires the presence of some other program to replicate itself. Typically viruses spread by attaching themselves to programs and in some cases files, for example the file formats for Microsoft word processor and spreadsheet programs allow the inclusion of programs called "macros" which can in some cases be a breeding ground for viruses.

See also: Trojan Horse, Worm


VPN -- (Virtual Private Network)

Usually refers to a network in which some of the parts are connected using the public Internet, but the data sent across the Internet is encrypted, so the entire network is "virtually" private.

See also: Internet (Upper case I)


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WAIS -- (Wide Area Information Servers)

A commercial software package that allows the indexing of huge quantities of information, and then making those indices searchable across networks such as the Internet. A prominent feature of WAIS is that the search results are ranked (scored) accordingto how relevant the hits are, and that subsequent searches can find more stuff like that last batch and thus refine the search process.


WAN -- (Wide Area Network)

Any internet or network that covers an area larger than a single building or campus.

See also: internet (Lower case i), LAN



Short for "World Wide Web."

See also: WWW


Web page

A document designed for viewing in a web browser. Typically written in HTML. A web site is made of one or more web pages.

See also: Browser, HTML, Web, Website



The entire collection of web pages and other information (such as images, sound, and video files, etc.) that are made available through what appears to users as a single web server. Typically all the of pages in a web site share the same basic URL, for example the following URLs are all for pages within the same web site:

The term has a somewhat informal nature since a large organization might have separate "web sites" for each division, but someone might talk informally about the organizations' "web site" when speaking of all of them.

See also: Web, Web page



Wi-Fi -- (Wireless Fidelity)

A popular term for a form of wireless data communication, basically Wi-Fi is "Wireless Ethernet".

See also: Ethernet



A worm is a virus that does not infect other programs. It makes copies of itself, and infects additional computers (typically by making use of network connections) but does not attach itself to additional programs; however a worm might alter, install, or destroy files and programs.

See also: Trojan Horse, Virus


WWW -- (World Wide Web)

World Wide Web (or simply Web for short) is a term frequently used (incorrectly) when referring to "The Internet", WWW has two major meanings:

First, loosely used: the whole constellation of resources that can be accessed using Gopher, FTP, HTTP,telnet, USENET, WAIS and some other tools.

Second, the universe of hypertext servers (HTTP servers), more commonly called "web servers", which are the servers that serve web pages to web browsers.

See also: Browser, FTP, Gopher, HTTP, Internet (Upper case I), Server, URL, Web, Web page


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XML -- (eXtensible Markup Language)

A widely used system for defining data formats. XML provides a very rich system to define complex documents and data structures such as invoices, molecular data, news feeds, glossaries, inventory descriptions, real estate properties, etc.

As long as a programmer has the XML definition for a collection of data (often called a "schema") then they can create a program to reliably process any data formatted according to those rules.


XPFE -- (Cross Platform Front End)

A suite of technologies used to create applications that will work and look the same on different computer operating systems. A widely used XPFE application is the Mozilla web browser and its derivities, such as the Netscape web browser in version 7 and later. The primary technologies used in creating XPFE applications are Javascript, Cascading Style Sheets, and XUL.

See also: CSS, JavaScript, XUL


XUL -- (eXtensible User-interface Language)

A markup language similar to HTML and based on XML.

XUL used to define what the user interface will look like for a particular piece of software. XUL is used to define what buttons, scrollbars, text boxes, and other user-interface items will appear, but it is not used to define how those item will look (e.g. what color they are).

The most widely used example of XUL use is probably in theMozilla web browser, where the entire user interface is defined using the XUL language.

See also: HTML, XML



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U.C. Berkeley

Library Web
Finding Information on the Internet: A Tutorial

Glossary of Internet & Web Jargon
UC Berkeley - Teaching Library Internet Workshops

About This Tutorial | Table of Contents | Handouts | Glossary

The URL of this page is

Buttons in most browsers' Tool Button Bar, upper left. BACK returns you to the document previously viewed. FORWARD goes to the next document, after you go BACK.
If it seems like the BACK button does not work, check if you are in a new Netscape window; some Web pages are programmed to open a new window when you click on some links.  Each window has its own short-term search HISTORY. If this does not work, use GO to select the page you want (some Web pages are programmed to disable BACK).
A blog (short for "web log") is a type of web page that serves as a publicly accessible personal journal (or log) for an individual. Typically updated daily, blogs often reflect the personality of the author. Blog software usually has archives of old blogs, and is searchable. Frequently blogging software is used by web pages providing excellent information on many topics, although very frequently the content is personal and requires VERY careful evaluation.
Way in Netscape to store in your computer direct links to sites you wish to return to. The equivalent in Internet Explorer (IE) is called a "Favorite." To create a bookmark in Netscape, click on BOOKMARKS, then ADD BOOKMARK. Or left-click on and drag the little bookmark icon (in Netscape 4.6 and higher, to the right of the word BOOKMARK) to the place you want a new bookmark filed. To visit a bookmarked site, click on BOOKMARKS and select the site from the list.
The equivalent in Internet Explorer to Netscape's Bookmarks is called "Favorites."
You can download a bookmark file to diskette and install it on another computer. To do this in Netscape, select BOOKMARKS, then EDIT BOOKMARKS, then, in the FILE menu, select SAVE AS. To do this in IE, select from the main browser tool bar FILE, then Import and Export... and follow directions for exporting to a file. Import (part of the same IE program) allows you to bring a Netscape Bookmark file into IE as Favorites.
Way to combine terms using "operators" such as "AND," "OR," "AND NOT" and sometimes "NEAR." AND requires all terms appear in a record. OR retrieves records with either term. AND NOT excludes terms. Parentheses may be used to sequence operations and group words. Always enclose terms joined by OR with parentheses. Which search engines have this?
See +REQUIRE or -REJECT TERM and FUZZY AND. Want a more extensive explanation of Boolean logic, with illustrations?
To follow links in a page, to shop around in a page, exploring what's there, a bit like window shopping. The opposite of browsing a page is searching it. When you search a page, you find a search box, enter terms, and find all occurrences of the terms throughout the site. When you browse, you have to guess which words on the page pertain to your interests. Searching is usually more efficient, but sometimes you find things by browsing that you might not find because you might not think of the "right" term to search by.
Browsers are software programs that enable you to view WWW documents. They "translate" HTML-encoded files into the text, images, sounds, and other features you see. Microsoft Internet Explorer (called simply IE), Netscape, Mosaic, Macweb, and Netcruiser are examples of browsers that enable you to view text and images and many other WWW features. They are software that must be installed on your computer. For more information about browsers, consult the introductory pages of the Teaching Library tutorial. See also LYNX, a browser often used from slow modems because it does not display images, colors, or sound, but lets you perform most basic WWW functions and see the content.
A cache temporarily stores web pages you have visited in your computer. A copy of documents you retrieve is stored in cache. When you use GO, BACK, or any other means to revisit a document, Netscape first check to see if it is in cache and will retrieve it from there because it is much faster than retrieving it from the server. If memory allocated to cache in your computer becomes full, Netscape discards older documents.
You can change the size of cache, although larger cache may affect other operations and is limited by the amount of memory on your computer. To change cache size, select Options, then Network Preferences, then Cache.
Capital letters (upper case) retrieve only upper case. Most search tools are not case sensitive or only respond to initial capitals, as in proper names. It is always safe to key all lower case (no capitals), because lower case will always retrieve upper case. Which search engines have this?
"Common Gateway Interface," the most common way Web programs interact dynamically with users. Many search boxes and other applications that result in a page with content tailored to the user's search terms rely on CGI to process the data once it's submitted, to pass it to a background program in JAVA, JAVASCRIPT, or another programming language, and then to integrate the response into a display using HTML.
A message from a WEB SERVER computer, sent to and stored by your browser on your computer. When your computer consults the originating server computer, the cookie is sent back to the server, allowing it to respond to you according to the cookie's contents. The main use for cookies is to provide customized Web pages according to a profile of your interests. When you log onto a "customize" type of invitation on a Web page and fill in your name and other information, this may result in a cookie on your computer which that Web page will access to appear to "know" you and provide what you want. If you fill out these forms, you may also receive e-mail and other solicitation independent of cookies.
Hierarchical scheme for indicating logical and sometimes geographical venue of a web-page from the network. In the US, common domains are .edu (education), .gov (government agency), .net (network related), .com (commercial), .org (nonprofit and research organizations). Outside the US, domains indicate country: ca (Canada), uk (United Kingdom), au (Australia), jp (Japan), fr (France), etc. Neither of these lists is exhaustive. See also DNS entry.
Any of these terms refers to the initial part of a URL, down to the first /, where the domain and name of the host or SERVER computer are listed (most often in reversed order, name first, then domain). The domain name gives you who "published" a page, made it public by putting it on the Web.
A domain name is translated in huge tables standardized across the Internet into a numeric IP address unique the host computer sought. These tables are maintained on computers called "Domain Name Servers." Whenever you ask the browser to find a URL, the browser must consult the table on the domain name server that particular computer is networked to consult.
"Domain Name Server entry" frequently appears a browser error message when you try to enter a URL. If this lookup fails for any reason, the "lacks DNS entry" error occurs. The most common remedy is simply to try the URL again, when the domain name server is less busy, and it will find the entry (the corresponding numeric IP address). For more information, see "All About Domain Names."
To copy something from a primary source to a more peripheral one, as in saving something found on the Web (currently located on its server) to diskette or to a file on your local hard drive. More information.
In Windows, DOS and some other operating systems, one or several letters at the end of a filename. Filename extensions usually follow a period (dot) and indicate the type of file. For example, this.txt denotes a plain text file, that.htm or that.html denotes an HTML file. Some common image extensions are picture.jpg or picture.jpeg or picture.bmp or picture.gif
In the Internet Explorer browser, a means to get back to a URL you like, similar to Netscape's Bookmarks.
Ability to limit a search by requiring word or phrase to appear in a specific field of documents (e.g., title, url, link). See LIMITING TO FIELD.
Button in Netscape Tool Button Bar at top. Searches for word(s) keyed in document in screen only. Useful to locate a term in a long document. Can be invoked by the keyboard command, Ctrl+F.
How up-to-date a search engine database is, based primarily on how often its spiders recirculate around the Web and update their copies of the web pages they hold, and discover new ones. Also determined by how quickly they integrate new sites that web authors send to them. Two weeks is about as good as most search engines do, but some update certain selected web sites more frequently.
A format for web documents that divides the screen into segments, each with a scroll bar as if it were as "window" within the window. Usually, selecting a category of documents in one frame shows the contents of the category in another frame. To go BACK in a frame, position the cursor in the frame an press the right mouse button, and select "Back in frame" (or Forward).
You can adjust frame dimensions by positioning the cursor over the border between frames and dragging the border up/down or right/left holding the mouse button down over the border.
File Transfer Protocol. Ability to transfer rapidly entire files from one computer to another, intact for viewing or other purposes.
In ranking of results, documents with all terms (Boolean AND) are ranked first, followed by documents containing any terms (Boolean OR) are retrieved. The farther down, the fewer the terms, although at least one should always be present.
Button in Netscape Menu Bar at top. Provides list of recent sites you visited, retained for the current session only. Click on any site in the list to return to the site. For a more permanent marker, make a BOOKMARK.
HEAD or HEADER (of HTML document)
The top portion of the HTML source code behind Web pages, beginning with <HEAD> and ending with </HEAD>. It contains the Title, Description, Keywords fields and others that web page authors may use to describe the page. The title appears in the title bar of most browsers, but the other fields cannot be seen as part of the body of the page. To view the <HEAD> portion of web pages in Netscape, click VIEW, Page Source. In Internet Explorer, click VIEW, Source. Some search engines will retrieve based on text in these fields.
HISTORY, Search History
Available by using the combined keystrokes CTRL + H, a more permanent record of sites you have visited/retrieved than GO. You can set how many days your Netscape retains history in Edit | Preferences, and in Internet Explorer in Tools | Internet Options ? General.
Computer that provides web-documents to clients or users. See also server.
Hypertext Markup Language. A standardized language of computer code, imbedded in "source" documents behind all Web documents, containing the textual content, images, links to other documents (and possibly other applications such as sound or motion), and formatting instructions for display on the screen. When you view a Web page, you are looking at the product of this code working behind the scenes in conjunction with your browser. Browsers are programmed to interpret HTML for display.
HTML often imbeds within it other programming languages and applications such as SGML, XML, Javascript, CGI-script and more. It is possible to deliver or access and execute virtually any program via the WWW.
You can see HTML in Netscape by selecting the View pop-down menu tab, then "Document Source." If you download a document as "Source," the file will contain HTML markup codes and can be viewed in Netscape and other browsers.
On the World Wide Web, the feature, built into HTML, that allows a text area, image, or other object to become a "link" (as if in a chain) that retrieves another computer file (another Web page, image, sound file, or other document) on the Internet. The range of possibilities is limited by the ability of the computer retrieving the outside file to view, play, or otherwise open the incoming file. It needs to have software that can interact with the imported file. Many software capabilities of this type are built into browsers or can be added as "plug-ins."
INTERNET (Upper case I)
The vast collection of interconnected networks that all use the TCP/IP protocols and that evolved from the ARPANET of the late 60’s and early 70’s. An "internet" (lower case i) is any computers connected to each other (a network), and are not part of the Internet unless the use TCP/IP protocols. An "intranet" is a private network inside a company or organization that uses the same kinds of software that you would find on the public Internet, but that is only for internal use. An intranet may be on the Internet or may simply be a network.
IP Address or IP Number
(Internet Protocol number or address). A unique number consisting of 4 parts separated by dots, e.g.
Every machine that is on the Internet has a unique IP address. If a machine does not have an IP number, it is not really on the Internet. Most machines also have one or more Domain Names that are easier for people to remember.
ISP or Internet Service Provider
A company that sells Internet connections via modem (examples: aol, Mindspring - thousands of ISPs to choose from; not easy to evaluate). Faster, more expensive Internet connectivity is available via cable, DSL, ISDN, or web-TV. Often these companies also provide Web page hosting service (free or relatively inexpensive web pages -- the origin of many personal pages).
A network-oriented programming language invented by Sun Microsystems that is specifically designed for writing programs that can be safely downloaded to your computer through the Internet and immediately run without fear of viruses or other harm to our computer or files. Using small Java programs (called "Applets"), Web pages can include functions such as animations, calculators, and other fancy tricks. We can expect to see a huge variety of features added to the Web using Java, since you can write a Java program to do almost anything a regular computer program can do, and then include that Java program in a Web page. For more information search any of these jargon terms in the PC Webopedia.
A simple programming language developed by Netscape to enable greater interactivity in Web pages. It shares some characteristics with JAVA but is independent. It interacts with HTML, enabling dynamic content and motion.
A word searched for in a search command. Keywords are searched in any order. Use spaces to separate keywords in simple keyword searching. To search keywords exactly as keyed (in the same order), see PHRASE.
Requiring that a keyword or phrase appear in a specific field of documents retrieved. Most often used to limit to the "Title" field in order to find documents primarily about one or more keywords. (Can be used for other fields. See the table summarizing search tools features.)
The URL imbedded in another document, so that if you click on the highlighted text or button referring to the link, you retrieve the outside URL. If you search the field "link:", you retrieve on text in these imbedded URLs which you do not see in the documents.
Term used to describe the frustrating and frequent problem caused by the constant changing in URLs. A Web page or search tool offers a link and when you click on it, you get an error message (e.g., "not available") or a page saying the site has moved to a new URL. Search engine spiders cannot keep up with the changes. URLs change frequently because the documents are moved to new computers, the file structure on the computer is reorganized, or sites are discontinued. If there is no referring link to the new URL, there is little you can do but try to search for the same or an equivalent site from scratch.
A discussion group mechanism that permits you to subscribe and receive and participate in discussions via e-mail. For more information see the Beyond General Web Searching Listservers section or attend Part III of these Web courses.
LYNX browser
Lynx is a "browser" program like Netscape or Internet Explorer that can access information on World Wide Web, but without access to images, film, or sound. It is used often from slow modems to eliminate the need to wait to download images and other features. Lynx allows you to read the text of any WWW document, and to select hypertext links in these documents. You can use Lynx to go to any WWW document, to fill out forms available on WWW, to print and save files and perform many other tasks. For information on how to use Lynx, see Lynx Basics.
Search engines that automatically submit your keyword search to several other search tools, and retrieve results from all their databases. Convenient time-savers for relatively simple keyword searches (one or two keywords or phrases in " "). See Meta-Search Engines page for complete descriptions and examples.
A term used in Boolean searching to indicate the sequence in which operations are to be performed. Enclosing words in parentheses identifies a group or "nest." Groups can be within other groups. The operations will be performed from the innermost nest to the outmost, and then from left to right.
A discussion group operated through the Internet. Not to be confused with LISTSERVERS which operate through e-mail. For more information see the Beyond General Web Searching Usenet Newsgroups section.
A web page created by an individual (as opposed to someone creating a page for an institution, business, organization, or other entity). Often personal pages contain valid and useful opinions, links to important resources, and significant facts. One of the greatest benefits of the Web is the freedom it as given almost anyone to put his or her ideas "out there." But frequently personal pages offer highly biased personal perspectives or ironical/satirical spoofs, which must be evaluated carefully. The presence in the page's URL of a personal name (such as "jbarker") and a ~ or % or the word "users" or "people" or "members" very frequently indicate a site offering personal pages.
When you retrieve a document via the WWW, the document is sent in "packets" which fit in between other messages on the telecommunications lines, and then are reassembled when they arrive at your end. This occurs using TCP/IP protocol. The packets may be sent via different paths on the networks which carry the Internet. If any of these packets gets delayed, your document cannot be reassembled and displayed. This is called a "packet jam." You can often resolve packet jams by pressing STOP then RELOAD. RELOAD requests a fresh copy of the document, and it is likely to be sent without jamming.
PDF or .pdf or pdf file
Abbreviation for Portable Document Format, a file format developed by Adobe Systems, that is used to capture almost any kind of document with the formatting in the original. Viewing a PDF file requires Acrobat Reader, which is built into most browsers and can be downloaded free from Adobe.
More than one KEYWORD, searched exactly as keyed (all terms required to be in documents, in the order keyed). Enclosing keywords in quotations " " forms a phrase in AltaVista, , and some other search tools. Some times a phrase is called a "character string."
An application built into a browser or added to a browser to enable it to interact with a special file type (such as a movie, sound file, Word document, etc.)
POPULARITY RANKING of search results
Some search engines rank the order in which search results appear primarily by how many other sites link to each page (a kind of popularity vote based on the assumption that other pages would create a link to the "best" pages). Google is the best example of this.
Insert + immediately before a term (no space) to limit search to documents containing a term. Insert - immediately before a term (no space) to exclude documents containing a term. Can be used immediately (no space) before the " " delimiting a phrase.
Functions partially like basic BOOLEAN LOGIC. If + precedes more than one term, they are required as with Boolean AND. If - is used, terms are excluded as with Boolean AND NOT. If neither + no - is used, the default if Boolean OR. However, full Boolean logic allows parentheses to group and sequence logical operations, and +/- do not. Which search engines have this?
The order in which search results appear. Each search tool uses its own unique algorithm. Most use "fuzzy and" combined with factors such as how often your terms occur in documents, whether they occur together as a phrase, and whether they are in title or how near the top of the text. Popularity is another ranking system.
A script is a type of programming language that can be used to fetch and display Web pages. There are may kinds and uses of scripts on the Web. They can be used to create all or part of a page, and communicate with searchable databases. Forms (boxes) and many interactive links, which respond differently depending on what you enter, all require some kind of script language. When you find a question marke (?) in the URL of a page, some kind of script command was used in generating and/or delivering that page. Most search engine spiders are instructed not to crawl pages from scripts, although it is usually technically possible for them to do so (see Invisible Web for more information).
Moving up or down within a document in your screen. Use scroll bar at right. Click on arrow down or arrow up. Drag the scroll button down or up. Or click on the page up or page down icons at the bottom of the bar. If you need to scroll left or right, use the scroll bar at the bottom.
A computer running that software, assigned an IP address, and connected to the Internet so that it can provide documents via the World Wide Web. Also called HOST computer. Web servers are the closest equivalent to what in the print world is called the "publisher" of a print document. An important difference is that most print publishers carefully edit the content and quality of their publications in an effort to market them and future publications. This convention is not required in the Web world, where anyone can be a publisher; careful evaluation of Web pages is therefore mandatory. Also called a "Host."
Something that operates on the "server" computer (providing the Web page), as opposed to the "client" computer (which is you or someone else viewing the Web page). Usually it is a program or command or procedure or other application causes dynamic pages or animation or other interaction.
SHTML, usually seen as .shtml
An file name extension that identifies web pages containing SSI commands.
This term is often used to mean "web page," but there is supposed to be a difference. A web page is a single entity, one URL, one file that you might find on the Web. A "site," properly speaking, is an location or gathering or center for a bunch of related pages linked to from that site. For example, the site for the present tutorial is the top-level page "Internet Resources." All of the pages associated with it branch out from there -- the web searching tutorial and all its pages, and more. Together they make up a "site." When we estimate there are 5 billion web pages on the Web, we do not mean "sites." There would be far fewer sites.
Computer robot programs, referred to sometimes as "crawlers" or "knowledge-bots" or "knowbots" that are used by search engines to roam the World Wide Web via the Internet, visit sites and databases, and keep the search engine database of web pages up to date. They obtain new pages, update known pages, and delete obsolete ones. Their findings are then integrated into the "home" database.
Most large search engines operate several robots all the time. Even so, the Web is so enormous that it can take six months for spiders to cover it, resulting in a certain degree of "out-of-datedness" (link rot) in all the search engines. For more information, read about search engines.
SPONSOR (of a Web page or site)
Many Web pages have organizations, businesses, institutions like universities or nonprofit foundations, or other interests which "sponsor" the page. Frequently you can find a link titled "Sponsors" or an "About us" link explaining who or what (if anyone) is sponsoring the page. Sometimes the advertisers on the page (banner ads, links, buttons to sites that sell or promote something) are "sponsors." WHY is this important? Sponsors and the funding they provide may, or may not, influence what can be said on the page or site -- can bias what you find, by excluding some opposing viewpoint or causing some other imbalanced information. The site is not bad because of sponsors, but you they should alert you to the need to evaluate a page or site very carefully.
SSI commands
SSI stands for "server-side include," a type of HTML instruction telling a computer that serves Web pages to dynamically generate data, usually by inserting certain variable contents into a fixed template or boilerplate Web page. Used especially in database searches.
In keyword searching, word endings are automatically removed (lines becomes line); searches are performed on the stem + common endings (line or lines retrieves line, lines, line's, lines', lining, lined). Not very common as a practice, and not always disclosed. Can usually be avoided by placing a term in " ".
Button at end of Netscape's Tool Button Bar. Use to stop downloading of a document.
In database searching, "stop words" are small and frequently occurring words like and, or, in, of that are often ignored when keyed as search terms. Sometimes putting them in quotes " " will allow you to search them. Sometimes + immediately before them makes them searchable. See Table of Search Engine features.
An approach to Web documents by a lexicon of subject terms hierarchically grouped. May be browsed or searched by keywords. Subject directories are smaller than other searchable databases, because of the human involvement required to classify documents by subject.
Ability to search only within the results of a previous search. Enables you to refine search results, in effect making the computer "read" the search results for you selecting documents with terms you sub-search on. Can function much like RESULTS RANKING. Which search engines have this?
(Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol) -- This is the suite of protocols that defines the Internet. Originally designed for the UNIX operating system, TCP/IP software is now available for every major kind of computer operating system. To be truly on the Internet, your computer must have TCP/IP software. See also IP Address.
Internet service allowing one computer to log onto another, connecting as if not remote.
In some search tools, the terms you choose to search on can lead you to other terms you may not have thought of. Different search tools have different ways of presenting this information, sometimes with suggested words you may choose among and sometimes automatically. The terms are based on the terms in the results of your search, not on some dictionary-like thesaurus.
TITLE (of a document)
The official title of a document from the "meta" field called title. The text of this meta title field may or may not also occur in the visible body of the document. It is what appears in the top bar of the window when you display the document and it is the title that appears in search engine results. The "meta" field called title is not mandatory in HTML coding.  Sometimes you retrieve a document with "No Title" as its supposed title; this is caused when the meta-title field is left blank.
In Alta Vista and some other search tools, title: search also matches on the "meta" field, which contains document descriptors not displayed on the Web. See also LIMITING TO A FIELD.
In a search, the ability to enter the first part of a keyword, insert a symbol (usually *), and accept any variant spellings or word endings, from the occurrence of the symbol forward. (E.g., femini* retrieves feminine, feminism, feminism, etc.) Which search engines have this?
Uniform Resource Locator. The unique address of any Web document. May be keyed in Netscape's OPEN or Netscape's LOCATION / GO TO box to retrieve a document. There is a logic the layout of a URL:
Anatomy of a URL:
Type of file (could say ftp:// or telnet://) Domain name (computer file is on and its location on the Internet) Path or directory on the computer to this file Name of file, and its file extension (usually ending in .html or .htm)
http:// TeachingLib/Guides/Internet/ FindInfo.html
Bulletinboard-like network featuring thousands of "newsgroups." For more information see the Beyond General Web Searching discussion group section.
Different word endings (such as -ing, -s, es, -ism, -ist,etc.) will be retrieved only if you allow for them in your search terms. One way to do this TRUNCATION, but few systems accept truncation. Another way is to enter the variants either separated by BOOLEAN OR (and grouped in parentheses). In +REQUIRE/-REJECT non-Boolean systems, enter the variant terms preceded with neither + nor -, because this will allow documents containing any of them to retrieved.
A variant of HTML. Stands for Extensible Hypertext Markup Language is a hybrid between HTML and XML that is more universally acceptable in Web pages and search engines than XML.
Extensible Markup Language, a dilution for Web page use of SGML (Standard General Markup Language), which is not readily viewable in ordinary browsers and is difficult to apply to Web pages. XML is very useful (among other things) for pages emerging from databases and other applications where parts of the page are standardized and must reappear many times. See XHTML.

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