Green Family Crest
Computer - Internet Glossary
Green Family Crest

Compiled by E. Daniel Green

100BASE-FX: Two-strand 100 Mbps fiber optic Ethernet cable; up to 412 meters

100BASE-T4: Four twisted pair 100 Mbps telephone wire Ethernet cable; up to 100 meters

100BASE-TX: Two twisted-pair 100 Mbps data grade wire Ethernet cable; up to 100 meters

10BASE-2: Thinwire baseband 10 Mbps coaxial Ethernet cable; up to 185 meters; also known as "thinnet"

10BASE-5: Thickwire baseband 10 Mbps coaxial Ethernet cable; up to 500 meters

10BASE-F(L): Fiber optic 10 Mbps Ethernet cable; up to 2000 meters

10BASE-T: Two twisted-pair 10 Mbps telephone wire Ethernet cable; up to 100 meters; also known as "thicknet"

1GL: First-Generation Language; machine language or the level of instructions and data that the processor is actually given to work on (which in conventional computers is a string of 0’s and 1’s)

2GL: Second-Generation Language; assembler (sometimes called "assembly") language; an assembler converts the assembler language statements into machine language

3-D: Three dimensions or three-dimensional; describes an image that provides the perception of depth

3GL: Third-Generation Language; "high-level" programming language such as C - FORTRAN - PL/1; a compiler converts the statements of a specific high-level programming language into machine language

4GL: Fourth-Generation Language; designed to be closer to natural language than a 3GL language

5GL: Fifth-Generation Language; programming that uses a visual or graphical development interface to create source language that is usually compiled with a 3GL or 4GL language compiler

AARP: AppleTalk Address Resolution Protocol

AC: Alternating current

Access Network: Portion of a public switched network that connects access nodes to individual subscribers; typically twisted pair copper wiring.

Access Nodes: Points on the edge of an Access Network that concentrate individual access lines into a smaller number of feeder lines; may also perform various forms of protocol conversion; typically are DLC systems concentrating individual voice lines to T1 lines - cellular antenna sites - PBXs - ONUs.

Acrobat: Cross-platform software for transmitting complex documents over the internet; uses PDF format

ACT: Association for Competitive Technology

Active Matrix Display: (also known as TFT); Technology used in the flat panel LCDs of notebook and laptop computers; provides a more responsive image at a wider range of viewing angles than passive matrix (dual scan) displays

ActiveX: Name Microsoft has given to a set of "strategic" object-oriented program technologies and tools

ADSL: Asymmetric DSL; bi-directional; 256 Kbps – 9 Mbps downstream; 16 Kbps – 800 Kbps upstream

AES/EBU: Audio Engineers Society/European Broadcasting Union; a digital audio transfer standard; the interface is usually implemented using 3-pin XLR connectors

AF: Audio Frequency

AGP: Accelerated Graphics Port; interface specification that enables 3-D graphics to display quickly on ordinary PC's

AI: Artificial intelligence; simulation of human intelligence processes by machines (especially computer systems); includes learning (acquisition of information and rules for using the information) - reasoning (using the rules to reach approximate or definite conclusions) - self-correction; particular applications of AI include expert systems - speech recognition - image recognition

ALE: Address Lifetime Expectancy

algorithm: Procedure or formula for solving a problem

aliasing: The generation of a false (alias) frequency along with the correct one when doing frequency sampling In sound and image generation; for images this produces a jagged edge or stair-step effect; for sound it produces a buzz

Alpha: Microprocessor and computer system produced by DEC; uses a newer and more advanced architecture than VAX

ALU: Arithmetic-Logic Unit; part of a computer processor that carries out arithmetic and logic operations on the operands in computer instruction words; sometimes divided into two units: an arithmetic unit (AU) and a logic unit (LU)

AMD: Advanced Micro Devices

AMPS: Advanced Mobile Phone Service; standard system for analog signal cellular telephone service in the United States and other countries

analog: Electronic transmission accomplished by adding signals of varying frequency or amplitude to carrier waves of a given frequency of alternating EM current; broadcast and phone transmission have conventionally used analog technology

anonymous FTP: Method for giving users access to files so that they don't need to identify themselves to the server; user enters "anonymous" as a user ID; usually the password is defaulted or furnished by the FTP server

ANSI: American National Standards Institute

antialiasing: The smoothing of the image or sound roughness caused by aliasing

anycast: Communication between any sender and the nearest of a group of receivers in a network

AOP: Aspect-Oriented Programming

API: Application Program Interface

APL: A Programming Language; general-purpose programming language developed in the early 1960’s

APON: ATM Passive Optical Network

applet: A small software application

AppleTalk: Set of communication protocols for Apple computers

application (program): Program designed to perform a specific function directly for the user or for another application program

Archie: Program that searches the files of all servers that offer anonymous FTP access for a particular search string

ARIN: American Registry of Internet Numbers

ARPANet: Advanced Research Projects Agency Network; forerunner to the internet

ASCII: American Standard Code for Information Interchange

ASP: Active Server Page; HTML page that includes one or more scripts (small embedded programs)

ASP: Application Service Provider; computer accessed via the Internet running s/w (instead of s/w loaded on each PC)

assembler: Program that takes basic computer instructions and converts them into a pattern of bits that the computer's processor can use to perform its basic operations

AT: Industry-wide open specification for PC motherboards; predates ATX

ATA: Advanced Technology Attachment; ANSI official name for IDE

ATAPI: AT Attachment Packet Interface

Athlon: Microprocessor from AMD; first CPU that supported a 200 MHz system bus and achieved 1 GHz clock speed

ATL: Active Template Library (formerly called ActiveX Template Library); a Microsoft program library

ATM: Asynchronous Transfer Mode

ATM25: ATM Forum defined 25.6 Mbps cell based user interface based on IBM token ring network

attosecond: One quintillionth (10 to the -18th) of a second

ATU-C: ADSL Terminal Unit - Central; sometimes called an "ADSL modem"

ATU-R: ADSL Terminal Unit - Remote; sometimes called an "ADSL modem"

ATX: Industry-wide open specification for PC motherboards; improvement on AT motherboards

AU: Arithmetic Unit; see ALU

AUI: Attachment Unit Interface; 15-pin physical connector interface between a computer's NIC and an ethernet cable

autoexec.bat: Text file containing DOS commands that are executed when the computer is booted; loaded after config.sys

AVI: Audio/Visual Interface; animation file extension

AWK: Utility that enables a programmer to write tiny but effective programs in the form of statements that define text patterns that are to be searched for in each line of a document and the action that is to be taken when a match is found within a line (also written as Awk and awk)

AWG: American Wire Gauge; sometimes known as Brown and Sharpe (B&S) Wire Gauge; U.S. standard set of non-ferrous (copper - aluminum - other materials) wire conductor sizes; "gauge" means diameter

B2B: Business-To-Business (e-biz); the exchange of products – services - information between businesses rather than between businesses and consumers

B-Channel: "Bearer" Channel; channel that carries the main data in ISDN

B-ISDN: Broadband ISDN; data transfer in excess of 1.544 or 2.048 Mbps; voice - data - image - video over the same infrastructure

backbone: Large transmission line that carries data from smaller lines that interconnect with it

BAL: Basic Assembler Language; Branch-And-Link instruction

bandwidth: Range of frequencies a transmitted communications signal occupies

banner: A banner (depending on how it’s used) is either a graphic image that announces the name or identity of a site (and often is spread across the width of the Web page) or is an advertising image

bar code: Small image of lines (bars) and spaces that is affixed to retail store items - identification cards - and postal mail to identify a particular product number – person - or location

baseband: Original frequency range of a signal before it is modulated into a higher and more efficient frequency range (usually by multiplexing the signal to send it on a carrier with other signals at the same time)

BASIC: Beginner's All-Purpose Symbolic Instruction Code; early simple programming language

batch: Program that is assigned to a computer to run without further user interaction

batch file: Text file that contains a sequence of commands for a computer OS

baud: One electronic state change per second; replaced by bps (more accurate)

BBS: Bulletin Board System

Bcc: Blind carbon copy: copy of an email sent to another address without indicating to the addressee or the Cc (Fcc) recipient that you also sent this copy

BDC: Backup Domain Controller; role assigned to a server in a network of computers that use the Windows NT OS

BDSL: Same as VDSL

bean: JavaBeans API component

BEDO DRAM: Burst Extended Data Output DRAM

benchmark :Point of reference by which something can be measured

BeOS: A PC OS that its makers describe as designed for the multimedia applications of the future

BER: Bit Error Rate

beta test: Second phase of software testing in which a sampling of the intended audience tries the product out

BGP: Border Gateway Protocol

BI: Business Intelligence (BI); broad category of application programs and technologies for gathering - storing - analyzing - providing access to data to help enterprise users make better business decisions

big-endian: Order in which a sequence of bytes are stored in computer memory; "big end" (most significant value in the sequence) is stored first (at the lowest storage address)

binary: Base two number system that computers use to represent data; consists of only two numbers: "0" and "1"

binary file: File whose content must be interpreted by a program or hardware processor that understands in advance exactly how it is formatted

bind: To make an association between two or more programming objects or value items for some scope of time and place

BinHex: Utility for encoding Macintosh files for transport over networks

bipolar signaling: (bipolar transmission) Baseband method of sending binary data over wire or cable; consists of two logic states - low and high - represented by the digits 0 and 1 respectively; uses both negative and positive voltage

BIOS: Basic Input/Output System

BIPM: International Bureau of Weights and Measures (acronym is from the French name "Bureau International des Poids et Mesures"); agency in Paris that maintains the International System of Units (SI)

bit: Binary digit; smallest unit of data in a computer; single binary value; either 0 or 1

bit depth: Describes the potential accuracy of a particular piece of hardware or software that processes audio data

bit map (or bitmap): Defines a display space and the color for each pixel or "bit" in the display space

BITNET: Because It's Time Network; An early network of educational sites sharing email services

bit rate: Number of bits that pass a given point in a telecommunication network in a given amount of time (usually a second)

bit robbing: Technique used in signaling on the T-carrier and in private networks; a 193 bit frame serving 24 channels is transmitted in a sequence of 12 frames that are referred to as a superframe; special signaling information (such as whether a voice channel is on-hook or off-hook) is included within the superframe by using a bit that is "robbed" from the sixth frame (the "a" bit) as a signaling bit and another bit (the "b" bit) that is robbed from the 12th frame

bit stream: Contiguous sequence of bits transmitted continuously over a communications path serially

bit stuffing: Addition of a small number of bits to a transmission unit in order to fill it up to a standard size or to help synchronize signaling rates between points in a network; the receiver knows how to detect and remove the stuffed bits

bleeding edge: Corruption of "leading edge"; technology that is the very newest; something that no one's quite sure is going to make it to mainstream use (so new and so sharp it might cut you when you try to use it)

BLOB: Binary Large Object; large file (typically an image or sound file) that must be handled (uploaded - downloaded - stored in a database) in a special way because of its size

block cipher: Method of encrypting text in which a cryptographic key and algorithm are applied to a block of data (for example 64 contiguous bits) at once as a group rather than to one bit at a time

Blowfish: Encryption algorithm that can be used as a replacement for DES or IDEA; symmetric (secret or private key) block cipher that uses a variable-length key from 32 bits to 448 bits; ideal for both domestic and exportable use

blue bomb: (WinNuke or nuking) Out-of-band network packet causing the Windows OS to crash or suddenly terminate

blue laser: Laser with a shorter wavelength than the red laser used in today's CD and laser printer technologies; has the ability to store and read two to four times the amount of data

Bluetooth: Computing and telecommunications industry specification describing how mobile phones - computers - PDAs can easily interconnect with each other and with home and business phones and computers using a short-range wireless connection

BMAN: Broadband Metropolitan Area Network

BNC connector: Bayonet Neil-Concelman connector; used to connect a computer to a coaxial cable in a 10BASE-2 Ethernet network

BOC: Bell Operating Company

bogomips: Measurement in the Linux operating system that indicates in a relative way how fast the CPU runs

boilerplate: Unit of writing that can be reused over and over without change; by extension the idea is sometimes applied to reusable programming as in "boilerplate code"

bookmark: Address book entry for a web address; some browsers call this a favorite

Boolean: system of logical thought developed by the George Boole; in Boolean searching an "and" operator between two values means one is searching for documents containing both of the values; an "or" operator between two values means one is searching for documents containing either of the values

boot: To load an OS into the computer's main memory or RAM

bootable floppy: (boot disk) Disk containing a back-up copy of your HDD's MBR; having a bootable floppy will allow you (in the event that the MBR becomes "infected" by a boot virus) to load it back onto your HDD (otherwise you may have to reformat your HDD and reinstall everything you've backed up)

BOOTP: Bootstrap Protocol; lets a network user be automatically configured

bot: (robot) Automated program that explores the web looking for information; similar to a spider; see knowbot

bounce email: Email that is returned to the sender because it cannot be delivered for some reason

bouncing: Tendency of any two metal contacts in an electronic device to generate multiple signals as the contacts close or open

Bourne shell: Original UNIX shell (online command interpreter) developed at AT&T

BPCS: Business Planning and Control System; popular system of application programs for manufacturing and other industries

bps: Bits per second

BRI: Basic Rate Interface; two 64 Kbps B channels and one 16 Kbps D channel intended for home and small enterprise use on ISDN

bridge: Connects two LANs that use the same protocol

broadband: Multiple channels of data using frequency division multiplexing

broadcast: Used in e-mail or other message distribution for a message sent to all members (rather than specific members) of a group such as a department or enterprise; on the internet certain web sites deliver original or redistributed broadcasts from existing radio and television stations using streaming sound or streaming media techniques to web users who visit the web site or "tune it in" using a special program

brouter: Network bridge and a router combined in a single product

browser: software program that runs on your computer and lets you see web pages

browser cache: Contains the most recent web files which have been downloaded and which is physically located on your hard disk (and possibly located in disk cache and memory cache as well at any moment in time)

BSD: Berkeley Software Distribution; Berkeley Software Design; particular version of the UNIX operating system that was developed at and distributed from the University of California at Berkeley

BSOD: Blue Screen Of Death; display image containing white text on a blue background that is generated by the Windows OS when the system has suddenly terminated with an error; the system is locked up and must be restarted; may include some hexadecimal values from a memory dump that may help determine what caused the crash

BSRAM: Burst Static RAM; also known as SynchBurst SRAM

buffer: Data area shared by hardware devices or program processes that operate at different speeds or with different sets of priorities

bug: Coding error in a computer program

burn: Colloquial term meaning to write to a CD-ROM all the content that is to be put on it for a given purpose

burst: Term used to mean a specific amount of data sent or received in one intermittent operation

bus: Transmission path on which signals are dropped off or picked up at every device attached to the line

bus master: Program either in a microprocessor or more usually in a separate I/O controller that directs traffic on the computer bus or input/output paths

BXXP: Blocks Extensible Exchange Protocol; new web document protocol touted as being a replacement for HTTP

byte: Unit of information that is eight bits long

bytecode: Object code that is processed by a program (virtual machine) rather than the "real" computer (processor)

C++: An object-oriented programming language; a superset of the C language

C: A structured procedural programming language

CA: Certificate Authority; authority in a network that issues and manages security credentials and public keys for message encryption and decryption

cab: Cabinet File; single file holding a number of compressed files; uses Lempel-Ziv compression

cable modem: Device that enables you to hook up your PC to a local cable TV line and receive data at about 1.5 Mbps.

Cable-Powered: Devices obtaining a/c power simultaneously with RF on the coaxial cable

cache: Place to store something more or less temporarily

cache coherence: Discipline that ensures that changes in the values of shared operands are propagated throughout the system in a timely fashion in a shared memory multiprocessor with a separate cache memory for each processor

cache memory: RAM that a computer microprocessor can access more quickly than it can access regular RAM

cache server: Server relatively close to internet users and typically within a business enterprise that caches web pages and possibly FTP and other files that all server users have requested so that successive requests for these pages or files can be satisfied by the cache server; is almost always a proxy server as well

CAD/CAM: Computer-Aided Design / Computer-Aided Manufacturing

CAP: Carrierless Amplitude/Phase

CAT 1: ANSI/EIA twisted pair cabling system; maximum data rate less than 1 Mbps; usual applications analog voice - ISDN Basic Rate Interface - doorbell wiring

CAT 2: ANSI/EIA twisted pair cabling system; maximum data 4 Mbps; usual application IBM Cabling System for Token Ring networks

CAT 3: ANSI/EIA twisted pair cabling system; maximum data rate 16 Mbps; usual application voice and data on 10BASE-T Ethernet

CAT 4: ANSI/EIA twisted pair cabling system; maximum data rate 20 Mbps; usual application 16Mbps token ring networks

CAT 5: ANSI/EIA twisted pair cabling system; maximum data rate 100 Mbps; usual applications 100 Mbps TPDDI - 155 Mbps ATM

CATV: Community Access Television; Community Antenna Television; cable TV

Cc: Carbon copy; copy of an email which is sent to another address; addressee is made aware copy was sent

CCITT: Consultative Committee on International Telephone and Telegraphy; now known as ITU-T

CDMA: Code-Division Multiple Access

CDF: Channel Definition Format

CDPD: Cellular Digital Packet Data

CD-ROM: Compact Disk Read-Only Memory (or Media)

CDSL: Consumer DSL

cellular telephone: Type of short-wave analog or digital transmission in which a subscriber has a wireless connection from a mobile telephone to a relatively nearby transmitter; transmitter's span of coverage is called a cell

centimeter: One hundredth (10 to the -2nd) of a meter

Centrex: Central Office Exchange Service

Centronics parallel interface: Older still widely-used standard I/O interface for connecting printers and other devices to computers

CERT: Computer Emergency Response Team; the Internet's official emergency team

CGA: Color Graphics Adapter; capable of rendering 4 colors; maximum resolution of 320 x 200 pixels

CGI: Common Gateway Interface

CGPM: General Conference on Weights and Measures (acronym is from the French name "Conference General des Poids et Mesures"); international organization that established the International System of Units (SI) in 1960

channel: Separate path through which signals can flow in telecommunications

channel: Separate wavelength of light within a combined multiplexed light stream in optical fiber transmission DWDM

channel: Pre-selected web site that can automatically send updated information for immediate display or viewing on request

channel: "Middleman" between a product creator and the marketplace in computer and internet marketing

CHAP: Challenge-Handshake Authentication Protocol

checksum: Count of the bits in a transmission unit included in the unit to check whether the same number of bits arrived

chipset: Group of microchips designed as a unit; performs one or more related functions

CICS: Customer Information Control System

CISC: Complex Instruction Set Computer (or Computing); computers designed with a full set of instructions intended to provide needed capabilities in the most efficient way

CIDR: Classless Inter-Domain Routing; also known as Supernetting

cipher: Any method of encrypting text; also used to refer to the encrypted text message itself; synonym for ciphertext

ciphertext: Encrypted text

CIS: Computer Information Systems

class: Template definition of the methods and variables in a particular kind of object in OOP

client: A s/w application that interacts with a server application

Client/Server: Networking where the client requests and stores information from the server; does much of the processing locally

clock speed: Number of pulses per second generated by an oscillator that sets the tempo for the processor; usually in MHz

CMIP: Common Management Information Protocol

CMOS: Complementary Metal-Oxide Semiconductor

CMTS: Cable Modem Termination System

coaxial cable: Cable with a central copper strand for transmitting electrical signals

COBOL: Common Business Oriented Language; first widely-used high-level programming language for business applications

code: Both the statements written in a particular programming language (source code) and the source code after it has been compiled and made ready to run in the computer (object code)

codec: Coder/Decoder; Compression/Decompression

command interpreter: Part of an OS that understands and executes commands that are entered interactively by a human being or from a program; sometimes called the shell

compiler: Special program that processes statements written in a particular programming language and turns them into machine language or "code" that a computer's processor uses

compile time: Term used to describe what gets embedded in a program when it is compiled

computer: Device that accepts information (usually in the form of digital data) and manipulates it for some result based on a program or sequence of instructions on how data is to be processed

config.sys: Text file containing DOS commands that tell the OS how the computer is initially set up; loaded before autoexec.bat

content:: If you think of a web site as an "infomercial" then the "info" part would be called "content" on the web

cooperative multitasking: Ability of an OS to manage multiple tasks such as application programs at the same time but without the ability to necessarily preempt them (preememptive multitasking)

CORBA: Common Object Request Broker Architecture

core: Refers to the ferrite cores of earlier memory technology

core dump: Printing or copying to a more permanent medium the contents of RAM at one moment in time

Core Network: Combination of switching offices and transmission plant connecting switching offices together

cookie: Text file a web site puts on a hard disk for future access

cpi or CPI: Characters per inch; clocks or cycles per instruction; Common Programming Interface

cps: Cycles per second; characters per second

CPU: Central Processing Unit; see processor

critical section routine: Name for the code that solved the problem (on early processors) of two or more programs competing for the same resource at the same time using only ordinary assembler instructions (today's processors use atomic read-modify-write instructions to avoid the problem)

crossover cable: Used to interconnect two computers by "crossing over" (reversing) their respective pin contacts; either an RS-232C or an RJ-45 connection is possible; sometimes known as a null modem

CRC: Cyclic Redundancy Checking

CRM: Customer Relationship Management

CRT: Cathode Ray Tube

CRTC: Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission

cryptanalysis: The study of ciphers - ciphertext - cryptosystems to find weaknesses in them that will permit retrieval of the plaintext from the ciphertext without necessarily knowing the key or the algorithm (known as "breaking" the cipher)

CSA: Carrier Serving Area

CSMA/CD: Carrier Sense Multiple Access with Collision Detection

CSS-P: CSS Positioning; an extension to the existing CSS standard

CSS: Cascading Style Sheet; style sheet standard for Web pages

CSU/DSU: Channel Service Unit / Data (or Digital) Service Unit

CSV file: Comma-Separated Values file

cyberspace: Nebulous domain inhabited by computers and networks

DAC: Digital-to-Analog Conversion

daemon: Program that runs continuously; handles periodic service requests that a computer system receives

D-AMPS: Digital AMPS; adds TDMA to AMPS to get three channels for each AMPS channel; triples the number of calls that can be handled on a channel

DAO: Data Access Objects

DARPA: Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency; originally called ARPA (the "D" was added later)

DASD: Direct Access Storage Device

DAT: Digital Audio Tape

data : 1) In computing: information that has been translated into a form (binary or digital) that is more convenient to move or process; 2) In computer component interconnection and network communication: data is often distinguished from "control information" and "control bits" to identify the main content of a transmission unit; 3) In telecommunications: data sometimes means digitally-encoded information to distinguish it from analog-encoded information such as conventional telephone voice calls

database: Collection of data that is organized so that its contents can easily be accessed - managed - updated

data mining: Analysis of data for relationships that have not previously been discovered

daughterboard: Circuit board that plugs into and extends the circuitry of another circuit board

DB2: RDBMS for large business computers from IBM

dB: Decibel; relative difference between two power levels in electronics

DBMS: Database Management System

DC: Direct Current

DCE: Distributed Computing Environment; Data Communication Equipment

DCIT: Digital Compression of Increased Transmission

DCOM: Distributed Component Object Model

DDE: Dynamic Data Exchange

DDR SDRAM: Double Data Rate SDRAM

deadlock: Situation in which two computer programs sharing the same resource are effectively preventing each other from accessing the resource resulting in both programs ceasing to function

debouncing: Any kind of h/w device or s/w that ensures that only a single signal will be acted upon for a single opening or closing of a contact

debug: Process of finding bugs before program users do

DEC: Digital Equipment Corporation

decryption: Process of converting encrypted data back into its original form so it can be understood

DECT: Digital Enhanced Cordless Telecommunications

DECUS: Digital Equipment Computer User's Society

DEN: Directory Enabled Networking

DES: Data Encryption Standard; widely-used method of data encryption using a private (secret) key; was judged so difficult to break by the U.S. government that it was restricted for exportation to other countries; 72 quadrillion or more possible encryption keys

DHCP: Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol

DHTML : Dynamic HTML

DIF: Directory Interoperability Forum

digital: Electronic technology that generates - stores - processes data in terms of two states (positive and non-positive); positive is expressed or represented by the number 1 and non-positive by the number 0

DIMM: Dual In-line Memory Module

DirectPC: Satellite internet connection; 400 Kbps downstream; 56 Kbps upstream (56K modem)

DirectX: API for creating and managing graphic images and multimedia effects in applications for MS Windows 9x OS

disk cache: Either a reserved area of RAM or a special hard disk cache where a copy of the most recently accessed data and adjacent (most likely to be accessed) data is stored for fast access

display: Computer output surface and projecting mechanism that shows text and often graphic images to the computer user using CRT - LCD - LED - gas plasma - or other image projection technology

DLC: Digital Loop Carrier

DLL: Dynamic Link Library

DMA: Direct Memory Access

DMT: Discrete Multitone Technology

DNS: Domain Name Server

DOCSIS: Data Over Cable Service Interface Specification

Domain Name: Unique name for each Internet site; used to specify or locate an organization or other entity on the internet

domain: A set of network addresses organized in levels

DOS: Disk Operating System

dot pitch: How sharp the displayed image (in mm) on a monitor can be; a smaller number means a sharper image

downlink: Link from a satellite down to one or more ground stations or receivers

downstream: Transmission from an information server toward an end user

dpi: Dots per inch

DRAM: Dynamic RAM

DRDRAM: Direct Rambus DRAM

driver: Program that contains special knowledge about a particular device or special kind of software

DS0: Digital Signal 0; 64 Kbps digital representation of voice

DS1: Digital Signal 1; 24 voice channels packed into a 193 bit frame; transmitted at 1.544 Mbps

DS2: Digital Signal 2; 4 T1 frames packed into a higher level frame; transmitted at 6.312 Mbps

DSL: Digital Subscriber Line

DSLAM: DSL Access Multiplexer

DSML: Directory Services Markup Language; use of XML to enable companies that use different network directory systems to exchange directory information using a common format

DSP: Digital Signal Processing

DSSSL: Document Style Semantics and Specification Language

DTE: Data Terminal Equipment

DTP: Data Transfer Process

dump: Copying of a large portion of one storage medium to another storage medium - printer - display - other output device

DUN: Dial-Up Networking

duplex: Send and receive signals at the same time (full-duplex); half-duplex only flows in one direction at a time

DVD: Digital Video Disk; Digital Versatile Disk

DWDM: Dense Wavelength-Division Multiplexing

E1: European basic multiplex rate; packs 30 voice channels into a 256 bit frame; transmitted at 2.048 Mbps

EAI: Enterprise Application Integration; business computing term for plans - methods - tools aimed at modernizing - consolidating - coordinating the computer applications in an enterprise

EBCDIC: Extended Binary-Coded Decimal Interchange Code

eBilling: see EBPP

EBP: Electronic Bill Payment; see EBPP

EBPP: Electronic Bill Presentment and Payment; secure method of receiving - reviewing - paying bills over the web; also known as EBP - Internet billing - eBilling

ECC: Error Correction (or Correcting) Code; Error Checking and Correcting

ECMAScript: Standard script language mainly derived from JavaScript

EDGE: Enhanced Data GSM Environment; faster version of the GSM wireless service designed to deliver data at rates up to 384 Kbps and enable the delivery of multimedia and other broadband applications to mobile phone and computer users

EDO RAM: Extended Data Output RAM

EDRAM: Enhanced DRAM

EEPROM: Electrically Erasable PROM

EGA: Enhanced Graphics Adapter ; capable of rendering 16 colors; maximum resolution of 640 x 350 pixels

EGP: Exterior Gateway Protocol

EIA: Electronic Industries Association

EIA/TIA: Electronics Industries Assocation/Telecommunication Industries Assocation

EIDE: Enhanced IDE

EISA: Extended Industry Standard Architecture

Emacs: Popular text editor used mainly on UNIX-based systems

email: Electronic Mail

EM: Electromagnetic

EMF: Electromagnetic Field; Electromagnetic Force

emoticon: Short sequence of keyboard letters and symbols; usually emulates a facial expression; expresses a feeling that supplements a message; also known as a "smiley"

encryption: Conversion of data into a form (called a cipher) that cannot be easily understood by unauthorized people

endless loop: See loop; endless

EPOC: OS designed for small portable devices with wireless access to phone and other information services

EPP/ECP: Enhanced Parallel Port / Enhanced Capability Port

EPROM: Erasable PROM

Erlang: Programming language; for developing robust systems of programs that can be distributed among different computers in a network

erlang: Unit of telephone traffic; a number between 0 and 1 that indicates how busy a telephone facility is over a period of time; an erlang of 1 applied to a particular telephone circuit would indicate "busy" 100% of the time

ERP: Enterprise Resource Planning

ESCD: Extended System Configuration Data


Ethernet: Widely used LAN technology; uses CSMA/CD protocol; speeds up to 10 Mbps

EUL: Extreme Ultraviolet Lithography; new process for etching silicon chips; reduces the size of features to at least .03 microns

exabyte: (EB) Approximately a billion gigabytes (10 to the 18th bytes)

exbibyte: (EiB) Term approved by the IEC in 1998 to replace "exabyte"; 2 to the 60th or exactly 1152921504606846976 bytes whereas "exabyte" should be restricted to 1000000000000000000 bytes

executable: File that contains a program; in a DOS or Windows OS it usually has a file name extension of .bat - .com - .exe

execute: Run a program in a computer

FAQ: Frequently Asked Questions

Fast Ethernet: Newer Ethernet standard; will carry 100 Mbps

FAT: File Allocation Table

fatal exception: Indicates an exceptional situation requiring that the program responsible be closed; when a fatal exception occurs, the OS has no other recourse but to shut down the application (and in some cases the OS itself)

favorite: Address book entry for a web address; some browsers call this a bookmark

Fcc: File (forward - first) carbon copy; same as cc

FCC: Federal Communications Commission

FDDI: Fiber Distributed Data Interface

FDM: Frequency-Division Multiplexing

FDMA: Frequency Division Multiple Access; division of the frequency band allocated for wireless cellular communication into 30 channels each of which can carry a voice conversation or (with digital service) carry digital data

FED: Field Emission Display

Feeder Network: That part of a public switched network which connects access nodes to the core network

femtosecond: One quadrillionth (10 to the -15th) of a second

FEXT: Far End Cross Talk; interference between 2 signals at the line ends; remote from the telephone switch

fiber optic: Medium and the technology associated with the transmission of information as light impulses along a glass or plastic wire or fiber; carries much more information than conventional copper wire and is far less subject to EM interference

FIFO: First In First Out

finger: Small software tool that allows a client to query a server for information on users

firewall: Method for protecting Internet-connected networks from break-ins by unauthorized outsiders

FireWire: Apple Computer's version of a high performance serial bus

firmware: Programming that is inserted into PROM thus becoming a permanent part of a computing device

flame: Vicious verbal treatment of one internet user at the hands of another

flash memory: Nonvolatile memory that can be erased and reprogrammed; a variation of EEPROM

FMD: Fluorescent Multilayer Disk; touted as next generation in laser disk technology after CDs and DVDs; can store up to 140 GB

FLOPS: Floating-Point Operations Per Second

FOIRL: Fiber Optic Inter-Repeater Link; up to 1000 meters

FOMAU: Fiber Optic Media Access Unit

FPM DRAM: Fast Page Mode DRAM

FPU: Floating Point Unit; microprocessor or special circuitry in a more general microprocessor that uses a special set of instructions to manipulate numbers (especially fractional numbers) more quickly than the basic microprocessor; also known as a numeric coprocessor

FORTRAN: FORmula TRANslation; third-generation programming language; designed for use by engineers - mathematicians - other users and creators of scientific algorithms

FQDN: Fully Qualified Domain Name

fractional T-1 line :Rental of portion of a T-1 line (24 channels at 64 Kbps); other channels unused

FRAD: Frame Relay Access Device; Frame Relay Assembler/Dissembler

FRAM: Ferroelectric RAM

FTP: File Transfer Protocol

FTTC or FTTK: Fiber To The Curb (Kerb); installation and use of optical fiber cable directly to the curb near homes; replaces POTS

FTTCab: Fiber To The Cabinet; same as FTTC; the cabinet is a street-side device which converts the signal for transmission to the subscriber over a twisted copper pair line

FTTH: Fiber To The Home; network where optical fiber runs from the telephone switch to the subscriber's home

Full-Motion Video: Not compressed; standard video signal; 30 frames per second; 525 horizontal lines per frame

G.Lite: (DSL Lite - splitterless ADSL - Universal ADSL) Slower ADSL that splits the line remotely at the telephone company

garbage collecting: Freeing up RAM storage of data that had been place there by the OS but is no longer needed

gateway: Network point that acts as an entrance to another network

Gbps: Gigabits per second

Gene's Law: Power requirements for semiconductors are decreasing exponentially

GIF: Graphics Interchange Format

GIOP: General Inter-ORB Protocol

GHz: Gigahertz; one billion hertz

gibibyte: (GiB) Term approved by the IEC in 1998 to replace "gigabyte"; 2 to the 30th or exactly 1073741824 bytes whereas "gigabyte" should be restricted to 1000000000 bytes

gigabyte: (GB) 1073741824 bytes (approximately 10 to the 9th bytes)

Gilder's Law: Bandwidth triples approximately every year

GML: Generalized Markup Language

GMR head: Giant MagnetoResistive head; HDD technology in which magnetic and nonmagnetic materials are layered in the read head roughly doubling or tripling its sensitivity

GNOME: GNU Network Object Model Environment


Gopher: Internet application protocol in which hierarchically-organized file structures are maintained on servers

GPL: General Public License

GPRS: General Packet Radio Service

graphics accelerator: Computer microelectonics component (chipset attached to a video board) to which a computer program can offload the sending and refreshing of images to the display monitor and the computation of special effects common to 2-D and 3-D images; speeds up the displaying of images on the monitor

GSA: Grover Search Algorithm; versatile algorithm used in quantum computing

GSM: Global System for Mobile communication; digital mobile telephone system that is widely used in Europe and other parts of the world

GUI: Graphical User Interface

h/w: Hardware

HCA: Host Channel Adapter

HDD: Hard Disk Drive

HDLC: High-Level Data Link Control

HDML: Handheld Device Markup Language

HDSL: High bit-rate DSL

HeadEnd: Control center of a cable television system; incoming signals are amplified - converted - processed - combined into a common cable along with any original cablecasting for transmission to subscribers; usually includes antennas - preamplifiers - frequency converters - demodulators - modulators - processors - other related equipment

hexadecimal: Base-16 number system (contains 16 sequential numbers as base units before adding a new position for the next number); the hexadecimal numbers are 0-9 and then the letters A-F

HFC: Hybrid Fiber Coaxial Cable

HIPPI: High-Performance Parallel Interface

hit: One "visit" from a user to a web site

HomePNA: An industry standard for interconnecting computers within a home using existing telephone lines and jacks

HSCSD: High-Speed Circuit-Switched Data; wireless data transmission for mobile users at data rates up to 38.4 Kbps; 4 times faster than GSM

HTML: Hypertext Markup Language; standard set of "markup" symbols or codes recommended by the W3C that are inserted in a file intended for display on a web browser; tells the browser how to display a web page's words and images for the user; individual markup codes are referred to as elements (but many people also refer to them as tag)

HTTP: Hypertext Transport Protocol

HTTPD: HTTP Daemon; program residing on a Web server that deals with data sent to it by a form on a Web page

hub: Place where data arrives and is forwarded out; usually includes a switch of some kind

hyperlink: Synonym for both link and hypertext link on the web or other hypertext systems

hypermedia: Extension of the notion of a hypertext link to include links among any set of multimedia objects including sound - motion video - virtual reality; can also connote a higher level of user/network interactivity than the interactivity already implicit in hypertext

hypertext: Organization of information units into connected associations that a user can choose to make; an instance of such an association is called a link or hypertext link; main concept that led to the invention of the World Wide Web which is nothing more (or less) than an enormous amount of information content connected by an enormous number of hypertext links

Hz: Hertz; unit of frequency (of change in state or cycle in a sound wave - alternating current - or other cyclical waveform) of one cycle per second; replaces the earlier term of "cycles per second (cps)"

I/O: Input/Output

IAB: Internet Architecture Board; Internet Advertising Bureau

IANA: Internet Assigned Numbers Authority

IAP: Internet Access Provider

IBM: International Business Machines

ICANN: Internet Corporation of Assigned Names and Numbers

ICMP: Internet Control Message Protocol

ICQ: "I Seek You"; program which advises when contacts are online; has page and chat features

IDCNS: Interdivisional Committee on Nomenclature and Symbols

IDE: Integrated Drive Electronics

IDEA: International Data Encryption Algorithm; data encryption algorithm that uses a block cipher with a 128-bit key; generally considered to be very secure and among the best publicly known algorithms

IDL: Interface Definition Language; Interactive Data Language; Interactive Distance Learning


IEC: International Electrotechnical Commission

IEEE: Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers

IETF: Internet Engineering Task Force

IGP: Interior Gateway Protocol

IIOP: Internet Inter-ORB Protocol

IIS: Internet Information Server

IMAP: Internet Message Access Protocol

in-band signaling: Exchange of signaling (call control) information on the same channel that the telephone call itself is using

Indeo: Compression algorithm developed by Intel and used by Microsoft's Video for Windows

InfiniBand: New technology from Intel that will replace PCI as the primary gateway bus for servers; originally called System I/O

instruction: Order given to a computer processor by a computer program

Interexchange Networks: Competing companies who link Core Networks

interlaced display: CRT display in which the lines are scanned alternately in two interwoven rasters

Internet: Series of interconnected local - regional - national - international networks; linked using TCP/IP; accessible via telephony wires - HFC networks - satellite

Internet billing: see EBPP

InterNIC: Internet Network Information Center

interrupt: Signal from a device attached to a computer or from a program within the computer that causes the OS to stop and figure out what to do next

interstitial: Page that is inserted in the normal flow of editorial content structure on a web site for the purpose of advertising or promotion

intranet: A company's use of internet technology to deliver information to a closed group of its own employees

IP: Internet Protocol; method or protocol by which data is sent from one computer to another on the internet

IPng: see IPv6

IPI: Intelligent Peripheral Interface

IPv6: Internet Protocol Version 6; latest level of IP and is now included as part of IP support in many products including the major computer operating systems; also known as "IPng" (IP Next Generation)

IPX: Internetwork Packet Exchange

IPX/SPX: Internetwork Packet Exchange / Sequenced Packet Exchange

IR: Infrared; energy in the region of the electromagnetic radiation spectrum at wavelengths longer than those of visible light but shorter than those of radio waves

IRC: Internet Relay Chat

IRQ: Interrupt Request

IRTF: Internet Research Task Force

IS: Information System(s); Information Service(s)

ISA: Industry Standard Architecture

ISAPI: Internet Server Application Program Interface

ISDL: Lines delivering data at 128 Kbps into an IDSL "modem bank" connect to a router for an ISDN

ISDN: Integrated Services Digital Network; 56 Kbps – 128 Kbps

ISMAP: Image that has certain regions mapped out as links to other Web documents; processed by CGI scripts

ISO: International Organization for Standardization

ISP: Internet Service Provider

ISPF: Interactive System Productivity Facility; set of menus for compiling and managing programs and for configuring an MVS system

IT: Information Technology

Itanium: Intel's first microprocessor based on IA-64 (64-bit architecture); developed under the code name "Merced"

ITU: International Telecommunication Union

ITU-T: International Telecommunications Union - Telecommunication Standardization Sector

IXC: Interexchange carrier; provides connections between local exchanges in different geographic areas

Java: Programming language from Sun Microsystems designed for use on the internet

JavaBeans: OOP interface from Sun Microsystems that lets you build re-useable applications or program building blocks called components that can be deployed in a network on any major OS platform

JavaScript: Script language from Netscape for use on the internet

JBOD: Just a Bunch of Disks

JDBC: Java Database Connectivity; API specification for connecting programs written in Java to the data in popular databases

JEDEC: Joint Electron Device Engineering Council

JEDEC SDRAM: Also known as PC66 SDRAM

JES2; JES3: Job Entry Subsystem 2 or 3; provides main work management in MVS systems

JIT compiler: Just In Time compiler; program that turns Java bytecode into instructions that can be sent directly to the processor

JPEG: Joint Photographic Experts Group

Jughead: Tool used by researchers and librarians for searching the information on Gopher sites for particular subjects

Kbps: Kilobits per second

Kermit: Popular file transfer and management protocol and suite of communications software programs

kernel: Essential center (nucleus) of an OS; the core that provides basic services for all other parts of the OS

key: Variable value in cryptography that is applied using an algorithm to a string or block of unencrypted text to produce encrypted text; length of the key generally determines how difficult it will be to decrypt the text in a given message

keyword: Word used to catalogue a web site in search engines so users can find the site

KHz: Kilohertz; one thousand hertz

kibibyte: (KiB) Term approved by the IEC in 1998 to replace "kilobyte"; 2 to the 10th or exactly 1024 bytes whereas "kilobyte" should be restricted to 1000 bytes

kilobyte: (KB or Kbyte) 1024 bytes; approximately 10 to the 3rd bytes

knowbot: Program that searches internet sites and gathers information from them according to user-specified criteria

LAN: Local Area Network

laser: Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation; coherent (all one wavelength unlike ordinary light which consists of many wavelengths) and focused beam of photons or particles of light

LATA: Local Access and Transport Area

latency: Expression of how much time it takes for a packet of data to get from one designated point to another

layer: Networking software protocol levels; each layer performs functions for the layers above it

LBA: Logical Block Addressing

LCD: Liquid Crystal Display

LDAP: Lightweight Directory Access Protocol

LEC: Local Exchange Carrier

LED: Light-Emitting Diode

legacy application: Applications and data that have been inherited from languages - platforms - techniques earlier than current technology

LFO: Low-Frequency Oscillator

LIFO: Last In First Out

Line Speed: Expressed in bps; maximum rate at which data can reliably be transmitted over a line using given hardware

link: Hypertext selectable connection from one word - picture - information object to another; in a multimedia environment such as the web such objects can include sound and motion video sequences; lets a user jump to a new location

Linux: UNIX-like OS for PC's

Listserv: Most common form of mailing list

little-endian: Order in which a sequence of bytes are stored in computer memory; "little end" (least significant value in the sequence) is stored first (at the lowest storage address)

LMCS: Local Multipoint Communications System; 10 Mbps wireless network technology

LMDS: Local Multipoint Distribution System; broadband microwave wireless transmission direct from a local antenna to homes and businesses within a line-of-sight radius; up to 1.5 Gbps downstream - 200 Mbps upstream

logic gate: Elementary building block of a digital circuit; most have two inputs and one output; there are seven basic logic gates: AND - OR - XOR - NOT - NAND - NOR – XNOR

loop: A sequence of instructions that is continually repeated until a certain condition is reached

loop; endless: See endless loop

Loop Qualification: Process of determining if a line (or loop) will support a specific type of DSL transmission at a given rate

LPT: Line Print Terminal

LU: Logic Unit ; see ALU

Lynx: Text-only Web browser developed at the University of Kansas primarily for students who use UNIX workstations

MAC: Media Access Control

machine code: Elemental language of computers; consists of a stream of 0's and 1's; is the ultimate output of any program

mainframe: Industry term for a large computer; typically manufactured by a large company such as IBM for the commercial applications of Fortune 1000 businesses and other large-scale computing purposes; historically associated with centralized rather than distributed computing

MAPI: Messaging Application Program Interface

markup: Sequence of characters or other symbols that you insert at certain places in a text or word processing file to indicate how the file should look when it is printed or displayed or to describe the document's logical structure; markup indicators are often called "tags"

MAU: Media Attachment Unit; Media Access Unit

Mbone: Arranged use of a portion of the internet for IP multicasting to multiple users at the same time

Mbps: Megabits per second

MBR: Master Boot Record ("partition sector"); first sector of HDD or floppy; info for loading OS into RAM

MCA: Micro Channel Architecture

MCSE: Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer

MDB: Multidimensional Database; type of database that is optimized for data warehouse and OLAP applications

MDDBMS: Multidimensional Database Management System

MDI: Multiple Document Interface; Media Dependent Interface; Manual Data Input

MDRAM: Multibank Dynamic RAM; type of video RAM

mebibyte: (MiB) Term approved by the IEC in 1998 to replace "megabyte"; 2 to the 20th or exactly 1048576 bytes whereas "megabyte" should be restricted to 1000000 bytes

megabyte: (MB); approximately 10 to the 6th bytes; due to inconsistent industry standards (and historical quirks) there are actually 3 definitions in use: when used to describe data storage it refers to 1048576 (2 to the 20th) bytes; when used by makers of HDDs (and some types of network hardware) and when used to describe data transfer rates (as in MB/s) it refers to 1000000 bytes; when used as a value for floppy disk storage it refers to 1024000 (1000 x 1024) bytes - therefore a 1.44 MB floppy actually holds 1.44 x 1024000 = 1474560 bytes - not 1.44 x 1048576 = 1509949.44 bytes

MEMS: Micro-Electromechanical Systems

Metcalfe's Law: For every n number of users in a network the value of the network increases by n squared

method: A programmed procedure in OOP that is defined as part of a class and included in any object of that class

MFC: Microsoft Foundation Class

MHz: Megahertz; one million hertz

MIC: Media Interface Connector

micron: One millionth (10 to the -6th) of a meter

microchip: Unit of packaged computer circuitry that has been manufactured from a material such as silicon at a very small scale; sometimes just called a "chip"

microprocessor: Computer processor on a microchip

microsecond: One millionth (10 to the -6th) of a second

MIDI: Musical Instrument Digital Interface

millimeter: One thousandth (10 to the -3rd) of a meter

millisecond: One thousandth (10 to the -3rd) of a second

MIM or MME file: MIME format file created by some email programs to encapsulate email that contains image or program attachments

MIM: Multimodal Input Manager

MIME: Multi-Purpose Internet Mail Extensions

MIPS: Million Instructions Per Second

mIRC: mardam-beyI (?) Internet Relay Chat

mirror site: Web site or set of files on another server in order to reduce network traffic to the original site

MMDS: Multichannel Multipoint Distribution Services

MMF: Multi-Mode Fiber; Multimedia Formats Interface

MMX: Pentium CPU designed by Intel to run faster when playing multimedia applications

mobo: Motherboard; used in Usenet newsgroups and Web forum discussions

modem: Modulator/Demodulator

monitor: Computer display and related parts packaged in a physical unit that is separate from other parts of the computer

MOO: An object-oriented MUD

Moore's Law: The amount of data storage that a microchip can hold doubles approximately every 18 months; more recently this has been amended to every 12 months

motherboard: Physical arrangement in a computer that contains the computer's basic circuitry and components

MP3: Popular compressed file format for storing and playing music files

MPEG: Motion Pictures Experts Group; group that defined the standards for compressed video transmission

MPP: Massively Parallel Processing; coordinated processing of a program by multiple processors that work on different parts of the program using their own operating systems and memory; up to 200 or more processors can work on the same application

MS: Microsoft

MSAU: Multistation Access Unit

MSIE: Microsoft Internet Explorer

MTU: Maximum Transmission Unit; largest size packet that can be sent in a packet-based network

MUD: Multi-User Dungeon; sometimes Multi-User Dimension

multicast: Communication between a single sender and multiple receivers

multiplex: Multiple signals on a carrier at the same time in the form of a single complex signal

multiprocessing: Coordinated processing of programs by more than one computer processor

multiprogramming: Rudimentary form of parallel processing in which several programs are run at the same time on a uniprocessor

multitasking: Management of multiple tasks running concurrently - each taking turns using the resources of the computer

multithreading: Management of multiple concurrent uses of the same program

mux: Multiplexer; the receiving device is sometimes called a demux

MVL: Multiple Virtual Line

MVS: Multiple Virtual Storage; IBM mainframe OS

nanometer: One billionth (10 to the -9th) of a meter

nanosecond: One billionth (10 to the -9th) of a second

nanotechnology: Branch of engineering that deals with the design and manufacture of extremely small electronic circuits and mechanical devices built at the molecular level of matter; sometimes called molecular manufacturing

NAP: Network Access Point; Network Access Provider

NAS: Network Attached Storage

NAT: Network Address Translation

NCP: NetWare Core Protocol

NDIS: Network Driver Interface Specification

NETBLT: Network Block Transfer protocol

NetBEUI: NetBIOS Extended User Interface

NetBIOS: Network BIOS; program that allows applications on different computers to communicate within a LAN

netiquette: "Proper" etiquette on the internet

NetWare: Most widely-installed network server OS; made by Novell

network: Series of Interconnected points or nodes; can interconnect with other networks and contain subnetworks.

Network Layer: The layer (in OSI architecture) that provides services to establish a path between open systems with a predictable quality of service

NeXT: Computer company formed by Steven Jobs (one of the founders of Apple Computer) and also the name of the advanced personal computer or workstation that the company developed and first offered in 1988

NEXT: Near End Cross Talk; interference between pairs of lines at the telephone switch end

NFS: Network File System

NHRP: Next Hop Resolution Protocol; protocol or method that can be used so that a computer sending data to another computer can learn the most direct route (the fewest number of hops) to the receiving computer

nibble: Four bits or half of an eight-bit byte

NIC: Network Interface Card

NIS and NIS+: Network Information System

N-ISND: Narrowband ISDN

NIST: National Institute of Standards and Technology

NOC: Network Operations Center

node: Connection point (single computer) on a network; either a redistribution point or an end point for data transmissions

nonvolatile memory: Solid state memory with a continuous source of power; all forms of ROM; battery powered RAM

NOS: Network Operating System

NSAPI: Netscape Server API

NSI: Network Solutions Inc.

NSP: Network Service Provider

NT: New Technology; MS Windows OS designed for users and businesses needing advanced capability

NTE: Network Termination Equipment

NTFS: NT File System; system that the Windows NT OS uses for storing and retrieving files on a HDD

NTIA: National Telecommunications and Information Administration

NTSC: National Television Systems Committee; standard North American TV format; 30 frames per second; 525 horizontal lines per frame; 4 MHz video bandwidth

null modem cable: Allows you to connect a PC to another nearby PC or serial device using its modem protocol

NUMA: Non-Uniform Memory Access

NVRAM: Nonvolatile RAM

OASIS: Organization for the Advancement of Structured Information Standards

object: In OOP objects are the things you think about first in designing a program and they are also the units of code that are eventually derived from the process

object code: Sequence of instructions that a computer processor can understand after being compiled from "source code"

OC3: Optical Carrier 3; optical fiber line carrying 155 Mbps

OCR: Optical Character Recognition

ODBC: Open Database Connectivity; standard or open application API for accessing databases

ODI: Open Data-Link Interface

ODMA: Open Document Management API

OEM: Original Equipment Manufacturer

OLAP: Online Analytical Processing

OLE: Object Linking and Embedding

OLTP: Online Transaction Processing

OMG: Object Management Group

ONU: Optical Network Unit

OODBMS: Object-Oriented Database Management System

OOP: Object-Oriented Programming

OpenGL: Open Graphics Library; industry standard API for defining 2-D and 3-D graphic images

open system: System that adheres to a publicly-known and sometimes standard set of interfaces so that anyone using it can also use any other system that adheres to the standard

open web: Web addresses that are available to anyone with internet access

OPS: Open Profiling Standard; standard for how www users can control the personal information they share with web sites

ORB: Object Request Broker

orthogonal: In computer terminology something - such as a programming language or a data object - is orthogonal if it can be used without consideration as to how its use will affect something else

OS: Operating System

OS/2: IBM's OS for the PC; sophisticated multitasking system that rivals Windows 3.1 and Windows 95 in terms of capability and performance; most recent versions have been called OS/2 Warp; used mostly by IBM's corporate customers

OS/390: IBM OS that includes a branded UNIX interface; designed for mainframe servers

ocillator: Electronic device used for the purpose of generating a signal

OSI: Open Systems Interconnection; standard description or "reference model" for how messages should be transmitted between any two points in a telecommunication network

OSF: Open Software Foundation

OSPF: Open Shortest Path First; type of IGP

out-of-band signaling: Telecommunication signaling that is done on a channel that is dedicated for the purpose and separate from the channels used for the telephone call

P3P: Platform for Privacy Preferences Project; framework for products and practices that will let www users control the amount of personal information they share with web sites

packet: Series of bits for transmission; contains data and control information; includes source and destination node addresses

Palm OS: Computer OS that provides a s/w platform for the PalmPilot series of PDAs made by Palm

Computing panel: Representation of what information will be sent to a user’s display screen in given circumstances

PAP: Packet Level Procedure; Password Authentication Protocol

parallel: More than one event happening at a time

parallel processing: Processing of program instructions by dividing them among multiple processors with the objective of running a program in less time

Pascal: Strongly-typed programming language with a one-pass compiler; designed for instructional purposes

parser: Program (usually part of a compiler) that receives input in the form of sequential source program instructions - interactive online commands - markup tags - or some other defined interface and breaks them up into parts that can then be managed by other programming

PBX: Private Branch Exchange

PC: Personal Computer

PCI: Peripheral Component Interconnect; PC local bus designed by Intel; runs at 33 MHz; supports Plug-and-Play

PCL: Printer Control Language

PCM: Pulse Code Modulation

PCMCIA: Personal Computer Memory Card International Association

PCS: Personal Communications Services; wireless phone service somewhat similar to cellular telephone service but emphasizing personal service and extended mobility

PDA: Personal Digital Assistant (handheld computer); any small mobile hand-held device that provides computing and information storage and retrieval capabilities for personal or business use

PDC: Primary Domain Controller; role assigned to a server in a network of computers that use the Windows NT OS

PDF: Portable Document Format

pebibyte: (PiB) Term approved by the IEC in 1998 to replace "petabyte"; 2 to the 50th or exactly 1125899906842624 bytes whereas "petabyte" should be restricted to 1000000000000000 bytes

Pentium: Pentium - Pentium Pro - Pentium II - Pentium III (Katmai); series of microprocessors developed by Intel that have replaced the 486 microprocessor

Perl: Practical Extraction and Reporting Language; script programming language

petabyte: (PB) Approximately a million gigabytes (10 to the 15th bytes)

PHP: Personal Home Page

picosecond: One trillionth (10 to the -12th) of a second

PICS: Platform for Internet Content Selection; a standardized format for rating systems

PINE: Program for Internet News & Email

ping: Packet Internet Groper; lets you verify that a particular Internet address exists and can accept requests

ping storm: (ping flood) Flood of packets sent to a server to test its ability to handle traffic or to make the server inoperable

pixel: (contraction of "picture element"); Basic unit of programmable color on a computer display or in a computer image; the physical size of a pixel depends on the what the resolution for the display screen is set to

PL/I: Programming Language 1; developed in the early 1960s; an antecedent of the C programming language

platform: Underlying computer system on which application programs can run (e.g. Win95 or Macintosh); consists of an OS and a microprocessor

PLB: Pipeline Burst Cache; storage area for a computer processor that is designed to be read from or written to in a pipeline succession of four data transfers (or bursts) in which later bursts can start to flow or transfer before the first burst has arrived at the processor

plug-in: s/w that loads in conjunction with a host application that extends its functionality; sometimes called "extension"

PnP: Plug-and-Play

PON: Passive Optical Network; fiber based transmission network containing no active electronics

POP: Point-Of-Presence; location of an access point to the internet; has a unique IP address

POP3: Post Office Protocol 3

port: In computer and telecommunication devices a port is generally a specific place for being physically connected to some other device usually with a socket and plug of some kind; in programming a port is a "logical connection place" and specifically (using TCP/IP) the way a client program specifies a particular server program on a computer in a network; port numbers are from 0 to 65536; ports 0 to 1024 are reserved for use by certain privileged services (for the HTTP service port 80 is defined as a default)

POSIX: Portable Operating System Interface; set of standard OS interfaces based on the UNIX OS

POTS: Plain Old Telephone Service; uses lowest 4 kHz bandwidth on twisted pair wiring

Power Cycle: The act of turning the electrical power to a device off and then back on; often used to reset the device

PowerPC: Microprocessor architecture developed jointly by Apple - IBM - Motorola that uses RISC; also known as PPC

PP: Point-to-Point Protocol; protocol for communication between two computers using a serial interface

PRAM: Parameter RAM

preemptive multitasking: Assignment of priorities to tasks by an OS depending on their relative importance - amount of resources they are consuming - other factors which the OS uses to preempt (cut short) a task having lower priority value so that a higher priority task is given a turn

PRI: Primary Rate Interface; 23 B channels and one 64 Kpbs D channel intended for large users on ISDN

private key: (also known as secret key); Encryption/decryption key known only to the party or parties that exchange data

processor: Logic circuitry that responds to and processes the basic instructions that drive a computer; has generally replaced the term CPU

program: Specific set of ordered operations for a computer to perform

PROM: Programmable RAM

proprietary system: System that does not adhere to a publicly-known and sometimes standard set of interfaces

protocol: Set of rules or standards that enables communication between computers on a network

Proxy Server: Network component between a LAN and the Internet providing security - administrative control - data caching; it is also a firewall that protects the network from intrusion

PSN: Processor Serial Number; s/w-readable unique serial number Intel has stamped into its Pentium III CPUs

PSTN: Public Switched Telephone Network

PTT: Generic European name used to refer to state owned telephone companies

public key: Value combined with a private key that can be used to encrypt and decrypt messages and digital signatures

PVC: Permanent Virtual Circuit

Python: Interpreted OOP language similar to Perl

qbit (qubit): Electrons - other subatomic particles used by quantum computers; can exist simultaneously as 0 and 1 or in between

QOS: Quality of Service

quadbit: One of 16 possible four-bit combinations used in some communication signals; sometimes called a "nibble"

quantum cryptography: Laboratory-demonstrated use of the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle and the quantum properties of photons to provide the ultimate in cryptography; remains to be seen whether this will become practical for everyday use

queue: A list of things or processes waiting to be handled in sequential order starting at the beginning or top

RADSL: Rate Adaptive ADSL; modem tests the line - adapts operating speed to fastest the line can handle

RAID: Redundant Array of Independent (or Inexpensive) Disks

RAM: Random Access Memory

RAMAC: Random Access Method of Accounting and Control; first HDD introduced by IBM in 1956

RAMDAC: RAM Digital-to-Analog Converter

RAS: Remote Access Server

raster: A grid of x- (horizontal) and y- (vertical) coordinates on a display space (and a z-coordinate for 3-D images)

RBOC: Regional BOC

RDBMS: Relational Database Management System

RDMA: Remote Direct Memory Access


reboot: To reload an OS into the computer's main memory or RAM without powering the system down

recursion: Programming technique whereby a procedure or subroutine contains instructions within its code to launch itself (again, so to speak); this loop continues until a given condition is met; see recursion

register: One of a small set of data holding places that are part of a computer microprocessor

registry: MS system for storing info on h/w - OS options - memory - application programs - etc.

relational database: Collection of data items organized as a set of formally-described tables from which data can be accessed or reassembled in many different ways without having to reorganize the database tables

render: To form something out of something else originally given; in computer graphics technology computer software can be used to render special 3-D effects given the right programming statements

repeater: Device that amplifies and retransmits an electromagnetic or optical signal

resolution: Number of pixels contained on a display monitor; expressed in terms of the number of pixels on the horizontal axis and the number on the vertical axis

RF: Radio Frequency

RFC: Request for Comments; internet formal document or standard

RIP: Routing Information Protocol; type of IGP

RISC: Reduced Instruction Set Computer; microprocessor designed to perform a smaller number of types of computer instructions so that it can operate faster

RJ-xx: Registered Jack (e.g. RJ-45)

RMI: Remote Method Invocation

ROM: Read-Only Memory

router: Device or software which determines next network point a packet should be forwarded to (to reach its destination)

RPC: Remote Procedure Call

RS-232C: Long-established standard ("C" is the current version) that describes the physical interface and protocol for relatively low-speed serial data communication between computers and related devices; originally developed for teletype devices

RSA: Rivest-Shamir-Adleman; most common internet encryption and authentication algorithm; included as part of the web browsers from Netscape and Microsoft; also part of Lotus Notes - Intuit's Quicken - many other products

RTF: Rich Text Format; file format to exchange text files between different word processors and/or operating systems

Ruettger's Law: Storage requirements for companies double approximately every year

runtime: Time during which a program is being executed

S.M.A.R.T.: Self-Monitoring Analysis and Reporting Technology; BIOS – HDD interface

S/MIME: Secure Multi-Purpose Internet Mail Extensions

s/w: Software

SAA: Systems Application Architecture

SAN: Storage Area Network

SAP: Service Advertisement Protocol

screen: Physical surface on which visual information is presented; usually made of glass; screen size is measured from corner to corner diagonally; common screen sizes for desktop display screens are 12 - 14 - 15 - 17 - 19 - 21 inches

SCM: Supply Chain Management

script: Program or sequence of instructions that is interpreted or carried out by another program rather than by the CPU

SCSI: Small Computer System Interface

SDH: Synchronous Digital Hierarchy; international equivalent of SONET

SDI: Serial Digital Interface; used by broadcasters to carry video at data rates up to the 270 megabits per second needed for uncompressed studio-quality pictures

SDMI: Secure Digital Music Initiative

SDRAM: Synchronous Dynamic RAM

SDSL: Single-line DSL; Symmetric DSL

Search engine: s/w and/or h/w that allows users to search the Web for information based on keywords and other search criteria

secure server: Server that uses a special code to make sensitive information difficult to read for anyone not authorized to access it

serial: One event at a time

Server Push: Technique used for animation within Web windows

server: Program that provides services to other computer programs in the same or other computers

SFTP: Simple File Transfer Protocol

SGML: Standard GML

SGRAM: Synchronous Graphics RAM

shadow RAM: Copy of BIOS routines (especially video) from ROM put into a special area of RAM for quicker access

shell: UNIX term for the interactive user interface with an OS; layer of programming that understands and executes the commands a user enters; in some systems called a command interpreter

S-HTTP: Secure Hypertext Transmission Protocol; pages using this protocol have a URL starting with https://

SI: International System of Units (from the French name "Système International"); internationally agreed upon system of weights and measures

signaling: Exchange of information in telephony between involved points in the network that sets up - controls - terminates each telephone call

SIMD: Single Instruction Multiple Data

SIMM: Single In-line Memory Module

simplex: Communication that flows in only one direction - never back

slab: Twelve bit "byte" from early days of computing

SLDRAM: SyncLink Dynamic RAM

SLIP: Serial Line Internet Protocol

slot: Technique for adding capability to a computer in the form of connection pinholes (typically in the range of 16 to 64 loosely-spaced holes) and a place to fit an expansion card containing the circuitry that provides some specialized capability such as video acceleration - sound - disk drive control; also known as an expansion slot

SMB: Server Message Block protocol

SMDS: Switched Multimegabit Data Service

SMF: Standard MIDI File

SMIL: Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language

SMP: Symmetric Multiprocessing; processing of programs by multiple processors that share a common OS and memory; does not usually exceed 16 processors; also known as "tightly coupled" multiprocessing

SMTP: Simple Mail Transfer Protocol

SNA: Systems Network Architecture; proprietary IBM architecture and set of implementing products for network computing within an enterprise

SNMP: Simple Network Management Protocol; allows a single host to gather network stats from many other network nodes

SOAP: Simple Object Access Protocol; a way for a program running in one kind of OS to communicate with a program in the same or another kind of an OS using HTTP and XML as the mechanisms for information exchange

sockets: Method for communication between a client program and a server program in a network

SONET: U.S. standard for synchronous data transmission on optical media; up to 9.953 Gbps

source code: Programming statements created by a programmer with a text editor or visual programming tool before being compiled into "object code"

spam: Flood with unwanted and/or unsolicited information; usually associated with email

SPE: SuperParamagnetic Effect; physical phenomenon that occurs in data storage when the energy that holds the magnetic spin in the atoms making up a bit (either a 0 or 1) becomes comparable to the ambient thermal energy; when this happens bits become subject to random "flipping" between 0's and 1's thus corrupting the data

spider: Program that visits Web sites and reads their information in order to create entries for a search engine index

splash page: Initial Web site page used to capture the user's attention for a short time for a promotion or lead-in to the home page

splitter: Filter used to separate ADSL signals from POTS signals to prevent mutual interference

sprite: Graphic image - usually animated - that a user can interact with and move around

SPX: Sequenced Packet Exchange

SRAM: Static RAM

SQL: Structured Query Language; interactive programming language for getting info from and updating a database

SQLJ: Java programming extension set to embed statements that provide SQL database requests

SS7: Signaling System 7; system that puts the information required to set up and manage telephone calls in a separate network rather than within the same network that the telephone call is made on

stack: Layers (TCP - IP - etc.) through which all data passes at both client and server ends of a data exchange

STOC: Symposium on the Theory Of Computing

stream cipher: Method of encrypting text in which a cryptographic key and algorithm are applied to each bit in a data stream one bit at a time; not much used in modern cryptography

streaming media: Streaming video with sound

streaming video: Sequence of "moving images" sent in compressed form and displayed by the viewer as they arrive

stub: Small program routine that substitutes for a longer program; possibly to be loaded later or is located remotely

subnet: Identifiably separate part of an network; e.g. all the machines on a specific LAN

subnet mask: TCP/IP number used to determine which subnet a device belongs to; devices in the same subnet can be communicated with locally without going through a router

supercomputer: Computer that performs at or near the currently highest operational rate for computers; typically used for scientific and engineering applications that must handle very large databases or do a great amount of computation (or both); most are really multiple computers that perform parallel processing using either symmetric multiprocessing or massively parallel processing

superstitial: Web ad format which combines animation technology with Java programming to deliver video-like web commercials

SVGA: Super Video Graphics Array; up to 16 million colors and from 800 x 600 pixels to 1280 x 1024 or even 1600 x 1200 pixel resolution

swap file: Space on a HDD used as a virtual memory extension of a computer's real RAM

switch: Device that selects a path or circuit for sending data to its next destination; may include the function of a router

SXGA: Super Extended Graphics Array; prototype LCD developed by IBM; offers 200 pixels per inch over a 2560 by 2048 grid for a total of 5.2 million color pixels

syntax: Grammar - structure - order of the elements in a language statement

T-carrier system: First successful system that supported digitized voice transmission

T1: 4 wire full-duplex digital bi-directional line; pulse code modulation; time-division multiplexing; 1.544 Mbps

T3: 4 wire full-duplex digital bi-directional line; pulse code modulation; time-division multiplexing; 44.736 Mbps

TACACS: Terminal Access Controller Access Control System; older authentication protocol common to UNIX networks

TAPI: Telephony Application Program Interface

task: Basic unit of programming that an OS controls

TCA: Target Channel Adapter

Tcl: Tool Command Language

TCP: Transmission Control Protocol

TCP/IP: Transmission Control Protocol / Internet Protocol

TCPMAN: Utility for manual or scripted modem dialing

TDM: Time-Division Multiplexing

TDMA: Time Division Multiple Access

tebibyte: (TiB) Term approved by the IEC in 1998 to replace "terabyte"; 2 to the 40th or exactly 1099511627776 bytes whereas "terabyte" should be restricted to 1000000000000 bytes

Telco: Telephone company

Telnet: A user command and an underlying TCP/IP protocol for accessing remote computers

template: Form - mold - pattern used as a guide for making something

terabyte: (TB) Approximately a thousand gigabytes (10 to the 12th bytes)

Terminal Server: Piece of hardware that allows dial-up connections to enter a network

text editor: Computer program that lets a user enter - change - store - and usually print text (characters and numbers each encoded by the computer and its input and output devices arranged to have meaning to users or to other programs)

TFT: Thin Film Transistor; LCD that has a transistor for each pixel; see Active Matrix Display

TFTP: Trivial File Transfer Protocol

thread: On the internet in Usenet newsgroups and similar forums a thread is a sequence of responses to an initial message posting; in computer programming a thread is placeholder information associated with a single use of a program that can handle multiple concurrent users

THz: Terahertz; one trillion hertz

TIA: Telecommunication Industry Association

TLA: Three Letter Acronym (gotcha!)

TLD: Top-Level Domain

TMN: Telecommunications Management Network

Token Ring Network: Widely used LAN technology; uses token-passing scheme to prevent collisions

TPON: Telephony over PON

traceroute: Utility that reports the gateways - or hops - that your data travels through on the Internet to reach its destination

Transistor: Semiconductor replacement for vacuum tubes; acts as a switch or gate for electronic signals

Trojan horse: Program in which malicious or harmful code is hidden inside apparently harmless programming or data

TSO: Time Sharing Option; main user interface in MVS systems

TWAIN: Technology Without An Important (Interesting) Name; driver that runs between an application and scanner h/w

UART: Universal Asynchronous Receiver/Transmitter

UBR: Universal Broadband Router

UCT: Coordinated Universal Time; previously known as GMT (Greenwich Mean Time)

UDA: Universal Data Access

UDP: User Datagram Protocol

UDSL: Unidirectional DSL

UGN: User Group Network

UI: User Interface

Ultra DMA: (more accurately: Ultra DMA/33) Protocol for transferring data from a HDD through the bus to RAM

UML: Unified Modeling Language

UMTS: Universal Mobile Telecommunications Service; broadband packet-based transmission of text - digitized voice - video - multimedia at data rates up to and possibly higher than 2 Mbps

UNC: Universal Naming Convention

unicast: Communication between a single sender and a single receiver over a network

Unicode: Officially called the Unicode Worldwide Character Standard; an entirely new idea in setting up binary codes for text or script characters; a system for "the interchange - processing - display of the written texts of the diverse languages of the modern world"; it also supports many classical and historical texts in a number of languages

unipolar signaling: (unipolar transmission) Baseband method of sending binary data over wire or cable; consists of two logic states - low and high - represented by the digits 0 and 1 respectively; uses strictly negative or strictly positive voltage

UNIX: OS that originated at Bell Labs in 1969 as an interactive time-sharing system

UPS: Uninterruptible Power Supply

uplink: Link from a ground station up to a satellite

upstream: Transmission from an end user toward an information server

URL: Uniform Resource Locator

USB: Universal Serial Bus

Usenet: Collection of notes on various subjects that are posted to servers on a worldwide network

utility: Small program that provides an addition to the capabilities provided by the OS

UUCP: Unix-to-Unix Copy Protocol

UUEncode/UUdecode: Method for encoding and decoding binary information into ASCII data

UWR: Ultra Wideband Radio; also known as digital pulse wireless

VADSL: Very high speed ADSL; same as VDSL (or a subset of VDSL if VDSL includes symmetric mode transmission)

vaporware: s/w or h/w that is announced to influence customers to defer buying competitors' products

VAR: Value-Added Reseller

variable: Value in programming that can change depending on conditions or on information passed to the program

VAX: Line of mid-range server computers from DEC; introduced the OS known as VMS

VB: Visual Basic; programming environment from Microsoft in which a programmer uses a GUI to choose and modify preselected sections of code written in the BASIC programming language

VDSL: Very high data rate DSL; 12.9 – 52.8 Mbps; maximum reach 1000 – 4500 feet of 24 gauge twisted pair wire

vector graphics: Digital images created by mathematical statements that place lines and shapes into 2-D or 3-D space

Veronica: Program that searches the files of the internet's Gopher servers for a particular search string

VESA: Video Electronics Standards Association

VGA: Video Graphics Array; 16 colors at 640 x 480 pixels or 256 colors at 320 x 200 pixels

video adapter: Integrated circuit card in a computer or a monitor that provides digital-to-analog conversion - video memory - video controller so that data can be sent to and constantly refreshed for a computer's display; also called a display adapter or video board

virtual machine: Term used by Sun Microsystems to describe software that acts as an interface between compiled Java binary code and the microprocessor (or "hardware platform") that actually performs the program's instructions

virtual memory: Maps program virtual addresses to real h/w storage addresses; allows for a very large range of addresses

virus: Piece of programming code designed to cause some unexpected and - for the victim - usually undesirable event

VLAN: Virtual LAN; LAN with a definition that maps workstations on some other basis than geographic location

VLIW : Very Long Instruction Word; computer processing architecture in which a language compiler or pre-processor breaks program instructions down into basic operations that can be performed by the processor in parallel (at the same time) - these operations are put into a very long instruction word which the processor can then take apart without further analysis and hand each operation to an appropriate functional unit

VLSI: Very Large-Scale Integration

VLSM: Variable Length Subnet Masks

VMEbus: VersaModular Eurocard bus; data path system used in industrial - commercial - military applications worldwide

VMS: Virtual Memory System; OS created by NEC

Voodoo: Graphics accelerator chipset that (depending on the version) is used either with or instead of a computer's video adapter for a more realistic graphics display and improved interactivity - especially for games

VPN: Virtual Private Network; private data network that makes use of the public telecommunication infrastructure


VRML: Virtual Reality Modeling Language

VSAM: Virtual Storage Access Method; file management system for IBM's larger operating systems

VTAM: Virtual Telecommunications Access Method; IBM API for communicating with telecommunication devices

W3C: World Wide Web Consortium

WAE: Wireless Application Environment

WAI: Web Application Interface

WAIS: Wide Area Information Server

WAN: Wide Area Network

WAP: Wireless Application Protocol

webcasting: (push technology); Prearranged updating of news – weather - other selected information on a computer user's desktop interface through periodic and generally unobtrusive transmission over the internet; uses so-called push technology in which the web server ostensibly "pushes" information to the user rather than waiting until the user specifically requests it

webdesigner: Someone who can design effective web sites

webmaster: Someone who keeps a web site running and available to its users

web page: Single file (usually HTML) that can be displayed on the web

web server: Program that serves requested HTML pages or files

web site: Collection of one or more web pages

Win2000: MS Windows 2000

Win9x: MS Windows 95 or Windows 98

WinMe: MS Windows Millenium

window: Separate viewing area on a computer display screen in a system that allows multiple viewing areas as part of a GUI; can usually be resized by the user; concept initially developed by Xerox; first came into general use in the Apple Macintosh; later Microsoft made the idea the foundation of the Windows OS

windowing system: System for sharing a computer's graphical display presentation resources among multiple applications at the same time; uses a window manager to keep track of where each window is located on the display screen and its size and status

Windows CE: Windows Consumer Electronics; OS based on MS Windows designed for mobile space-constrained devices

Windows NT: Microsoft Windows PC OS designed for users and businesses needing advanced capability; is actually two products: Microsoft NT Workstation and Microsoft NT Server; may originally have stood for "New Technology" (although Microsoft doesn't say)

Windows XP: Microsoft Windows PC OS designed as the next step in the Windows NT / Windows 2000 series; slated for release in the second half of 2001

winipcfg.exe: Win9x utility that displays the TCP/IP configuration information for the computer and allows the lease for the IP address(es) to be renewed

WINS: Windows Internet Naming Service

winsock: Protocol for implementing TCP/IP on Windows computers

Wintel: Widely-sold combination of an Intel Pentium processor and a Windows OS

WIPO: World Intellectual Property Organization

wireless: Communications – monitoring - control system in which electromagnetic or acoustic waves carry a signal through atmospheric space rather than along a wire; in most wireless systems RF or IR waves are used; some monitoring devices such as intrusion alarms employ acoustic waves at frequencies above the range of human hearing

word processor: Computer program that provides special capabilities beyond that of a text editor; usually provides a GUI

worm: Type of virus or replicative code that situates itself in a computer system in a place where it can do harm

WOSA: Windows Open Services Architecture

WRAM: Window RAM

WSL: Wireless Session Layer

WTLS: Wireless Transport Layer Security

WTP: Wireless Transport Layer

WYSIWYG: What You See Is What You Get

www: World Wide Web; Name given to all HTML documents that exist on all interconnected HTTP servers around the world

XGA: Extended Graphics Array; 800 x 600 pixel resolution in true color (16 million colors) or 1024 x 768 resolution in 65536 colors

XHTML: Extensible Hypertext Markup Language; reformulation of HTML4 (current HTML version) as an application of XML

XML: Extensible Markup Language; flexible way to create common information formats and share both the format and the data on the web - intranets - elsewhere

XNS: Xerox Network Systems

Xmodem: Error-correcting protocol for modems; also called Modem7

XQL: XML Query Language; way to locate and filter the elements (data fields) and text in an XML document

XSL: Extensible Stylesheet Language; language for creating a style sheet that describes how data sent over the web using XML is to be presented to the user

XSLT: XSL Transformations; standard way to describe how to transform the structure of an XML document into an XML document with a different structure

XWindows: Open cross-platform client-server system for managing a windowed GUI in a distributed network

Ymodem: Error-correcting protocol for modems that uses larger data blocks for greater efficiency

yottabyte: (YB) Approximately a quadrillion gigabytes (10 to the 24th bytes)

zettabyte: Approximately a trillion gigabytes (10 to the 21st bytes)

Zip drive: Small portable disk drive used primarily for backing up and archiving personal computer files

zip file: Compressed archive file created by a program called Zip/PKZIP/WinZip/NetZip/MacZip

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