- A small Java program that can be embedded in an HTML page. Applets differ
from full-fledged Java applications in that they are not allowed to access certain
resources on the local computer, such as files and serial devices (modems, printers,
etc.), and are prohibited from communicating with most other computers across a network.
The current rule is that an applet can only make an Internet connection to the computer
from which the applet was sent.
See Also: HTML , Java
- A search tool for finding files stored on the Internet. Mostly obsolete since the
advent of the World Wide Web.
- (Advanced Research Projects Agency Network) -- The precursor to the Internet.
Developed in the late 60s and early 70s by the US Department of Defense as an
experiment in wide-area-networking that would survive a nuclear war.
- (American Standard Code for Information Interchange) -- This is the de facto world-wide
standard for the code numbers used by computers to represent all the upper and lower-case
Latin letters, numbers, punctuation, etc. There are 128 standard ASCII codes each of which
can be represented by a 7 digit binary number: 0000000 through 1111111.
- A high-speed line or series of connections that forms a major pathway within a network.
The term is relative as a backbone in a small network will likely be much smaller
than many non-backbone lines in a large network.
- How much stuff you can send through a connection. Usually measured in bits-per-second. A
full page of English text is about 16,000 bits. A fast modem can move about 15,000 bits in
one second. Full-motion full-screen video would require roughly 10,000,000
bits-per-second, depending on compression.
- In simplifed/slightly incorrect terms it's the number of bits that a modem can transfer
in a second. A bit is 1/8 of a byte which is equal to a single character
- (Bits-Per-Second) -- A measurement of how fast data is moved from one place to another.
A 28.8 modem can move 28,800 bits per second.
- A program (software) that resides on a computer and is used to view information.
Typically this term is used when discussing a web browser. Examples of web browsers would
be Netscape Navigaotr and Microsoft Internet Explorer.
- (By The Way) -- A shorthand appended to a comment written in an online forum.
- (Common Gateway Interface) -- A set of rules that describe how a Web Server
communicates with another program on the same computer and vise versa.
- The most common name of the directory (folder) on a web server in which CGI
programs are stored.
The bin part of cgi-bin is slang for binary which is what most
programs were refered to as.
- A program that is used to obtain and manipulate data from a Server. Each Client
program is designed to work with one A Web Browser is a specific kind of Client.
- Most often used to refer to physically locating a server that belongs to one compnay on
an Internet-connected network that belongs to another company. This is usually
done to put the server on the best possible place on the Internet and to avoid the high
cost of running fast phone lines to a remote location.
- A cookie on the Internet generally refers to a small file that is sent by a web server
to a web browser. The web browser us usually expected to save, and send back this file
whenever the browser makes additional requests from the Server.
- Term originated by author William Gibson in his novel Neuromancer the word
Cyberspace is currently used to describe the whole range of information resources
available through computer networks.
- Domain Name
- Is a unique name that identifies an IP (Internet Protocol) number.
- (Electronic Mail) Nuff Said
- A very common method of networking computers. Ethernet will handle about 10,000,000
bits-per-second and is mostly universally accepted as the standard.
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Fire Wall
- A combination of hardware and software that separates a LAN into two or more parts for
security purposes. Generally used to seperate a LAN form the Intenet
- A derogatory comment no matter how witless or crude.
- (File Transfer Protocol) -- A very common method of moving files between two Internet
sites. Annoymous FTP refers to a public FTP server that will allow access to anyone, by
simply logging in using the account name anonymous.
- (Graphic Interchange Format) -- A common format for image files, used heavily on the
Internet. GIF images are especially suitable for images containing large areas of the same
- 1024 Megabytes. Often misrepresented by hard drive manufacturers as 1000 megabytes.
- The precurser to the world Wide Web and mostly obsolete these days.
- A hit refers to a single request from a web browser for a single item from a web server.
If a web page contains 3 graphics then viewing the entire page for the first time would
generate 4 hits.... 1 for the html document and 3 for the images
- (HyperText Markup Language) -- The fomatting language that is used to create Hypertext
documents for use on the World Wide Web. The HTML code in a webpage is read by the
web browser and tells the web browser how to display the webpage.
- (HyperText Transport Protocol) -- The protocol for moving hypertext files (web pages)
across the Internet.
- In My Humble Opinion
- A huge hodgepodge collection of computers networked together across the globe.
- A smaller private version of the Internet used inside a compnay or organization for
- IP Number
- Internet Protocol Number 4 sets of 1 to 3 numbers seperated by periods or dot .
Every computer that is on the Internet has a unique IP number
- Internet Relay Chat is a large multi-user live chat facility. Generally used to type
messages/commnets to others in a chat room or channel..
- Integrated Services Digital Network... basically digital phone lines that can provide
speeds of roughly 128,000 bits-per-second.
- Internet Service Provider is a group or company that provides access to the Internet
through modem/isdn or leased phone lines.
- Java is a network-oriented programming language invented by Sun Microsystems that is
specifically designed for writing programs that can be safely downloaded to your computer
through the Internet and immediately run without fear of viruses or other harm to your
computer or files. Using small Java programs (called "Applets"), Web
pages can include functions such as animations, calculators, and other fancy tricks.
- (Joint Photographic Experts Group) -- JPEG is most commonly mentioned as a format for
image files. JPEG format is preferred to the GIF format for photographic images as
opposed to line art or simple logo art.
See Also: GIF
- A thousand bytes. Actually, usually 1024 (2^10) bytes.
See Also: Byte , Bit
- (Local Area Network) -- A computer network limited to the immediate area, usually the
same building or floor of a building.
See Also: Ethernet
- Refers to a phone line that is rented for exclusive 24-hour, 7 -days-a-week use from
your location to another location. The highest speed data connections require a leased
See Also: T-1 , T-3
- The most common kind of maillist, Listservs originated on BITNET but they
are now common on the Internet.
See Also: BITNET
, E-mail , Maillist
- Noun or a verb. Noun: The account name used to gain access to a computer system. Not a
secret (contrast with Password).
Verb: The act of entering into a computer system, e.g. Login to the WELL and then go to
the GBN conference.
See Also: Password
- (or Mailing List) A (usually automated) system that allows people to send e-mail
to one address, whereupon their message is copied and sent to all of the other subscribers
to the maillist. In this way, people who have many different kinds of e-mail access can
participate in discussions together.
- A million bytes. Actually, technically, 1024 kilobytes.
See Also: Byte , Bit , Kilobyte
- (Multipurpose Internet Mail Extensions) -- The standard for attaching non-text files to
standard Internet mail messages. Non-text files include graphics, spreadsheets, formatted
word-processor documents, sound files, etc.
An email program is said to be MIME Compliant if it can both send and receive files using
the MIME standard.
When non-text files are sent using the MIME standard they are converted (encoded) into
text - although the resulting text is not really readable.
Generally speaking the MIME standard is a way of specifying both the type of file being
sent (e.g. a Quicktime video file), and the method that should be used to turn it
back into its original form.
Besides email software, the MIME standard is also universally used by Web Servers
to identify the files they are sending to Web Clients, in this way new file formats
can be accommodated simply by updating the Browsers list of pairs of MIME-Types and
appropriate software for handling each type.
See Also: Browser
, Client , Server , Binhex , UUENCODE
- Generally speaking, to mirror is to maintain an exact copy of something.
Probably the most common use of the term on the Internet refers to mirror
sites which are web sites, or FTP sites that maintain exact copies of
material originated at another location, usually in order to provide more widespread
access to the resource.
Another common use of the term mirror refers to an arrangement where
information is written to more than one hard disk simultaneously, so that if one disk
fails, the computer keeps on working without losing anything.
See Also: FTP , Web
- (MOdulator, DEModulator) -- A device that you connect to your computer and to a phone
line, that allows the computer to talk to other computers through the phone system.
Basically, modems do for computers what a telephone does for humans.
- (Mud, Object Oriented) -- One of several kinds of multi-user role-playing environments,
so far only text-based.
See Also: MUD , MUSE
- The first WWW browser that was available for the Macintosh, Windows, and UNIX all
with the same interface. Mosaic really started the popularity of the Web. The source-code
to Mosaic has been licensed by several companies and there are several other pieces of
software as good or better than Mosaic, most notably, Netscape.
See Also: Browser , Client , WWW
- (Multi-User Dungeon or Dimension) -- A (usually text-based) multi-user simulation
environment. Some are purely for fun and flirting, others are used for serious software
development, or education purposes and all that lies in between. A significant feature of
most MUDs is that users can create things that stay after they leave and which other users
can interact with in their absence, thus allowing a world to be built gradually and
See Also: MOO , MUSE
- (Multi-User Simulated Environment) -- One kind of MUD - usually with little or no
See Also: MOO , MUD
- The etiquette on the Internet.
See Also: Internet
- Derived from the term citizen, referring to a citizen of the Internet, or someone
who uses networked resources. The term connotes civic responsibility and participation.
- A WWW Browser and the name of a company. The Netscape (tm) browser was originally
based on the Mosaic program developed at the National Center for Supercomputing
Netscape has grown in features rapidly and is widely recognized as the best and most
popular web browser. Netscape corporation also produces web server software.
Netscape provided major improvements in speed and interface over other browsers, and has
also engendered debate by creating new elements for the HTML language used by Web
pages -- but the Netscape extensions to HTML are not universally supported.
The main author of Netscape, Mark Andreessen, was hired away from the NCSA by Jim Clark,
and they founded a company called Mosaic Communications and soon changed the name to
Netscape Communications Corporation.
See Also: Browser , Mosaic
, Server , WWW
- Any time you connect 2 or more computers together so that they can share resources, you
have a computer network. Connect 2 or more networks together and you have an internet.
See Also: internet , Internet , Intranet
- The name for discussion groups on USENET.
See Also: USENET
- (Networked Information Center) -- Generally, any office that handles information for a
network. The most famous of these on the Internet is the InterNIC, which is where new
domain names are registered.
Another definition: NIC also refers to Network Interface Card which plugs into a computer
adapts the network interface to the appropriate standard. ISA, PCI, and PCMCIA cards are
all examples of NICs.
- (Network News Transport Protocol) -- The protocol used by client and server
software to carry USENET postings back and forth over a TCP/IP network.
If you are using any of the more common software such as Netscape, Nuntius,
Internet Explorer, etc. to participate in newsgroups then you are benefiting from
an NNTP connection.
See Also: Newsgroup , TCP/IP , USENET
- Any single computer connected to a network.
See Also: Network , Internet ,
- Packet Switching
- The method used to move data around on the Internet. In packet switching, all the
data coming out of a machine is broken up into chunks, each chunk has the address of where
it came from and where it is going. This enables chunks of data from many different
sources to co-mingle on the same lines, and be sorted and directed to different routes by
special machines along the way. This way many people can use the same lines at the same
- A code used to gain access to a locked system. Good passwords contain letters and
non-letters and are not simple combinations such as virtue7. A good password might
See Also: Login
- A (usually small) piece of software that adds features to a larger piece of software.
Common examples are plug-ins for the Netscape® browser and web server.
Adobe Photoshop® also uses plug-ins.
The idea behind plug-ins is that a small piece of software is loaded into memory by
the larger program, adding a new feature, and that users need only install the few
plug-ins that they need, out of a much larger pool of possibilities. Plug-ins are usually
created by people other than the publishers of the software the plug-in works with.
- (Point of Presence, also Post Office Protocol) -- Two commonly used meanings: Point of
Presence and Post Office Protocol. A Point of Presence usually means a city or location
where a network can be connected to, often with dial up phone lines. So if an Internet
company says they will soon have a POP in Belgrade, it means that they will soon have a
local phone number in Belgrade and/or a place where leased lines can connect to their
network. A second meaning, Post Office Protocol refers to the way e-mail software such as
Eudora gets mail from a mail server. When you obtain a SLIP, PPP, or shell account you
almost always get a POP account with it, and it is this POP account that you tell your
e-mail software to use to get your mail.
See Also: SLIP
- 3 meanings. First and most generally, a place where information goes into or out of a
computer, or both. E.g. the serial port on a personal computer is where a modem
would be connected.
On the Internet port often refers to a number that is part of a URL, appearing
after a colon (:) right after the domain name. Every service on an Internet server
listens on a particular port number on that server. Most services have standard port
numbers, e.g. Web servers normally listen on port 80. Services can also listen on
non-standard ports, in which case the port number must be specified in a URL when
accessing the server, so you might see a URL of the form:
shows a gopher server running on a non-standard port (the standard gopher port is 70).
Finally, port also refers to translating a piece of software to bring it from one type of
computer system to another, e.g. to translate a Windows program so that is will run on a
See Also: Domain Name , Server , URL
- A single message entered into a network communications system.
E.g. A single message posted to a newsgroup or message board.
See Also: Newsgroup
- (Point to Point Protocol) -- Most well known as a protocol that allows a computer to use
a regular telephone line and a modem to make TCP/IP connections and thus be
really and truly on the Internet.
See Also: IP
Number , Internet , SLIP
- (Public Switched Telephone Network) -- The regular old-fashioned telephone system.
- (Request For Comments) -- The name of the result and the process for creating a standard
on the Internet. New standards are proposed and published on line, as a Request For
Comments. The Internet Engineering Task Force is a consensus-building body that
facilitates discussion, and eventually a new standard is established, but the reference
number/name for the standard retains the acronym RFC, e.g. the official standard for e-mail
is RFC 822.
- A special-purpose computer (or software package) that handles the connection between 2
or more networks. Routers spend all their time looking at the destination addresses
of the packets passing through them and deciding which route to send them on.
Also: Network , Packet Switching
- Security Certificate
- A chunk of information (often stored as a text file) that is used by the SSL
protocol to establish a secure connection.
Security Certificates contain information about who it belongs to, who it was issued by, a
unique serial number or other unique identification, valid dates, and an encrypted
fingerprint that can be used to verify the contents of the certificate.
In order for an SSL connection to be created both sides must have a valid Security
See Also: Certificate
Authority , SSL
- A computer, or a software package, that provides a specific kind of service to client
software running on other computers. The term can refer to a particular piece of software,
such as a WWW server, or to the machine on which the software is running, e.g.Our
mail server is down today, thats why e-mail isnt getting out. A single server
machine could have several different server software packages running on it, thus
providing many different servers to clients on the network.
See Also: Client , Network
- (Serial Line Internet Protocol) -- A standard for using a regular telephone line (a
serial line) and a modem to connect a computer as a real Internet site. SLIP
is gradually being replaced by PPP.
See Also: Internet
- (Switched Multimegabit Data Service) -- A new standard for very high-speed data
- (Simple Mail Transport Protocol) -- The main protocol used to send electronic mail on
SMTP consists of a set of rules for how a program sending mail and a program receiving
mail should interact.
Almost all Internet email is sent and received by clients and servers using
SMTP, thus if one wanted to set up an email server on the Internet one would look for
email server software that supports SMTP.
See Also: Client
- (Simple Network Management Protocol) -- A set of standards for communication with
devices connected to a TCP/IP network. Examples of these devices include routers,
hubs, and switches.
A device is said to be SNMP compatible if it can be monitored and/or
controlled using SNMP messages. SNMP messages are known as PDUs -
Protocol Data Units.
Devices that are SNMP compatible contain SNMP agent software to receive, send,
and act upon SNMP messages.
Software for managing devices via SNMP are available for every kind of commonly used
computer and are often bundled along with the device they are designed to manage. Some
SNMP software is designed to handle a wide variety of devices.
See Also: Network , Router
- Spam (or Spamming)
- An inappropriate attempt to use a mailing list, or USENET or other
networked communications facility as if it was a broadcast medium (which it is not) by
sending the same message to a large number of people who didnt ask for it. The term
probably comes from a famous Monty Python skit which featured the word spam repeated over
and over. The term may also have come from someones low opinion of the food product
with the same name, which is generally perceived as a generic content-free waste of
resources. (Spam is a registered trademark of Hormel Corporation, for its processed meat
E.g. Mary spammed 50 USENET groups by posting the same message to each.
See Also: Maillist , USENET
- (Structured Query Language) -- A specialized programming language for sending queries to
databases. Most industrial-strength and many smaller database applications can be
addressed using SQL. Each specific application will have its own version of SQL
implementing features unique to that application, but all SQL-capable databases support a
common subset of SQL.
- (Secure Sockets Layer) -- A protocol designed by Netscape Communications to enable
encrypted, authenticated communications across the Internet.
SSL used mostly (but not exclusively) in communications between web browsers and
web servers. URLs that begin with https indicate that an
SSL connection will be used.
SSL provides 3 important things: Privacy, Authentication, and Message Integrity.
In an SSL connection each side of the connection must have a Security Certificate,
which each sides software sends to the other. Each side then encrypts what it sends
using information from both its own and the other sides Certificate, ensuring that
only the intended recipient can de-crypt it, and that the other side can be sure the data
came from the place it claims to have come from, and that the message has not been
See Also: Browser , Server , Security
Certificate , URL
- (System Operator) -- Anyone responsible for the physical operations of a computer system
or network resource. A System Administrator decides how often backups and maintenance
should be performed and the System Operator performs those tasks.
- A leased-line connection capable of carrying data at 1,544,000 bits-per-second.
At maximum theoretical capacity, a T-1 line could move a megabyte in less than 10
seconds. That is still not fast enough for full-screen, full-motion video, for which you
need at least 10,000,000 bits-per-second. T-1 is the fastest speed commonly used to
connect networks to the Internet.
See Also: Bandwidth , Bit , Byte , Ethernet , T-3
- A leased-line connection capable of carrying data at 44,736,000 bits-per-second.
This is more than enough to do full-screen, full-motion video.
See Also: Bandwidth , Bit , Byte , Ethernet , T-1
- (Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol) -- This is the suite of protocols that
defines the Internet. Originally designed for the UNIX operating system,
TCP/IP software is now available for every major kind of computer operating system. To be
truly on the Internet, your computer must have TCP/IP software.
See Also: IP Number , Internet
- The command and program used to login from one Internet site to another.
The telnet command/program gets you to the login: prompt of another host.
- 1000 gigabytes.
See Also: Byte , Kilobyte
- A device that allows you to send commands to a computer somewhere else. At a minimum,
this usually means a keyboard and a display screen and some simple circuitry. Usually you
will use terminal software in a personal computer - the software pretends to be (emulates)
a physical terminal and allows you to type commands to a computer somewhere else.
- Terminal Server
- A special purpose computer that has places to plug in many modems on one side,
and a connection to a LAN or host machine on the other side. Thus the
terminal server does the work of answering the calls and passes the connections on to the
appropriate node. Most terminal servers can provide PPP or SLIP
services if connected to the Internet.
See Also: LAN
, Modem , Host , Node , PPP , SLIP
- (User Datagram Protocol) -- One of the protocols for data transfer that is part of the TCP/IP
suite of protocols. UDP is a stateless protocol in that UDP makes no provision
for acknowledgement of packets received.
See Also: TCP/IP
- A computer operating system (the basic software running on a computer, underneath things
like word processors and spreadsheets). UNIX is designed to be used by many people at the
same time (it is multi-user) and has TCP/IP built-in. It is the most common
operating system for servers on the Internet.
- (Uniform Resource Locator) -- The standard way to give the address of any resource on
the Internet that is part of the World Wide Web (WWW). A URL looks like this:
The most common way to use a URL is to enter into a WWW browser program, such as Netscape,
See Also: Browser , WWW
- A world-wide system of discussion groups, with comments passed among hundreds of
thousands of machines. Not all USENET machines are on the Internet, maybe half.
USENET is completely decentralized, with over 10,000 discussion areas, called newsgroups.
See Also: Newsgroup
- (Unix to Unix Encoding) -- A method for converting files from Binary to ASCII
(text) so that they can be sent across the Internet via e-mail.
See Also: Binhex , MIME
- (Very Easy Rodent Oriented Net-wide Index to Computerized Archives) -- Developed at the
University of Nevada, Veronica is a constantly updated database of the names of almost
every menu item on thousands of gopher servers. The Veronica database can be
searched from most major gopher menus.
See Also: Gopher
- (Wide Area Information Servers) -- A commercial software package that allows the
indexing of huge quantities of information, and then making those indices searchable
across networks such as the Internet. A prominent feature of WAIS is that
the search results are ranked (scored) according to how relevant the hits are, and that
subsequent searches can find more stuff like that last batch and thus refine the search
- (Wide Area Network) -- Any internet or network that covers an area larger
than a single building or campus.
See Also: Internet
, internet , LAN , Network
- See: WWW
- (World Wide Web) -- Two meanings - First, loosely used: the whole constellation of
resources that can be accessed using Gopher, FTP, HTTP, telnet, USENET, WAIS and
some other tools. Second, the universe of hypertext servers (HTTP servers) which
are the servers that allow text, graphics, sound files, etc. to be mixed together.
Also: Browser , FTP , Gopher , HTTP , Telnet , URL , WAIS