A name that is substituted for a more complicated name. For example, a simple alias may be used instead of a more complicated mailing address or for a mailing list.
A computer program written in Java for transfer over the web.
A search utility used on the Internet to locate files in FTP sites, these files are generally public domain files that anyone can download.
A graphical representation of a person in a chat room. The word comes from Hindu mythology in which spirits come down and inhabit bodies.
Describes the capacity at which a given communications channel, such as ordinary copper telephone line, can transfer information; increasing bandwidth increases the speed at which data transfer takes place. The greater the bandwidth, the greater amount of data can be transferred.
A measurement of how quickly a modem transfers data. Although, strictly speaking, this is not the same as bits per second, the two terms are often used interchangeably.
BBS (Bulletin Board System)
A service accessible via modem or other connection through which users may exchange messages privately or post messages to a publicly accessible forum; may or may not have Internet access.
Basic Input Output System. This is the basic set of instructions that tell the computer how to act.
Short for binary digit; either a 1 or a 0; the smallest unit into which digital information may be broken.
BPS (Bits per Second)
A measure of the speed of data transmission; the number of bits of data that can be transmitted each second. Modems are generally measured by their BPS rate (14.4K - 14400 BPS, 28.8K - 28800 BPS)
The process of turning on the computer, which includes a number of functions that are performed automatically every time the power switch is turned on.
A client software program used to search networks, retrieve copies of files and display them in an easy-to-read, often graphical, format. Browsers such as SPRY Mosaic, Netscape Navigator, and Microsoft Internet Explorer are used to access information on the World Wide Web.
A collection of eight BITS.
A software program that provides access to network resources by working with information stored on a server.
Complimentary Metal Oxide Semiconductor. A CMOS computer circuit consumes very little power and is used in computers to keep track of the system setup information, data, time, type of disk and hard drives, etc. that a computer has installed. The CMOS information is powered by the computer's on-board battery. So if the on-board battery fails, the information in CMOS is lost.
An unexpected shutdown either of a program or the whole system.; sometimes traumatic, always frustrating ; often fixable by turning off the computer and turning it back on; results in losing any unsaved work. Can also be used in instances of a hard disk physically being damaged.
A term coined by author William Gibson. It describes the imaginary space in which computer users travel when "surfing" the Internet.
In UNIX, a program running all the time in the "background" (that is, unseen by users), providing special services when required. An example of a daemon is biff, which lets you know when mail arrives.
E-mail (Electronic Mail)
A means of sending typed messages from one computer to another, over a network or the Internet.
Frequently Asked Question. This is often a file which new users can refer to when using a new service or piece of Internet software. It contains answers to frequently asked questions, hence the name.
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