Web Glossary

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ascii

  A very basic text format. Its advantage is that it can be used on any system.


bookmark (also favorite and favorite place)

  A shortcut back to a favorite Web page. When you find a Web page that you like, you can add it to your list of bookmarks, usually by choosing from your Web browser's menu bar. The next time you want to return to that Web page, just select it from your list of bookmarks.


browser (also Web browser)

  A computer program you use to view pages on the World Wide Web. A browser interprets HTML code and displays it. Most browsers can display words, pictures and sounds, and many browsers can also play movies, animations, news tickers and more. Common browsers include the AOL browser, Internet Explorer, and Netscape Navigator.


domain name

  The unique name of an address on the Internet. Domain names usually consist of a name, like aol, followed by a period (called a "dot") and ending with one of several top level domains that describe the type of organization that runs that address. The primary top level domains are:
    .com - Companies
    .net - Internet Service Providers
    .edu - Educational Institutions
    .mil - Military
    .org - Non-profit organizations
    .gov - Government

Examples of complete domain names are aol.com, whitehouse.gov, and harvard.edu. Together with other elements, domain names make up Web addresses.


dot

  The name for the period (.) that separates the pieces of an Internet address. For example, the Web address "www.aol.com" would be pronounced "W-W-W dot A-O-L dot com."  


E-Mail

  Electronic mail sent very fast using the Internet for delivery.


FTP (File Transfer Protocol)

  FTP is protocol for transferring binary data or text over the Internet.


HTML (Hypertext Markup Language)

  HTML stands for Hypertext Markup Language. HTML allows a person to define what goes in a Web page, what the page does, and how it looks in a Web browser, as well as what the words say, how to draw the pictures or play the sounds, where the links go and more.


http (hypertext transfer protocol)

  The very first part of a Web address that says, "I am a Web address," and tells the computers on the Internet to use the "hypertext transfer protocol" to send information to and from your computer. (A "protocol" is just a techy term for an agreed-upon way to swap information.)


hyperlink (also link)

  Hyperlinks tie information on the Web together, making it easy to jump between connected Web pages. Text hyperlinks are usually underlined blue text, and when you click on a hyperlink with your mouse, you will "go" to another Web page. For example, a Web page about Sports might have a hyperlink to more information about Basketball -- click on the hyperlink, and the Basketball page is brought to your computer screen. (In most Web browsers, when you move your mouse over a hyperlink, the mouse arrow will turn into a pointing finger, which means you can click that link.)  


Internet

  The world's largest computer network, made up of thousands of smaller networks and computers all connected together.  


Internet Protocol

  Internet Protocol. The address which tells the router where to send the data.  


packet

  The standard unit of information that is sent over the Internet. When you click on a hyperlink, the information on the Web page you want is broken up into little packets, sent over the wires and networks that make up the Internet, and reassembled in your computer so you can see them on your Web browser.


plug-in

  A small program that improves the capabilities of your Web browser in a specific way. Downloading and installing a specific plug-in gives you a specific feature, like the ability to listen to streaming audio (with the RealAudio plug-in), or the capability to view animated movies (with the Flash plug-in). See the Multimedia Showcase for more information and the most popular plug-ins.  


search engine

  A tool that lets you find information on the Internet. You type words describing what you're looking for, and the search engine scours the Internet for Web sites that match your description. An example of a search engine is AOL NetFind.


server

  A program that handles client programs. There are different kinds of servers. For example a FTP - server allows a FTP - client to download data or a Web - server allows a Web - client to access the Web sites located on the server.  


streaming

  A particular way that files are sent over the Web that lets you see or hear information as it arrives, so you don't have to wait for the entire file to download.  


Web address

  The location of a page on the World Wide Web, which usually looks like "http://www.aol.com." Web addresses are officially known as URLs, which stands for Uniform Resource Locator.


Web page (also page)

  A document on the World Wide Web, created using HTML and seen with a Web browser. A Web page can contain text, pictures, sounds, software files, movies and more. Each Web page has a unique Web address that describes how to get to it. A home page is a specific kind of Web page, usually the main page on a Web site.


Web site

  A collection of Web pages.


World Wide Web (also WWW, Web)

  The World Wide Web uses the Internet to create a network of information, made up of documents ("Web Pages") containing text, sounds, pictures, movies and more, tied together with hyperlinks so that all this information is just a few clicks of the mouse away.


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