A small niche application or utility such as a mortgage calculator program, that performs just one useful task and is designed for use within larger programs. Because of their small size many applets are available as free software online.

The main international telecommunications networks that carry internet traffic among other national, regional, and local networks.

The amount of data that can travel in a given time, usually one second, across a network or a connection to a network such as a modem.

A common system of logic that uses operators such as AND, OR, NOR, or NOT. To search for a document that includes the words "January" and "March" but not "Febuary", the boolean expression would be "January AND March NOT Febuary."

Software that allows a user to navigate the World Wide Web by clicking with a mouse on underlined text and graphical objects similar to those found in the Microsoft Windows and Apple Macintosh operating systems.

A personal computer attached to any network, including the Internet. Also, personal-computer software that gives access to, and enables use of, the Internet, either by modem connection or by connection to a local area network and related hardware.

A method used on Web sites to track visitors. Cookies are designed to recognize a user's ID or password when the user revisits a Web site. After a particular Web server places the cookie on the computers hard drive, each subsequent request to the same server will contain that cookie.

Central Processing Unit. Also called the microprocessor, this chip acts as the brain of the computer. It controls the computer's actions and can find, decode, and carry out instruction, plus assign tasks to other resources. Most IBM compatible PC's use 386, 486, or Pentium class chips designed by Intel Corp.

A popular term encompassing all computer networks, including the Internet, on line services, and private networks.

Domain name
An Internet address, commonly in the generic form Six types of domain names are used in the United States: .com for businesses, .edu for education institutions, .gov for government agencies, mil for the military, .net for networks, and .org for organizations.

Bringing data from the Internet into a personal computer.

Electronic Data Interchange. It allows companies to place orders, bid on projects, and make payments over the Internet or private networks.

Electronic Commerce
Conducting sales or other business transactions over the Internet or private networks.

Electronic mail. A message sent from one person to one or more other persons over the Internet or private network.

E-Mail address
An electronic location for receiving and sending e-mail. E-mail addresses are used to identify and contact users. They take the form:

Frequently asked questions. A list of common questions about a particular subject such as a newsgroup or a Web site.

Computer hardware and software that prevents Internet users from accessing part or all of a private computer network that is attached to the Internet.

An angry e-mail message or newsgroup posting.

File Transfer Protocol. A software protocol that allows people to copy or move files from a remote computer -- called an FTP site -- to their own computers over the Internet.

Graphics Interface Format. (pronounce jiff.) A method used to compress and transfer graphics images into digital information; it is commonly used to transfer graphics files on the Internet because of its excellent display of solid colors on all Web browsers.

A way of measuring the number of visitors to a Web site. Although it's sometimes believed a hit equals one visit to a site, it actually refers to the number of files opened at the site, For example, if you access a page that has six images on it, the site will register seven hits (one for the page and one for each of the image files).

Hypertext Markup Language. A language used to create electronic documents, especially pages on the World Wide Web, that contain connection called hyperlinks. Hyperlinks allow users to jump from on document to a related document by clicking an icon or a hypertext phrase. For instance, you might jump from a company logo or name on a Web page to the company's home page on the Internet.

Hypertext Transfer Protocol. The set of standards that let users of the World Wide Web exchange information found in Web pages. Web browser software is used to read documents formatted and delivered according to HTTP. the beginning of every Web address is "http://", tells the browser that the address' document is HTTP -compatible.

An icon, graphic, or word in a file that when clicked with the mouse, automatically opens another file for viewing World Wide Web pages often include hyperlinks that display other Web pages when selected. Usually these hyperlinked papers are related in some way. Hyperlinks include the address or names of the files to which they point, but typically this code is hidden from the user.

A software format that lets users embed into documents the links to other documents. It also allows multiple documents to be represented by one page.

A global Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) network linking millions of computers for communications purposes. The Internet originally was developed in 1969 for the U.S military and gradually grew to include educational and research institutions. Today, commercial industries, corporations, and home users all communicate over the Internet, sharing software, messages and information. The most famous aspect of the Internet is the World Wide Web, a system of graphical files saved in Hypertext Markup Language format.

Internet Network Information Center. A private agency responsible for registering Web site domain names.

Internet Protocol. The address of a computer on a Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol (TP/IP) network. IP addresses are written as four groups of number (each group may consist of as many as three numbers) separated by periods. An example of an IP address is

Internet Relay Chat. A type of interactive communication on the Internet in which computer users engage in real-time communication.

Integrated Sevices Digital Network. A telecommunications network that allows digital voice, video, and data transmissions. ISDN replaces the slow and inefficient analog telephone system with a fast digital network. ISDN lines can transmit data at 128Kbps. Special equipment is required to connect to ISDN lines, which may soon become as affordable as other communications services.

Internet Service Provider. An organization that lets users dial into its computers to connect to its Internet link for a fee. ISP's generally provide only an Internet connection, an E-mail address, maybe World Wide Web browsing software. You can use any ISP based in your town that offers an access number in your local calling area, or a national ISP that provides local-access numbers across the country. You also can connect to Internet through a commercial online service, such as America Online or Compuserv. With this kind of connection, you get Internet access and the proprietary features offered by the online service, such as chat rooms and searchable databases.

A private network within a company or organization that may allow users to connect to the Internet by limits access from the Internet.

A software language that allows people to build interactive Web sites.

Joint Photographic Experts Group. (pronounced "jay-peg". A color image graphics compression format in which a lossy compression method is used and some data is sacrificed to achieve greater compression.

A hypertext code that allows people to move from one document to another by clicking on the link with the mouse.

Observing the activities of a discussion group such as a newsgroup, chat room, or mailing list before posting messages.

Mailing list
Similar to newsgroups (see below), mailing lists allow people to discuss common interests by posting messages, which are received by everyone in the group. Unlike newsgroups, people must subscribe to a mailing list to post and receive messages. Also called listserv.

A device that allows a computer to connect to the Internet over the phone lines.

A group of computers linked by a common communications protocol.

Slang for the unwritten rules of Internet courtesy.

A group of messages about a single topic. On the Internet, newsgroups bring together people around the world for discussion of shared interests.

On line
The generic term for the Internet and on-line services.

On-line Service
Services such as America Online, and Compuserv, the Microsoft Network, and Prodigy that provide members Internet access, e-mail, discussions areas, and information.

Sofware programs that expand the features of main programs and add multimedia capabilities to your browser. A plug-in is a small program that "plugs into" a large application and runs as a part of that application.

Point-to-Point Protocol. A communications protocol that lets users connect their PCs directly to the Internet through their phone lines. Considered more advanced than the Serial Line Internet Protocol (SLIP) connection it is quickly replacing, PPP offers more error-checking capabilities as well as several forms of password protection.

Search Engine
Software that searches through a database (a large cache of information) located on your computer. At Web-based search engines, surfers type in a keyword query (descriptor word), and the search engine responds with a list of all the sites in its database fitting the query description.

Search sites
World Wide Web sites that allow users to search for specific content by keywords or phrases. Popular search sites, some are search engines, others are Web directories, include Alta vista, Excite, Lycos, Webcrawler, and Yahoo.

A computer that people dial into by modem or over a network to gain access to the Internet. A server is also used to host Web, FTP, and chat sites.

Secured Server
A server using software that protects the privacy of electronic transactions conducted over the Internet.

Copyrighted software distributed on a free-will donation basis either via the Internet or by being passed along by satisfied customers.

Secure Socket Layer. A method of securing the transmission of confidential data through the Internet.

Serial Line Internet Protocol. An Internet protocol that lets users gain Internet access with a modem and a phone line. SLIP lets users link directly to the 'net through an Internet provider (ISP). It is slowly being replaced with its successor, Point-to-Point Protocol (PPP).

Streaming Audio
An audio format experienced in real-time. Users hear the audio as it is downloaded without waiting for a complete file to be downloaded.

Streamig Video
Technology that allows the user to see the video as it is being downloaded.

A type of data connection able to transmit a digital signal at 1.544 megabits per second. T1 lines often are used to link large computer networks together, such as those that make up the Internet.

Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol. A protocol governing communication among all computers on the Internet. It dictates how packets of information are sent over networks and ensures the reliability of data transmissions across Internet-connected networks.

Technology that lets users use a PC to make and receive telephone calls. Telephony software often includes features such as voice mail, fax, auto dialing, and onscreen messaging.

Universal Resource Locator. In short, an Internet address. In detail, a standardized naming or addressing system for documents and media accessible over the Internet. For example, includes the type of document (a Hypertext Transfer Protocol [http] document) and the address of the computer on which it can be found (

To send or transmit a file from one computer to another via a modem.

Web Server
A computer where a Web page resides. A server may be dedicated, meaning its sole purpose is to be the server or non-dedicated, meaning it can be used for basic computing in addition to acting as the server.

Web Browser
Software that gives access to and navigation of the World Wide Web(WWW). Using a graphical interface that lets users click buttons, icons, and menu options to access command, browsers show Web pages as graphical or text-based documents. Browsers allow users to down load pages at different sites either by clicking different hyperlinks (graphics or text presented in a different color than the rest of the page, which contains a programming code that connects to another page), or by entering a Web page's address, called a Universal Resource Locator (URL).

Web Page
A document written in Hypertext Markup Language (HTML) that can be accessed on the Internet. Web pages are found by addresses call Universal Resource Locators (URLs). Web pages can contain information, graphics, and hyperlinks to other Web pages and files.

Web Site
A location managed by a single entity that provided information such as text, graphics, and audio files to users as well as connections (called hypertext links, hyperlinks, or links) to other Web sites on the Internet. Every Web site has a home page, the initial document seen by users, which acts as a table of contents to other available Web pages and offerings at the site.

World Wide Web
A graphical interface for the Internet that is composed of Internet servers that provide access to documents, which in turn provide hyperlinks to other documents, multimedia files, and sites. These links are graphics or different colored text that contain programming codes which provides the actual connection to another site.

    "As a matter of fact"

  • AFK
    "Away from keyboard"

  • BBFN
    "By bye for now"

  • BTW
    "By the way"

    "Correct me if I'm wrong"

  • EOL
    "End of lecture"

  • IAC
    "In any case"

  • IMHO
    "In my humble opinion"

  • LJBF
    "Let's just be friends"

  • LOL
    "Laughing out loud"

  • OIC
    "Oh, I see"

  • OTOH
    "On the other hand"

  • TIC
    "Tongue in cheek"

  • TTFN
    "Ta ta for now"

  • TYVM
    "Thank you very much"

  • <G>

  • <S>

  • <L>

  • <J>

  • :-)

  • ;-)

  • :-(

  • :->

  • >:->

  • :'-(

  • :'-)
    "Happy and crying"

  • :-@

  • :-&
    "Tongue tied"

  • :-\

  • :-c
    "Bummed out"

  • ;-o

  • >:-<

  • :-O
    "Uh oh"

  • <:-|

  • :-*

  • :-D
    "Big smile"