internet terms
Internet Terms and Definitions A-G

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Online Storefront Information


Terms and Definitions A-G

Active X
New programming standard proposed by Microsoft to increase the functionality of webpages. Similar in some respects to Java and Javascript.

Ad Clicks
Number of times that a viewer clicks on an ad banner.

Normally refers to one's E-mail address which can be a series of letters and/or numbers, or when referring to a World Wide Web site, it is a URL.

Address Verification
Process used by a credit card processor or other party to verify that a customer's ordering address matches their records.

(Advanced Digital Network): Normally refers to a 56Kbps leased-line.

(Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line): A method for moving data over regular phone lines that is much faster than a regular phone connection. Data can be downloaded at speeds of up to 1.544 megabits (not megabytes) per second and sent at speeds of up to 128 kilobits per second.

Nickname for a domain or host computer.

Synonym for a hyperlink.

Anonymous FTP
Allows Internet users to access certain servers via FTP (file transfer protocol) using a general password such as GUEST or ANONYMOUS for the purpose of downloading freeware and shareware files.

A small program that runs from within another program, generally a Java program embedded in a Web page which executes as the Web page loads in a browser such as Netscape or Internet Explorer.

A computer program, specifically software that runs on a computer and performs a particular task, i.e. word processor, spreadsheet, etc.

(Application Programming Interface): - A standard interface between a communications device and a software application operating in a computer.

An Internet service that enables users to search the file databases of many anonymous FTP sites. Can be accessed via Telnet, a local Archie client, or E-Mail.

Term used to describe either a server containing a large amount of publicily accessible software or a file containing one or more other files that have been compressed and stored.

Advanced Research Projects Agency. The governmental organization responsible for creating the beginnings of the Internet.

The network developed by ARPA in the late 1960's and early 1970's which served as a foundation for today's Internet. An experiment in wide-area-networking intended to survive a nuclear war.

(American Standard Code for Information Interchange) -- The world-wide standard for the code numbers used by computers to represent all upper and lower-case letters, numbers, punctuation, etc. There are 128 standard ASCII codes.

A file that is linked or included to a specific email message, just as you might paperclip a clipping to a snail mail letter.

Automated Clearing House
An ACH transaction is an electronic fund transfer through the Federal Reserve Bank from a checking or savings account

The process of checking the validity and available balance of a customer's credit card before the transaction can be accepted.

Refers to the main high-speed international telecommunication networks that carry internet traffic among national, regional, and local networks.

A high-tech term used to describe the amount of data (webpages, text, graphics, video, sound, etc.) that can travel in a given time, usually one second, across a network or a connection to a network such as a modem. When you send a message across the internet, you are using part of its bandwidth, just as your car takes up space on the freeway. We manage a customer's website based on the amount of data transfer used per month.

Baud or bps
(bits per second). The baud rate is the measurement of speed that a telephone or cable modem can transmit or receive in bits; more is better. Example: a 1200 bit-per- second modem actually runs at 400 baud, but moves 3 bits per baud or (3 x 400) 1200 bits per second. You will want a modem with a rating of at least 14,400 bps to access the internet effectively. Preferably, use 28,800 or higher.

An interactive ad placed on a webpage that is linked to an external advertiser's website or another internal page within the same website.

Abbreviation for Bulletin Board System, a system that allows people to meet and leave messages, carry on discussions, and upload and download files without the people being connected to the computer at the same time.

(BINary HEXadecimal) -- A method for converting binary files (applications) into ASCII format. This is needed because Internet e-mail can only handle ASCII.

Abbreviation meaning "Basic Input-Output System". Computer software controlling input and output (e.g. on a PC, the code stored in ROMs which allows the PC to cummunicate with the keyboard, screen and disks as well as boot up an operating system.

(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.

Refers to software which allows a user to navigate the World Wide Web and look at various kinds of Internet resources offering visual graphics and text. The three most popular browsers used to navigate the Web are Microsoft Explorer, Netscape Navigator, AOL, Web TV, and Opera.

A set of Bits that represent a single character. Usually there are 8 Bits in a Byte, sometimes more, depending on how the measurement is being made.

"Card Not Present" Merchant Account
An account that allows merchants to process credit cards without a face to face transaction with the purchaser.

(Compact Disc - Read-Only Memory) CD containing data.

Certificate Authority
A Certificate Authority (CA) is a third party which verifies the identity of merchants and their sites. The certificate authority issues a certificate (also called a digital certificate or an authentication certificate) to an applicant company, which can then put the certificate up on its site.

Stands for "Common Gateway Interface" (but everyone uses the acronym nowadays). CGI refers to programs that sites can run to generate web pages dynamically. For example, web search engines use CGI programs to read what keywords you're searching for, find web pages for you, and format the results in a web page for you to see. A CGI program can be written in any computer language. Perl is the most popular language for writing CGI programs, but other major contenders are C and C++, Unix shell scripts, Java, and Visual Basic.

Another term for IRC . Also, an acronym meaning Conversational Hypertext Access Technology. An internet feature which allows two or more people to communicate with each other by typing messages on their keyboards. This is similar to a telephone conversation but using computers.

Chat Room
Refers to the theoretical room in cyberspace where individuals with a similar interest "meet together" to "chat."

A computed value which is dependent upon the contents of a packet. This value is sent along with the packet when it is transmitted. The receiving system computes a new checksum based upon the received data and compares this value with the one sent with the packet. If the two values are the same, the receiver has a high degree of confidence that the data was received correctly.

(Computer Incident Advisory Center). A group of the US Department of Energy that alerts concerned parties with information about computer security and viruses which may affect other government agencies and the public.

A computer attached to any network (including the internet) that requests a service of another computer system or process. The term is also used to describe personal computer software (FTP or Telnet) 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.

(coaxial). It's the thick round cabling commonly used for cable television. Depending on how it's used, it can have 100 to 500 times the data-carrying capacity of regular phone lines. Cable TV is already in more than 60 percent of American homes, and nearby to most others. But cable systems must be updated to handle digital data in addition to broadcast signals, and PCS would require new "cable modems" to use them.

Commerce Server
The server that manages and maintains all transactional and backend data for a commerce website.

A small file which is installed on your computer by a web site you visit. The file contains data about you and the conputer system you are on and the data is often used by the web site to track your choices and custom tailor responses for future visits.

Crackers are users who try to gain illegal access to computers. They are usually malicious in their intentions.

Cross Promotion
The promotion of a website through other traditional forms of advertising such as magazines, newspapers, radio, TV, billboards, etc.

A term coined by science fiction writers William Gibson and Bruce Sterlingreffering for a sub-group existing in an overindustialized society. It is a cultural label used for many different kinds of human, machine, and punk attitudes, including clothing and lifestyle.

A popular term (first used by author William Gibson in his sci-fi novel Neuromancer) for the space or the plethora of information that seems to exist within computers and computer networks.

Data Base Management System.

Delayed Settlement Processing
Once a transaction has been authorized, the merchant must ship the hard goods before a transaction can be settled. Delayed settlements are stored online until the merchant selects the transactions for settlement.

A temporary connection between machines established over a standard phone line, usually by means of modems.

A message that contains multiple individual postings to a mailing list or newsgroup. Example: LinkExchange Daily Digest.

(Domain Name Server) A program running on a server which automatically translates domain names into their correct TCP/IP addresses.

Digital Certificate
A Digital Certificate issued by a Certificate Authority certifies that a merchant and a particular website are connected, just as a photo on your driver's licence connects your identity with your personal details. A digital certificate verifies to the shopper that the virtual store is actually associated with a physical address and phone number which can increase the shoppers confidence in the authenticity of the merchant.

Distribution Channel
The method through which a product is sold including retailers, catalogers, internet commerce websites, etc.

(Dynamic Link Library) A set of shared functions and procedures used by applications that can be loaded or unloaded at any time by the applications.

(Domain Name Server) A program running on a server which automatically translates domain names into their correct TCP/IP addresses.

Domain Name
The unique name of an internet website or internet address. It is the English language standard for a computer system's TCP/IP numeric address (example: Domain names always have 2 or more parts, separated by dots (example: Currently there are six types of domain names used in the U.S.: .com is used for businesses, .edu for educational institutions, .gov for government agencies, .org for organizations, .mil for military, and .net for networks.

The Disk Operating System that preceded Windows but that has receded in importance with each new version of Windows.

The transfer of information or data such as a file or program from the a host or source computer to your computer which is the browsing the internet.

Drop Ship
The shipping of a product directly from the manufacturer to the customer without requiring inventory carrying by the retailer.

Digital Simultaneous Voice and Data.

Electronic data interchange. It allows companies to place orders, bid on projects, and make payments over the internet or private networks.

Electronic Commerce
Also known as e-commerce; this term refers to sales or other business transactions over the internet or private networks.

Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF)
A foundation that addresses social and legal issues arising from the impact of computers on society.

Electronic Software Distribution
Software that can be purchased and downloaded directly from the internet.

Short term for electronic mail; it refers to a message sent from one person to one or more other persons over the internet or a private network. On the Internet the email protocol most commonly used is called SMTP(standard mail transfer protocal)

E-Mail Address
An electronic location for sending and receiving E-Mail. An email address is made up of several parts. The first part of the address, the username, identifies a unique user on a server. The @ symbol separates the username from the host name. The host name uniquely identifies the server computer and is the last part of the Internet email address. The three-letter suffix in the host name identifies the kind of organization operating the server. The most common suffixes are: .com (commercial), .edu (educational), .gov (government), .mil (military), .net (networking), and .org (non-commercial). Two letter suffixes generally identify a geographical area: .uk (united kingdom), .de (Germany), .ca (Canada), etc.

ELM (Electronic Mailer)
A UNIX email program based on a server equivalent to Netscape mail, user agent which sends out e-mail, and stores messages for users to read, or send directly from the server.

The basis of network security. Encryption encodes network packets to prevent anyone except the intended recipient from accessing the data.

The most common method of networking computers in a LAN (local area network).The Ethernet processes about 10,000,000 bits-per-second and is used with almost any kind of computer.

(Frequently Asked Questions). FAQ's are lists that answer the most common questions on a particular topic. There are thousands of FAQ's on the web covering a multitude of subjects. FAQ's are often grouped together, along with their answers, and posted to help newcomers become informed about a specific subject such as a newsgroup or a web site. They are usually written by people who are tired of answering the same questions over and over.

A combination of hardware and software that separates LAN (local area network) into two or more parts for security purposes.

Originally, flame meant to carry on a fierce and honorable debate. Flames often involved the use of flowery language and flaming was an art form. More recently, flame has come to refer to any kind of vicious, derogatory, or mean-spirited comment used in email or in public forums such as newsgroups and discusssion lists. There is little danger of getting any on the web.

Flame War
Occurs when an online discussion degenerates into a series of personal attacks against the debators, rather than discussion of their positions.

Online electronic forms that you can complete on the Web, if you have a forms-capable Web browser such as Netscape Navigator or Internet Explorer.

A network system made up of community-based bulletin board systems with email, information services, interactive communications, and conferencing. They are usually funded and operated by individuals or organizations who wish to make computer networking services freely available as public libraries.

Software that you can distribute freely and use for free, but for which the author often retains the copyright, which means that it can't be modified.

File Transfer Protocol is a system for moving or copying files from a remote computer (called an FTP site) to their own computer over the internet. FTP is a method of logging into another Internet site for the purposes of retrieving and/or sending files. Many Internet sites have publicly accessible databanks of downloadable material that can be obtained by using FTP. These sites are often referred to as Anonymous FTP sites because anyone can log in using the UserID "anonymous" and their email address as a password.

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