HTML for Dummies Glossary

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when negotiating a network connection, the phase at the beginning of the communications process is called the "setup." At this point, protocol details, communication rates, and error-handling approaches will be worked out, allowing the connection to proceed correctly and reliably thenceforth.

SGML (Standard Generalized Markup Language)
an ISO standard document definition, specification, and creation mechanism that makes platform and display differences across multiple computers irrelevant to the delivery and rendering of documents.

shell (see UNIX shell)

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SLIP (Serial Line Interface Protocol)
a relatively old-fashioned TCP/IP protocol used to manage telecommunications between a client and a server that treats the phone line as a "slow extension" to a network.

SMTP (Simple Mail Transfer Protocol)
the underlying protocol and service for Internet-based electronic mail.

spider (aka Web spider, Webcrawler)
a Web-traversing program that tirelessly investigates Web pages and their links, while storing information about its travels for inclusion in the databases typically used by search engines.

stdin (UNIX standard input device)
the default source for input in the UNIX environment, stdin is the input source for CGI programs as well.

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stdout (UNIX standard output device)
the default recipient for output in the UNIX environment, stdout is the output source for Web browsers and servers as well (including CGI programs).

in HTML documents, we refer to superstructure as the layout and navigational elements used to create a consistent look and feel for Web pages belonging to a document set.

literally, the formal rules for how to speak, we use syntax in this book to describe the rules that govern how HTML markup looks and behaves within HTML documents. The real syntax definition for HTML comes from the SGML Document Type Definition (DTD).

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syntax checker
a program that checks a particular HTML document's markup against the rules that govern its use; a recommended part of the testing regimen for all HTML documents.

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the formal name for an element of HTML markup, usually enclosed in angle brackets (< >).

TCP (Transmission Control Protocol; see TCP/IP)
the transport layer protocol for the TCP/IP suite, TCP is a reliable, connection-oriented protocol that usually guarantees delivery across a network.

TCP/IP (Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol)
the name for the suite of protocols and services used to manage network communications and applications over the Internet.

when a network communication session is ending, the two computers agree to stop talking, and then systematically break the connection, and recover the port addresses and other resources used for the session. This process is called teardown.

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literally, someone who's afraid of technology, this term is more commonly applied to those who don't want to understand technology, simply to use it!

the Internet protocol and service that lets you take a smart computer (your own, probably) and make it emulate a dumb terminal over the network. Briefly, Telnet is a way of running programs and using capabilities on other computers across the Internet.

literally, a model to imitate, we use the term template in this book to describe the skeleton of a Web page, including the HTML for its heading and footer, and any consistent layout and navigation elements for a page or set of pages.

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terminal emulation
the process of making a full-fledged, standalone computer act like a terminal attached to another computer, terminal emulation is the service that Telnet provides across the Internet.

test plan
the series of steps and elements to be followed in conducting a formal test of software or other computerized systems; we strongly recommend that you write -- and use --a test plan as a part of your Web publication process.

text controls
any of a number of HTML tags, including both physical and logical markup, text controls provide a method of managing the way that text appears within an HTML document.

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a method of browser operation that displays characters only. Text-mode browsers cannot display graphics without the assistance of helper applications.

another measure of communications capability, this term refers to the amount of data that can be "put through" a connection in a given period of time. It differs from bandwidth in being a measure of actual performance, rather than a theoretical maximum for the medium involved.

a miniature rendering of a graphical image, used as a link to the full-sized versiont.

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the text supplied between <TITLE> ... </TITLE> defines the text that will show up on that page's title bar when displayed, and is also used as data in many Web search engines.

token ring
the second most common type of local-area networking technology in use, token ring is always and forever associated with IBM, since they helped to develop and perfect this type of network. It takes its name from passing around special "permits to transmit" called tokens, in a ring-shaped pattern around the network, to give all attached devices a fair chance to broadcast information whenever they need to.

transparent GIF
a specially-rendered GIF image that will take on the background color selected in a browser capable of handling such GIFs. This makes the graphic blend into the existing color scheme and provides a more professional-looking page.

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tree structure(d) (see hierarchical structure)
computer scientists like to think of hierarchies in graphical terms, which makes them look like upside-down trees (a single root at the top, multiple branches below). File systems and genealogies are examples of tree structured organizations that we're all familiar with, but they abound in the computer world. This type of structure also works well for certain Web document sets, especially longer, more complex ones.

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the operating system of choice for the Internet community at large, and the Web community, too, UNIX offers the broadest range of tools, utilities, and programming libraries for Web server use.

UNIX shell
the name of the command-line program used to manage user-computer interaction, the shell can also be used to write CGI scripts and other kinds of useful programs for UNIX.

URI (Uniform Resource Identifier)
any of a class of objects that identify resources available to the Web; both URLs and URNs are instances of URIs.

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URL (Uniform Resource Locator)
the primary naming scheme used to identify Web resources, URLs define the protocols to be used, the domain name of the Web server where a resource resides, the port address to be used for communication, and the directory path to access a named Web file or resource.

URL-encoded text
a method for passing information requests and URL specification to Web servers from browsers, URL encoding replaces spaces with plus signs (+) and substitutes special hex codes for a range of otherwise unreproduceable characters. This method is used to pass document queries from browsers to servers (for the details, please consult Chapter 15).

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URN (Uniform Resource Name)
a permanent, unchanging name for a Web resource, URNs are seldom used in today's Web environment. They do, however, present a method guaranteed to obtain access to a resource, as soon as the URN can be fully resolved (it sometimes consists of human or organizational contact information, rather than resource location data).

an Internet protocol and service that provides access to a vast array of named newsgroups, where users congregate to exchange information and materials related to specific topics or concerns.

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CCITT standard for a 9.6 Kbps two-wire full duplex modem operating on a regular dial-up or 2-wire leased lines.

newer higher-speed CCITT standard for full-duplex transmission on two-wire leased and dial-up lines at rates from 4.8 to 14.4 Kbps.

the newest high-speed CCITT standard for full-duplex transmission on two-wire leased and dial-up lines at rates from 4.8 to 28.8 Kbps.

CCITT error correction standard that can be used with V.32, V.32bis, and V.34.

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CCITT data compression standard, capable of compressing files "on the fly" at an average rate of 3.5:1. It can yield speeds of up to 38.4 Kbps on a 9.6 Kbps modem, and up to 115.2 Kbps on a 28.8 modem. If your modem can do this, try to find an Internet service provider that also supports V.42bis. This feature can pay for itself very quickly.

The VAX is a Digital Equipment Corporation computer in wide use; VMS (Virtual Memory System) is the name of the proprietary operating system that many of these machines run. Today, many VAXes run UNIX instead of VMS.

a search tool for navigating the global collection of Gopher servers, collectively referred to as Gopherspace.

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WAIS (Wide-Area Information Service)
a collection of programs that implement a specific protocol for information retrieval, able to index large-scale collections of data round the Internet. WAIS provides content-oriented query services to WAIS clients, and is one of the more powerful Internet search tools available.

shorthand for the World-Wide Web (or W3), we also use Web in this book to refer to a related, interlinked set of HTML documents.

Web pages
synonym for HTML documents, we use Web pages in this book to refer to sets of related, interlinked HTML documents, usually produced by a single author or organization.

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Web server
a computer, usually on the Internet, that plays host to httpd and related Web-service software.

Web site
an addressed location, usually on the Internet, that provides access to the set of Web pages that correspond to the URL for a given site; thus a Web site consists of a Web server and a named collection of Web documents, both accessible through a single URL.

white space
the "breathing room" on a page, this refers to the parts of a document or display that aren't occupied by text or other visual elements. A certain amount of white space is essential to make documents attractive and readable.

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Windows (aka MS-Windows)
Microsoft's astonishingly popular (and sometimes frustrating) GUI environment for PCs, Windows is the GUI of choice for most desktop computer users.

the Windows version of a popular Web browser developed at MCC.

World-Wide Web (aka WWW or W3)
the complete collection of all Web servers available on the Internet, which comes as close to containing the "sum of human knowledge" as anything we've ever seen.

WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get)
a term used to describe text editors or other layout tools (like HTML authoring tools) that attempt to show their users on-screen what final, finished documents will look like.

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X Windows
the GUI of choice for UNIX systems, X Windows offers a graphical window, icon, and mouse metaphor similar to (but much more robust and powerful than) Microsoft Windows.


E-Mail: HTML for Dummies at html4dum@lanw.com
URL: http://www.lanw.com/html4dum/h4d1e/glossar4.htm
Text - Copyright © 1995, Ed Tittel & Steve James.
For Dummies, the Dummies Man logo and Dummies Press are trademarks or registered trademarks of Wiley Publishing, Inc. Used with Permission.
Web Layout - Copyright © 1995, LANWrights
Revised -- May, 2002 [MCB]