- A type of computer program that knows how to
connect to two or more different kinds of networks, and to translate information
from one side's format to the other's, and vice versa. Common types of gateways
include e-mail, database, and communications.
- An abbreviation for CompuServe's Graphic Interchange
Format, GIF is one of a set of commonly used graphics formats within Web documents,
because of its compressed format and compact nature.
- A program/protocol developed at the University
of Minnesota, Gopher provides for unified, menu-driven presentation of a variety
of Internet services, including WAIS, Telnet, and FTP.
- In HTML documents, graphics are files that belong
to one of a restricted family of types (usually .GIF or .JPEG) that are referenced
via URLs for inline display on Web pages.
- An abbreviation for general regular expresssion
parser, grep is a standard UNIX program that looks for patterns found in files
and reports on their occurrences. grep handles a wide range of patterns, including
so-called "regular expressions" that can use all kinds of substitutions and
wild cards to provide powerful search-and-replace operations within files.
- GUI (Graphical User Interface)
- Pronounced "gooey," GUIs make graphical Web
browsers possible; they create a visually oriented interface that makes it
easy for users to interact with computerized information of all kinds. Microsoft
Windows and the Mac OS are operating systems that use GUIs.
- For HTML a heading is a markup tag used to add
document structure. The term may sometimes be used to refer to the initial
portion of an HTML document between the <HEAD>... </HEAD> tags,
where titles and context definitions are commonly supplied.
- helper applications
- Today, browsers can display multiple graphics
files (and sometimes other kinds of data); sometimes, browsers must pass particular
files -- for instance, motion picture or sound files -- over to other applications
that know how to render the data they contain. Such programs are called helper
applications, because they help the browser deliver Web information to users.
- A numbering system composed of six letters and
ten numbers that is to condense binary numbers. In HTML, hexadecimal numbering
is used with tags and their attributes to denote what colors should comprise
backgrounds and other elements in a Web page.
- hierarchical structure
- A way of organizing Web pages using links that
make some pages subordinate to others (see tree structured for another description
of this kind of organization).
- history list
- Each time a user accesses the Web, the browser
normally keeps a list of all the URLs visited during a session; this is called
a history list and provides a handy way to jump back to any page that's already
been visited. History lists in Netscape Navigator normally disappear when
the browser is exited, but Internet Explorer saves history lists.
- A Web page that consists of a series of links
to other pages, usually annotated with information about what's available
on each link. Hotlists act like switchboards to content information and are
usually organized around a particular topic or area of interest.
- HTML (HyperText Markup Language)
- The SGML-derived markup language used to create
Web pages. Not quite a programming language, HTML nevertheless provides a
rich lexicon and syntax for designing and creating useful hypertext documents
for the Web.
- http or HTTP (hypertext teleprocessing protocol,
a.k.a. HyperText Transfer Protocol)
- The Internet protocol used to manage communication
between Web clients (browsers) and servers.
- httpd (http daemon)
- The name of the collection of programs that runs
on a Web server to provide Web services. In UNIX-speak, a daemon is a program
that runs all the time listening for service requests of a particular type;
thus, an httpd is a program that runs all the time on a Web server, ready
to field and handle Web service requests.
- A shorthand term for hypertext link, which is
- Any of a variety of computer media -- including
text, graphics, video, sound, and so on -- available through hypertext links
on the Web.
- hypertext link
- In HTML, a hypertext link is defined by special
markup that creates a user-selectable document element that can be selected
to change the user's focus from one document (or part of a document) to another.
- A method of organizing text, graphics, and other
kinds of data for computer use that lets individual data elements point to
one another; a nonlinear method of organizing information, especially text.
- image map
- A synonym for clickable image, this refers to
an overlaid collection of pixel coordinates for a graphic that can be used
to locate a user's selection of a region on a graphic, in turn used to select
a related hypertext link for further Web navigation.
- Acronym for "In My Humble Opinion," mostly used
- A psuedo-Teutonic synonym for Information Superhighway
(taken from Autobahn, the German highway system), commonly used because it's
shorter and "cooler" than Information Superhighway.
- Information Superhighway
- The near-mythical agglomeration of the Internet,
communications companies, telephone systems, and other communications media
that politicians seem to believe will be the "next big thing" in business,
academia, and industry. Many people believe that this highway is already here,
and that it's called "the Internet."
- input-handling program
- For Web services, a program that runs on a Web
server designated by the ACTION attribute of an HTML <FORM> tag; its
job is to field, interpret, and respond to user input from a browser, typically
by custom-building an HTML document in response to some user request.
- An Internet traveler (like "Astronaut" or "Argonaut").
- Internet Service Provider (ISP)
- A company or organization that provides a variety
of Internet services for a fee.
- A worldwide collection of networks that began
with technology and equipment funded by the U.S. Department of Defense in
the 1970s. Today, it links users in nearly every country, speaking nearly
every known language.
- IP (Internet Protocol; see TCP/IP)
- IP is the specific networking protocol of the
same name used to tie computers together over the Internet; IP is also used
as a synonym for the whole TCP/IP protocol suite.
- ISDN (Integrated Services Digital Network)
- An emerging digital technology for telecommunications
that offers higher bandwidth and better signal quality than old-fashioned
analog telephone lines. Not yet available in many parts of the United States
or in the rest of the world.
- ISO (International Standardization Organization)
- The granddaddy of standards organizations worldwide,
the ISO is made up of standards bodies from countries all over the world.
Most important communications and computing standards -- like the telecommunications
and character code standards mentioned in this book -- are the subject of
- An object-oriented, platform-independent, secure,
and compact programming language designed for Web application deployment.
Java was created by Sun Microsystems, but is supported by most system vendors.
- .JPEG or .JPG
- .JPEG stands for Joint Photographic Experts'
Group, an industry association that defined a highly compressible format for
images designed for complex color still images (like photographs). .JPEG files
usually take the extension .JPEG (except DOS or Windows 3.x machines, which
are limited to the three-character .JPG equivalent). Today, .JPEG is one graphics
format of choice for Web use, particularly for complex images.
- Kbps (Kilobits per second)
- A measure of communications speed, in units of
210 bits per second (210 = 1024, which is just about
1,000 and explains the quasi-metric "K" notation).
- KISS (Keep It Simple, Stupid!)
- A self-descriptive philosophy that's supposed
to remind us to "eschew obfuscation" but is easier to understand!
- LAN (Local-Area Network)
- One of many communications technologies used
to link computers together in a single location or on a campus.
- layout element
- In an HTML document a layout element is a paragraph,
list, graphic, horizontal rule, heading, or some other document component
whose placement on a page contributes to its overall look and feel.
- linear text
- Shorthand for old-fashioned documents that work
like this book: by placing one page after the other, ad infinitum in a straight
line. Even though such books have indexes, pointers, cross-references, and
other attempts to add linkage, they must be applied manually (rather than
by clicking your mouse).
- For HTML, a link is a pointer in one part of
a document that can transport users to another part of the same document,
or to another document entirely. This capability puts the "hyper" into hypertext.
In other words, a link is a one-to-one relationship/association between two
concepts or ideas, similiar to "cognition" (the brain has triggers such as
smell, sight, and sound that cause a link to be followed to a similar concept
- list element
- An item in an HTML list structure tagged with
(list item) tag.
- list tags
- HTML tags for a variety of list styles, including
ordered lists <OL>, unordered lists <UL>, menus <MENU>,
glossary lists <DL>, or directory lists <DIR> .
- An Internet e-mail handling program, typically
UNIX-based, that provides mechanisms to let users manage, contribute and subscribe
to, and exit from named mailing lists that distribute messages to all subscribed
members daily. A common mechanism for delivering information to interested
parties on the Internet, this is how the HTML working group communicates amongst
its members, for instance.
- logical markup
- Refers to any of a number of HTML character handling
tags that exist to provide emphasis or to indicate a particular kind of device
or action is involved (see Chapter 6 for a discussion of HTML tags by category
that includes the details on descriptive versus physical markup).
- A widely used UNIX-based character-mode Web browser.
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Revised -- January 16, 1998