active desktop A backdrop on which you can display content from HTML pages on your PC.

alias A name or label used as an alternative means of referring to a file or person. For example, the group alias "Marketing" could be used to send an e-mail message to all the employees in the Marketing department.

application See program.

article A message posted to a newsgroup; an article can be read and replied to by anyone with access to the newsgroup. See also thread.

binary file A file type encoded using only the binary digits 0 and 1. Binary files are usually programs, graphics, or complex documents that are readable only by a computer.

bitmap A collection of bits that make up a dot pattern or graphic image. Bitmaps with a BMP extension are the default file type for the Paint accessory in Windows.

browser See Web browser.

cache An area where copies of Web files are temporarily stored for quick access, either in the computer memory or on a disk drive. When Internet Explorer retrieves an element from the cache, the element doesnít have to be downloaded from the Web site, thus increasing the speed of retrieval.

channel A Web site set up to deliver content to subscribers.

Channel Bar The spot that holds links you can use to access information from selected Web sites.

Channel Definition Format A standard way of indicating which Web pages at a site should be broadcast on the site's channel.

chat The action of sending and receiving messages from other individuals on the Internet. Chat interaction take place in "real-time."

chat room Area on the Internet where chat takes place.

compress To compact a file or group of files so that they occupy less disk space. See also decompress.

confidence scores The numerical indicators that rate how close the search engine results match the text you typed.

cookies Pieces of information sent from a Web site and stored on your computer to customize your visit to the site.

copy To duplicate information and reproduce it.

crawler A special program that searches Internet database indexes for information. Also referred to as a spider.

database A collection of data related to a particular topic or purpose, such as a database of customer information. Can also refer to a type of program, such as Microsoft Access, you can use to organize and manipulate detailed lists of information.

decompress To expand a compressed file or group of files so that the file or files can be opened. See also compress.

default A predefined setting built into a program and used when you do not specify an alternative setting. For example, a document might have a default setting of 1-inch page margins unless you specify another value for the margin settings.

destination A document or program receiving information that was originally generated in another program. See also source.

dial-up connection A connection between two computers using software, a modem, and a phone line. When you start Internet Explorer and use your modem to call your service provider, you are establishing a dial-up connection. See also network connection.

digital signature An electronically transmitted signature that guarantees the identity of the sender Also referred to as a digital ID.

DNS (Domain Name System) A network service that converts raw numeric names for Internet addresses to readable hierarchical Internet addresses. For example, DNS converts to

document Any independent unit of information, such as a text file, worksheet, or graphic object, that is created with a program. A unique filename can be used for saving and later retrieving the document.

download The action of transferring a file from the Internet to your hard drive.

drag-and-drop A mouse technique for directly moving or copying a set of information from one location to another. To drag an object, position the pointer over the object, hold down the mouse button while you move the mouse, and then release the mouse button when the object is positioned where you want it.

edit To add, delete, or change information, such as text or graphics.

e-mail Notes, messages, and files sent between computers using telecommunication or network services. Also referred to as electronic mail.

emoticon A group of characters, including punctuation, used to add expression or humor to Internet communication. The most common is the smiley face, which when viewed sideways looks like a smiling face. :-)

encode To translate a binary file into another format, such as ASCII.

encrypted Describes data that has been coded to prevent unauthorized use. You cannot read encrypted data until you decode it with the correct key.

file A collection of information identified by a unique file name. A file might be text, binary code, a graphic element, or a combination of these. A file format is the way in which data is stored in a file. Usually, different programs, such as Microsoft Word or Microsoft Excel, have different file formats.

flame To insult another person in an e-mail message, chat session, or in a reply to a newsgroup article. An extended series of insulting e-mail exchanges between two or more individuals is called a flame war.

font A family of type styles, such as Times or Helvetica. Various effects, such as bold or italic, are possible within one font, and various point sizes can be applied to a font.

frame Division on a Web page in which other Web pages can be viewed.

freeware Free software distributed by the creator, who retains all copyright privileges.

FTP (File Transfer Protocol) A communications standard that makes it possible for a user to transfer files from one location to another over the Internet.

GIF (Graphics Interchange Format) A graphics file format commonly used on the Internet. It is best used for graphics with few colors, such as cartoons or line drawings. GIF files are compressed bitmaps. See also JPEG.

Gopher A nongraphical, menu-driven type of software for browsing the Internet. Gopher menus function like links in Web pages, allowing the user to jump from one information source to another.

home page 1) The first page of a Web site used as an entrance into the Web site, or 2) a Start Page. See also start page.

hot spot See link.

hotlink See link.

HTML (HyperText Markup Language) A set of rules used to format World Wide Web pages. HTML includes methods of specifying text characteristics (bold, italic, etc.), graphic placement, links, and so on. A Web browser, such as Internet Explorer, must be used to properly view an HTML document.

HTTP (HyperText Transfer Protocol) The communications standard used by the World Wide Web. The protocol enables a Web browser to retrieve text, graphics, sound, and other digital information from a Web server.

hyperlink See link.

icon A small graphic that represents an object, such as a program, a disk drive, or a document.

Internet A worldwide "network of networks," made up of thousands of computer networks and millions of commercial, education, government, and personal computers, all connected to each other. You connect to the Internet using an Internet Service Provider. Also known as the Net.

Internet Service Provider A company or organization that provides access to computers that are directly connected to the Internet for a fee. You call in to the providerís computer using your modem and then, through the companyís computers, you have access to the Internet.

intranet A self-contained network that uses the same communications protocols and file formats as the Internet. An intranet can, but doesnít have to, be connected to the Internet. Many businesses use intranets for their internal communications. See also Internet.

JPEG (Joint Photographic Experts Groups) A graphics file format commonly used on the Internet and supported by many Web browsers. JPEG was developed for compressing and storing photographic images and is best used for graphics containing many colors, such as scanned photographs. JPEG files, which usually have the extension JPG, are compressed bitmaps. See also GIF.

keywords The text used to conduct a search using a search engine. The search engine looks for matches to the text you type.

link A hot spot or jump to a location, in the same file or another file, usually represented by text that is colored or underlined, or by a graphic. You click a link to jump in a nonsequential manner to another location, such as in the current page or to another HTML page on the Web or on an intranet. Also known as hyperlink or hotlink.

lurking To read a newsgroup, chat session, or mailing list without actively participating or posting any messages.

mailing list 1) A collection of e-mail addresses. Referred to as a "group" in the Outlook Express Address Book, or 2) A group of people who conduct discussions through e-mail messages instead of in a newsgroup.

message header The area at the top an e-mail message, displaying its author, subject, date and time, and recipient(s).

MIME (Multipurpose Internet Mail Extensions) A standard for transferring binary files via the Internet. MIME is commonly used to send and receive graphic or document attachments in e-mail messages.

moderated newsgroup A type of newsgroup where one or more people screen messages before the messages are posted to the newsgroup.

NETBEUI (The Network Basic Input Output System Extended User Interface) A local area network standard for transferring data between networked computers.

Netiquette Internet standards of behavior, proper usage, and interaction.

network connection A connection between two computers without using a modem. If you open Internet Explorer and your Custom Start Page immediately appears, then you are using a network connection. See also dial-up connection.

NETBEUI (The Network Basic Input Output System Extended User Interface) A local area network standard for transferring data between networked computers.

netiquette Internet standards of behavior, proper usage, and interaction.

network connection A connection between two computers without using a modem. If you open Internet Explorer and your Custom Start Page immediately appears, then you are using a network connection. See also dial-up connection.

news server A computer dedicated to storing newsgroups and the articles that appear in each newsgroup. See also newsgroup.

newsgroup An Internet discussion group in which people read and post messages and replies. There are thousands of Internet newsgroups available. See also Usenet.

offline Not connected to a network, or not connected to your Internet Service Providerís server. See also online.

online Connected to a network, or connected to your Internet Service Providerís server. See also offline.

program Computer software designed to do a specific type of work, such as a word processor, spreadsheet, presentation designer, or relational database.

protocol A communications standard — such as TCP/IP used on the Internet, or NETBEUI used in Microsoft networks — that ensures reliable transmission among the computers and other components on a network.

public domain Software or information available for use by the general public without any copyright restrictions.

search engine A database application on the Internet that allows you to search for links to Web pages using keywords or topics.

self-extracting file A compressed file that automatically decompresses when you double-click it.

shareware Freely distributed software available for downloading. You can usually use a shareware program for a set period of time before you have to pay for it or delete it from your hard drive.

shortcut An object that acts as a pointer to a document, folder, Internet address, or program. If you double-click the shortcut, the target item opens.

site certification An online document awarded to a Web site that registers with a certifying agency. The certificate is then transmitted as proof of identity to users who wish to download information from — or send information to — the Web site.

SiteCrawl A program that goes through the Web pages you have subscribed to, looking for new information.

source In a Web page, the text page that displays all HTML tags. In Internet Explorer, the source for the displayed Web page can be seen by choosing Source from the View menu.

start page The first page that appears when you start Internet Explorer. The start page can be any Web page, including an HTML page on your local drive. See also home page.

subscription A regularly scheduled update of a Web page.

tag Text in angled brackets that represents HTML formatting instructions. Web browsers display text and graphic elements based on these tags; the tag itself is not displayed.

TCP/IP (Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol) An Internet standard for transferring data between networked computers.

thread A series of messages in response to a newsgroup posting. You can view conversation threads to more easily follow a specific discussion. See also article.

upload The action of transferring a file from your hard disk to the Internet.

URL (Uniform Resource Locator) The standard format of an Internet address, such as a Web page or Gopher site. A URL defines the type of resource (such as FTP, HTTP, or Gopher) to be accessed, the specific site where the information is stored, and the precise location of the information in the site. A Web URL typically is displayed like the following:

Usenet (User Network) The thousands of computers connected to each other that share the messages posted to newsgroups from around the world. See also newsgroup.

virus A program that attaches itself to another program in computer memory or on a disk and spreads from one program to another. Viruses can damage data, cause computers to crash, display offending or bothersome messages, or lie dormant until such time as they are set to be activated.

Web See World Wide Web.

Web address The path to an item such as an object, a document, or a Web page. An address can be a URL (address to an Internet site), a path and filename, or a path (address to a file on a local area network).

Web browser Software that interprets and displays documents formatted for the World Wide Web. The documents might be HTML, graphics, or multimedia files.

Web page A document on the Web, formatted in HTML. Web pages usually contain links you can use to jump from one page to another or from one location to another. See also link.

Web server A computer that stores Web pages. Your computer connects to a server computer through the Internet.

Web site A collection of Web pages at the same location.

World Wide Web The collection of information available on the Internet connected by links so you can jump from one document to another. You view Web pages by using a Web browser, such as Internet Explorer, which can display text, pictures, sounds, animation, and video. Also called the Web, WWW, and W3.

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