An analog modem is a device that enables a computer to transmit
data over telephone lines (e.g. 28.8Kbps [kilo bits per second]
and 56Kbps). Computer information is stored digitally, whereas
information transmitted over telephone lines is transmitted
in the form of analog waves. Analog modems translate data from
digital to analog and back. The fastest analog modems run at
Short for 'binary digit,' the smallest, most basic unit of computer
data. It's like an atom of information, having two possible
states--positive and negative, often defined as 'on and off',
or 'one and zero.'
Bps (bits or bytes per second)
The speed at which data is transferred over a network line,
defined in bits or bytes.
The software that serves as your interface with the Internet.
Netscape Navigator and Microsoft Internet Explorer are the two
Technically equal to 8 bits, one Byte of data is the standard
unit of measure on the Internet. As data is transferred to the
cable modem via broadband technology, some of the data is lost
in what is known as "Overhead". Due to the loss in
overhead, every 10 bits of data transferred equates to 1 Byte.
So, if your display read "43 bits per second", you
would be receiving 4.3 bytes of data per second.
(Pronounced cash.) It's the location in your computer's memory,
or in an independent storage device, reserved for easy, high-speed
retrieval of information, known as cache hits. Cache effectiveness
is defined by hit rate. Many systems use 'smart caches,' which
recognize and readily supply frequently used data, such as a
recently visited web page.
Real-time communication between multiple users over the Internet,
like a party line or conference call using text instead of conversation.
The text appears as it is typed on all PCs participating in
the chat. Internet chat occurs in 'chat rooms,' which are usually
set up by specific sites for users with a common interest.
DHCP (Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol)
A protocol for assigning IP addresses to devices on a network
from a pool of available IP's. A dynamic IP address changes
each time the device connects to the network (or every 4 hours).
The alphabetic address for a web site, usually beginning with
the prefix 'www' (for 'world wide web'). The domain name usually
contains an identifying name, such as that of a company; a suffix
which defines the type of organization; and titles defining
the descending layers of a site, narrowing down to a specific
The suffix describes the type of organization, standardized
net: network changeover path
XX: two letter country codes (e.g. United Kingdom = uk)
DNS (Domain Name Service)
A sort of Internet phone book. While we humans recognize a web
site by domain name, a network recognizes it by IP address.
For example, a DNS might translate the IP address 123.456.789.0
into the domain name www.example.com.
Download (a.k.a. downstream)
The process of transferring files from another computer to your
computer over a network or modem line.
A program that controls peripheral hardware devices, such as
a printer or modem.
E-mail (electronic mail)
E-mail is the primary means of communication over the Internet,
as well as the most frequently used application by Internet
users. Users can send each other messages, attaching complete
documents, photos, or audio and video clips.
This is where electronic mail is received. It is a combination
of a user name and a host name, such as firstname.lastname@example.org
Ethernet card (a.k.a. NIC, or Network Interface Card)
An expansion board that connects a PC, or PCs, to a network.
The first page of a web site, usually serving as an introduction
and table of contents. The address is usually as simple as the
site gets, containing only the site name and suffix.
(Hypertext Markup Language)
The programming language used to create web sites.
HTTP (Hypertext Transfer Protocol)
The protocol that tells the host server what information (web
pages, FTP sites, etc.) to send the client.
A regional point of connection between the Internet and its
users, such as an Internet Service Provider.
An icon, graphic, or word on a web page that automatically opens
another page for viewing.
IP (Internet Protocol)
The protocol that specifies the format of information 'packets'
transported over the Internet, including how the packets are
addressed for delivery.
The numerical address of a computer or a web page. Internet
protocols recognize a specific machine by this address. If,
for example, a user obtains their IP address, they can then
access their e-mail from any computer.
ISP (Internet Service Provider)
ISPs, such as CNS, provide access to the Internet, be it to
individuals or to large companies. Most provide a software package,
user name, password and access number for a monthly fee. Equipped
with a modem, users can then log on the web and send and receive
e-mail. ISPs are connected to one another through Network Access
LAN (Local Area Network)
A group of computers connected by a local, usually physical,
network, such as that in a single office, building, company
MAC (Media Access Control)
Controls the way multiple devices share a common media channel.
A host server, which holds e-mail messages for clients.
Phisher/Phishing emails are e-mails and forged websites intended
to trick recipients into releasing financial or personal information,
such as usernames, passwords, social security numbers or credit
card numbers. They do so by stealing images from legitimate
websites and creating a forged look-a-like of familiar brands
and/or online stores.
An application, which can be installed into a larger one, such
as your browser, to carry out, specialized tasks such as playing
audio or video. Plug-ins are designed to integrate automatically
with existing programs.
POP3 (Post Office Protocol)
The protocol for incoming e-mail.
A very close relative of Spyware is software that records the
behavior of an online user, often without their knowledge or
consent. It also "calls home" but it may send back
specifics regarding your browsing activity and/or to get more
pop up ads.
SMTP (Simple Mail Transfer Protocol)
The protocol for outgoing mail.