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Technology Dictionary

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An alphabetical listing of General terms and items.

 
W3C   Dico Tools
(World Wide Web Consortium) An influential group of interested parties who agree what is and isn't official HTML. Originally WWWC, but W3C is a lot easier to say.


Wallpaper   Dico Tools
A picture or motif on your Windows desktop. To change the Windows wallpaper right-click anywhere on the desktop, select Properties from the pop-up menu, choose the Desktop tab and select a new entry from the list under Background. To add pictures of your own to the list, save them as .bmp(bitmap) files and put them in your Windows folder.


WAN   Dico Tools
(Wide Area Network) A sort of group of networks, or more properly LANs, connected together.


WAP   Dico Tools
(Wireless Application Protocol; pr. "wapp" or "wopp") A system to enable mobile phones to browse the World Wide Web. In practise the site has to be specially designed and text only, and only a very few sites have bothered to set up a WAP version.


WAV   Dico Tools
A computer sound recording. WAV files tend to be very large, so sound recordings are often compressed into MP3s on the internet, giving a slightly lower quality but much smaller files.


Webcam   Dico Tools
(WEB CAMera) a kind of cheap TV camera which you can use for videoconferencing over the internet, or just showing off. The picture quality usually isn't all that great but it doesn't need to be, because high quality real time video won't fit down an ordinary internet connection anyway.


Webhost   Dico Tools
A company which makes webpages available on the World Wide Web, usually as a commercial venture.


Weblog   Dico Tools
A website documenting someone's life and/or thoughts, also known as a blog.


Webmail   Dico Tools
Email controlled from a website such as Hotmail or Yahoo instead of with a dedicated mail program like Outlook Express or Eudora. Many ISPs allow you to access your email both with a mail program and via the Web, so that you can access your email while travelling.


Webmaster   Dico Tools
The person prinicipally responsible for maintaining a website.


Webserver   Dico Tools
A computer which fetches or stores World Wide Web pages and provides them over the internet on request.


Website   Dico Tools
A page or group of pages on the World Wide Web.


Webspace   Dico Tools
The storage on an internet server where websites are kept. Webspace can be hired from a commercial provider, or is sometimes provided free with an internet dialup account.


Websurfing   Dico Tools
Looking at pages on the World Wide Web. Often just called surfing.


WiFi   Dico Tools
(WIreless FIdelity) A method of connecting computers together in a network without cables, using small transmitter/receivers connected to ordinary PCs, printers, broadband modems etc. See 80211 etc.


Wiki   Dico Tools
A website where the users create and edit the content collaboratively, the best known being Wikipedia, a huge online encyclopedia. Entries on controversial subjects should be viewed with caution, as they may have been edited by persons with strong but not necessarily correct views.


Win9x   Dico Tools
Compatible with or pertaining to both Windows 95 and Windows 98.


Windows   Dico Tools
A family of operating systems from the Microsoft Corporation, standard on most PCs. Windows 95, 98 and ME (Millenium Edition) are three generations of the version intended mainly for home use; Windows NT and 2000, developed and released in parallel with the 9x family, were intended more for use in office and network environments, supposedly more robust but usually requiring a more powerful computer. The latest version is Windows XP, intended to bring the two different "flavours" together in a unified whole.


Windows 3.1 / 3.11   Dico Tools
Microsoft's standard PC operating environment before the release of Windows 95. Not strictly speaking an operating system in its own right, more an add-on which provides DOS with a GUI. Windows 3.11 was officially called "Windows for Workgroups" because it was purportedly designed for use with networks, but in practice is no different to 3.1.


Windows 98SE   Dico Tools
(Second Edition) An upgrade to Microsoft's Windows 98. Generally agreed to be the best of the Win9x bunch.


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Windows ME   Dico Tools
(Millenium Edition) The successor to Windows 98, but not widely taken up and now replaced by Windows XP. See Windows.


Windows NT   Dico Tools
A version of Windows intended for business use, more stable for networking but less game-friendly than its Win9x cousins. Superseded first by Windows 2000 and now by Windows XP.


Windows Vista   Dico Tools
Microsoft's latest version of its popular Windows operating system, released in 2007, intended to replace XP. It has been released in no less than six different versions, with varying capabilities and prices.


Windows XP   Dico Tools
The latest version of Windows and generally agreed to be the most stable. Intended to bring together and replace the different 9x and NT versions of Windows (see Windows) - but Microsoft released two versions, "Home" and "Professional".


Winsock   Dico Tools
A program required by Windows to communicate with the internet, usually installed automatically along with internet connection software.


Winzip   Dico Tools
The most popular program for compressing files, either for storage or transmission via the internet, widely available as a free download. The compressed files it creates have the extension .zip. See also zip.


Wireless Network   Dico Tools
A computer network which uses radio transmitters (usually) to move information between computers without the need for physical cables. See Wi-Fi.


Wizard   Dico Tools
A Windows feature which presents a user with simple menus or options for what would otherwise be a complex task, and carries them out automatically. Almost all Windows programs are installed via Wizards, and they are also widely used inside Windows programs.


Word Processor   Dico Tools
A program used for creating documents, letters etc. The best known is Microsoft Word.


Word Test   Dico Tools
testing message


World Wide Web   Dico Tools
The easiest part of the Internet to understand and use, the World Wide Web consists of many millions of pages of text and images published by anyone and everyone, from governments and large corporations down to the humblest home user, in a standardised hypertext format. A particular person or company's area is called a website. Viewed with a program called a browser. Wandering around the World Wide Web is often called Websurfing or just surfing.


Worm   Dico Tools
A malicious program introduced into computers by stealth, similar to a virus.


Write-protected   Dico Tools
A write-protected file has been set so that it cannot be altered or deleted without first removing the write protection. Also called read-only. You can write-protect a file in windows by right-clicking on it and checking the "read-only" box under attributes. Floppy disks can be write-protected by moving the small plastic square in the top right corner.


WWW   Dico Tools
The easiest part of the Internet to understand and use, the World Wide Web consists of many millions of pages of text and images published by anyone and everyone, from governments and large corporations down to the humblest home user, in a standardised hypertext format. A particular person or company's area is called a website. Viewed with a program called a browser. Wandering around the World Wide Web is often called Websurfing or just surfing.


WYSIWYG   Dico Tools
(What You See Is What You Get; pr. "whizzy-wig") A computer interface, usually for creating documents, that reproduces the end-product as accurately as possible on screen. Standard on all modern software, so you don't often hear it mentioned these days.



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