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Terms and Definitions A-C

File Folders
Internet Terms and Definitions

 Access Point

 A device that transports data between a wireless network and a wired network (infrastructure), similar in fuction to a wired hub.


 A term used to refer to initialisms, which
 are combinations of letters representing a
 longer phrase). Acronyms are pronounced
 as words rather than a series of individual
 letters. View a complete list of acronyms.

 Active X

 New programming standard proposed by
 Microsoft to increase the functionality of
 web pages. Similar in some respects to
 Java and Javascript.

 Ad Clicks

 Number of times that a viewer clicks on an
 ad banner.


 Normally refers to one's e-mail address
 which can be a series of letters and/or
 numbers, or when referring to a World
 Wide Web site, it is a URL.

 Address Verification

 Process used by a credit card processor or
 other party to verify that a customer's
 ordering address matches their records.


 (Advanced Digital Network): Normally
 refers to a 56Kbps leased-line.


 (Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line): A
 method for moving data over regular phone
 lines that is much faster than a regular
 phone connection. Data can be downloaded
 at speeds of up to 1.544 megabits (not
 megabytes) per second and sent at speeds
 of up to 128 kilobits per second.

 Affiliate Marketing

 A system of advertising in which site A
 agrees to feature banners, buttons, and
 links from site B in exchange for a
 payment, usually as a percentage of any
 sales generated for site B.

 Affinity Marketing

 Marketing efforts aimed at consumers on
 the basis of established buying patterns.


 Agents are search tools that automatically
 seek out relevant online information based
 on your specifications. Agents are also
 called intelligent agents, personal agents,
 knowbots, or droids.


 A set of rules that a search engine uses to
 rank the listings contained within its index,
 in response to a particular query. No search
 engine reveals exactly how its own
 algorithm works, to protect itself from
 competitors and those who wish to spam
 the search engine.

 Algorithmic Results

 See organic listings.


 Nickname for a domain or host computer.


 Synonym for a hyperlink.

 Anonymous FTP

 Allows internet users to access certain
 servers via FTP (file transfer protocol) using
 a general password such as GUEST or
 ANONYMOUS for the purpose of
 downloading freeware and shareware files.


 A small program that runs from within
 another program, generally a Java program
 embedded in a web page which executes as
 the web page loads in a browser such as
 Netscape or Internet Explorer.


 A computer program, specifically software
 that runs on a computer and performs a
 particular task, i.e. word processor,
 spreadsheet, etc.


 (Application Programming Interface):
 A standard interface between a
 communications device and a software
 application operating in a computer.


 An internet service that enables users to
 search the file databases of many
 anonymous FTP sites. Can be accessed via
 telnet, a local Archie client, or e-mail.


 Term used to describe either a server
 containing a large amount of publicily
 accessible software or a file containing one
 or more other files that have been
 compressed and stored.


 Advanced Research Projects Agency. The
 governmental organization responsible for
 creating the beginnings of the internet.


 The network developed by ARPA in the late
 1960's and early 1970's which served as a
 foundation for today's internet. An
 experiment in wide-area-networking
 intended to survive a nuclear war.


 (American Standard Code for Information
 Interchange): The world-wide standard for
 the code numbers used by computers to
 represent all upper and lower-case letters,
 numbers, punctuation, etc. There are 128
 standard ASCII codes.


 A file that is linked or included to a specific
 e-mail message, just as you might paperclip
 a clipping to a snail mail letter.

 Automated Clearing House

 An ACH transaction is an electronic fund
 transfer through the Federal Reserve Bank
 from a checking or savings account.


 The process of checking the validity and
 available balance of a customer's credit
 card before the transaction can be


 Refers to the main high-speed international
 telecommunication networks that carry
 internet traffic among national, regional,
 and local networks.


 All the links pointing at a particular web
 page. Also called inbound links.


 A high-tech term used to describe the
 amount of data (webpages, text, graphics,
 video, sound, etc.) that can travel in a
 given time, usually one second, across a
 network or a connection to a network such
 as a modem. When you send a message
 across the internet, you are using part of
 its bandwidth, just as your car takes up
 space on the freeway. The management
 of a customer's website is based on the
 amount of data transfer used per month.


 When pages are removed from a search
 engine's index specifically because the
 search engine has deemed them to be
 spamming or violating some type of

 Baud or BPS

 (Bits per second): The baud rate is the
 measurement of speed that a telephone or
 cable modem can transmit or receive in
 bits;more is better. Example: a 1200
 bit-per-second modem actually runs at 400
 baud, but moves 3 bits per baud or (3 x
 400) 1200 bits per second. You will want a
 modem with a rating of at least 14,400 bps
 to access the internet effectively.
 Preferably, use 28,800 or higher.


 An interactive ad placed on a webpage that
 is linked to an external advertiser's website
 or another internal page within the same


 Abbreviation for Bulletin Board System, a
 system that allows people to meet and
 leave messages, carry on discussions, and
 upload and download files without the
 people being connected to the computer at
 the same time.


 (BINary HEXadecimal): A method for
 converting binary files (applications) into
 ASCII format. This is needed because
 internet e-mail can only handle ASCII.


 Abbreviation meaning "Basic Input-Output
 System". Computer software controlling
 input and output (e.g. on a PC, the code
 stored in ROMs which allows the PC to
 communicate with the keyboard, screen
 and disks as well as boot up an operating


 A wireless, short-range radio technology aimed at voice and data networking with 1 mbps maximum transfer rate. Bluetooth is not compatible with 802.11 or 802.11b.


 (Bits-Per-Second): A measurement of how
 fast data is moved from one place to
 another. A 28.8 modem can move 28,800
 bits per second.


 The broadband communication network has significantly greater bandwidth than telephone networks, which allows it to be shared among multiple signals — such as those for voice and data — or different frequencies.


 Refers to software which allows a user to
 navigate the World Wide Web and look at
 various kinds of internet resources offering
 visual graphics and text. The most popular
 browsers used to navigate the Web are
 Microsoft Explorer, Netscape Navigator,
 AOL, Web TV, and Opera.


 A set of bits that represent a single
 character. Usually there are 8 bits in a
 byte, sometimes more, depending on
 how the measurement is being made.

 "Card Not Present" Merchant Account

 An account that allows merchants to
 process credit cards without a face to face
 transaction with the purchaser.


 (Compact Disc - Read-Only Memory): CD
 containing data.

 Certificate Authority

 A Certificate Authority (CA) is a third party
 which verifies the identity of merchants and
 their sites. The certificate authority issues a
 certificate (also called a digital certificate or
 an authentication certificate) to an
 applicant company, which can then put the
 certificate up on its site.


 Stands for "Common Gateway Interface"
 (but everyone uses the acronym these
 days). CGI refers to programs that
 sites can run to generate web pages
 dynamically. For example, web search
 engines use CGI programs to read what
 keywords you're searching for, find web
 pages for you, and format the results in a
 web page for you to see. A CGI program
 can be written in any computer language.
 Perl is the most popular language for
 writing CGI programs, but other major
 contenders are C and C++, Unix shell
 scripts, Java, and Visual Basic.


 Another term for IRC. Also, an acronym
 meaning Conversational Hypertext Access
 Technology. An internet feature which
 allows two or more people to communicate
 with each other by typing messages on
 their keyboards. This is similar to a
 telephone conversation but using

 Chat Room

 Refers to the theoretical room in
 cyberspace where individuals with a similar
 interest "meet together" to "chat."


 A computed value which is dependent upon
 the contents of a packet. This value is sent
 along with the packet when it is
 transmitted. The receiving system
 computes a new checksum based upon the
 received data and compares this value with
 the one sent with the packet. If the two
 values are the same, the receiver has a
 high degree of confidence that the data
 was received correctly.


 (Computer Incident Advisory Center): A
 group of the U.S. Department of Energy
 that alerts concerned parties with
 information about computer security and
 viruses which may affect other government
 agencies and the public.

 Clickthrough Rate

 The percentage of those clicking on a link
 out of the total number who see the link.
 For example, imagine 10 people do a web
 search. In response, they see links to a
 variety of web pages. Three of the 10
 people all choose one particular link. That
 link then has a 30 percent clickthrough
 rate. Also called CTR.


 A computer attached to any network
 (including the internet) that requests a
 service of another computer system or
 process. The term is also used to describe
 personal computer software (FTP or Telnet)
 that gives access to and enables use of the
 internet either by modem connection or by
 connection to a local area network and
 related hardware.


 In terms of search engine marketing, this is
 the act of getting a search engine to record
 content for a URL that is different than
 what a searcher will ultimately see. It can
 be done in many technical ways. Several
 search engines have explicit rules against
 unapproved cloaking. Those violating these
 guidelines might find their pages penalized
 or banned from a search engine's index. As
 for approved cloaking, this generally only
 happens with search engines offering paid
 inclusion program. Anyone offering cloaking
 services should be able to demonstrate
 explicit approval from a search engine
 about what they intend to do. If not, then
 they should then have explained the risks
 inherent of unapproved cloaking.


 (Coaxial): It's the thick round cabling
 commonly used for cable television.
 Depending on how it's used, it can have
 100 to 500 times the data-carrying
 capacity of regular phone lines. Cable TV
 is already in more than 60 percent of
 American homes, and nearby to most
 others. But cable systems must be
 updated to handle digital data in addition
 to broadcast signals, and PCS would require
 new "cable modems" to use them.

 Commerce Server

 The server that manages and maintains all
 transactional and backend data for a
 commerce website.

 Contextual Link Inventory

 To supplement their business models,
 certain text-link advertising networks have
 expanded their network distribution to
 include "contextual inventory". Most
 vendors of "search engine traffic" have
 expanded the definition of search engine
 marketing to include this contextual
 inventory. Contextual or content inventory
 is generated when listings are displayed on
 pages of web sites (usually not search
 engines), where the written content on the
 page indicates to the ad-server that the
 page is a good match to specific keywords
 and phrases. Often this matching method is
 validated by measuring the number of
 times a viewer clicks on the displayed ad.

 Conversion Rate

 The relationship between visitors to a
 web site and actions consider to be a
 "conversion," such as a sale or request to
 receive more information. Often expressed
 as a percentage. If a web site has 50
 visitors and 10 of them convert, then the
 site has a 20 percent conversion rate.


 A small file which is installed on your
 computer by a web site you visit. The file
 contains data about you and the computer
 system you are on and the data is often
 used by the web site to track your choices
 and custom tailor responses for future

 Cost Per Click

 System where an advertiser pays an agreed
 amount for each click someone makes on a
 link leading to their web site. Also known
 as CPC.


 See cost per click.


 System where an advertiser pays an agreed
 amount for the number of times their ad
 is seen by a consumer, regardless of the
 consumer's subsequent action. Heavily used
 in print, broadcasting and direct marketing,
 as well as with online banner ad sales. CPM
 stands for "cost per thousand," since ad
 views are often sold in blocks of 1,000.
 The M in CPM is Latin for thousand.


 Crackers are users who try to gain illegal
 access to computers. They are usually
 malicious in their intentions.


 Component of a search engine that gathers
 listings by automatically "crawling" the
 web. A search engine's crawler (also called
 (a spider or robot) follows links to web
 pages. It makes copies of the web pages
 found and stores these in the search
 engine's index.

 Cross Promotion

 The promotion of a website through other
 traditional forms of advertising such as
 magazines, newspapers, radio, TV,
 billboards, etc.


 See clickthrough rate.


 A term coined by science fiction writers
 William Gibson and Bruce Sterlingreffering
 for a sub-group which exists in an
 overindustialized society. It is a cultural
 label used for many different kinds of
 human, machine, and punk attitudes,
 including clothing and lifestyle.


 A popular term (first used by author William
 Gibson in his sci-fi novel Neuromancer) for
 the space or the plethora of information
 that seems to exist within computers and
 computer networks.


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