Skip to main content




access point: A device that allows wireless-equipped computers and other devices to communicate with a wired network.

Active Directory: a Microsoft database/directory service used to manage devices, users, domains, and objects within a network.  It allows users to gain authenticated and authorized access to devices, applications, and systems across the campus network based on policy group permissions.  This allows the university to easily manage different security/permissions for different groups of users such as students, faculty & staff.

alias: A short, easy-to-remember name created for use instead of a longer, more complicated name; commonly used in e-mail applications. Also referred to as a "nickname".

anti-spam: To prevent e-mail spam, both end users and administrators of e-mail systems use various anti-spam techniques. Some of these techniques have been embedded in products, services and software to ease the burden on users and administrators. No one technique is a complete solution to the spam problem, and each has trade-offs between incorrectly rejecting legitimate e-mail vs. not rejecting all spam, and the associated costs in time and effort. Dataprise Cloud-Based Anti-SPAM e-mail service eliminates the problem almost entirely. Our state-of-the-art solution lets users see only the e-mail they want — and filters out all of the viruses and e-solicitations they don’t want before they reach user’s computers and mobile devices. To learn more click here.

application: A program designed for a specific purpose, such as word processing or graphic design.

attachment: In this context, a file that is sent along with an e-mail message. ASCII (plain text) files may be appended to the message text, but other types of files are encoded and sent separately (common formats that can be selected include MIME, BinHex, and Uuencode).

authentication: The process of identifying yourself and the verification that you're who you say you are. Computers where restricted information is stored may require you to enter your username and password to gain access.



Bandwidth: A measurement of the amount of data that can be transmitted over a network at any given time. The higher the network's bandwidth, the greater the volume of data that can be transmitted.

blended learning: Instruction that combines aspects of both face-to-face (F2F) and online learning experiences. An increasing number of courses at OSU now offer this type of mix.

bluetooth: A wireless networking technology that allows users to send voice and data from one electronic device to another via radio waves.

browser: A program used to access World Wide Web pages. Examples: Firefox, Safari or Internet Explorer.

BYOD: Bring Your Own Device or "BYOD" is a business and technology policy that allows employees to bring in personal mobile devices and use these devices to access company data, email, etc.

byte: A group of adjacent binary digits that a computer processes as a unit to form a character such as the letter "C". A byte consists of eight bits.



cache: Refers to: 1) a region of computer memory where frequently accessed data can be stored for rapid access; or 2) a optional file on your hard drive where such data also can be stored. Examples: Internet Explorer and Firefox have options for defining both memory and disk cache. The act of storing data for fast retrieval is called "caching".

captcha: A challenge-response test in the form of an image of distorted text the user must enter that to determine whether the user is human or an automated bot.

CAS: AKA Central Authentication Service. See single-sign-on.

case-sensitive: Generally applies to a data input field; a case-sensitive restriction means lower-case letters are not equivalent to the same letters in upper-case. Example: "data" is not recognized as being the same word as "Data" or "DATA".

CBT: Computer-Based Training; a type of training in which a student learns a particular application by using special programs on a computer. Sometimes referred to as "CAI" (Computer-Assisted Instruction) or "CBI" (Computer-Based Instruction), although these two terms may also be used to describe a computer program used to assist a teacher or trainer in classroom instruction.

CD-ROM: Compact Disk, Read Only Memory; a high-capacity secondary storage medium. Information contained on a CD is read-only. Special CD-ROM mastering equipment available in the OIT Multimedia Lab can be reserved for creating new CDs.

chat: Real-time communication between two or more users via networked-connected computers. After you enter a chat (or chat room), any user can type a message that will appear on the monitors of all the other participants. While most ISPs offer chat, it is not supported by OIT. However, the campus CMS (Carmen) supported by TELR does provide the capability for live chat among students participating in online courses.

client: A program or computer that connects to and requests information from a server. Examples: Internet Explorer or Firefox. A client program also may be referred to as "client software" or "client-server software".

cloud: (See below): a common shorthand for a provided cloud computing service (or even an aggregation of all existing cloud services) is "The Cloud".To learn more please click here.

cloud computing: A general term used to describe Internet services such as social networking services (e.g., Facebook and Twitter), online backup services, and applications that run within a Web browser. Cloud computing also includes computer networks that are connected over the Internet for server redundancy or cluster computing purposes.

compress: The process of making a file smaller so that it will save disk space and transfer faster over a network. The most common compression utilities are Winrar for PC or compatible computers (.zip files) and or Stuffit (.sit files) for Macintosh computers.

cookie: A small piece of information you may be asked to accept when connecting to certain servers via a web browser. It is used throughout your session as a means of identifying you. A cookie is specific to, and sent only to the server that generated it.

CPU: Central processing unit; the part of a computer that oversees all operations and calculations.

CSS: Cascading Style Sheet; A set of rules that define how web pages are displayed using CSS, designers can create rules that define how page

cursor: A special symbol that indicates where the next character you type on your screen will appear. You use your mouse or the arrow keys on your keyboard to move the cursor around on your screen.



database: A collection of information organized so that a computer application can quickly access selected information; it can be thought of as an electronic filing system. Traditional databases are organized by fields, records (a complete set of fields), and files (a collection of records). Alternatively, in a Hypertext database, any object (e.g., text, a picture, or a film) can be linked to any other object.

data center: A data center (data centre / datacentre / datacenter) is a facility used to house computer systems and associated components, such as telecommunications and storage systems. It generally includes redundant or backup power supplies, redundant data communications connections, environmental controls (e.g., air conditioning, fire suppression) and security devices.

data security: is the process of safeguarding digital information throughout its entire life cycle to protect it from corruption, theft, or unauthorized access. It covers everything—hardware, software, storage devices, and user devices; access and administrative controls; and organizations' policies and procedures.

decompress: Opposite of compressing a file; the process of restoring the file to its original size and format. The most common programs for decompressing files are Winrar for PC and compatible computers (.zip files) and Stuffit Expander (.sit files) for Macintosh computers.

defragmentation: The process of rewriting parts of a file to contiguous sectors on a hard drive to increase the speed of access and retrieval.

desktop: On computers like IBM PC or compatibles and Macintoshes, the backdrop where windows and icons for disks and applications reside.

DHCP: Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol; a protocol that lets a server on a local network assign temporary IP addresses to a computer or other network devices.

dialog box: Sometimes referred to as a window; on a graphical user interface system, an enclosed area displayed by a program or process to prompt a user for entry of information in one or more boxes (fields).

distance learning: The goal of distance education; distance learning and distance education are often used interchangeably.

DNS: Domain Name System; a service for accessing a networked computer by name rather than by numerical, (IP) address.

Domain: Part of an Internet address. The network hierarchy consists of domains and subdomains. At the top are a number of major categories (e.g., com, edu, gov); next are domains within these categories (e.g., ohio-state); and then there are subdomains. The computer name is at the lowest level of the hierarchy.

download: The process of transferring one or more files from a remote computer to your local computer. The opposite action is upload.

dpi: Dots per inch; a measure of a printer's resolution. The higher the number, the better the print quality. A minimum of 300 dpi usually is required for professional quality printing.

drag and drop: The act of clicking on one icon and moving it on top of another icon to initiate a specific action. Example: Dragging a file on top of a folder to copy it to a new location.

drive permissions: Clarkson used shared network drives such as the S Drive (Data) and K Drive (OIT).  These network drives require permissions managed in Active Directory to allow users to access folders contained with in them



E-mail: Electronic mail; the exchange of messages between users who have access to either the same system or who are connected via a network (often the Internet). If a user is not logged on when a new message arrives, it is stored for later retrieval.


firewall: A method of preventing unauthorized access to or from a particular network; firewalls can be implemented in both hardware and software, or both.

folder: An area on a hard disk that contains a related set of files or alternatively, the icon that represents a directory or subdirectory.

font: A complete assortment of letters, numbers, and symbols of a specific size and design. There are hundreds of different fonts ranging from businesslike type styles to fonts composed only of special characters such as math symbols or miniature graphics.

FTP: File Transfer Protocol; a method of exchanging files between computers via the Internet. A program like WS_FTP for IBM PC or compatibles or Fetch for Macintosh is required. Files can contain documents or programs and can be ASCII text or binary data.



GIF: Graphics Interchange Format; a format for a file that contains a graphic or a picture. Files of this type usually have the suffix ".gif" as part of their name. Many images seen on web pages are GIF files.

gigabyte (Gig or GB):

GUI: Graphical user interface; a mouse-based system that contains icons, drop-down menus, and windows where you point and click to indicate what you want to do. All new Windows and Macintosh computers currently being sold utilize this technology.



hardware: The physical components of a computer including the keyboard, monitor, disk drive, and internal chips and wiring. Hardware is the counterpart of software.

HTML: HyperText Markup Language; a language used for creating web pages. Various instructions and sets of tags are used to define how the document will look.

HTTP: HyperText Transfer Protocol; a set of instructions that defines how a web server and a browser should interact. Example: When you open a location (e.g., enter a URL) in your browser, what actually happens is an HTTP command is sent to the web server directing it to fetch and return the requested web page.

hyperlink: Connects one piece of information (anchor) to a related piece of information (anchor) in an electronic document. Clicking on a hyperlink takes you to directly to the linked destination which can be within the same document or in an entirely different document. Hyperlinks are commonly found on web pages, word documents and PDF files.



icon: On a system like Windows or Macintosh that uses a graphical user interface (GUI), a small picture or symbol that represents some object or function. Examples: a file folder for a directory; a rectangle with a bent corner for a file; or a miniature illustration for a program.

Internet: A worldwide network based on the TCP/IP protocol that can connect almost any make or model of popular computers from micros to supercomputers. Special programs called "clients" enable users with a network connection to do things like process e-mail or browse web sites using the familiar interface of a desktop computer.

IP address: Internet Protocol address; every computer connected to the Internet has a unique identifying number. Example:



JPEG: Joint Photographic Experts Group; a graphics format which compresses an image to save space. Most images imbedded in web pages are GIFs, but sometimes the JPEG format is used (especially for detailed graphics or photographs). In some cases, you can click on the image to display a larger version with better resolution. is lined up against the right margin).



knowledge base: A database where information common to a particular topic is stored online for easy reference; for example, a frequently-asked questions (FAQ) list may provide links to a knowledge base.



LAN: Local area network; a network that extends over a small area (usually within a square mile or less). Connects a group of computers for the purpose of sharing resources such as programs, documents, or printers. Shared files often are stored on a central file server.

link: Another name for a hyperlink.

LINUX: An open-source operating system that runs on a number of hardware platforms including PCs and Macintoshes. Linux is freely available over the Internet.

log in, log on: The process of entering your username and password to gain access to a particular computer; e.g., a mainframe, a network or secure server, or another system capable of resource sharing.



malware: Software programs designed to damage or do other unwanted actions on a computer; common examples of malware include viruses, worms, trojan horses, and spyware.

megabyte (Meg or MB): 1,024 x 1,024 (2 to the 20th power) bytes; it's usually sufficient to think of a megabytes as one million bytes.

Microsoft Windows: A group of operating systems for PC or compatible computers; Windows provides a graphical user interface so you can point and click to indicate what you want to do.

monitor: The part of a computer that contains the screen where messages to and from the central processing unit (CPU) are displayed. Monitors come in a variety of sizes and resolutions. The higher the number of pixels a screen is capable of displaying, the better the resolution. Sometimes may be referred to as a CRT.

mouse: A handheld device used with a graphical user interface system. Common mouse actions include: 1) clicking the mouse button to select an object or to place the cursor at a certain point within a document; 2) double-clicking the mouse button to start a program or open a folder; and 3) dragging (holding down) the mouse button and moving the mouse to highlight a menu command or a selected bit of text.



NaaS: Network as a Service; a category of cloud services that provides users with the capability of where the capability provided to the cloud service user is to usinge network/transport connectivity services and/or inter-cloud network connectivity services.

network: A group of interconnected computers capable of exchanging information. A network can be as few as several personal computers on a LAN or as large as the Internet, a worldwide network of computers.

network adapter: A device that connects your computer to a network; also called an adapter card or network interface card. network security: Network security consists of the provisions and policies adopted by a network administrator to prevent and monitor unauthorized access, misuse, modification, or denial of the computer network and network-accessible resources. Network Security is the authorization of access to data in a network, which is controlled by a network administrator. Dataprise uses state-of-the-art network security techniques while providing authorized personnel access to important files and applications. Every organization’s needs are different and hackers are always adapting their techniques, so we are extremely serious about staying up to date with the latest network security tools, threats and industry developments. To learn more please click here.



OCR: Optical character recognition; the act of using a visual scanning device to read text from hard copy and translate it into a format a computer can access (e.g., an ASCII file). OCR systems include an optical scanner for reading text and sophisticated software for analyzing images.

online: A term that has commonly come to mean "connected to the Internet". It also is used to refer to materials stored on a computer (e.g., an online newsletter) or to a device like a printer that is ready to accept commands from a computer.



password: A secret combination of characters used to access a secured resource such as a computer, a program, a directory, or a file; often used in conjunction with a username.

PC: Usually refers to an IBM PC or compatible, or when used generically, to a "personal computer". In a different context, PC also is an abbreviation for "politically correct."

PDF: Portable Document Format; a type of formatting that enables files to be viewed on a variety computers regardless of the program originally used to create them. PDF files retain the "look and feel" of the original document with special formatting, graphics, and color intact. You use a special program or print driver (Adobe Distiller or PDF Writer) to convert a file into PDF format.

phishing: A con that scammers use to electronically collect personal information from unsuspecting users. Phishers send e-mails that appear to come from legitimate websites such as eBay, PayPal, or other banking institutions asking you to click on a link included in the email and then update or validate your information by entering your username and password and often even more information, such as your full name, address, phone number, social security number, and credit card number.

PING: Packet Internet Groper; a utility used to determine whether a particular computer is currently connected to the Internet. It works by sending a packet to the specified IP address and waiting for a reply.

pixel: Stands for one picture element (one dot on a computer monitor); commonly used as a unit of measurement.

plug-in: A program used for viewing multimedia files that your web browser cannot handle internally; files using a plug-in do not need to be moved to your computer before being shown or played. Contrast to a helper application which requires the file to first be moved to your computer. Examples of plug-ins: Adobe Flash Player (for video and animation) and Quicktime (for streamed files over the Internet).

plug and play: A set of specifications that allows a computer to automatically detect and configure a device and install the appropriate device drivers.

pop-up blocker: Any application that disables the pop-up, pop-over, or pop-under ad windows that appear when you use a web browser.





RAM: Random Access Memory; the amount of memory available for use by programs on a computer. Also referred to as "main memory". Example: A computer with 8 MB RAM has approximately 8 million bytes of memory available. Contrast to ROM (read-only memory) that is used to store programs that start your computer and do diagnostics.

remote desktop: A Windows feature that allows you to have access to a Windows session from another computer in a different location (XP and later).

RJ-45 connector: An eight-wire connector used for connecting a computer to a local-area network. May also be referred to as an Ethernet connector.

ROM: Read Only Memory; a special type of memory used to store programs that start a computer and do diagnostics. Data stored in ROM can only be read and cannot be removed even when your computer is turned off. Most personal computers have only a few thousand bytes of ROM. Contrast to RAM (random access or main memory) which is the amount of memory available for use by programs on your computer.



SaaS: Software as a Service; a software delivery model in which software and associated data are centrally hosted on the cloud. SaaS is typically accessed by users using a thin client via a web browser.

safe mode: A way of starting your Windows computer that can help you diagnose problems; access is provided only to basic files and drivers.

SAN: A storage area network (SAN) is a dedicated storage network that provides access to consolidated, block level storage. SANs primarily are used to make storage devices (such as disk arrays, tape libraries, and optical jukeboxes) accessible to servers so that the devices appear as locally attached to the operating system. A SAN typically has its own network of storage devices that are generally not accessible through the regular network by regular devices.

screen reader: A software program that translates text on a Web page into audio output; typically used by individuals with vision impairment.

scroll bar: In a graphical user interface system, the narrow rectangular bar at the far right of windows or dialog boxes. Clicking on the up or down arrow enables you to move up and down through a document; a movable square indicates your location in the document. Certain applications also feature a scroll bar along the bottom of a window that can be used to move from side-to-side.

search engine: A tool that searches documents by keyword and returns a list of possible matches; most often used in reference to programs such as Google that are used by your web browser to search the Internet for a particular topic.

self-extracting file: A type of compressed file that you can execute (e.g., double-click on the filename) to begin the decompression process; no other decompression utility is required. Example: on IBM PC or compatibles, certain files with an ".exe" extension and on Macintoshes, all files with a ".sea" extension.

serial port: An interface on a computer that supports transmission of a single bit at a time; can be used for connecting almost any type of external device including a mouse, a modem, or a printer.

server: A computer that is responsible for responding to requests made by a client program (e.g., a web browser or an e-mail program) or computer. Also referred to as a "file server".

shareware : Copyrighted software available for downloading on a free, limited trial basis; if you decide to use the software, you're expected to register and pay a small fee. By doing this, you become eligible for assistance and updates from the author. Contrast to public domain software which is not copyrighted or to freeware which is copyrighted but requires no usage fee.

single sign-on: Single sign-on (SSO) is a session and user authentication service that permits a user to use one set of login credentials (username & password) to access multiple applications and systems. We us CAS (Central Authentica Service) as our SSO solution to ease the management of multiple logins.

signature: A file containing a bit of personal information that you can set to be automatically appended to your outgoing e-mail messages; many network newsreaders also have this capability. Large signatures over five lines generally are frowned upon.

SIMM: Single In-line Memory Module; a small circuit board that can hold a group of memory chips; used to increase your computer's RAM in increments of 1,2, 4, or 16 MB.

SMTP: Simple Mail Transfer Protocol; a method of handling outgoing electronic mail.

software: Any program that performs a specific function. Examples: word processing, spreadsheet calculations, or electronic mail.

spam: Email spam, also known as junk email or unsolicited bulk email (UBE), is a subset of spam that involves nearly identical messages sent to numerous recipients by email. Definitions of spam usually include the aspects that email is unsolicited and sent in bulk. Spammers collect email addresses from chatrooms, websites, customer lists, newsgroups, and viruses which harvest users' address books, and are sold to other spammers. They also use a practice known as “email appending” or "epending" in which they use known information about their target (such as a postal address) to search for the target's email address. Also see "Anti-Spam".

SSID: Service Set Identifier; a name that identifies a wireless network.

streaming (streaming media): A technique for transferring data over the Internet so that a client browser or plug-in can start displaying it before the entire file has been received; used in conjunction with sound and pictures. Example: The Flash Player plug-in from Adobe Systems gives your computer the capability for streaming audio; RealPlayer is used for viewing sound and video.

spyware: Any software that covertly gathers user information, usually for advertising purposes, through the user's Internet connection.

subdirectory: An area on a hard disk that contains a related set of files; on IBM PC or compatibles, a level below another directory. On Macintoshes, subdirectories are referred to as folders.



10Base-T: An adaptation of the Ethernet standard for Local Area Networks that refers to running Ethernet over twisted pair wires. Students planning on using ResNet from a residence hall must be certain to use an Ethernet adapter that is 10Base-T compatible and not BNC (used with 10Base-2 Ethernet systems).

table: With reference to web design, a method for formatting information on a page. Use of tables and the cells within also provide a way to create columns of text. Use of tables vs frames is recommended for helping to make your web site ADA-compliant.

TCP/IP: Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol; an agreed upon set of rules that tells computers how to exchange information over the Internet. Other Internet protocols like FTP, Gopher, and HTTP sit on top of TCP/IP.

Telephony: Telephony encompasses the general use of equipment to provide voice communication over distances, specifically by connecting telephones to each other. Dataprise's expert team of telecommunication consultants can design and implement a system that is feature rich, simple to use and integrates seamlessly with your existing business applications. To learn more please click here.

Telnet: A generic term that refers to the process of opening a remote interactive login session regardless of the type of computer you're connecting to.

TIFF: Tag Image File Format; a popular file format for storing bit-mapped graphic images on desktop computers. The graphic can be any resolution and can be black and white, gray-scale, or color. Files of this type usually have the suffix ".tif" as part of their name.

token: A group of bits transferred between computers on a token-ring network. Whichever computer has the token can send data to the other systems on the network which ensures only one computer can send data at a time. A token may also refer to a network security card, also known as a hard token.

tool bar: On a graphical user interface system, a bar near the top of an application window that provides easy access to frequently used options.

Trojan horse: A harmless-looking program designed to trick you into thinking it is something you want, but which performs harmful acts when it runs.

TrueType: A technology for outline fonts that is built into all Windows and Macintosh operating systems. Outline fonts are scalable enabling a display device to generate a character at any size based on a geometrical description.

tweet: An update of 140 characters or less published by a Twitter user meant to answer the question, "What are you doing?" which provides other users with information about you.

Twitter: A service that allows users to stay connected with each other by posting updates, or "tweets," using a computer or cell phone or by viewing updates posted by other users.

twisted pair cable: A type of cable that is typically found in telephone jacks; two wires are independently insulated and are twisted around each other. The cable is thinner and more flexible than the coaxial cable used in conjunction with 10Base-2 or 10Base-5 standards. Most Ohio State UNITS telephone jacks have three pairs of wires; one is used for the telephone and the other two can be used for 10Base-T Ethernet connections.

two-factor authentication: An extra level of security achieved using a security token device; users have a personal identification number (PIN) that identifies them as the owner of a particular token. The token displays a number which is entered following the PIN number to uniquely identify the owner to a particular network service. The identification number for each user is changed frequently, usually every few minutes.



upload: The process of transferring one or more files from your local computer to a remote computer. The opposite action is download.

USB: Universal Serial Bus; a connector on the back of almost any new computer that allows you to quickly and easily attach external devices such as mice, joysticks or flight yokes, printers, scanners, modems, speakers, digital cameras or webcams, or external storage devices. Current operating systems for Windows and Macintosh computers support USB, so it's simple to install the device drivers. When a new device is connected, the operating system automatically activates it and begins communicating. USB devices can be connected or disconnected at any time.

Username: A name used in conjunction with a password to gain access to a computer system or a network service.

URL: Uniform Resource Locator; a means of identifying resources on the Internet. A full URL consists of three parts: the protocol (e.g., FTP, gopher, http, nntp, telnet); the server name and address; and the item's path. The protocol describes the type of item and is always followed by a colon (: ). The server name and address identifies the computer where the information is stored and is preceded by two slashes (//). The path shows where an item is stored on the server and what the file is called; each segment of the location s preceded by a single slash (/). Examples: The URL for the Dataprise home page is http: //

USB port: An interface used for connecting a Universal Serial Bus (USB) device to computer; these ports support plug and play.

utility: Commonly refers to a program used for managing system resources such as disk drives, printers, and other devices; utilities sometimes are installed as memory-resident programs. Example: the suite of programs called Norton Utilities for disk copying, backups, etc.



virtualization: Virtualization is the creation of a virtual (rather than actual) version of something, such as a hardware platform, operating system, a storage device or network resources. In hardware virtualization, the term host machine refers to the actual machine on which the virtualization takes place; the term guest machine, however, refers to the virtual machine. Likewise, the adjectives host and guest are used to help distinguish the software that runs on the actual machine from the software that runs on the virtual machine. The software or firmware that creates a virtual machine on the host hardware is called a hypervisor or Virtual Machine Monitor.

virtual memory: A technique that enables a certain portion of hard disk space to be used as auxiliary memory so that your computer can access larger amounts of data than its main memory can hold at one time.

virus: A program intended to alter data on a computer in an invisible fashion, usually for mischievous or destructive purposes. Viruses are often transferred across the Internet as well as by infected diskettes and can affect almost every type of computer. Special antivirus programs are used to detect and eliminate them.

VoIP: Voice over Internet Protocol; a means of using the Internet as the transmission medium for phone calls. An advantage is you do not incur any additional surcharges beyond the cost of your Internet access.

VPN: Virtual Private Networking; a means of securely accessing resources on a network by connecting to a remote access server through the Internet or other network.



WAN: Wide Area Network; a group of networked computers covering a large geographical area (e.g., the Internet).

WAP: Wireless Application Protocol; a set of communication protocols for enabling wireless access to the Internet.

WEP: Wired Equivalent Privacy; a security protocol for wireless local area networks defined in the 802.11b standard. WEP provides the same level of security as that of a wired LAN.

wi-fi: Wireless Fidelity; A generic term from the Wi-Fi Alliance that refers to of any type of 802.11 network (e.g., 802.11b, 802.11a, dual-band, etc.). Products approved as "Wi-Fi Certified" (a registered trademark) are certified as interoperable with each other for wireless communications.

wild card: A special character provided by an operating system or a particular program that is used to identify a group of files or directories with a similar characteristic. Useful if you want to perform the same operation simultaneously on more than one file. Example: the asterisk (*) that can be used in DOS to specify a groups of files such as *.txt.

window: On a graphical user interface system, a rectangular area on a display screen. Windows are particularly useful on multitasking systems which allow you to perform a number of different tasks simultaneously. Each task has its own window which you can click on to make it the current process. Contrast to a "dialog box" which is used to respond to prompts for input from an application.

Windows: A casual way of referring to the Microsoft Windows operating systems.

wireless (networking): The ability to access the Internet without a physical network connection. Devices such as cell phones and PDAs that allow you to send and receive e-mail use a wireless Internet connection based on a protocol called WAP (Wireless Application Protocol). At this point, web sites that contain wireless Internet content are limited, but will multiply as the use of devices relying on WAP increases.

WLAN: Wireless Local Area Network; the computers and devices that make up a wireless network.

Workstation: Another name for a desktop computer.

World Wide Web: A hypertext-based system of servers on the Internet. Hypertext is data that contains one or more links to other data; a link can point to many different types of resources including text, graphics, sound, animated files, a network newsgroup, a telnet session, an FTP session, or another web server. You use a special program called a "browser" (e.g., Firefox or Internet Explorer) for viewing World Wide Web pages. Also referred to as "WWW" or "the web".

Worm: A program that makes copies of itself and can spread outside your operating system worms can damage computer data and security in much the same way as viruses.

WPA: Wi-Fi Protected Access; a standard designed to improve on the security features of WEP.

WWW: An abbreviation for World Wide Web.

WYSIWYG: What You See Is What You Get; a kind of word processor that does formatting so that printed output looks identical to what appears on your screen.



zero trust network access (ZTNA): Zero Trust Network Access or ZTNA is a security framework that requires all users - in or outside the organization’s network - to be authenticated, authorized, and continuously validated for security configuration and posture before being granted or keeping access to data and applications.

Zip: A common file compression format for PC or compatibles; the utility WinZip or Winrar is used for compressing and decompressing files. Zipped files usually end with a ".zip" file extension. A special kind of zipped file is self-extracting and ends with a ".exe" extension. Macintosh OSX also supports the .zip format and has tools that can compress and decompress zip files.

Zoom: Zoom is a communications platform that allows users to connect with video, audio, phone, and chat. https: //

zoom: The act of enlarging a portion of an onscreen image for fine detail work; most graphics programs have this capability.