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You have to be familiar with some Web Jargon before you get into web design.

As you know, a jargon is a technical term, usually used among web design professionals and other Internet users. But it's not that complicated once you get the hang of it.

We will deal with some of the common Web Jargon that are frequently used among web design professionals.

Understanding Web Jargon.

Don't know your HTML from your HTTP? Your cache from your cookies? The web has serious amounts of jargon, and it seems like people come up with new words almost every day. Most of it isn't especially useful, but there are some words that it's good to know to help you along on the web.

Here are the essentials.

Apache. The most popular web server. It is open source and free for anyone to use.

Blog. A short for 'weblog'. A web page that is updated like a diary, with the most recent writing first. Usually done using blogging software instead of being maintained by hand. You can also make money with blogs if you do not have a web site.

Browser. A web browser is the software that you use to view pages on the web. Internet Explorer is the most common browser.

But the most important to know is that your web design must be tested on various browsers like Mozilla, Netscape etc. There are many people who uses browsers other than Internet explorer and your site has to display correctly on each of them.

The relevance of a browser from the angle of web design comes here. Your web site is going to be displayed by them and your site must be tested on as many of them as possible.

Cache. A web browser's cache is where it keeps files that it has downloaded from the web and might need to use again. A site's logo and navigation graphics may be stored in the cache, for example, so that they don't have to be downloaded again each time you go from one page of the site to another. This happens automatically.

Cookies. Small files that websites can store on your computer to let them 'remember' you. When you log into a website and you're still logged in when you go back there later on, that's because the site gave your browser a cookie.

Favorites. Also known as Bookmarks, this is a place in your browser where you can save links to pages that you'd like to visit again.

Flash. A browser plug-in developed by Macromedia that displays animations and animated websites.

FTP. File Transfer Protocol. The usual method of uploading files from your computer to a web server.

HTML. Hypertext Markup Language. The language that web pages are written in.

HTTP. Hypertext Transfer Protocol. Theoretically, the way that HTML pages are sent between a server and a browser, although in practice HTTP is used for sending all sorts of data, including graphics and file downloads. Many files should really be provided using FTP, but HTTP is considered to be easier and faster.

IIS. Internet Information Server. Microsoft's competitor to Apache, comes with versions of Windows that can be used as web servers. Often considered to be somewhat insecure and prone to crashing, although recent versions have improved.

ISP. Internet Service Provider. The company or institution that provides your computer with access to the Internet, usually in exchange for a monthly fee.

Link. A link is some text on one web page that will take you to another page if you click on it.

MySQL. MySQL is a free, open source database. It is often used for smaller web applications and websites.

Open source. Open source software is software which makes its source code freely available. This is intended to give you more freedom to modify the software however you want (or pay someone to modify it for you), instead of tying you to a company and relying on them for updates. In practice, this means that the software is available for download at no cost. Visit www.opensource.org  for more information.

PDF. Portable Document Format. A document format that aims to reproduce text exactly the way it would appear on a page. Viewable in web browsers using a plug-in, but disliked by many users because it can be very slow.

Another important thing about PDF is that it can load on most browser. That is, you can incorporate PDF's into your web design strategy.

PHP. Stands for 'PHP: Hypertext Processor'. A very easy to learn and easy to use scripting language that is one of the most common on the web, helped along by the fact that it is also free. It is most often used in quite simple ways, such as retrieving text from a database and adding it to a page.

URL. Uniform Resource Locator. A technical term for a whole web address, such as http://www.example.com/page.html. It is called uniform because you can use similar addresses to refer to entirely different kinds of resources: for example, file://c:/windows refers to your Windows folder, and ftp://ftp.example.com/public_html refers to a folder on an FTP server.

In general conversations among web design professionals, URL is also simple referred as link.

W3C. The World Wide Web Consortium (three Ws and a C, so W3C). This is the standards body that is considered to be 'in charge' of the web, and decides what gets put in and taken out of the various versions of HTML, amongst other things.

These are some of the common web jargons used among  web design professionals and Internet users. If you would like browse through more articles on web design, there are many more on this site. Enjoy!


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