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Glossary of Internet & Computer Terms

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Select the first letter of the word from the list above to jump to appropriate section of the glossary or type the term on which you want to search.

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also written as back up, to copy or save a program or file for safe keeping in the event the working program fails in some way or is lost. It is wise to back up all files on floppy, zip disks, or tape. Many software applications periodi cally prompt you to save your work while you are actually working. However, a usershould still backup all work on the computer’s hard drive in case of malfunction or failure.

the quantity of data that can effectively be sent through a connection, measured in bits-per-second. The greater the bandwidth, the faster the transmission of information. High bandwidth also provides clearer images on a computer’s display monitor while online.

the key character, ( ! ). The exclamation point.

banner ad
an advertisement on a Web page with a short compelling message. The message is designed to get the user to click on the ad. The ad contains a hyperlink to the advertiser’s Website. see hyperlink.

bar chart
(bar graph) a type of chart or graph that quantifies or measures relative values represented by rectangular bars.

(Beginners All-purpose Symbolic Instruction Code) an early computer programming language developed in the 1960s that has many contemporary variations functioning today. BASIC is used for many business applications and includes a great number of proprietary functions.

BAT file
(batch file) a DOS or Microsoft file that ends with a .BAT extension.

batch processing
putting a computer to work to process large amounts of data at one time. Batch processing is best accomplished during periods when the computer would otherwise be idle because continuous running time is required.

a unit of measurement that represents the number of bits that can be sent or received over a telephone line or via a satellite signal per second. Baud is actually the maximum number of times per second that the signal shifts value. For example, a 56,000-baud modem takes 56,000-baud (56,000-bps) and encodes it into an audio signal whose actual signal is 14,000. To keep it simple, remember that the higher the baud rate, the faster the transmission of data. The challenge is that telephone lines are limited in their ability to transmit these signals. The term baud is losing popularity to the more accurate “bps” meaning bits per second.

(bay drive, drive bay) a site on a computer or portable disk drive where a disk or tape drive may exist or be installed.

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