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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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software distributed on the Internet that the user agrees to pay a small fee to use. The name nagware comes from the periodic appearance (usually before or after each session) of a pop-up message reminding the user he has not yet registered. see shareware.

the identification of a folder or program, given by the manufacturer or the creator of the file, which is made up of keyboard characters. For example, you might collect recipes, in a word processing file named “yummy.”

name server
also referred to as a domain name server, a computer that translates domain names into IP addresses.

a free software application developed by Napster Inc., founded by John Fanning and his nephew Shawn Fanning (Shawn wrote the program code), that allows a user to download music over the Internet using the MP3 format. Additionally, the program allows users access to a worldwide library of music maintained by subscribers, as well as the ability to chat online. The company claims more than 20 million users. The name Napster was Shawn Fanning’s childhood nickname. Napster has stirred a great deal of controversy over intellectual property rights. Many artists have spoken out against Napster as they feel their work is being taken without payment. At present, several lawsuits have been filed to stop the upstart company from facilitating the distribution of copyrighted music. Proponents maintain that subscribers simply allow other subscribers to borrow music they own, thus contend, no copyright violation. In the summer of 2000, the US Senate listened to testimony of artists claiming financial harm from the company as well as a representative of the firm contending no laws have been broken. Shortly thereafter, a federal judge ordered the site to shut down. It is almost certain that this issue will end up being resolved in court.

(Network Attached Storage) a specialized file server that connects to the network. A NAS device contains a slimmed-down (microkernel) operating system and file system and processes only I/O requests by supporting popular file sharing protocols such as NFS (Unix) and SMB/CIFS (DOS/Windows). Using traditional LAN protocols such as Ethernet and TCP/IP, the NAS enables additional storage to be quickly added by plugging it into a network hub or switch. As network transmission rates have increased from Ethernet to Fast Ethernet to Gigabit Ethernet, NAS devices have come up to speed parity with direct attached storage devices.

(Network Address Translation) an IETF standard that allows an organization to present itself to the Internet with far fewer IP addresses than there are nodes on its internal network. The NAT technology, which is implemented in a router, firewall or PC, converts private IP addresses (such as in the range) of the machine on the internal private network to one or more public IP addresses for the Internet. It changes the packet headers to the new address and keeps track of them via internal tables that it builds. When packets come back from the Internet, NAT uses the tables to perform the reverse conversion to the IP address of the client machine.

the original operating environment of a particular software program. Although an application may adapt to more than one format, the native format is the one that is exclusive to the software.

nav bar
(navigation bar) various on-screen controls found on a Web page allowing the user to scroll from left to right, or up and down. Utilizing these helpful tools offer a user a wide range of menus, instructions, FAQs, and allow for easier access to the World Wide Web. Nav bars might also be hyperlinks pointing to other pages or Websites.

see Netscape Navigator.

near letter quality
(NLQ) a printing standard where the documents produced resemble the higher standard, “letter quality” produced on a quality typewriter. Laser printers produce letter quality documents. Although some inkjet printers advertise “near letter quality” performance, it is difficult for the untrained eye to distinguish NLQ from letter quality documents.

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