Computer & Internet Jargon

The computer industry and the internet have a multitude of jargon that seems to just be a combination of letters. To help you be more comfortable in the use of your computer and the internet we have put together a list of the most common jargon you may come across with a short description.

Data Sizes

Bit – This si the smallest unit of computer data. There are 8 bits in a byte.
Byte – This unit of computer data can store a single character. There are 1024 bytes to a kilobyte (1Kb).
Mb – 1Mb (Megabyte) is made up of 1024 Kb.
Gb – 1Gb (Gigabyte) is the same as 1024 Mb. 1Gb is sometimes referred to as a Gig.

Audio Files

MP3 – This is a standard used to compress digital audio. The quality of these types of files is almost equal to that of a CD but take up a lot less space.
WAV – This an audio file that does not use compression. This means that the file sizes can be very large.
WMA – This stands for Windows Media Audio. A standard created by Microsoft for playback through Windows Media Player.

Image Files

BMP – (Bitmap) An image type that is recorded as many dots (pixels). They are large files so they are not as popular as the other file types listed.
GIF – This is a bitmap image format that can be used for animated images.
JPG – Often referred to as jpeg. These are compressed files making them one of the smaller file sizes suitable for web use.
TIFF – A file format that when compressed does not lose any detail from the image.

Internet Connections

ADSL – A technology that changes a normal telephone line into a fast internet connection.
Dialup – This is a Windows component that allows access to the internet via a modem.
DSL – Technology that allows the transmission of data through the line originally supplied to connect you to your telephone exchange.

Common Computer Jargon

Hard Disk – A disk drive that is in all PCs that stores both information and applications.
Hardware – This is the physical components that make up your computer.
Software – A program or group of programs that tell your hardware how to perform.

Common Internet Jargon

Domain Name – This is the name used to recognise a website on the internet
Download – This is the transfer of data from the internet to your computer regardless of whether it is a webpage or a piece of software.
Router – A piece of equipment that directs your internet request to your ISP who then sends your request in the right direction.
Server – This is a computer on a network that stores information and can also manage shared printers.
URL – This is another way to say website address (Uniform Resource Locator).