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ACCC Glossary of Computer Terms
Word Processing at UIC DTP

ACCC Glossary of Computer Terms, I-N

 

Contents

I | J | K | L | M | N

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List of Defined Words

Icarus
IEEE
IMAP
Inbox
Indeo
INFORM
InfoTech Arcade
Input
Inside Margin
Interactive processing
Interface
Interrupt
Intranet
Internet and The Internet
Internet Explorer
Internet IP address
Internet protocol suite
Inverse Landscape printing
Inverse Portrait printing
I/O
IP
IPX
ISO
ISO 8601 dates
ISO 9660
ISP
ITL
JCL
JPEG or JPG
Justification
K
Kbps
Kerning
LaTeX
LAN
LANE
Landscape printing
Laser printing
Layout
LCD projection panel
Leading
Line Edit
Line printer
LISP
Local Area Network
Local echo
LocalTalk
Login
Logout
M
Maildrop
macro
Mail
Mailfolders and Mailboxes
Mainframe
Mbps
Megabyte
Megaflop (MFLOP)
Memory
Metacode
Microcomputer
MIDI
MIME
Minidisk
MINITAB
Modem
Mono-Spaced Fonts
Morphing
Mosaic
MotionJPEG, MJPEG, MJP
MPC-2
MPEG
Multiplex
MVS
Name server and name resolution
Nanosecond (nsec)
NAP
NCSA
Netid
NETNEWS
Netscape
NetWare
Network
News or newsgroups
NFS
NNI
Node
NSFnet
NTSC
Null modem

+--+ I +--+

Icarus
The ACCCs' Sun Enterprise 4000 workstation, icarus.cc.uic.edu; any registered UIC student may have a personal account on icarus. For more information, see the ACCC Accounts, Machines, Passwords page.
IEEE
Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers: An international professional society that issues standards and is a member of ANSI and ISO. IEEE LAN standards are the predominant LAN standards today, including standards similar or virtually identical to Ethernet and Token Ring. For more information, see the IEEE home page and Engineering from IEEE Spectrum.
IMAP
Interactive Mail Access Protocol: A client-server protocol similar to POP which allows electronic mail be retrieved from a server to a personal computer; but is better suited to having the PC manipulate mail that stays on the host machine. See IMAP: What's New in Electronic Mail.
Inbox
All email programs provide an Inbox, a special mail folder or mailbox that holds your incoming mail messages. Your email program will allow you to read, reply to, save, or delete the messages in your Inbox.
Indeo
Intel's compression/decompression for video; Windows, OS/2, some Mac.
INFORM
The ACCC's online documentation facility.
InfoTech Arcade
The Library's Information Technology Arcade supports the  applications of technology and multimedia in higher education. For more information, see the Arcade's home page.
Input
The information that a computer or a particular computer program takes in.
Inside Margin
A text formatting term: The left margin of a right-hand (odd-numbered) page, and the right margin of a left-hand (even-numbered) page. The inside margin is often wider than the opposite margin to accommodate binding.
Interactive processing
A computer system where a person can communicate directly with the machine by means of a terminal. The user enters commands which are immediately executed by the computer which sends the results of the command directly back to the user. See also Batch processing.
Interface
A shared boundary defined by a common physical interconnection and signal characteristics and meanings.
Interrupt
A signal which causes the machine's hardware to break the normal program flow and transfer control to a specific interrupt handling routine. Once the interrupt has been processed, the interrupted program is resumed.
 
Intranet
Aprivate internet (with a lower case i; a network containing multiple subnetworks) inside a campus or company; the UIC campus network is an intranet.
Internet and The Internet
The global collection of interconnected local, mid-level, and wide-area networks that use IP as the network layer protocol. Also, an "internet" which is a collection of networks interconnected by routers that function as a single network. The UIC campus-wide network is an internet in this sense. See Internet and WWW.
 
Internet Explorer:
IE is Microsoft's WWW browser for Windows. See also Netscape.
Internet IP address
A unique number identifying each host machine on the Internet network. Also called the IP address. In addition to the Internet address, each machine has an Internet domain style name which usually has the form machine.location.domain or machine.group.location.domain; for example, tigger's domain name is tigger.cc.uic.edu or tigger.uic.edu (or www.uic.edu, when it's acting as a Web server). For more information, see Now that You're Wired.
Internet protocol suite
A set of protocols developed by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency network (DARPA) to support a reliable host-to-host packet-switched network with hosts using different operating systems, of different sizes, and made by different manufacturers. This suite is referred to as TCP/IP because TCP and IP are the best known of the protocols in the suite. IP -- Internet Protocol -- is the OSI network layer protocol in TCP/IP. See the Inform The Internet's TCP/IP Protocol Suite menu.
Inverse Landscape printing
A text formatting term: The rotation of a page design to print text and graphics horizontally, and upside down across the 11 inch width of the paper. Duplex landscape texts are sometimes printed in landscape on the front of the page and inverse landscape on the back; then when the pages are joined at the top, the reader can flip though the packet with all the text in the same orientation. See also Landscape, Portrait, and Inverse Portrait printing.
Inverse Portrait printing
A text formatting term: With a sheet of paper held with the 8.5 inch side horizontal and the 11 inch side vertical (up), text which is printed upside down is called inverse portrait. See also Portrait, Landscape, and Inverse Landscape printing.
I/O
Input/Output: The receiving or sending of data to or from the computer.
IP
Internet Protocol: See Internet protocol suite. See also Internet address.
IPX Internetwork Packet Exchange
The network layer protocol used on Novell NetWare networks. See also NetWare.
ISO
International Standards Organization: An organization established to develop standards to facilitate the international exchanges of goods and services and to develop mutual cooperation in areas of intellectual, scientific, technological, and economic activity. For more information, see the ISO home page.
ISP
Internet Service Provider. For links to lists of ISPs and information on how to select one, see Finding a Commercial ISP.
ISO 8601 dates
The international standard date format defined in ISO 8601: yyyy-mm-dd; see ISO 8601: The Right Format for Dates.
ISO 9660
Industry standard multi-platform CD-ROM format.
ITL
The ACCC's Instructional Technology Lab, which helps faculty and computer support staff work with instructional technology. For more information, see the ITL home page.
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+--+ J +--+ 

JCL
Job Control Language: A highly specialized and inflexible control statement language used to define a job to the MVS operating system.
JPEG Joint Photographic Experts Group
A compression algorithm for 24-bit color images, giving compression ratios of up to 20:1 with very little degradation.
Justification
A text formatting term: Adjusting the spacing within a line of text such that each line of text begins - "left justified" - or ends - "right justified" - at the same place. An exception to justification is the line before a forced break or a blank line (such as the last line of a paragraph, which may not contain enough text to allow right justification. Paragraph indents are an exception to left justification.
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+--+ K +--+

K
Kilo: In most areas, "kilo" stands for 1000, but in computer usage a K is 1024 or 2 to the 10th power.
Kbps
1024 (or kilo) Bits Per Second: A measure of the speed of transmission of computer data. See also Baud.
Kerning
A text formatting term: The amount of space between letters, especially certain combinations of letters that must be brought closer together than others in order to create visually consistent spacing between all letters. The letters AW, for example, may appear to have a wider gap between then than the letters NM unless there is a special kerning formula set up for the AW combination.
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+--+ L +--+

LaTeX
A set of TeX document layout macros which can be used with TeX commands to relatively easily use TeX to format a variety of types of documents. See TeX and LaTeX.
LAN
Local Area Network: Communication systems which link several computer devices and allow them to use each other's resources effectively. The machines are usually geographically close to one another (a maximum of one or two miles). The "devices" linked by a LAN may include computers, terminals, printers, disk drives. Each device on a LAN is a "node". See LANs at UIC.
LAN Manager is a distributed file system developed by Microsoft, and LAN Network Manager and LAN Server are IBM products.
Landscape printing
A text formatting term: The rotation of a page design to print text and graphics from left to right horizontally across the 11 inch width of the paper. See also Inverse Landscape, Portrait, and Inverse Portrait printing.
 
LANE
LAN Emulation; LAN simulation on ATM networks. See also ATM.
Laser printing
A text formatting term: Printers which use a toner based laser system for printing. Laser printers use a laser to scan an image onto a photosensitive drum or belt and then transfer the image to the paper. Some typesetters also use laser technology in conjunction with their photochemical processing, but these are usually referred to as phototypesetters rather than as laser printers.
See also xerographic printing engine.
Layout
A text formatting term: The arrangement of text and graphics on a page.
LCD projection panel
A device to project a computer screen, used with a high-lumen (very bright) overhead projector.
Leading
A text formatting term: The amount of vertical spacing, expressed in points, between the baselines of two lines of text. The term leading is carried over from the days of metal type; it referred to placing strips of lead between lines of type to increase the space between the lines. See also Vertical Justification.
Line Edit
The old method of working interactively with a computer, where you work one line at a time.
Line printer
A text formatting term: A printer which prints pages (even graphics) one line at a time, as opposed to a page printer, which prints an entire page at once.
LISP
LISt Processor: A high level, list processing language commonly used in artificial intelligence and computer research. LISP is different from most other programming languages in several ways; a major difference is that recursion is used as a control structure rather than iteration (looping) which is common in most programming languages.
Local Area Network
See LAN.
Local echo
Specifies that the characters you type are to be "echoed", or set to your terminal for display, by your terminal. This is needed only when neither the remote computer you are using nor the communications system echoes the characters, as in half duplex communication.
LocalTalk
Apple Computer's proprietary low-speed (230 Kbps), CSMA/CD LAN hardware standard. Macintosh computers connected with LocalTalk cables form a LocalTalk LAN using MacOS's AppleTalk software. LocalTalk networks use Apple's DDP, Datagram Delivery Protocols.
Login or Logon
The process of initiating an interactive computer session. During login, you tell the computer which system you want to use and who you are. You will also enter your private password during login.
Logout or Exit or Logoff
The logout command is used to tell the computer that you are done with an interactive session. It must be entered at the close of each of your sessions, or you may find all your units used up the next time you login (either because someone stole your account, or because the computer continued executing your last instruction indefinitely).
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+--+ M +--+

M
Mega: In most areas M stands for a million, but in computer usage M represents 1024K or 2 to the 20th power.
macro
A single, symbolic programming language statement that, when translated, expands to a predefined series of statements.
Mail
See Electronic Mail.
Maildrop
See Email Account.
Mail folders and Mailboxes
places where your mail program stores email messages. Pine calls them mail folders; Eudora calls them mailboxes. Most people save their mail in different mail folders depending on topic, correspondent, date, or other categories. Modern email programs provide the same services (read, reply, save, or delete) to other mail folders that they provide for the Inbox.
Mainframe
a large, multi-user computer.
Mbps and Megabyte
Megabits per second; "M" is 1024K, which equals 1,048,576, or about one million.
Megabyte
About a million bytes.
Megaflop (MFLOP)
One million operations per second: the unit used to rate computer (especially supercomputer) performance.
Memory
The part of a computer system which is used to run programs. The word memory is used to refer to the capacity of the system (for example, a 1 meg machine), and also to the actual chips that provide the memory (a memory upgrade). See also RAM and ROM.
Metacode
The internal codes used within a system.
Microcomputer
Small computers, inexpensive enough to be purchased by individuals and small businesses. Also called personal computers. IBM, APPLE, Radio Shack, Zenith and Commodore are common manufacturers of micros. [Wow, that was written a while ago. IBM and Apple are still around, along with Micron, Dell, Compac, and Gateway. All the big Web search sites have special pages with information on purchasing and using personal computers; see, for example, Excite's Computers and Internet hardware page at: http://my.excite.com/computers_and_internet/hardware/ ]
MIDI Musical Instrument Digital Interface
Industry standard connection for digital control of musical devices.
MIME
Multipurpose Internet Mail Extensions: An extension to Internet email that allows you attach any type of file, including non-text files like graphics and video, to electronic mail. It also provides enhancements for email text, including formatting and support for extended character sets. For more information, see the Inform MIME menu; see also electronic mail.
Minidisk
A virtual disk, the VM/CMS term for what appears to be a small complete disk pack, but in reality is a section of an actual physical disk.
MINITAB
MINITAB is a general purpose, highly interactive statistical computing system designed especially for students and researchers who have little or no previous experience with computers. It on the ACCC lab personal computers and the ACCC UNIX workstations.
Modem
MOdulator DEModulator: A device converts characters into a form that can be transmitted over a telephone line, and reconverts transmitted signals to characters. See CCITT. See also Connecting From Home.
Mono-Spaced Fonts
A text formatting term: A font in which all the characters have the same width (as in a mechanical typewriter). Also known as "fixed-pitch fonts".
Morphing
Changing one image into another by moving corresponding elements rather than by crossfading.
Mosaic:
Mosaic was the first popular WWW browser. It was so popular that, for a while, people refered to the WWW as Mosaic. The Mosaic browsers were written by the National Center for Supercomputer Applications (NCSA) at UIUC.
MotionJPEG MJPEG or MJP
New codec algorithm, particularly in the PC platform.
MPC-2
Spec for a multimedia PC, based on a 486SX.
MPEG Moving Pictures Experts Group
Codec technology for moving images using inter- and intra-frame compression.
Multiplex
To interleave information from different sources on a single channel.
MVS
Multiple Virtual Storage: One of the operating systems the ACCC used to run under VM/ESA on its IBM 3090.
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+--+ N +--+

Name server and name resolution
A server provided on a network which resolves network names into network locations. Also known as DNS (Domain Name Server).
Nanosecond (nsec)
One nanosecond is 10 to the -9th seconds.
NAP (Network Access Point)
A small number of locations on the Internet backbone where Internet Service Providers connect to the backbone and to each other through peering arrangements. Ameritech's Chicago NAP is one of them; the others in San Francisco, Washington, DC, and Pennsauken, New Jersey (that's the New York NAP). UIC's connection to our commodity ISP, Nap.Net, is in the Chicago NAP; we also have direct peering connections there to a number of other ISPs. See internet.com's Directory of Internet Service Providers for a history of the Internet and an explanation on how the NAP system works. (See, in particular, the Internet Architecture link.)
NCSA
National Center for Supercomputer Applications at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC).
Netid
A personal id that everyone at UIC can and should have. It is used as your login id for your ACCC UNIX workstation account and, as such, is part of one of your UIC electronic mail addresses: yrnetid@tigger.cc.uic.edu, for example. You can also use your netid as part of a machine-independent UIC email address: yrnetid@uic.edu
See Getting a Netid.
News or Newsgroups
See Usenet.
NETNEWS
On UICVM CMS, the command NETNEWS is used to view articles posted to the Usenet newsgroups. See also Usenet.
 
Netscape:
Netscape is a set of WWW browsers, were originally produced by Netscape Communications Corporation, which was was founded in April 1994 by Dr. James H. Clark, founder of Silicon Graphics, and Marc Andreessen, the original creater of NSCA Mosaic. For a very long time, Netscape was the most popular WWW browser, but then came Microsoft and its Windows Internet Explorer.
NetWare
Novell, Inc.'s popular file server system. For information on using Novell Networks at UIC, see Novell Guidelines.
Network
A group of computers and/or other devices (called nodes) linked together by cables or telephone lines. Computers joined in this way often share printers and memory storage devices (See LAN: Local Area Network).
Computer networks may also be less intimately connected, with the links between nodes allowing information prepared according to a set convention to be exchanged among the nodes, but without direct sharing of devices. The Internet is an example of this type of network.
NFS
Network File System: A distributed file system protocol suite developed by Sun Microsystems that allows remote file access across a network. The NFS is one of the protocols in the suite; others include XDR (External Data Representation) and RPC (Remote Procedure Call). These are part of Sun's ONC (Open Network Computing) architecture.
NNI
Network-to-Network Interface; ATM protocol for the interface between two ATM networks; part of UNI.
Node
(1) An end point or connection point of a Network, as in an "Internet node". tigger, icarus, and UICVM are nodes on the Internet network. (2) In a larger sense, node is a generic term which refers to any entity that can access a network, and in this sense it is used interchangeably with device. See LAN.
NSFnet
National Science Foundation NETwork: A network based on the Internet protocol suite established by the NSF to connect the NSF-funded national supercomputer centers. NSFNet is part of the Internet network.
NTSC National Television Standards Committee
Composite signal standard adopted by TV and videos in the US and Japan, with a frame rate of 30fps (actually 29.97fps).
Null modem
A box or cable which joins two computing devices directly rather than over a network.
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2009-12-7  document@uic.edu
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