Jargon Buster:

Jargon Buster:  A

Computing terms explained in plain English

1.  AAC

Advanced Audio Coding. A type of music file.

2.  Access point

Links wireless network users to a wired network.

3.  ActiveX

Technology for adding extra features to a web browser.

4.  Add-in

Generic term for a piece of software that adds extra features to another program.

5.  Address bar

An area of a web browser into which internet addresses can be typed. Pressing enter then directs the browser to that exact page. The address bar is sometimes confused with a search bar. Typing addresses into a search field will produce a list of websites that may or may not match what you are looking for.

 6.  ADF

Automatic Document Feeder. A device that feeds sheets of paper into a photocopier or scanner, one by one.

 7.  ADSL

Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line. A technology that converts a standard phone line into a broadband internet connection.

 8. ADSL2

A newer, faster type of ADSL broadband.

 9. Adware

Software that displays adverts.

10. Aero

The technology that provides fancy window effects in Windows 7 and some versions of Vista.

 11. AGP

Accelerated Graphics Port. A slot used to connect graphics cards in older computers.

12. AI

Artificial Intelligence. A computer program designed to mimic the behaviour of humans or animals.

 13. AIFF

Audio Interchange File Format. A digital audio format often associated with Apple Mac computers.

 14. Ajax

Asynchronous JavaScript and XML. A technology that allows websites to fetch fresh information from the web without loading a new page.

15. Analogue

A signal whose value varies over time, as opposed to a digital signal which is either on or off.

16. Android

An operating system for portable computers and mobile phones, based on the Linux system that is used on some PCs.

 17. Animated GIF

A type of simple animation found on the internet.

18. Annotation

A comment on a document, rather like a note jotted down on a paper document.

 19. Anti-virus

Software that protects against and removes computer viruses.

 20. Aperture

An opening that controls the amount of light entering a camera lens.

 21. API

Application Programming Interface. A system built into a program so that other programs can work with it.

22. App

A small program designed to run on a phone or handheld computer (short for application). Could be a game, utility or any other type of program.

23. App

A small program designed to run on a phone or handheld computer (short for application). Could be a game, utility or any other type of program.

24. Applet

A small program, often one that runs within a larger program to perform a specific task.

 25. Application

A computer program that performs a specific task, such as Microsoft Word for creating documents.

 26. Aspect ratio

A measurement of the shape of a display. Traditional computer screens are 4:3. Widescreen displays are 16:9 or 16:10.

 27. ATRAC

Adaptive Transform Acoustic Coding. A type of music file used by some older Sony players.

28. Attachment

A computer file, such as a word-processing document, sent along with an email.

29. Audible

A company that sells downloadable audio books. Also used to describe the files it uses.

30. Audio book

A book read aloud and recorded on tape, CD or as a digital file.

31. Autocorrect

A technology that corrects words as you type them.

 32. Auto play

A Windows feature that allows a program to be automatically started when a disk is connected to a computer

 33. Auto sum

A tool in Excel that provides a quick total of the selected cells.

 34. Auto trace

A tool in some photo editors that attempts to trace an image, converting it into vector graphics that can be resized.

 35. AV

Audio/Visual. Any device that can show video or play sound.

 36. Avatar

A graphic or icon used to represent a computer user, either online or in a video game.

 37. AVCHD

Advanced Video Coding High Definition. A standard for storing high-definition video. AVCHD discs can be played by most Blu-ray players.

38. AVI

Audio Video Interleave. A type of video file. AVI is known as a container format, as it can hold many types of audio and video.

39. AV Sender

A device that sends audio and video signals wirelessly.


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