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Mathematics and Statistics

Common Terminology Associated With the WWW

The following is a description of some of the more common terms you will hear when referring to the Web.

This is an acronym for Uniform Resource Locator. This is the address of the document that you want to look at. The URL for the Math department's home page is The first part of this (http:) says that the information you want to retrieve is on a web server. The part gives the name of the Web server that the information you want to retrieve is located on.
This too is an acronymn for the language that is used to write Web documents. It stands for HyperText Markup Language. Writing your own HTML files requires an understanding of the HTML syntax.
In order to be able to access the Web, you first need to be able to access the internet. You then need software which will let you look at all of the information available on the Web. This is often referred to as browsing and the software that lets you do this is called a browser. In the Math Department, the currently preferred browser on the UNIX machines and Macs is called Netscape, version 2.0.
Hyperlink or Link
When you are browsing pages on the Web, you will find that some of the text you see may be underlined or highlighted. This is telling you that there is more information about this underlined or highlighted word or phrase. If you are using a computer equipped with a mouse, then all you need to do is point the mouse to the underlined or highlighted word and click. You will be taken to the place which has this additional information. This could be at the same location or anywhere in the world.

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September 2004
Mathematics and Statistics
Boston University