The Internet For Dummies
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The internet, links, the web … people and the media bounce around many online-related terms these days, and folks sometimes use them incorrectly. Your first step in getting familiar with the internet is to understand what some of these terms mean.

Here’s a list of common internet-related terms:

  • The internet is a large network of computers, which contain information and technology tools that can be accessed by anybody with an internet connection.

  • Residing on that network of computers is a huge set of documents, which form the World Wide Web, usually referred to as just the web.

  • The web includes websites, which are made up of collections of web pages, just as a book is made up of chapters that contain individual pages. Websites can be informational and/or host communication tools, such as chats or discussion boards that allow people to “talk” via text messages.

    They may also provide entrance to an online retail business where you can shop, or allow you to share files with others, or use software applications without having to install them on your computer.

  • You can buy, bid for, or sell a wide variety of items in an entire online marketplace referred to as the world of e-commerce.

  • To get around online, you use a software program called a browser. There are many browsers available, and they’re free. Internet Explorer is Microsoft’s browser; others include Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, and Apple's Safari. Browsers offer tools to help you navigate from website to website and from one web page to another.

  • When you open a website, you might see colored text or graphics that represent hyperlinks, also referred to as links. You can click links using your mouse to move from place to place within a web page, on a website, or between web documents.

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A link can be a graphic (such as a company logo) or text. A text link is identifiable by colored text, and it’s usually underlined. After you click a link, it usually changes color to show that you’ve followed the link.

About This Article

This article is from the book:

About the book authors:

John R. Levine is a recognized technology expert and consumer advocate who works against online fraud and email spam. Levine is the president of the Coalition Against Unsolicited Commercial Email (CAUCE) and worked to bring the internet to underserved parts of the world as a trustee of The Internet Society.

Alison Barrows is the author or coauthor of several books about Access, Windows, and the Internet. Joseph Stockman is an 18-year software designer who has authored or coauthored five Access programming books. Allen Taylor is a 30-year veteran of the computer industry and the author of over 20 books.

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