tea and poetry with daisies

Last updated on March 20th, 2022 at 09:54 am

Web technology makes use of all kinds of quirky words and plenty of acronyms too. This glossary will give you a chance for the most basic level of familiarization. Scan down the list to introduce the new terms. Don’t get intimidated by tech talk, allow yourself to keep reading even if you don’t completely understand. Eventually, you’ll feel more familiar and start to recognize these terms in the wild.

Analytics – Metrics gathered about your website traffic that can help inform strategic decisions.

API – Application Programming Interface – a protocol for securely transferring program data from one source to another. A way for applications to “talk” to each other.

CamelCase – the internet loves to capitalize compound words. It makes a hump in the middle, like a camel.

CMS – Content Management System – like WordPress or Joomla, a site that runs on a stack with a front-end that visitors see, and a control panel for site administrators. Usually extensible using plug-ins, components, or apps.

CSS – Cascading Style Sheets – a code language for styling blocks of HTML. CSS defines how the content looks, i.e. layout, spacing, fonts, sizing, to infinity, and beyond.

Docker – a popular method to containerize applications for quick deployment in the cloud.

Domain Name Registrar – Company that registers your domain name along with auxiliary services like privacy, and security certificates. Sometimes they also offer web hosting or site-builders.

FOSS – Free and Open Source Software

GDPR – General Data Protection Regulation – These are new rules from the EU governing body, designed to protect the privacy rights of EU citizens. Also results in annoying consent pop-ups, of questionable value.

HTML – HyperText Markup Language – HTML is a markup language used to code webpages.

HTTP – Hypertext Transfer Protocol – the foundation of data communication for the worldwide web. Introduced in 1991.

iframe – an HTML tag used to include one web page inside of a frame on another web page. Web authors rarely use iframes anymore. See below:

<iframe src="example.com/webpage" height="300" width="100%"></iframe>

LAMP/LEMP – Linux Apache/Nginx MySQL PHP – a server stack for hosting websites that supports a database to store entries. LAMP = Apache LEMP = Nginx (engine X)

Nginx – pronounced ‘engine X’ – a Web server software known for its speedy delivery.

Responsive or RWD – Responsive Web Design; A collection of methods to render content appropriately for different device resolutions and orientations. A way to correctly fit your website layout on phones, tablets, and desktop computers.

SEO – Search Engine Optimization – A set of techniques to boost your page higher in the search engine results page.

Sitemap – an XML file that lists the URLs in your site to help search engines more effectively index your content.

Ubuntu – a Linux kernel commonly used to run servers; an operating system.

WebDAV – Web Distributed Authoring and Versioning – A set of commands for concurrency, like version control built into HTTP.

Webhost – The individual or company that maintains your website files on their server(s).

WordPress – a popular type of website installation that runs on a LAMP or LEMP stack, which provides database support and a web server like Apache or Nginx. Extending WordPress with plugins can allow for advanced functionality.

WSL – Windows Subsystems for Linux – Fancy way to run Linux on a Windows machine.

XML – eXtensible Markup Language – widely used for the representation of arbitrary data structures like sitemaps.