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Computer Jargon

When can a chip not be eaten;  when does a  bug not bite and  when can  something crash and you can't feel a thing? 

When it is in a computer.

You have got this far, so obviously you have some computer ability, but ever come across a term you're not quite sure of? Here are just a few definitions but anyone wishing to add some more just contact us on and we will add them. 

These are a few of the most basic terms and only the very tip of a huge iceberg.




Words, pictures, web sites etc. that have been marked in order to enable immediate access from within a list in your browser.


An error in hardware or software that causes it to malfunction or crash.


Computer Disc Read Only Memory


Abbreviation of microchip. A small piece of semiconductor material (usually silicon) soldered onto printed circuit boards, used to carry electronic circuits


Stops working suddenly.


Structured set of data/information held within the computer.


What is on the screen after booting up.


Data storage medium e.g. floppy disk, hard disk.


Electronic mail. Messages sent between computers.

FILE TRANSFER Mr. Tim Howe informs me this is accessing information from other computers via networks.


A portable computer.

MIME Multipurpose Internet Mail Extensions.  Standard for the transfer of binary email attachments.


Device used to convert date from analogue to digital and back again e.g. between a computer and telephone line.

In the UK we have a shampoo advert in which they say "and now for the scientific bit".  They then proceed to explain in scientific terms why their product is so good for your hair.  Well, here's my "scientific bit", kindly supplied by Pete Crilly -

The term "modem" is an abbreviation for MODulator/DEModulator, and is a device that converts a digital signal (from the computer) into an analogue signal (audio in this case), which is sent through the telephone wires.   At the 'other end' another modem receives the analogue signal, converting it back into a digital signal and back into the computer.


A device used to move the cursor on the screen.


An application combining text, graphics, motion video and sound.


Several computers linked together by cables, radio waves or telephone lines.


Connected to a computer or network.


Personal computer.


Random Access Memory


Read Only Memory. Information that cannot be altered.

SEARCH ENGINE Once again Mr. Tim Howe advises this is a piece of developed software to interrogate the Internet to locate and list Internet sites from a pre-selected search argument.


Programmes and other operating information used by the computer.


Accessing information from other computers via networks etc.

I am advised by Mr. Tim Howe of Lensframe Logic Limited that "Surfing" is in fact the act of interrogating and exploring the Internet via a search engine.


Software used to gain access to the world wide web e.g. Internet Explorer and Netscape Navigator.

More computer and printer terminology which you may find useful.






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