Here are some commonly used computer/web expressions that you might see on your travels.


This refers to how easy it is for everyone to use your website, including people who are visually impaired or have other disabilities. It also means that your website works on mobile devices and smartphones.


The white bar towards the top of your computer screen. It will normally have something typed in it that starts with “http://” This is where you type in the address of a website that you want to visit.


When you visit a website, you are seeing it on a browser. Without the browser what you see would be lots of code.  The browser, a piece of software,  decodes it for you. So when you are reading websites like the BBC news page, it looks “normal”

Types of browser that you may use are: Microsoft Internet Explorer or Google Chrome


WordPress is an example of a content management system.  It is a piece of web software that you use to add, edit and manage your website.

It means that non-technical users can make changes to their websites using the piece of software and all the hardwork and coding is being done behind the scenes.


A small piece of information that most websites store on your computer when you visit them. You will often see a message that pops up telling you that the site uses cookies and do you agree to that.

Cookies can be quite useful. It means the website loads quickly when you next visit because some of the data contained in the website  is already saved on your computer.

They also remember who you are so they might log you in automatically or if you buy something have already filled in the address to send it to.

Cookies are collecting information about you like how often you visit the site, when you last visted, the site you came from, what you do when your visit their site.

They can use this data to analyse how many people use their site, for how long and which pages you have visited. This gives them lots of data and helps them with marketing.

So cookies enable companies to build a users online profile, rather like a supermarket clubcard, it is collecting information about you, what your interests are, what adverts you click, what products you buy.

There are 1st party cookies and 3rd party cookies. 1st party cookies are the cookies placed on your computer by the organisation’s website you are looking at. So for example the BBC website places cookies on your computer and will show you the weather in your home town for example.

Third party cookies can be somewhat more worrying. These are usually advertising companies that have placed an advert or an image on the site you are visiting. They can track you and the websites you visit. Therefore if you read an article about swimming you will be shown an advert about swimming as you browse round the web.

Cookies present privacy concerns, in particular 3rd party cookies. 3rd party cookies can be annoying as they follow you round the web and keep data on what you do. You may want to consider how you manage the cookies that are placed on your computer.

Here are some simple instructions on how you might manage cookies on your device.  Have a look at this article on how to manage cookies on an ipad using safari



The domain name system (DNS) is a way to give an address for your unique space on the internet. It means that the website address is understandable and easy to spell (hopefully) rather than a set of numbers and dots. It’s almost as if it is a nickname for the IP address but is not the same as the URL (see below for IP address and URL definitions)

Let’s have a look at some examples:

Let’s look at the different domains in these websites

The different domain levels  are separated by dots.

HTML: Hyper Text Markup Language

This is the base language that s used for creating websites. Common uses of the term are, “html coding” and “html website”. A website created in pure html is also referred to as a static website. In other words, it does not interact with the visitor other than in the most basic ways. It stores no data and can not return data other than what is consistently on the page itself. Emails that use different fonts, colours, borders, backgrounds and graphics are also generally coded in html, with the alternative being plain text.


HyperText Transfer Protocol. This is a method used to transfer information on the internet and normally precedes the “description” of the actual resource being accessed and transferred. For example, web sites and web pages are one type of resource, identified by their domain name (


Similar to HTTP, HTTPS stands for HyperText Transfer Protocol over SSL (Secure Socket Layer) or, alternately, HyperText Transfer Protocol Secure. Like HTTP, it”s a set of rules for transferring hypertext requests between browsers and servers, but this time it”s done over a secure, encrypted connection.


A hyperlink is a link from one web page to another, either on the same site or another one. Generally these are text or images, and are highlighted in some way (text is often underlined or put in a different colour or font weight). The inclusion of hyperlinks are the “hyper” part of “hypertext.”


Hypertext is any computer-based text that includes hyperlinks. Hypertext can also include presentation devices like tables or images, in addition to plain text and links.


The Internet is a vast ‘interconnection of computer networks’.  It is comprised of millions of computing devices that trade volumes of information.  Desktop computers, mainframes, GPS units, cell phones, car alarms, video game consoles, and even soda pop machines are connected to the Net.

The Internet started in the late 1960’s as an American military project, and has since evolved into a massive public spiderweb. No single organization owns or controls the Internet.  The Net has grown into a spectacular mishmash of non-profit, private sector, government, and entrepreneurial broadcasters.

The World Wide Web, or ‘Web’ for short, is the most popular portion of the Internet.  The Web is viewed through web browser software.


A string of four numbers separated by fullstops (such as used to represent a computer on the Internet.


Internet Service Provider. A company that provides an Internet connection.


An internet marketing term that refers to the main topics or subjects of your web pages in relation to how people would phrase them when searching for your products or services on the internet. For example, your topic may be “Quantifiable Analysis of the Strategic Business Model” but the average person searching for your exact information may simply search for “planning business strategies”. Your key phrases are at the core of any website marketing strategy and needs to relate to your target market’s thinking rather than your own.


A pre-recorded audio program that is made available for download (manually or automatically) so people can listen to them on personal computers or mobile devices.


A format for information syndication, enabling the publishing of data which can then be reused in other contexts. RSS sources are often called feeds, meaning that new information is produced and published regularly and can be obtained from these feeds. RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication.


Stands for “Search Engine Optimisation” and very simply refers to the practice of tweaking website coding and content to achieve the highest possible search engine ranking. SEO practitioners are people who specialise in this (or claim to).


A server is a computer that is used to house websites and provide a physical storage area for websites and emails. Without a server, your website would not be viewable to the world. Servers are normally provided by hosting companies who keep the servers in special premises, under special conditions and with permanent connections to the internet.


A tag is a set of markup characters that are used around an element to indicate where it starts and ends . Tags can also include HTML or other code to specify how that element should look or behave on the page.

URL Uniform Resource Locator 

The URL allows all resources on the internet to be found in a standard manner, in other words this is how you write a website address so that we can go to the website. And every website will stick to this method when they publish on the internet. It is a website address that has all the pertinent information for finding the exact location attached to it.

The URL for this website is: But the URL for this particular page is


Standards are specifications recommended by the World Wide Web Consortium for standardizing website design. The main purpose of web standards is to make it easier for both designers and those who create web browsers to make sites that will appear consistent across platforms, although browsers such as IE – Internet Explorer are slow to add the latest standards for website design.