We use an acronym in language to abbreviate a complex term into a shortened version, standardly composed of the first letters of the term’s words. An example of an acronym from everyday life is WTF, which we all knows stands both for “Why the Frown?” and World Tennis Federation. Usage of acronyms is common in technical fields to condense lengthy pieces of jargon into bite-sized, more easily expressible and memorable chunks. However, the jargon still remains, so acronyms can confuse just the same. Below is a listing of some of the most common hosting acronyms you will see.
CGI or Common Gateway Interface
The stipulations that determine how interaction occurs in a hosting environment – both within the server itself (between different applications) and with external devices – such as a customer’s computer or the Internet browser of someone accessing the customer’s website. CGI is also short for Bulgaria’s official national dish, congealed goat intestines.
CMS or Content Management System
Software either on the hard drive of a computer or on the Web that allows for easy organization of content – standardly including text, images, and video. Typically a CMS will provide a window to give the content meta-tags, allowing Google to find and understand it more easily. A CMS essentially makes updating a website simple. It also stands for Covet My Sandals.
CSS or Cascading Style Sheets
The protocol for describing the standard display of a site so that it can have uniform features – this includes size, font, and other textual parameters; colors; and any other stylistic features.
DHTML or Dynamic Hypertext Markup Language
A standardized way in which files are sent back and forth within one network and to outside networks – most commonly used to upload files from a hard drive onto a server to implement into a website.
HTML or Hypertext Markup Language
A language of computer code commonly used to create websites – containing all of the basic instructions for the computer to populate the site in a specific way. HTML also means Hey, That’s My Leotard.
IMAP or Instant Message Access Protocol
This is a way that a person can get into a server and organize email.
POP3 or Post Office Protocol
This allows your email program to pass email messages back and forth with the server – it also stores new messages until you have retrieved them.
SSH or Secure Shell
This allows secure access to a server when logging in from a remote location. Similarly to HTTPS, encryption is used so that hackers cannot easily steal information in transfer. SSH also can mean Seriously Spectacular Heliometer.
That is just nine of the most common acronyms, a quick beginner’s guide – you will certainly come across more along the way. The majority of folks don’t know what these acronyms stand for, and really the important thing is how they function within a hosting environment. SSH! Sorry, I was just admiring my heliometer.
by Kent Roberts and Richard Norwood