dictionaryDefinitions are "plain English" definitions to the terms used in this website. If you wish more information, use the term to search the Internet or search the term at W3C. If we missed something that needs clarification, please let us know. Terms used in this text are linked to those definitions.

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Accessibility Compliance (WAI)/508 - Web Accessibility Initiative:
WAI is a developing standard to incorporate code in a website which will aid those with impairments to be able to browse the Internet. For example, writing the HTML in such a way that a visually impaired person using a text reader could take advantage of the information offered on your site. 508 is a more rigorous standard established for Federal Agencies and does not apply to non-Federal sectors. This reference is included because you will likely see WAI/508 coupled.
CMS - Content Management System
A content management system is a computer program - actually a number of programs - which take the various pieces of a web page: the template, the menu command structure, the content and the media files and dynamically combine them when the site's URL is entered into the browser's address bar. The result is the web page you are viewing right now. For the home page of this site, the CMS requests the content, the images from images file and the text from the database, and based on the commands of the "Home" button in the main menu uses the template to build the page and then applies the CSS files to create the look and feel of the page. This happens every time a different URL for a CMS based site is entered into the address bar or an internal link is clicked.
CSS - Cascading Style Sheet:Illustration of the CSS effect on an HTML layout
CSS is the style of a website. A web page consists of two parts: its structure and its style. CSS determines the a website's look, positions the elements of the HTML colors, font style, spacing and much more. The image on the right illustrates the result of CSS styling on the HTML illustration below. It is also a rough approximation of this site's layout.
Dynamic website:
A dynamic website page only exists when it is asked for by the browser. They exist only as a single page, the template, and content, which is located in the database. When you request a specific page by entering the address in your browser, for example, the process page of this site (www.websitesbyblue.com/process.html), the content management program builds the page "on the fly", adding the necessary content stored in the database into the template. The biggest single advantage of a dynamic website is that it is easy, read inexpensive, to add new content or change the template to another look or layout.
These are the small icons found just to the left of the website address or in the browser's tab. This image, FALR favicon image, is an example of a favicon developed for Farms and Land Realty.
Think of frames as a website within a website. Very much like a picture frame, a website frame is very similar. It can contain anything that can be linked to on the WWW. Frames have been out of favor for a while because they were used for unethical reasons. However, there are still very legitimate reasons for using them. An interactive Google Map locating a business and allowing for driving directions is an excellent example of a legitimate reason to use a frame. In this example, the Google Map is actually from the Google website; it is simple "framed" within the client's website.
htaccess is a core Joomla file that provides directions to the hosting server about different functions for the server and Joomla to follow. It is a simple text document.
HTML - Hypertext Markup Language:
One of the scripting languages used by browsers like Internet Explorer, Firefox and others to render, or build, the structure, or layout, of a web page. (Also, HTML 4.01, HTML 5 or XHTML.) Think of HTML like you'd think of the structure of a building. It's the framework on which the walls, ceilings and floors are built. HTML is the structure on which the styling is "hung". Styling can be thought of as the building's colors, trim and other parts which add style to a building.
Visual example of HTML layoutHTML is only linear, meaning it is strictly written and read from top to bottom. This is what a text reader used by a visually impaired visitor "sees" - and search engine spiders see. Think of the main elements of a web page: header, navigation, content. columns and footer, as boxes. For this site, the HTML is coded in this order: header, where the company logo and name go, navigation, this is the main site menu, content, which is all of the "important stuff" for that page goes, a right column, a left column and the footer, which generally includes copyright and address information goes, as shown in the illustration to the right. CSS is used to move these boxes around to create the style you see on the home page. This is considered a web standard.
A scripting language that works in your browser. It is used to add functionality to a website. For example, it can be used to swap images when you mouse over an image or to size a pop up window, like that used if you want to print one of our web pages using the print icon. Using the browser to help display a web page is called shared computing. The advantage is that it helps the page load and work faster than if the save action were done on the hosting server.

A small piece of JavaScript, <a href="javascript: history.go(-1);">, is used to link the definition titles back to the last page that you visited. If you arrived at this page by clicking on a defined term somewhere on the site, clicking on the definition term on this page will take you back to that page. JavaScript was used because the actions created by this code are only needed if the visitor clicks on a definition, in this case.
Joomla Content Management System
Joomla is one of the premiere open source content management systems available today. Open source meaning that it is a powerful program that dynamically manages the content of a website. Some organizations you may know that use Joomla are: Citibank, Harvard University, University of North Carolina, U.S. Army Corp of Engineers, and the Guggenheim Museum. Joomla won the 2011 Open Source Content Management System award.
Depending on our client's needs, BLUEwebs often recommends using a CMS for their website, because it is one of the most economical solutions available. First, the Joomla CMS is free. The other reason is that it affords owner's an easy way to update their websites. The third reason is that it is relatively change the entire look and feel of the site.
Joomla, an off-shoot of an earlier CMS, Mambo, launched in 2005. Beginning with version 1.0, the Joomla! development team has continued enhancing the core program adding additional security and enhancements. Currently (Jan 28, 2013), it has evolved into version 3.0. Continuing development is scheduled through version 4.5. Versions 1.0 and  2.5 were a major developments, creating some migration challenges from version 1.0 to 1.5 and from 1.5 to 2.5. Future developments are intended to bootstrap on previous versions. However, version 1.5 is a solid plaform. Sites running version 1.5 will continue to do so. BLUEwebs recommends that clients running version 1.5 consider and plan to convert to version 2.5 or greater as soon as it is convenient.
jQuery is another scripting language. It is like JavaScript but more compliant across browsers.
Note pad is a text editor available in all versions of Microsoft Windows. Notepad++ is a free, open source text editor program. Both allow for content to be written as pure text, without any hidden code being applied to the document. Notepad++ offers more options and languages than Windows' Notepad. Notepad++ may be downloaded from Notepad ++ Opens site in new window.
Open Source
Simply, open source means free. Joomla, the number one ranked CMS in 2011, is an open source program, as are many of its extensions. An extension is an add-on program the extends the functionality of the core CMS. The "image slider" that displays some of BLUEwebs' client sites on the home page is an example of an extension.
Another scripting language, primarily used in open source (read: free) programs. It is used to create the dynamic elements of a website. For example, a Joomla uses it to build its web pages, interact with the database, form data storage, and so forth. It executes on the hosting server (computer) and is "invisible" to the visitor.

PHP is used to update the copyright date on this site. This code snippet, , is "interpreted" before the site is delivered to your browser; it insures that the copyright is always the current year.
QR Code
QR Code, which stands for Quick Response, is similar to the bar code scanned at a retail checkout. The difference is that a QR Code image can be coded to contain information about a website, event, contact information, driving directions or other details. They can be read by almost any Internet capable Smart Phone or similar device and have become more common in print advertising to directBLUEwebs QR Code for the website individuals to websites.

The image to the right is an example of a QR Code. If scanned it would take you to the home page of this site and was developed for BLUEwebs business card.
SEO - Search Engine Optimization:
SEO is the process of optimizing a website so that it will be more visible and better ranked by the search engines. There are two uses of this term: for the website design and by "SEO" companies. Building a website for SEO purposes isn't much more than including relevant content and following best practices and web standards. Relevant content, that's your job; best practices and web standards, that's BLUEwebs job. Tying the two together is our job.
Currently the two most important measures applied by search engines to rank websites is relevant content and new content. Think relevant to your visitors. Think about the times you've done a search only to go to a page and have no idea why it showed up in the search results? Those listings don't remain highly ranked for long. New content means just that. Sites with "fresh" content regularly added will rank higher than a site that hasn't added anything new in a while.
What relevance means is that all the pieces-parts of a website point to the same end. For example, a website with the URL of www.besthomesinamerica.com that featured fishing gear and uses keywords referencing recreation vehicles would have a very low ranking. On the other hand, if www.besthomesinamerica.com featured homes around the nation, information about why they are listed, products included in them, keywords related to words in the content, and added a new home a week, etc. would likely have a high ranking.
"SEO" companies are companies that specialize in providing extra expertise and programs which can analyze the market, statistics, and other variables to improve the possibility of a higher search engine ranking.
Beware of any company that guarantees they can secure a top ranking - and keep you there. Search engines use over 200 variables in their algorithms to rank pages.
Standards Compliant:
Standards Compliant has two meanings: one for web browsers like Firefox or Internet Explorer and one for web designers/developers. A standards compliant browser is one where its programming has been written to recognize the web standards developed by the W3C. For "standards compliant" web developers, it means that developers write their code to those standards. The result is that pages will render similarly across browsers. Writing code to web standards is a critical SEO consideration.
Static website:
Each page of the website exists as a unique item. If a static website has 20 pages, there are 20 documents representing each page. Imagine the challenge of changing the template for a static site.
URL - Uniform Resource Locator:
This is a website address (outlined in the image). It is often referred to as a Domain Name. address-barThere is a difference, though, which may help it you are speaking with a "techie". The URL is "http://www.somedomainname.com" or dot net or whatever suffix is used. The domain name is the part you own, "somedomainname.com".
W3C - World Wide Web Consortium:
It is an organization set up to establish standards for Internet websites. Their goal is to provide the standards so that a website will render similarly across different browsers and display media, i.e. personal computers, handheld devices, projectors, text readers, etc.
Web Standards
Web standards are a set of guidelines written by the W3C to guide browser and website developers. During the "Browser Wars" in the 1990's it was the Wild West with every browser rendering web pages in whatever way they chose. Needless to say this presented some interesting challenges - and websites - and for some rather convoluted coding (think slow). Even today there can be subtle differences between standards compliant browsers that must be coded for. Firefox, Google Chrome, Apple Safari and Opera are considered to be standards compliant. Microsoft has continued to "go its on way" with Internet Explorer, but is gradually incorporating W3C standards into its newer versions. All browsers listed are currently free to download.
There other free browser. BLUEwebs only tests a site in the ones mentioned above. And for Internet Explorer (IE), we currently only test and code for IE7, IE8 and IE9.
WWW - World Wide Web:
All the web pages you can view on your computer.
XAMPP is an open source tool for website developers to build and test websites on their personal computers. It is a Linux based system which creates a local server, using MySQL, PHP and Perl languages. It is available to download for free at Apache Friends... Opens page in new window. It comes in 3 "flavors", one of which (XAMPPLITE) can be run on a thumb drive.
XHTML - Extensible Hypertext Markup Language:
An enhanced and more restrictive version of HTML. Used to render the structure of a web page in a browser. No longer considered to be the primary language for websites. While many of the restrictions implemented in XHTML are still recommended, HTML5 is the language currently supported by W3C.