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Terms related to computer fundamentals, including computer hardware definitions and words and phrases about software, operating systems, peripherals and troubleshooting.

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  • compaction - In a data center, compaction is the reduction or consolidation of hardware to make better use of physical floor space.
  • complementary metal-oxide semiconductor (CMOS) - A complementary metal-oxide semiconductor (CMOS) is the semiconductor technology used in most of today's integrated circuits, also known as chips or microchips.
  • complex system - A complex system is an arrangement of a great number of related but various elements with intricate interconnections.
  • compound - In chemistry, a compound is a substance made up of two or more different chemical elements that are combined in a fixed ratio.
  • computer - A computer is a device that accepts information (in the form of digitalized data) and manipulates it for some result based on a program, software, or sequence of instructions on how the data is to be processed.
  • computer forensics (cyber forensics) - Computer forensics is the application of investigation and analysis techniques to gather and preserve evidence from a particular computing device in a way that is suitable for presentation in a court of law.
  • computer hardware - Computer hardware is a collective term used to describe any of the physical components of an analog or digital computer.
  • computer instruction - A computer instruction is an order given to a computer processor by a computer program.
  • computer operator - A computer operator is the person responsible for monitoring and controlling computer systems especially mainframe computer systems in a company or organization.
  • computer room air conditioning (CRAC) unit - A computer room air conditioning (CRAC) unit is a device that monitors and maintains the temperature, air distribution and humidity in a data center, network or server room.
  • computer-based training (CBT) - Computer-based training (CBT) is any course of instruction whose primary means of delivery is a computer.
  • configuration - Generally, a configuration is the arrangement - or the process of making the arrangement - of the parts that make up a whole.
  • connection - In telecommunication and computing in general, a connection is the successful completion of necessary arrangements so that two or more parties (for example, people or programs) can communicate at a long distance.
  • connectionless - In telecommunications, connectionless describes communication between two network endpoints in which a message can be sent from one endpoint to another without prior arrangement.
  • container (disambiguation) - This page explains how the term container is used in software development, storage, data center management and mobile device management.
  • content aggregator - A content aggregator is an individual, organization or tool that gathers web content and applications from different online sources for reuse.
  • content filtering - Content filtering is a process involving the use of software or hardware to screen and/or restrict access to objectionable email, webpages, executables and other suspicious items.
  • content-addressed storage (CAS) - Content-addressed storage (CAS) -- also called content-addressable storage -- is a method for storing fixed content as objects and providing fast access to that content.
  • continuation symbol - The continuation symbol is used to indicate extension of a sequence or set, or to imply the existence of intermediate elements in a sequence or set.
  • continuous data protection - Continuous data protection (CDP), also known as continuous backup, is a backup and recovery storage system in which all the data in an enterprise is backed up whenever any change is made.
  • controller - A controller, in a computing context, is a hardware device or a software program that manages or directs the flow of data between two entities.
  • Coordinated Universal Time (UTC, GMT, CUT) - Coordinated Universal Time (abbreviated as UTC, and therefore often spelled out as Universal Time Coordinated and sometimes as Universal Coordinated Time) is the standard time common to every place in the world.
  • copyleft - Copyleft is the idea and the specific stipulation when distributing software that the user will be able to copy it freely, examine and modify the source code, and redistribute the software to others (free or priced) as long as the redistributed software is also passed along with the copyleft stipulation.
  • corollary - A corollary is a statement that follows naturally from some other statement that has either been proven or is generally accepted as true.
  • COTS, MOTS, GOTS, and NOTS - COTS, MOTS, GOTS, and NOTS are abbreviations that describe pre-packaged software or hardware purchase alternatives.
  • courseware - Courseware is educational material intended as kits for teachers or trainers or as tutorials for students, usually packaged for use with a computer.
  • cryptographic nonce - A nonce is a random or semi-random number that is generated for a specific use.
  • cryptography - Cryptography is a method of protecting information and communications through the use of codes, so that only those for whom the information is intended can read and process it.
  • cumulative trauma disorder (CTD) - In information technology, cumulative trauma disorder (CTD) refers to any of several physical problems that can result from improper or excessive use of a computer display or terminal.
  • cursor - A cursor is the position indicator on a computer display screen where a user can enter text.
  • customer data integration (CDI) - Customer data integration (CDI) is the process of defining, consolidating and managing customer information across an organization's business units and systems to achieve a "single version of the truth" for customer data.
  • customer lifecycle - In customer relationship management (CRM), customer lifecycle is a term used to describe the progression of steps a customer goes through when considering, purchasing, using and maintaining loyalty to a product or service.
  • cyber - Cyber is a prefix used to describe a person, thing, or idea as part of the computer and information age.
  • cyberextortion - Cyberextortion is a crime involving an attack or threat of an attack coupled with a demand for money or some other response in return for stopping or remediating the attack.
  • cyberpicketing - Cyberpicketing is the use of the Internet to protest a corporation or other institution's wages, work conditions, products, environmental policy, or other issues.
  • cyberstalking - Cyberstalking is a crime in which someone harasses or stalks a victim using electronic or digital means, such as social media, email, instant messaging (IM) or messages posted to a discussion group or forum.
  • data - In computing, data is information that has been translated into a form that is efficient for movement or processing.
  • data center - A data center -- also known as a datacenter or data centre -- is a facility composed of networked computers, storage systems and computing infrastructure that organizations use to organize, process, store and disseminate large amounts of data.
  • data classification - Data classification is the process of organizing data into categories that make it is easy to retrieve, sort and store for future use.
  • data compression - Data compression is a reduction in the number of bits needed to represent data.
  • data in motion - Data in motion, also referred to as data in transit or data in flight, is a process in which digital information is transported between locations either within or between computer systems.
  • data point - A data point is a discrete unit of information.
  • data restore - Data restore is the process of copying backup data from secondary storage and restoring it to its original location or a new location.
  • data set - A data set is a collection of data that contains individual data units organized (formatted) in a specific way and accessed by one or more specific access methods based on the data set organization and data structure.
  • data streaming - Data streaming is the continuous transfer of data at a steady, high-speed rate.
  • data structures - A data structure is a specialized format for organizing, processing, retrieving and storing data.
  • data transfer rate (DTR) - Data transfer rate (DTR) is the amount of digital data that is moved from one place to another in a given time.
  • Daylight Saving Time (DST) - Daylight Saving Time (DST) is the practice of turning the clock ahead as warmer weather approaches and back as it becomes colder again.
  • deadlock - A deadlock is a situation in which two computer programs sharing the same resource are effectively preventing each other from accessing the resource, resulting in both programs ceasing to function.
  • decimal - Decimal is a term that describes the base-10 number system, probably the most commonly used number system.
  • decoupled architecture - In general, a decoupled architecture is a framework for complex work that allows components to remain completely autonomous and unaware of each other.
  • default - In computer technology, a default (noun, pronounced dee-FAWLT) is a predesigned value or setting that is used by a computer program when a value or setting is not specified by the program user.
  • defragmentation - Defragmentation is the process of locating the noncontiguous fragments of data into which a computer file may be divided as it is stored on a hard disk, and rearranging the fragments and restoring them into fewer fragments or into the whole file.
  • deploy - To deploy (from the French deployer) is "to spread out or arrange strategically.
  • deprecated - In information technology (IT), deprecation means that although something is available or allowed, it is not recommended or that -- in the case where something must be used -- to say it is deprecated means that its failings are recognized.
  • desktop - A desktop is a computer display area that represents the kinds of objects one might find on top of a physical desk, including documents, phone books, telephones, reference sources, writing and drawing tools, and project folders.
  • digit - A digit is an element of a set that, taken as a whole, comprises a system of numeration.
  • digital accessibility - Digital accessibility is design of technology products and environments to help people with various disabilities not be impeded or otherwise unable to partake in use of the service, product or function.
  • digital audio broadcasting (DAB) - .
  • digital cash (eCash) - Digital cash is a system of purchasing cash credits in relatively small amounts, storing the credits in your computer, and then spending them when making electronic purchases over the Internet.
  • digital library - A digital library is a collection of documents in organized electronic form, available on the Internet or on CD-ROM (compact-disk read-only memory) disks.
  • digital modeling and fabrication - Digital modeling and fabrication is a design and production process that marries 3-D modeling or computing-aided design (CAD) software with additive and subtractive manufacturing.
  • Direct Memory Access (DMA) - Direct Memory Access (DMA) is a capability provided by some computer bus architectures that allows data to be sent directly from an attached device (such as a disk drive) to the memory on the computer's motherboard.
  • direct-attached storage (DAS) - Direct-attached storage (DAS) is a type of storage that is attached directly to a computer without going through a network.
  • disaster recovery plan (DRP) - A disaster recovery plan (DRP) is a documented, structured approach that describes how an organization can quickly resume work after an unplanned incident.
  • disruptive technology - A disruptive technology is one that displaces an established technology and shakes up the industry or a ground-breaking product that creates a completely new industry.
  • distributed - Computing is said to be "distributed" when the computer programming and data that computers work on are spread out over more than one computer, usually over a network.
  • document - A document is a form of information that might be useful to a user or set of users.
  • Document Type Definition (DTD) - A Document Type Definition (DTD) is a specific document defining and constraining definition or set of statements that follow the rules of the Standard Generalized Markup Language (SGML) or of the Extensible Markup Language (XML), a subset of SGML.
  • DOS (disk operating system) - A DOS, or disk operating system, is an operating system that runs from a disk drive.
  • dot product (scalar product) - The dot product, also called scalar product, is a measure of how closely two vectors align with each other, in terms of the directions they point.
  • double factorial - The double factorial, symbolized by two exclamation marks (!!), is a quantity defined for all integers greater than or equal to -1.
  • double-slit experiment - The double-slit experiment is a nineteenth-century investigation into the properties of light that has since been found to demonstrate both the duality of photons and the concepts of superposition and quantum interference.
  • DRY principle - The DRY (don't repeat yourself) principle is a best practice in software development that recommends software engineers to do something once, and only once.
  • duty cycle - Duty cycle is the proportion of time during which a component, device, or system is operated.
  • dynamic and static - In general, dynamic means energetic, capable of action and/or change, or forceful, while static means stationary or fixed.
  • early adopter - An early adopter is a person who embraces new technology before most other people do.
  • Earth's mean orbital speed - Earth's mean orbital speed is the average speed at which the Earth revolves around the sun.
  • edu - edu is one of the top-level domain names that can be used when choosing a domain name.
  • electronic data processing (EDP) - Electronic data processing (EDP) refers to the gathering of data using electronic devices, such as computers, servers or calculators.
  • electronic discovery (e-discovery or ediscovery) - Electronic discovery -- also called e-discovery or ediscovery -- refers to any process of obtaining and exchanging evidence in a civil or criminal legal case.
  • email - Email (electronic mail) is the exchange of computer-stored messages from one user to one or more recipients via the internet.
  • embedded system - An embedded system is a combination of computer hardware and software designed for a specific function.
  • encoding and decoding - Encoding and decoding are used in many forms of communications, including computing, data communications, programming, digital electronics and human communications.
  • end user - In information technology, the term end user is used to distinguish the person for whom a hardware or software product is designed from the developers, installers, and servicers of the product.
  • ENIAC - ENIAC (Electronic Numerical Integrator And Computer) was the world’s first general-purpose computer.
  • enterprise architecture (EA) - An enterprise architecture (EA) is a conceptual blueprint that defines the structure and operation of an organization.
  • entity - In general, an entity (pronounced N-tih-tee) is an existing or real thing.
  • entrepreneur (entrepreneurship) - An entrepreneur is an individual who identifies a need in the marketplace and works to fulfill it.
  • event - An event, in a computing context, is an action or occurrence that can be identified by a program and has significance for system hardware or software.
  • event handler - In programming, an event handler is a callback routine that operates asynchronously once an event takes place.
  • executable - In computers, to execute a program is to run the program in the computer, and, by implication, to start it to run.
  • EXL Service (EXL Services) - EXL Service, also known as EXL Services (NASDAQ: EXLS), provides business process outsourcing services to global corporations.
  • exponential function - An exponential function is a mathematical function of the following form:f (x) = a xwhere x is a variable, and a is a constant called the base of the function.
  • extension - In computer operating systems, a file name extension is an optional addition to the file name in a suffix of the form ".
  • fabric - In information technology, fabric is a synonym for the words framework or platform.
  • factorial - The factorial, symbolized by an exclamation mark (!), is a quantity defined for all integers greater than or equal to 0.
  • falsifiability - Falsifiability is the capacity for some proposition, statement, theory or hypothesis to be proven wrong.
  • farad (F) - A farad (F) is the standard unit of capacitance in the International System of Units (SI).
  • fault-tolerant - Fault-tolerant technology is a capability of a computer system, electronic system or network to deliver uninterrupted service, despite one or more of its components failing.
SearchNetworking
  • throughput

    Throughput is a measure of how many units of information a system can process in a given amount of time.

  • traffic shaping

    Traffic shaping, also known as packet shaping, is a congestion management method that regulates network data transfer by delaying...

  • open networking

    Open networking describes a network that uses open standards and commodity hardware.

SearchSecurity
  • buffer underflow

    A buffer underflow, also known as a buffer underrun or a buffer underwrite, is when the buffer -- the temporary holding space ...

  • single sign-on (SSO)

    Single sign-on (SSO) is a session and user authentication service that permits a user to use one set of login credentials -- for ...

  • pen testing (penetration testing)

    A penetration test, also called a pen test or ethical hacking, is a cybersecurity technique that organizations use to identify, ...

SearchCIO
  • benchmark

    A benchmark is a standard or point of reference people can use to measure something else.

  • spatial computing

    Spatial computing broadly characterizes the processes and tools used to capture, process and interact with 3D data.

  • organizational goals

    Organizational goals are strategic objectives that a company's management establishes to outline expected outcomes and guide ...

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  • talent acquisition

    Talent acquisition is the strategic process employers use to analyze their long-term talent needs in the context of business ...

  • employee retention

    Employee retention is the organizational goal of keeping productive and talented workers and reducing turnover by fostering a ...

  • hybrid work model

    A hybrid work model is a workforce structure that includes employees who work remotely and those who work on site, in a company's...

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