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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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  • greedy algorithm - A greedy algorithm is a mathematical process that looks for simple, easy-to-implement solutions to complex, multi-step problems by deciding which next step will provide the most obvious benefit.
  • Gregorian calendar - The Gregorian calendar is the calendar in current use in the Western world, both as the civil and Christian ecclesiastical calendar.
  • grid computing - Grid computing uses small, distributed resources from servers and PCs to solve big problems.
  • GUI (graphical user interface) - A GUI (usually pronounced "GOO-ee") is a graphical (rather than purely textual) user interface to a computer.
  • gyroscope - A gyroscope is a device with a spinning disc or wheel mechanism that harnesses the principle of conservation of angular momentum: the tendency for the spin of a system to remain constant unless subjected to external torque.
  • hangup (or hang) - A hangup, also called a hang, is a condition that sometimes occurs when computer programs conflict or do not run properly.
  • haptics - Haptics (pronounced HAP-tiks) is the science of applying touch (tactile) sensation and control to interaction with computer applications.
  • hard copy (printout) - A hard copy (or "hardcopy") is a printed copy of information from a computer.
  • hard drive shredder - A hard drive shredder is a mechanical device that physically destroys old hard drives in such a way that the data they contain cannot be recovered.
  • hard error - A hard error is an issue in RAM that results from a permanent physical flaw in the module caused by a hardware failure or defect.
  • hard reset (factory reset; master reset) - A hard reset, also known as a factory reset or master reset, is the restoration of a device, such as a smartphone or tablet, to its state when it left the factory.
  • header - In information technology, a header is, in general, something that goes in front of something else and is usually repeated as a standard part of the units of something else.
  • heuristic - As an adjective, heuristic (pronounced hyu-RIS-tik and from the Greek "heuriskein" meaning "to discover") pertains to the process of gaining knowledge or some desired result by intelligent guesswork rather than by following some preestablished formula.
  • hexadecimal - Hexadecimal describes a base-16 number system.
  • hibernation - Hibernation is a mode in which a computer is turned off but saves its state to resume when it is turned on again.
  • hiccup - In information technology, hiccup is an informal term for a non-recurring problem of indeterminate cause that usually does not cause a significant disruption of work or activity.
  • hierarchy - A hierarchy is an organizational structure in which items are ranked according to levels of importance.
  • high-performance computing (HPC) - High-performance computing (HPC) is the use of parallel processing for running advanced application programs efficiently, reliably and quickly.
  • histogram - A histogram is a display of statistical information that uses rectangles to show the frequency of data items in successive numerical intervals of equal size.
  • holographic print - A holographic print is a rendition of a hologram on a flat surface, producing 3-D (three-dimensional) effects when viewed.
  • holographic storage (holostorage) - Holographic storage is computer storage that uses laser beams to store computer-generated data in three dimensions.
  • home server - A home server is a computer that functions as a server in a client-server home network.
  • host (in computing) - A host (also known as "network host") is a computer or other device that communicates with other hosts on a network.
  • htm - htm is sometimes used as a short form of the file name suffix for an HTML file.
  • human factors (ergonomics) - In industry, human factors (also known as ergonomics) is the study of how humans behave physically and psychologically in relation to particular environments, products, or services.
  • humanware - Humanware is hardware and software that emphasizes user capability and empowerment and the design of the user interface.
  • hybrid application (hybrid app) - A hybrid application (hybrid app) is one that combines elements of both native and Web applications.
  • hyperspace - Hyperspace is a term that describes the total number of individual locations and all of their interconnections in a hypertext environment.
  • hypervisor - A hypervisor is a function that abstracts -- isolates -- operating systems (OSes) and applications from the underlying computer hardware.
  • hypothesis - A hypothesis (plural: hypotheses) is a statement that may be tested and proven to be either true or false.
  • hysteresis - Hysteresis is the tendency for a system to change or react based on a trend of how it has already transformed leading up to a specific point in time.
  • ICT (information and communications technology, or technologies) - ICT, or information and communications technology (or technologies), is the infrastructure and components that enable modern computing.
  • ICT4D (Information and Communications Technologies for Development) - ICT4D (Information and Communications Technologies for Development) is an initiative aimed at bridging the digital divide (the disparity between technological "have" and "have not" geographic locations or demographic groups) and aiding economic development by ensuring equitable access to up-to-date communications technologies.
  • identity management (ID management) - Identity management (ID management) is the organizational process for ensuring that individuals have the appropriate access to technology resources.
  • IFrame (Inline Frame) - The IFrame HTML element is often used to insert content from another source, such as an advertisement, into a Web page.
  • image compression - Image compression is minimizing the size in bytes of a graphics file without degrading the quality of the image to an unacceptable level.
  • IMHO (in my humble opinion) - Like FYI (for your information), IMHO (in my humble opinion) is an abbreviation for a phrase sometimes used in online chatting and e-mail.
  • implementation - Implementation is the execution of any idea, model, or method; in IT, it refers to the process of setting up new software or hardware after a purchase is made.
  • increment - An increment is a small, unspecified, nonzero change in the value of a quantity.
  • inertia - Inertia is a property of matter that causes it to resist changes in velocity (speed and/or direction).
  • infinite sequence - An infinite sequence is a list or string of discrete objects, usually numbers, that can be paired off one-to-one with the set of positive integers {1, 2, 3,.
  • information - Information is stimuli that has meaning in some context for its receiver.
  • information technology (IT) - Information technology (IT) is the use of any computers, storage, networking and other physical devices, infrastructure and processes to create, process, store, secure and exchange all forms of electronic data.
  • input/output (I/O) - I/O (input/output), pronounced "eye-oh," describes any operation, program, or device that transfers data to or from a computer.
  • instruction - An instruction is an order given to a computer processor by a computer program.
  • instruction set - An instruction set is a group of commands for a CPU in machine language.
  • integer - An integer (pronounced IN-tuh-jer) is a whole number (not a fractional number) that can be positive, negative, or zero.
  • integer overflow - Integer overflow is the result of trying to place into computer memory an integer (whole number) that is too large for the integer data type in a given system.
  • integration - Integration is the act of bringing together smaller components into a single system that functions as one.
  • Intel 8086 - The Intel 8086 was Intel’s first x86 processor.
  • intelligent device - An intelligent device is any type of equipment, instrument, or machine that has its own computing capability.
  • intelligent system - An intelligent system is a machine with an embedded, Internet-connected computer that has the capacity to gather and analyze data and communicate with other systems.
  • interactivity - In computers, interactivity is the dialog that occurs between a human being (or possibly another live creature) and a computer program.
  • interface - As a noun, an interface is either:A user interface, consisting of the set of dials, knobs, operating system commands, graphical display formats, and other devices provided by a computer or a program to allow the user to communicate and use the computer or program.
  • interlaced GIF - An interlaced GIF (Graphics Interchange Format) is a GIF image that seems to arrive on your display like an image coming through a slowly-opening Venetian blind.
  • internationalization (I18N) - Internationalization (sometimes shortened to "I18N, meaning "I - eighteen letters -N") is the process of planning and implementing products and services so that they can easily be adapted to specific local languages and cultures, a process called localization.
  • Internet problems - Here are:Three rules-of-thumb for dealing with Internet problemsA table showing the most common codes and messages you're likely to see on your Web browser (HTTP), when accessing Usenet, using e-mail, or using the FTP protocol to upload or download files Three Rules-of-Thumb for Dealing with Internet ProblemsIf you get a message saying the domain name server (DNS) can't find your page and you're sure you've typed it in correctly or clicked on a valid link, try it again - TWO more times! (Sometimes packets don't get there!)If you get a "Not found" message, the page may be temporarily missing because of miscoding at the target site.
  • interoperability - Interoperability (pronounced IHN-tuhr-AHP-uhr-uh-BIHL-ih-tee) is the ability of different systems, devices, applications or products to connect and communicate in a coordinated way, without effort from the end user.
  • interrupt latency - Interrupt latency, also called interrupt response time, is the length of time that it takes for a computer interrupt to be acted on after it has been generated.
  • intersection symbol - The intersection symbol denotes the intersection of two sets.
  • IRQ (interrupt request) - An IRQ (interrupt request) value is an assigned location where the computer can expect a particular device to interrupt it when the device sends the computer signals about its operation.
  • irrational number - An irrational number is a real number that cannot be reduced to any ratio between an integer p and a natural number q.
  • IS (information system or information services) - An information system (IS) is the collection of technical and human resources that provide the storage, computing, distribution, and communication for the information required by all or some part of an enterprise.
  • iSCSI switch (Internet Small Computer System Interface switch) - An iSCSI switch is an appliance that processes and channels data between an iSCSI initiator and target on a storage device.
  • ISRS (information storage and retrieval system) - An information storage and retrieval system (ISRS) is a network with a built-in user interface that facilitates the creation, searching, and modification of stored data.
  • ISV (independent software vendor) - An ISV (independent software vendor) makes and sells software products that run on one or more computer hardware or operating system (OS) platforms.
  • iterative development - Iterative development is a way of breaking down the software development of a large application into smaller chunks.
  • JBoss - JBoss is a division of Red Hat that provides support for the JBoss open source application server program and related middleware services marketed under the JBoss Enterprise Middleware brand.
  • job - In certain computer operating systems, a job is the unit of work that a computer operator gives to the operating system.
  • John von Neumann - John von Neumann was the scientist who conceived a fundamental idea that serves all modern computers - that a computer's program and the data that it processes do not have to be fed into the computer while it is working, but can be kept in the computer's memory - a notion generally referred to as the stored-program computer.
  • K-12 - K-12, a term used in education and educational technology in the United States, Canada, and possibly other countries, is a short form for the publicly-supported school grades prior to college.
  • kelvin (K) - The kelvin (abbreviation K), less commonly called the degree Kelvin (symbol, o K), is the Standard International (SI) unit of thermodynamic temperature.
  • kilobit - In data communications, a kilobit is a thousand (103) bits.
  • kilogram (kg) - The kilogram (abbreviation, kg) is the Standard International (SI) System of Units unit of mass.
  • kinetic energy - Kinetic energy is the energy of motion, observable as the movement of an object, particle, or set of particles.
  • kiosk - A kiosk (pronounced KEE-ahsk ) is a small, free-standing physical structure that displays information or provides a service.
  • knowledge - In information technology, knowledge is, to an enterprise or an individual, the possession of information or the ability to quickly locate it.
  • Kryder's Law - Kryder's Law describes the rate at which former Seagate CTO Mark Kryder predicted disk drive density would grow.
  • L1 and L2 - L1 and L2 are levels of cache memory in a computer.
  • lambda (general definition) - Lambda, the 11th letter of the Greek alphabet, is used as a symbol in optical fiber networking, in mathematics and in computer programming.
  • landscape - In printing from a computer, landscape refers to a mode in which content is printed for reading on the longer length of the sheet of paper.
  • laser - A laser is a coherent and focused beam of photons; coherent, in this context, means that it is all one wavelength, unlike ordinary light which showers on us in many wavelengths.
  • laser diode (injection laser or diode laser) - A laser diode, also known as an injection laser or diode laser, is a semiconductor device that produces coherent radiation (in which the waves are all at the same frequency and phase) in the visible or infrared (IR) spectrum when current passes through it.
  • latent data (ambient data) - Latent data, also known as ambient data, is the information in computer storage that is not referenced in file allocation tables and is generally not viewable through the operating system (OS) or standard applications.
  • latitude and longitude - Latitude and longitude are angles that uniquely define points on a sphere.
  • layering - In computer programming, layering is the organization of programming into separate functional components that interact in some sequential and hierarchical way, with each layer usually having an interface only to the layer above it and the layer below it.
  • lean manufacturing (lean production) - Lean manufacturing is a methodology that focuses on minimizing waste within manufacturing systems while simultaneously maximizing productivity.
  • learning curve - Learning curves are a visualization of the difficulty estimated in learning a subject over a period of time as well as relative progress throughout the process of learning.
  • learning management system (LMS) - A learning management system (LMS) is a software application or web-based technology used to plan, implement and assess a specific learning process.
  • legacy application - A legacy application (legacy app) is a software program that is outdated or obsolete.
  • lemniscate - A lemniscate is a plane curve with a characteristic shape, consisting of two loops that meet at a central point as shown below.
  • leverage - In the physical sense, leverage is an assisted advantage.
  • library - In computing, a library is a collection of similar objects that are stored for occasional use - most frequently, programs in source code or object code form, data files, scripts, templates, fonts, and physical storage units such as tape cartridges.
  • lights-out management (LOM) - Lights-out management (LOM) is the ability for a system administrator to monitor and manage servers by remote control.
  • lightweight - In information technology, the term lightweight is sometimes applied to a program, protocol, device, or anything that is relatively simpler or faster or that has fewer parts than something else.
  • limit - In mathematics, a limit is a value toward which an expression converges as one or more variables approach certain values.
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    Twofish is a symmetric-key block cipher with a block size of 128 bits and variable-length key of size 128, 192 or 256 bits.

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    On the internet, a walled garden is an environment that controls the user's access to network-based content and services.

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  • storage medium (storage media)

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