Technology Dictionary – Computer Lingo Reference

The following list of technology definitions pertains to the terminology used within my website and therefore is not all-encompassing. For greater detail on the term, search my site for an article that contains it.

Acronym, Term or PhraseDefinition or Intended Meaning
adwareMalicious software that places advertisements on computers through hijacking, popups or other means.
backdoorA hidden function in a program or computer, allowing access without the computer user's knowledge or authorization.
BIOSBasic Input Output System. Standard set of instructions/programs for computer system startup, to allow accessing storage and loading operations.
coreThe processing paths within modern CPU chips. Because these paths are running in parallel within the CPU, each are often counted as a CPU.
CPUCentral Processor Unit or Central Processing Unit. The primary chip(s) in a computer system which performs instructions and calculations.
crawlerAlso known as a spider. A program that automatically follows links on a web-site or document to generate indices of the data or obtain data. Commonly used by search engines.
CRCCyclic Redundancy Check. A mathematical process of verifying data transmission accuracy.
dialerOriginally using modems to deliver their payload, today's dialers take advantage of the victims broadband internet connection to deliver its payload elsewhere.
downloaderSometimes used in conjunction with Trojan, this program gains access to a system and then downloads other content for installation on the system.
GPUGraphics Processor Unit or Graphics Processing Unit. The primary chip(s) which render and present graphics for presentation to the user interface.
GUIGraphical User Interface. Environment using images, text and shapes to interact with the user.
HAHigh Availability. General term for redundant functionality to improve the availability of platforms in the event of failures.
hijackmalicious software that redirects browser traffic to other sites than intended by the computer user. Can also be a software that allows unauthorized remote control of a computer.
HTTPHyperText Markup Language. Simple programming language used by web-sites and similar documents to provide textual and graphical elements.
hyper-threadingA processing technology that splits a CPU core into two virtual cores. This allows the core to perform two tasks simultaneously.
IGNIn Game Name. Usually a fictional name create by a game player, instead of using their real name.
keyloggerOften paired with spyware, this software tracks keyboard and sometimes mouse movement.
malwareShortened version of malicious software. Includes virus, spyware, ransomware, among other harmful intending programs.
metaGeneral data, such as keywords, author, dates and other properties beyond the main data of a file, database or other content.
NVRAMNon-Volatile Random Access Memory. This memory style retains its content when not powered.
PINGPacket InterNet Groper. Tool for testing basic IP connectivity.
RAMRandom Access Memory.
ransomwareMalicious software with an encrypting payload, demanding financial compensation for the key to unlock encrypted contents.
RJ-11Registered Jack number 11, containing four conductor connections, typically used in security systems and residential telephone.
RJ-45Registered Jack number 45, containing eight conductor connections, typically used to network cables and commercial telephone.
ROMRead Only Memory. Typically holds permanently stored programs.
rootkitMalicious software that loads as part or prior to the operating system.
SEOSearch Engine Optimization. Propagated meta data to assist crawlers with site and document indexing.
socketThe term for the connection point of a CPU into a circuit board. Used to identify individual physical (or virtual) processors, regardless of core count.
spywareA program written to track internet and computer use with the intent of reporting information to its author or other party.
SSLSecure Sockets Layer. An open standard for encrypted communications.
TLSTransport Layer Security. An open standard for encrypted communications.
trojanSoftware posing to provide a purpose other than the hidden purpose, including virus payload or providing backdoor access.
vCPUVirtual CPU. Used in virtualized environments and often combines sockets and cores. I.e. 2 CPU virtual sockets, each with 2 virtual cores, equals 4 vCPU.
virusPrograms written to spread automatically and typically cause destruction to data.
VRAMVolatile Random Access Memory. This memory style loses its content when not powered.
wormA self-propagating program that methodically spreads through a computer, network or e-mail environment.
GbEGigabit Ethernet. Network technology transmitting Ethernet frames at rates of gigabits per second. Often preceded by a number representing the quantity. (in example, 10 GbE is ten gigabits Ethernet.)