Month: October 2015

Tech Terms: XHTML

Stands for “Extensible Hypertext Markup Language.” Yes, apparently “Extensible” starts with an “X.” XHTML is a spinoff of the hypertext markup language (HTML) used for creating Web pages. It is based on the HTML 4.0 syntax, but has been modified to follow the guidelines of XML, the Extensible Markup Language. Therefore, XHTML 1.0 is sometimes referred to as HTML 5.0.

Because XHTML is “extensible,” Web developers can create their own objects and tags for each Web page they build. This gives the developers more control over the appearance and organization of their Web pages. The only requirement is that the custom tags and attributes are defined in a document type definition (DTD), that is referenced by the XHTML page.

XHTML pages must also conform to a more strict syntax than regular HTML pages. While Web browsers are rather lenient and forgiving of HTML syntax, XHTML pages must have perfect syntax. This means no missing quotes or incorrect capitalization in the markup language. While the strict syntax requires more meticulous Web page creation, it also ensures Web pages will appear more uniform across different browser platforms.

Source: http://techterms.com/definition/xhtml

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Tech Terms: EUP

Stands for “Enterprise Unified Process.” EUP is a software development methodology that helps companies create software in an structured and organized manner. It is an extension of the Rational Unified Process (RUP), adding two new development phases — Production and Retirement. Since the RUP includes four phases, the EUP consists of six phases:

Inception – The idea for the project is stated. The development team determines if the project is worth pursuing and what resources will be needed.

Elaboration – The project’s architecture and required resources are further evaluated. Developers consider possible applications of the software and costs associated with the development.

Construction – The project is developed and completed. The software is designed, written, and tested.

Transition – The software is released to the public. Final adjustments or updates are made based on feedback from end users.

Production – Software is kept useful and productive after being released to the public. Developers make sure the product continues to run on all supported systems and support staff provides assistance to users.

Retirement – The product is removed from production, often called “decommissioning.” It can either be replaced or simply no longer supported. The release of a new version of software often coincides with the retirement phase of an older version.

Source: http://techterms.com/definition/eup

Tech Terms: RUP

Stands for “Rational Unified Process.” RUP is a software development process from Rational, a division of IBM. It divides the development process into four distinct phases that each involve business modeling, analysis and design, implementation, testing, and deployment. The four phases are:

Inception – The idea for the project is stated. The development team determines if the project is worth pursuing and what resources will be needed.

Elaboration – The project’s architecture and required resources are further evaluated. Developers consider possible applications of the software and costs associated with the development. 

Construction – The project is developed and completed. The software is designed, written, and tested.

Transition – The software is released to the public. Final adjustments or updates are made based on feedback from end users.

The RUP development methodology provides a structured way for companies to envision create software programs. Since it provides a specific plan for each step of the development process, it helps prevent resources from being wasted and reduces unexpected development costs.
Source: http://techterms.com/definition/rup

Tech Terms: String

A string data type used in programming, such as an integer and floating point unit, but is used to represent text rather than numbers. It is comprised of a set of characters that can also contain spaces and numbers. For example, the word “hamburger” and the phrase “I ate 3 hamburgers” are both strings. Even “12345” could be considered a string, if specified correctly. Typically, programmers must enclose strings in quotation marks for the data to recognized as a string and not a number or variable name.

For example, in the comparison:

if (Option1 == Option2) then …

Option1 and Option2 may be variables containing integers, strings, or other data. If the values are the same, the test returns a value of true, otherwise the result is false. In the comparison:

if (“Option1” == “Option2”) then …

Option1 and Option2 are being treated as strings. Therefore the test is comparing the words “Option1” and “Option2,” which would return false. The length of a string is often determined by using a null character.

Source: http://techterms.com/definition/string

Tech Terms: Null Character

A null character is a character with all its bits set to zero. Therefore, it has a numeric value of zero and can be used to represent the end of a string of characters, such as a word or phrase. This helps programmers determine the length of strings. In practical applications, such as database and spreadsheet programs, null characters are used as fillers for spaces.

Source: http://techterms.com/definition/nullcharacter

Tech Terms: Null

When a variable has no value, it considered to be null. Having a null value is different than having a value of 0, since 0 is an actual value. However, when used in a boolean test, both null and zero result in a FALSE value. Programmers often use boolean tests to determine whether a variable has been given a value or not.

Source: http://techterms.com/definition/null

Tech Terms: Hexadecimal 

Hexadecimal is a base-16 number system. It is a different method of representing numbers than the base-10 system we use in every day practice. In base-10, we count in multiples of 10 before adding another digit. For example, “8 – 9 – 10 – 11 – 12…” and “98 – 99 – 100 – 101 – 102…” Notice how a new digit is added when the number 10 is reached, and another digit is added to represent 100 (10×10). In base-16, or the hexadecimal number system, each digit can have sixteen values instead of ten. The values of a hexadecimal digit can be:

0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, A, B, C, D, E, F

Therefore, the number 12 (in the common base-10 format) would be represented as “C” in hexadecimal notation. The number 24 would be 18 (16+8). 100 is 64 in hexadecimal (16×6 + 4) and 1000 is 3E8 (256×3 + 16×14 + 8).

While computers process numbers using the base-2, or binary system, it is often more efficient to visually represent the numbers in hexadecimal format. This is because it only takes one hexadecimal digit to represent four binary digits. Since there are eight binary digits in a byte, only two hexadecimal digits are needed to represent one byte.

Source: http://techterms.com/definition/hexadecimal

Tech Terms: Nybble

A nybble, sometimes spelled “nibble,” is a set of four bits. Since there are eight bits in a byte, a nybble is half of one byte. While it may take the average person several nibbles to equal one bite of a cookie, in the computer world, two nybbles always equal one byte.

The four bits in a nibble allow it to have 16 possible values, which is the same as one hexadecimal digit. Therefore, a nybble is sometimes referred to as a “hex digit.” In data communications, nybbles are sometimes called “quadbits,” because of the four bits that make up each nybble.

Source: http://techterms.com/definition/nybble

Tech Terms: Peripherals 

A peripheral is any external device that provides input and output for the computer. For example, a keyboard and mouse are input peripherals, while a monitor and printer are output peripherals. Computer peripherals, or peripheral devices, are sometimes called “I/O devices” because they provide input and output for the computer. Some peripherals, such as external hard drives, provide both input and output for the computer.

Source: http://techterms.com/definition/peripheral

Tech Terms: End User

A person that a software program or hardware device is designed for. The term is based on the idea that the “end goal” of a software or hardware product is to be useful to the consumer. The end user can be contrasted with the developers or programmers of the product. End users are also in a separate group from the installers or administrators of the product.

To simplify, the end user is the person who uses the software or hardware after it has been fully developed, marketed, and installed. It is also the person who keeps calling the “IT guy” with questions about why the product isn’t working correctly. Generally, the terms “user” and “end user” mean the same thing.

Source: http://techterms.com/definition/enduser