Resources

Tech Terms: CRM

In CRM (customer relationship management), CRM software is a category of software that covers a broad set of applications designed to help businesses manage many of the following business processes:

  • customer data
  • customer interaction
  • access business information
  • automate sales
  • track leads
  • contracts
  • marketing
  • customer support
  • clients and contacts
  • support vendor / partner relationships
  • employees
  • knowledge and training
  • assets or resources

While CRM software is most commonly used to manage a business-customer relationship, CRM software systems are also used in the same way to manage business contacts, employees, clients, contract wins and sales leads. Typically, CRM software is used in the enterprise, however many products scale and can be used in a business of any size.

Today’s CRM Software
CRM software is designed to help businesses meet the overall goals of customer relationship management (see Webopedia’s CRM definition). Today’s CRM software is highly scalable and customizable, allowing businesses to gain actionable customer insights with a back-end analytical engine, view business opportunities with predictive analytics, streamline operations and personalize customer service based on the customer’s known history and prior interactions with your business.

CRM Software Installations
Customer relationship management software is offered in a number of installations including on-premises (where the software resides inside the corporate firewall and is managed by IT operations), or as web-based (cloud applications) where the software is hosted by a CRM provider and accessed by the client business online via the provider’s secure services.

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Tech Terms: High Level Language

A high-level language (HLL) is a programming language such as C, FORTRAN, or Pascal that enables a programmer to write programs that are more or less independent of a particular type of computer. Such languages are considered high-level because they are closer to human languages and further from machine languages.
In contrast, assembly languages are considered low-level because they are very close to machine languages.

Advantages of High-Level Languages
The main advantage of high-level languages over low-level languages is that they are easier to read, write, and maintain. Ultimately, programs written in a high-level language must be translated into machine language by a compiler or interpreter.

The first high-level programming languages were designed in the 1950s. Now there are dozens of different languages, including Ada, Algol, BASIC, COBOL, C, C++, FORTRAN, LISP, Pascal, and Prolog.

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Tech Terms: IT

IT is short for Information Technology and is pronounced as separate letters. IT is the broad subject concerned with all aspects of managing and processing information, especially within a large organization or company. IT is generally not used in reference to personal or home computing and networking.

IT is More than Computers and Networks
While IT is often used to describe computers and computer networks, it actually includes all layers of all systems within an organization — from the physical hardware to the operating systems, applications, databases, storage, servers and more. Telecommunication technologies, including Internet and business phones are also part of an organization’s IT infrastructure.

IT Departments
Because computer systems are central to information management, computer departments within companies and universities are often called IT departments. Some companies refer to this department as IS (Information Services) or MIS (Management Information Services).

Information Technology Jobs
IT spans such a broad subject there are many careers associated with IT, starting with the information technology degree focusing on the branch of engineering that pertains to the use of computers to collect, store, and share and protect information.

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Tech Terms: Enterprise Application

An enterprise application is the phrase used to describe applications (or software) that a business would use to assist the organization in solving enterprise problems. When the word “enterprise” is combined with “application,” it usually refers to a software platform that is too large and too complex for individual or small business use.

Integration and Deployment
Enterprise applications are typically designed to interface or integrate with other enterprise applications used within the organization, and to be deployed across a variety of networks (Internet, Intranet and corporate networks) while meeting strict requirements for security and administration management.

Proprietary Enterprise Apps
Proprietary enterprise applications are usually designed and deployed in-house by a specialized IT development team within the organization. However, an enterprise may outsource some or all of the development of the application, and bring it back in-house for deployment.

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Tech Terms: URL

URL is the abbreviation of Uniform Resource Locator and is defined as the global address of documents and other resources on the World Wide Web. To visit this website, for example, you’ll go to the URL http://www.webopedia.com.
We all use URLs to visit webpages and other resources on the web. The URL is an address that sends users to a specific resource online, such as a webpage, video or other document or resource. When you search Google, for example, the search results will display the URL of the resources that match your search query. The title in search results is simply a hyperlink to the URL of the resource.

A URL is one type of Uniform Resource Identifier (URI); the generic term for all types of names and addresses that refer to objects on the World Wide Web.

What Are the Parts of a URL?
The first part of the URL is called a protocol identifier and it indicates what protocol to use, and the second part is called a resource name and it specifies the IP address or the domain name where the resource is located. The protocol identifier and the resource name are separated by a colon and two forward slashes.

URL
For example, the two URLs below point to two different files at the domain webopedia.com. The first specifies an executable file that should be fetched using the FTP protocol; the second specifies a webpage that should be fetched using the HTTP protocol:
ftp://www.webopedia.com/stuff.exe
http://www.webopedia.com/index.html

Web Address is a URL with HTTP/HTTPS
The term “web address” is a synonym for a URL that uses the HTTP or HTTPS protocol. The Uniform Resource Locator (URL) was developed by Tim Berners-Lee in 1994 and the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) URI working group. Today, the format of the URL has not changed. The URL format is specified in RFC 1738 Uniform Resource Locators (URL).

In Programming: The URL Class
Note that in object-oriented programming, such as Java, programs can use a class (a category of objects) called URL. You can create a URL object to represent the URL address. See Java Tutorials: Working with URLs in the Related Links section below for additional information on using the URL object in a Java program.

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Tech Terms: SSID

SSID is short for service set identifier. In layman’s terms, an SSID is the name for a Wi-Fi network.
People typically encounter an SSID most often when they are using a mobile device to connect to a wireless network. For example, if you take your laptop to the coffee shop and attempt to connect to the local Wi-Fi, your screen will display a list of SSIDs — the names of all the networks that are within range for your device. You’ll select the name of the local coffee shop network and enter the password (if necessary) to connect.

How to Change the Default Wireless Network Name (SSID) and Password
SSIDs can be up to 32 alphanumeric characters long. They are also case-sensitive; “HOME” is a different network than “home.”

Many router manufacturers set up their devices to use a generic name by default (often the make and model of the router). However, security experts recommend changing the default name and password. This makes it more difficult to hack into the network, and it also makes it less likely that two networks with the same SSID will be within range of each other.

Quick Tip: The SSID can be changed in the software configuration pages for your wireless modem. The modem manufacturer will provide a common IP address that you enter in the address bar of a Web browser to access settings, using a generic username and password. Once logged in, you can then change the network name (SSID) and password for your network. Alternatively, you can contact your ISP technical support team to walk you through the steps or have the network name and password changed for you

802.11 WLAN Standards
The IEEE 802.11 WLAN architecture standards specify that the SSID be attached to the header of packets sent over a wireless local-area network (WLAN). This helps to ensure that data is being transmitted to and from the correct network.
The SSID differentiates one WLAN from another, so all access points and all devices attempting to connect to a specific WLAN must use the same SSID to enable effective roaming. As part of the association process, a wireless network interface card (NIC) must have the same SSID as the access point or it will not be permitted to join the basic service set (BSS) — a component of the IEEE 802.11 WLAN architecture.

SSID Security
An SSID is necessary for a secure network, but on its own, it doesn’t do much to make a network more secure. An SSID can be sniffed in plain text from a packet and most access points broadcast the SSID multiple times per second within the body of each beacon frame. A hacker can easily use an 802.11 analysis tool to identify the SSID.
Some network administrators turn off SSID broadcasting in an attempt to “hide” a network, but experts say that this can actually make a WLAN more vulnerable to attack.

Using Multiple SSIDs
Users can assign more than one SSID to an access point. Using multiple SSIDs allows users to access different networks, each with different policies and functions, increasing the flexibility and efficiency of the network infrastructure. For example, a hotel owner may set up one network for guests and one network for employees. The two networks might use the same physical infrastructure, but they would have two different SSIDs, which would help prevent guests from being able to access sensitive information contained on the hotel servers.

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Tech Terms: WiFi Networking

Wi-Fi is the name of a popular wireless networking technology that uses radio waves to provide wireless high-speed Internet and network connections. A common misconception is that the term Wi-Fi is short for “wireless fidelity,” however this is not the case. Wi-Fi is simply a trademarked phrase that means IEEE 802.11x.

How Wi-Fi Networks Works
Wi-Fi networks have no physical wired connection between sender and receiver by using radio frequency (RF) technology — a frequency within the electromagnetic spectrum associated with radio wave propagation. When an RF current is supplied to an antenna, an electromagnetic field is created that then is able to propagate through space.

The cornerstone of any wireless network is an access point (AP). The primary job of an access point is to broadcast a wireless signal that computers can detect and “tune” into. In order to connect to an access point and join a wireless network, computers and devices must be equipped with wireless network adapters.

The Wi-Fi Alliance
The Wi-Fi Alliance, the organization that owns the Wi-Fi registered trademark term specifically defines Wi-Fi as any “wireless local area network (WLAN) products that are based on the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers’ (IEEE) 802.11 standards.”

Initially, Wi-Fi was used in place of only the 2.4GHz 802.11b standard, however the Wi-Fi Alliance has expanded the generic use of the Wi-Fi term to include any type of network or WLAN product based on any of the 802.11 standards, including 802.11b, 802.11a, dual-band and so on, in an attempt to stop confusion about wireless

LAN interoperability.
Wi-Fi Support in Applications and Devices
Wi-Fi is supported by many applications and devices including video game consoles, home networks, PDAs, mobile phones, major operating systems, and other types of consumer electronics. Any products that are tested and approved as “Wi-Fi Certified” (a registered trademark) by the Wi-Fi Alliance are certified as interoperable with each other, even if they are from different manufacturers. For example, a user with a Wi-Fi Certified product can use any brand of access point with any other brand of client hardware that also is also “Wi-Fi Certified”.

Products that pass this certification are required to carry an identifying seal on their packaging that states “Wi-Fi Certified” and indicates the radio frequency band used (2.5GHz for 802.11b, 802.11g, or 802.11n, and 5GHz for 802.11a).

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Tech Terms: Direct Message

In computer and Internet phrases there are multiple definitions for the DM abbreviation, including the following:

  1. On the Twitter Web site (a free social messaging tool), DM is short for direct message, and it is used to send a private tweet (Twitter update) to a person you are following. You can view DMs from the Messages tab of your Twitter profile. You can also choose to receive email notification of new messages.
  2. Short for deathmatch, it is a type of gameplay mode found in first-person-shooter games.

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Tech Terms: Warm Colors

The phrase warm color is used to describe any color that is vivid or bold in nature. Warm colors are those that tend to advance in space and can be overwhelming. Examples of warm colors include red, yellow and orange (think exciting fire and volcanoes). Contrast with cool colors.

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Tech Terms: Cool Colors

The phrase cool color is used to describe any color that is calm or soothing in nature. Cool colors are not overpowering and tend to recede in space. For this reason, cool colors typically make a space seem larger. Examples of cool colors include green, blue and violet (think calming blue waters). Some also use cool colors to describe more neutral white and greys.

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