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Web Design

Glossary of Terms


Web Accessibility is the inclusive practice of removing barriers for people with disabilities. Sites that are correctly designed, edited, and developed with web accessibility provide all users with equal access to the information and functionality of the website.

Address Bar

The address bar is normally a text box at the top of a browser. This box displays the address (url) of the website/page you are currently looking at. You can also copy/paste or type an address to be visited in the address bar. Many modern browsers now use the address bar for search functionality as well.


AJAX (Asynchronous JavaScript And XML) is a large set of website development techniques using a group of web technologies on the client side to create web applications. AJAX allows web applications to send and retrieve data from a server asynchronously (in the background) without actually interfering with the behavior of the existing page.

AJAX is not a single technology but a group of technologies working together. AJAX is also not some new technology, or different programming language, just existing technologies working together in new ways.

Anchor Text

The anchor text, link text, or link title is a clickable hyperlink. The words surrounded by this anchor can determine the ranking that page will receive by the major search engines. Not all links have anchor text as it may be obvious where the specific link may lead though context. Usually the major search engines analyze anchor text from hyperlinks from web pages.

Back End

The back end of a website is the part that is hidden from regular website visitors. The back end normally includes the applications, information infrastructure, and the Content Management System controlling the front end content of the website


A backlink for a resource is a link from an external source or website (referrer) to the web resource (referent). A web resource may be a website, page, or web directory (among others).

A backlink is like a reference comparable to a citation. The quantity, relevance, and quality of backlinks for a website or page are among many factors that the major search engines evaluate in order to estimate just how important the page is.


This refers to two separate entities... the amount of data (in total) you are allowed to have transferred through your web host during a given time period (usually within a month) before the site is charged with overage or the speed (rate) at which information can be transferred online through your ISP (Internet Service Provider).


Blogs (originally called weblogs) are usually websites published on the world wide web for informational purposes based on a specific niche or subject. Articles (or posts) are added to help educate the visitor on the subject at hand. Blogs are most often used for marketing purposes and have exploded throughout the world wide web since the mid-2000's.

Bounce Rate

A bounce rate determines the certain percentage a single session on a page of your website has no interaction once it is viewed.

Bounce rates are used in internet marketing to track visitors actions and find ways to keep the visitor on the site and interacting with your website content.


Breadcrumbs are used for navigation throughout many websites (mostly used in blogs) that show the pages/subpages that appeared before the page the visitor is currently viewing.


Browsers are pieces of software that allow you to view web pages or websites visually, the way the web designer/developer intended. Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Internet Explorer are the most commonly used browsers at this time.

Each browser displays the coding for the website a little differently. Hence why it is important for a web designer/developer to test the design in all browsers for user experience.

CMS (Content Management System)

Content management systems are a backend tool for managing a websites content that will then be displayed on the client side area once loaded.

The CMS (content management system) stores all the information in a database that is connected to the hosting server.

There are many content management systems to choose from with their own weaknesses and strengths. Joomla!, Wordpress, Mambo, and Drupal are some of the main CMS that are available today.

CSS (Cascading Style Sheets)

Cascading Style Sheets is a language used for the presentation of a website through programming markup. CSS is most often used to help visually style websites and web pages and user interfaces written in HTML or XHTML. The language can also be applied to XML documents and is applicable to rendering speech or on other media. Along with HTML and Javascript, Cascading Style Sheets is a technology used to help with the visual engagement of websites, user interfaces for applications, and user interfaces for mobile applications.

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Dynamic HTML, or HTML is a collection of technologies used freely together to create animated websites. Using a combination of a static markup language, a client-side scripting language (like Javascript), a presentation definition language, and the DOM (Document Object Module). DHTM was introduced by Microsoft with the release of IE (Internet Explorer) in 1997.


E-commerce (Electronic Commerce) is a way of selling online with transactions through banking institutions. It draws on technologies such as electronic funds transfer, mobile commerce, internet marketing, EDI (Electronic Data Interchange), as well as (and not limited to) automated data collection systems. Typical transactions made online include a plethora of items including but not limited to: digital content (like music and online books), clothing, and online services.


A Favicon (short for favorite Icon), is a file containing one or more small icons associated with a website or web page. The designer creates such an icon to upload to a website by several means. The graphical browsers (like Mozilla Firefox) will make display the icon (or image) at the top of the browser tab next to the website it came from. This is a great way to help market your brand.

GUI (Graphical User Interface)

The graphical user interface is a type of interface that allows users to interact with devices through graphical icons and visual indicators. GUI's were introduced because of the steep learning curve of command line interfaces (like DOS) which would require commands typed on a computer keyboard.

Graphical User Interfaces are used on many devices and programs including websites, media players, gaming devices, smartphones, and touchscreen displays.

HTML (Hyper Text Markup Language)

HTML (Hyper Text Markup Language) is a standard language for website design and applications. With CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) and other programming languages like Javascript, it forms a cornerstone for the World Wide Web. Modern web browsers receive HTML documents from a web server or local storage and render them into web pages for the visitor to view.

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Inline Style

Inline Styles are a snippet of CSS code added to the actual HTML document. The styles only affect the page (or tag) it is associated with and does not affect other styles site wide from an actual style sheet.

JSON (JavaScript Object Notation)

JSON is a text-based interchange format. It was designed for transmitting data between web servers and web applications.

It is often as an alternative to XML. In most cases the JSON representation of an object is more compact than the XML representation.

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Keywords are phrases that describe content. They can be used through metadata to describe data records, images, text documents, and Web pages. A user can tag pictures or text files with keywords that are relevant to the content on the page. By tagging content on your website you can help with search engine placement for those particular keywords.


LAMP is a model of web service stacks, named as an acronym of the names of the four open source components it connects: Linux (the operating system), Apache (HTTP Server), MYSQL (a relational database management system), and PHP (the programming language). The LAMP components are interchangeable and not limited to the original selection. LAMP is suitable for creating and programming dynamic websites and web applications.


Metadata is information that provides more detailed information about other data throughout the website. Three distinct types of metadata exist: descriptive metadata, structural metadata, and administrative metadata.


Web navigation refers to the navigating of a network of resources throughout the World Wide Web. The navigation is organized as hypertext or hypermedia. This is then displayed on what's known as a web browser.

Open Source

Open source refers to source code made available to the general public. Open source programs are generally free or very low cost and are developed by teams of people, sometimes comprised mostly of volunteers.

The philosophy of open source is to promote universal access via a free license. Open source gave hold with the rise of the internet.

One of the founding fathers of this amazing system was Richard Stallman, one of the most influential people to teach the philosophy behind the open source society.

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A Plug-In is a third party code that extends the capabilities of the CMS (Content Management System) a website is running on. Plug-ins are a way to extend the functionality of a websites use without having to edit the core coding of the website.Plug-ins may also refer to third-party software installed on computers as well that offer the same type of extended functionality.

QR Code (Quick Response Code)

A QR code is a type of barcode that contains a series of dots. It is usually scanned using a scanner or a smartphone scanner used with the built in camera. Once the code is scanned certain software on the device will convert the dots into a number string or a string of characters. In retrospect scanning the code on your phone might open up a web address through the phones browser.

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RSS (Rich Site Summary)

RSS (Rich Site Summary), commonly called 'Really Simple Syndication', is a web feed which allows your users to access updates to content throughout your website. The feed itself can allow users to keep track of many updates and changes to websites in a single news aggregator. The aggregator will automatically check with the websites RSS feed for new content.

Semantic Markup

Semantic markup is the use of HTML markup to reinforce the semantics of the information in web pages and web applications.

Semantic HTML is processed by traditional web browsers as well as by many other user agents. CSS is used to suggest its presentation to human users.

Recent HTML standards discourage the use of the element (i) in preference to a more accurate element like (em). This being said the stylesheet used should specify whether emphasis is denoted by an italic, bold, or underlying font.


Website templates are used in web development and design to allow designers and developers to allow automatic generation of custom websites and pages. This allows for the reuse of a site, while allowing dynamic elements to be defined based upon the parameters of the database request.

Templates can be present in CMS (Content Management Systems), web application frameworks, and HTML editors.

URL (Uniform Resource Locator)

A URL (Uniform Resource Locator) is a reference to a resource on the World Wide Web that specifies the location of the resource on a computer network allowing a mechanism to retrieve it. URLs occur most commonly to reference web pages, but are also used for FTP (File Transfer Protocol), Email, Database access, and a large list of other applications.

VPN (Virtual Private Network)

A VPN (Virtual Private Network) extends a private network through a public network. It enables for the client to send and receive the data across a shared or public network. All applications running across the VPN can then benefit from the functionality, security, and management of the VPN.

Web Standards

Web standards are pretty much the non-proprietary standards and technical specifications that define aspects of the World Wide Web. The term has been associated with the trend of endorsing good code and a set of standardized practices for building websites. It is also a philosophy of web design and development that includes the above methods.

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XHTML (Extensible Hypertext Markup Language)

XHTML (Extensible Hypertext Markup Language) is part of the XML family of programming languages. It extends the HTML language that Web pages and Web sites are formed from. XHTML documents are formed well and therefore may be parsed using standard XML.


YouTube is the largest video sharing service on the World Wide Web. Users are able to watch videos posted by others as well as upload their own.

YouTube started as an independent service in 2005 and was acquired by Google (the search engine giant) the year following. Videos posted to YouTube can be used to help promote products and services for online businesses.

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Zone File

Zone Files are stored on a name server through a hosting account providing information about one or more of the domains files. The files contain a list of DNS (Domain Name Server) records that map between domain names and IP addresses. The records in turn define the IP address of the domain name, allow for a reverse lookup through services like ICANN, and contain DNS as well as mail server information.

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In 2006 our founder and lead developer formed Flagstaff Web Architects to be one of the most innovative web design & development agencies in the area.

Although we have changed the name and expanded the business to reach throughout all of Arizona, Flagstaff is still at the heart of our business model and the owner still lives and breaths right here in this beautiful oasis.

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Arizona Web Architects Designing & Developing the Net With LOVE for Over 20 Years Office (928) 224-2889 Emergency (928) 814-9049
Arizona Web Architects. Designing & Developing the Net With LOVE for Over 20 Years.
Office Line (928) 224-2889 Emergency (928) 814-9049

Arizona Web Architects

Designing & Developing the Net With
LOVE for Over 20 Years

Office Line (928) 224-2889
Emergency Line (928) 814-9049

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