Glossary - Definitions You Can Use

We don't try to drown you in technical talk. We want to make sure every part of your job is exactly the way you want it. Bookmark this helpful glossary to get definitions for terms that may appear in our proposals or our project documentation.

You will also see the definition for these words or phrases display throughout our website wherever the words or phrases are used in context.

# |  A - C |  D - K |  K - R |  S - Z
Wireless Access Point A wireless LAN transceiver that can connect a wired LAN to one or many wireless devices. Access points can also bridge to each other.
Screened twisted-pair (ScTP) A balanced twisted-pair cable surrounded by metallic braid, foil (screen) or both and bound in a single cable sheath.
Shielded twisted-pair (SSTP) A cable surrounded by a metallic braid, foil or both and bound in a single plastic sheath containing balanced twisted-pair conductors that are individually shielded.
SONET (Synchronous Optical Network) An optical interface standard that allows different digital signals to be transported using a base transmission rate of 51.84 megabits per second OC-1 (Optical Carrier) STS-1 (Synchronous Transport Signal). Higher rates are direct multiples of the basic OC-1 building block.
Signal-to-Noise Ratio (S/N Ratio) Signal-to-Noise Ratio (S/N Ratio) The ratio of the signal power to the noise power at a point in a system (usually expressed in decibels).
Spectrum The range of electromagnetic radio frequencies used in the transmission of voice, data and television.
Switch A device that can be controlled to interconnect two circuits. In the context of Frame or LAN switching, this refers to a device that filters, forwards and floods frames based on the frame destination address. The switch learns the addresses associated with each switch port and builds tables based on this information to be used for the switching decision. Some switches are high speed implementations of bridges where switching decisions are made by computer chips, usually an Application Specific Integrated Circuit (ASIC).
T-1 Circuit A digital circuit that uses the DS-1 signaling format to transmit information over the telephone network at 1.544 megabits per second. Can carry up to 24 uncompressed voice channels.
Telecommunications As defined in the Telecommunications Act of 1996, transmission between or among points specified by the user, of information of the user's choosing, without change in the form or content of the information as sent and received. Any transmission, emission, or reception of signs, signals, writings, images, and sounds or intelligence by wire, radio, optical, or other electromagnetic systems.
Throughput A measure of the overall efficiency, quality and performance of a communications link and its software/protocols.
Token Ring A local area network architecture that connects stations by using a token (special data packet) passing access method to allow a token to be passed from node to node on the ring.
Traffic Messages sent and received over a communications channel.
Trunk A communications path connecting two switching systems in a network, used to establish an end-to-end connection
Trunk Group A set of trunks that are traffic engineered as a unit in order to establish connections between switching systems in which all of the communications paths are interchangeable.
Twisted Pair (TP) Cable consisting of two 18 to 24 AWG (American Wire Gauge) solid copper strands twisted around each other. The twisting provides a measure of protection from electromagnetic and radio-frequency interference.
Unicast Address An address that specifies a single network device.
Unshielded Twisted Pair (UTP) Four-pair wire medium used in the transmission of many different telecommunications protocols such as Ethernet, 10BaseT, and CDDI.
Virtual Private Network Virtual private networks are secured private network connections, built on top of publicly-accessible infrastructure, such as the Internet or the public telephone network.
Voice over Internet Protocol An industry transmission standard which supports voice communications over packet networks, such as the Internet.
Wavelength The length of one complete wave of an alternating or vibrating phenomenon, generally measured from crest to crest or from trough to trough of successive waves.
Web Site A collection of files on the World Wide Web that are arranged under a common address that allows for retrieval via hypertext-based software.
Webcasting The use of the Web as a one-to-many medium to broadcast events or hold collaborative conferences among remote participants.
Wide Area Network (WAN) A network that links multiple locations together. A WAN encompasses a much larger geographic area than that of a Local Area Network (LAN).
Wireless Refers to mobile or cellular telecommunications, for which part of the communications pathway includes transmission through radio links to land-based networks. Wireless communications products and services include cellular phones and pagers.
World Wide Web or WWW or Web An area of the Internet that allows for graphical information retrieval via hypertext-based software, such as a web browser like Netscape Navigator or Microsoft Internet Explorer, in a point-and-click environment.
X.25 Protocol An international protocol that defines the interface between the customer's equipment and a public packet network Data Circuit Terminating Equipment for public packet switched networks; a reference to the section of the published international recommendations established by the International Telephone and Telegraph Consultative Committee (CCITT) where the particular type of protocol generally monitors electrical interface, error checking, etc.
X.75 Protocol An international standard developed by the Consultative Committee (CCITT) for International Telephone and Telegraph that provides the foundation for interconnection of individual packet switched Networks.
X.400 Protocol International standard for a store-and-forward message handling system in a multi-vendor environment.
X3T9.5 Protocol The number assigned to the Task Group of the Accredited Standards Committee for their internal, working documents describing the Fiber Distributed Data Interface.
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