Tech Skills Glossary for Non-IT Professionals

— A —

ABAP — Programming Language — Advanced Business Application Programming. An object-oriented programming language, created by German company SAP, for developing applications for SAP’s system.

Access — Database — Software for creating and managing databases from Microsoft. Access is easier to use than many other database systems making it ideal for less-skilled users.

AIX — Operating System — A UNIX-like operating system produced by IBM.

AJAX — Programming Language — Asynchronous JavaScript and XML. A web development model that groups existing technologies together to create interactive web applications.

Apache Tomcat — Application Server — A specialized application server for Java code to execute.

Application Delivery — Networking Technology — A suite of technologies that provide application availability, load balancing, security and acceleration.

Application Server — Application Server — A server that hosts an application programming interface to expose business logic and business processes for use by third-party applications.

AS/400 — IBM Skill — A midrange server for small companies and departmental use in large firms. The system has recently been rebranded as the “IBM iSeries.”

ASP — Programming Language — Active Server Page. A web page that includes one or more scripts (small embedded programs) that are processed on a server before being sent to a user. A Microsoft product.

ASP.net — Programming Language — Faster than a standard ASP page, elements on an ASP. net web page act as objects and are run on a server. A Microsoft product.

— B —

Business Intelligence — Database — The systems and tools businesses use to collect, store and analyze corporate data and to understand market behavior.

— C —

C — Programming Language — A popular language that provides very fine control over the performance and size of a program, especially compared to other higher-level languages.

C++ — Programming Language — A superset of C that adds object-oriented features (a group of objects that act on each other, rather than a set of functions or instructions). Popular for graphical applications.

C# — Programming Language — (Pronounced “c-sharp”) A combination of C and C++, C# is an object-oriented language used on a .NET platform to develop web applications. A Microsoft product that resembles Java.

CAD — Graphics & Multimedia — Computer- Aided Design. A hardware and software combination that allows engineers and architects to design a variety of objects. Most CAD workstations run on Windows-based PCs, while some CAD systems run on hardware from a UNIX or Linux operating system.

Change Management — Process Management — A service management process that ensures standardized, orderly methods for changes to IT infrastructure.

CICS — IBM Skill — Customer Information Control System. A transaction manager that controls processes on IBM mainframes.

Cisco — Networking Technology — A leading manufacturer of products for networking including routers, switches, wireless and unified communications technologies.

CISP — Certification — Certified Information Systems Security Professional. An independent information security certification administered by the International Information Systems Security Certification Consortium.

Cloud Computing — Other Skill — A style of computing that uses a network of shared computing resources, “the cloud,” rather than having local servers or personal devices process the applications.

COBOL — Programming Language — Common Business Oriented Language. A popular language for business applications that run on large computers (mainframes). Though created in the late 1950s, it is still one of the most widely used languages.

Cognos — Database — An IBM company that makes software for business intelligence and performance management.

ColdFusion — Programming Language — A toolset including an application server and software language used to create dynamic web pages integrated with databases.

CRM — Enterprise Application — Customer Relationship Management. Encompasses the capabilities and technologies that support managing customer relationships, whether it is sales or service-related.

Crystal Reports — Database — A popular Windows-based report generation program. It can integrate data from multiple databases to create one report.

CS — Programming Language — Cascading Style Sheets. A mechanism used by web site developers to define how HTML web pages are displayed.

— D —

Data Deduplication — Storage — The process of deleting redundant data and storing only one copy of data while retaining the data index. Data Warehouse — Database — A collection of an organization’s electronically stored data.

DB2 — Database — The group of relational database management products from IBM.

DHCP — Networking Technology — Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol. A protocol used by devices on a network to dynamically assign IP addresses.

Disaster Recovery — Process Management — A plan for recovering a business’s electronic resources, including data records, in the event of a disaster.

DNS — Networking Technology — Domain Name System. An Internet process that converts domain names into IP addresses.

— E —

eDiscovery — Storage — Refers to any process in which electronic data is sought, located, secured and searched with the intent of using it as evidence in a civil or criminal legal case.

EMC Corporation — Storage — A leading provider of information infrastructure systems, software and services found in storage networks and large data centers.

Ethernet — Networking Technology — A widely used connection between a computer and a local area network (LAN).

ERP — Enterprise Application — Enterprise Resource Planning. A system that integrates all the data and processes of an organization into a single unified system.

ESX — Other Skill — An enterprise-class server virtualization platform offered by VMware, Inc.

ETL — Database — Extract Transform and Load. A process that combines three database functions into one tool to pull data from one database and load it on to another.

— F —

Fibre Channel — Storage — A network technology used for storage networking especially for mass storage that requires very high bandwidth.

Firewall — Networking Technology — A system that prevents unauthorized users from accessing a network. Communications entering or exiting the network pass through the firewall, which checks each communication and stops those that do not meet the security criteria.

Flash — Graphics & Multimedia — A software program from Adobe used to develop animation on the web.

Frame Relay — Networking Technology — A packet-switching protocol that makes transmission of digital information more efficient.

— G —

Gateway — Networking Technology — A node or processing location on a network that acts as a doorway to another network.

— H —

HP-UX — Operating System — Hewlett- Packard’s first, proprietary Unix operating system.

HTML — Programming Language — The language used to create web pages. It provides structure to text in a web document and enhances that text with interactive forms, images and other objects.

Hub/Switch — Networking Technology — A piece of hardware that links together segments of a local area network (LAN).

Hyper-V — Other Skill — Microsoft’s implementation of a virtual machine hypervisor, which allows the separating of a computer operating system from the underlying hardware resources.

— I —

IIS — Application Server — Internet Information Server. A set of Internet-based services for servers using Microsoft Windows.

Illustrator — Graphics & Multimedia — A drawing and illustration software program developed by Adobe Systems.

Informatica — Database — A leading provider of data integration software.

iSCSI — Storage — Internet SCSI. A protocol allowing organizations to link storage devices over a network and transfer data via IP networks.

iSeries — IBM Skill — A midrange server for small companies and departmental use in large firms. Previously known as “AS/400.”

ITIL — Process Management — Information Technology Infrastructure Library. A widely accepted set of best practices for IT service management.

— J —

Java/J2EE — Programming Language — An object-oriented language often used for creating small applications, called Java applets, which enhance the functionality of a web page. Similar to C++ but simpler.

JavaScript — Programming Language — Sharing many of the same features of Java, JavaScript can interact with other code to make a web page more dynamic by changing the page each time it is viewed.

JBoss — Application Server — An open source, Java based application server and development toolset available on multiple platforms.

JCL — Programming Language — Job Control Language. A scripting language used to instruct an IBM mainframe operating system to execute a job.

JDBC — Programming Language — Java Database Connectivity. A Java programming language that controls database access.

JDE — Enterprise Application — J.D. Edwards. A suite of enterprise resource planning (ERP) software produced by Oracle Corporation.

JSP — Programming Language — Java Server Pages. A Java technology developers use to dynamically integrate HTML, XML and other types of code to make the software more functional.

Juniper — Networking Technology — A leading manufacturer of products for networking including bridges, routers and switches.

— L —

LAN — Network — Local Area Network. A computer network that covers a small area like a home, office or close group of buildings.

Linux — Operating System — A UNIX-like operating system that is free and can be run on many platforms, including PCs and Macs.

Lotus Notes — Database — A sophisticated email and database application that allows users to develop and share communications as well as database-oriented programs.

— M —

MacOS — Operating System — The official name of the operating system for a Mac computer.

Mainframe — IBM Skill — A large computer system that stores bulk data capable of supporting a great number of users simultaneously.

Microsoft Office — Graphics & Multimedia — MS Office. A suite of general business software programs including Word, Excel and PowerPoint.

Microsoft Project — Special Skill — A program designed to assist project managers in developing plans, assigning tasks, tracking progress and managing budgets.

MPLS — Networking Technology — Multi Protocol Label Switching. A mechanism for using a shared IP network to securely carry traffic from many, possibly unrelated systems while allowing for differentiated handling to ensure quality of service to critical or timesensitive applications.

MySQL — Database — A free relational database management system that depends on SQL to process data in a database. See SQL and RDBMS entries.

— N —

NAS — Storage — Network-Attached Storage. A storage server dedicated to sharing on a network.

.NET — Programming Language — An umbrella term for a collection of Microsoft products that depend on the .NET framework, such as C# or Visual Basic.NET.

NetApp — Storage — Network Appliance, Inc. A data management and computer storage company that fostered the widespread use of network-attached storage.

Network Security — Other Skill — Policies and processes for monitoring a network and protecting it from unauthorized access.

NIC — Networking Technology — Network Interface Card. A card that allows a computer to connect to a local area network (LAN).

— O —

Object-Oriented — Programming Paradigm — The idea that a computer program should be made up of a group of objects that act on each other, rather than a set of functions or instructions.

Open Source — Other Skill — A program with source code that the general public can access and modify for free.

Oracle Application Server — Application Server — A suite of Oracle products used to develop, deploy and integrate applications.

Oracle DB — Database — Oracle Corporation is a major software company that is best known for developing database products.

— P —

PeopleSoft — Enterprise Application — A leading provider of human resource, customer relationship and performance management software.

Perl — Programming Language — A language designed for processing text. Similar to C and C++ but easier to learn and faster to code.

PHP — Programming Language — An opensource, embedded scripting language used to create dynamic web pages.

PL/SQL — Programming Language — Oracle Corporation’s proprietary server-based version of the SQL language.

PowerBuilder — Programming Language — A computer application development system featuring an integrated development environment that speeds the creation and deployment of applications.

Python — Programming Language — A general programming language that is open source and very portable.

— Q —

QA — Process Management — Quality Assurance. A systematic development process that ensures a project, product or service meets certain standards, avoids defects and satisfies customer requirements.

QoS — Networking Technology — Quality of Service. The ability for a network to control different applications, data flow or users in order to guarantee a specific performance level.

— R —

RDBMS — Database — Relational Database Management System. Stores data in a series of tables.

Red Hat — Other Skill — A leading company that sells and supports its own Linux distribution and other open source technologies.

Router — Networking Technology — A hardware device that acts as a junction for forwarding data between two or more networks.

RPG — Programming Language — Report Program Generator. An IBM programming language used to develop business applications. Widely used on AS/400 / iSeries systems.

Ruby/Ruby on Rails — Programming Language — An open source web application framework for Ruby, an object-oriented programming language. ROR is used to develop databasebacked web applications.

— S —

SaaS — Other Skill — Software as a Service. A delivery method where software is treated as a service accessed from an Internet host. The process saves companies money and reduces maintenance and support problems.

SAN — Storage — Storage Area Network. A network of shared storage devices that can be accessed by multiple computers.

SAP — Enterprise Application — A leading provider of comprehensive integrated business applications.

SAS — Enterprise Application — A software system for statistical analysis, reporting and data mining produced by SAS Institute.

Script — Technical Term — A small, simple program or bit of programming code typically used for repeated actions.

Security Clearance — Special Skill — A status granted by the U.S. government to individuals allowing them access to classified information.

Sharepoint — Other Skill — An integrated suite of Microsoft technologies used for content sharing, collaboration and document management.

Shell — Programming Language — The processor that accepts and executes the commands a user enters in a UNIX operating system. Other versions include: C-shell (csh), Tab C-shell (tcsh), Bourne shell (bash), Korn shell (ksh).

Siebel — Enterprise Application — A leading provider of customer relationship management software systems.

SIP — Other Skill — Session Initiation Protocol. A signaling protocol that can be used to integrate Internet Telephony services with email, Internet and chat.

SMTP — Networking Technology — Simple Mail Transfer Protocol. An Internet standard for sending email messages between Internet servers.

SOA — Other Skill — Service Oriented Architecture. An application architecture that integrates functions to perform various business processes.

SOAP — Programming Language — Simple Object Access Protocol. A protocol for exchanging XML-based messages over a computer network.

Solaris — Operating System — A UNIXlike operating system produced by Sun Microsystems.

SOX Compliance — Process Management — The Sarbanes-Oxley Act mandates specific processes to improve the accuracy of financial reporting by public companies. SOX compliance has IT implications including the rule that all electronic messages and resources are saved for at least five years.

SQL — Programming Language — Structured Query Language. SQL is used to retrieve data from a database.

SQL Server — Database — A database that can respond to queries from applications on PCs or workstations using the SQL language.

Sun Microsystems — Enterprise Service Provider — A multinational company that sells computers, software, IT systems and services, including the Solaris operating system.

SUSE — Operating System — A commercial version of Linux sold by Novell, Inc. Sybase — Database — Sybase generally refersto database management systems developed by the Sybase Corporation.

— T —

TCP/IP — Networking Technology — Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol. A suite of communication protocols used to exchange data over the Internet between two computer systems.

Telephony — Networking Technology — Sound translated into electrical signals, which are transmitted, and then converted back into sound. Often refers to computer hardware and software that function similar to telephone equipment.

TOAD — Database — Tools for Oracle Application Development. A set of tools that streamlines development and administration of applications, databases and business intelligence.

Tomcat — Application Server — An open source, Java-based application server that runs on multiple platforms.

TSO/ISPF — Other Skill — Time Sharing Option and Interactive System Productivity Facility. Two software environments that allow system functionality from creating and managing data sets to submitting jobs.

— U —

Ubuntu — Operating System — A free operating
system derived from Debian Linux.

UML — Programming Language — Unified Modeling Language. A standardized software engineering language used to specify and visualize software programs.

Unified Communications — Other Skill — A movement to simplify business communications by integrating a range of technologies and applications into one platform.

UNIX — Operating System — Developed by Bell Labs in the 1970s, UNIX is a small, flexible operating system that has many variations.

— V —

Virtualization — Other Skill — A technique to implement a complete simulation of a device — an operating system, server or network — dividing the resource into multiple execution environments.

Visual Basic — Programming Language — A widely used programming language, Visual Basic was one of the first to provide graphical programming, rather than using functions or instructions. A Microsoft product.

Visual Basic.NET — Programming Language — The next generation of Visual Basic that makes web applications easier to develop.

Visual C++ — Programming Language — An object-oriented language developed by Microsoft for C++ programmers.

VMware — Other Skill — A leading provider of virtualization software and services.

VoIP — Networking Technology — A technology that delivers voice communications over IP-based data networks rather than traditional circuit transmissions.

VPN — Network — Virtual Private Network. A private network that uses a public network (usually the Internet) to connect remote sites or users together.

— W —

WAN — Network — Wide Area Network. A geographically dispersed network.
WebLogic — Application Server — A suite of application server products offered by Oracle Corporation.

WebSphere — Platform — Brand of IBM products that can process a high volume of e-business transactions over the web.

Wi-Fi — Networking Technology — A common technology that uses radio signals for wireless networking. Wi-Fi is used in home networks, some mobile phones and other devices that need wireless networking.

WiMAX — Networking Technology — Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access. A telecommunications technology, that uses a range of transmission modes to send data wirelessly. Also called IEEE 802.16.

Windows OS — Operating System — The collection of operating systems by Microsoft for use on personal computers.

Wireless — Network — A network where no physical wired connection is required. A user may connect to the network via low-powered radio waves.

— X —

Xen — Other Skill — An open source virtual machine hypervisor, which allows the separating of a computer operating system from the underlying hardware resources.

XML — Programming Language — eXtensible Markup Language. A language that facilitates the sharing of data across different systems, particularly systems connected via networked systems.

XSL — Programming Language — eXtensible Style Language. A group of transforming languages used to describe how content and style should be separated when creating HTML or XML web pages.

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