Web Development Terms

If it’s your first time into the Web development or the E-Business world, you may become overwhelmed by all of the acronyms and buzz words. XHTML, Plugins, Nginx, GPL, Widgets… The list goes on and is still growing, as many products are being created, new technologies are being developed, concepts and terms are being crafted.

Knowing what all these letters mean can make the difference between a good choice for your web system or a poor one. With so many options for choosing the correct services for your project, it is vital to understand what each company or service provider offers you and how these technologies are related.

We can usually find extensive glossary lists over the internet and searching for what an acronym such as SRGS stands for is a matter of seconds using the most popular search engines. However, linking them together can quickly become an uneasy task because one term is often used in another one’s definition.

In this article we grouped some of these key terms by their role so that related terms are explained together. This way you can have the general idea of the purpose of the technology and learn what you should look for when selecting a web management company, or just what to search if you want to get deeper knowledge about these concepts.


These are just a few examples of technical recommendations from the World Wide Web Consortium (the main international standards organization for the Web). They are Web technologies used to build web page structures and design, determine how data is encoded, represented, manipulated, transmitted and accessed.

Ajax, Flash, JavaScript, ASP, PHP, Perl, ColdFusion

These are programming and/or scripting languages used on the client-side (for instance your web browser) or the server-side (the system that hosts the website) for creating dynamic content and complex behaviors that make our experience in the web more interactive, secure, and usable.

ADS, DB2, Firebird, H2, MySQL, Microsoft SQL Server, PostgreSQL

These are databases and computer programs used to create, maintain, and access databases. A database is an integrated collection of data records, files and other objects. User information, applications configurations, and all sorts of data are usually stored in databases.

Apache, IIS, Nginx, GWS

These are examples of web servers. A web server is software that can be accessed from the Internet and uses programming languages, databases, and other types of infrastructure for hosting websites and applications. They are usually offered by web hosting providers that offer adequate hardware, bandwidth, uptime, and maintenance for a website at a monthly cost.

AGPL, BSD, CDDL, GPL, Creative Commons

These are free software licenses. Their purpose is to grant users the freedom to run, copy, distribute, study, change and improve software – which would otherwise be prohibited by copyright law. Each one of them grants different levels of legal rights to use, modify or redistribute a product.

Drupal, Joomla!, Mambo, WordPress, XOOPS

These are content management systems (CMS). A CMS is software for facilitating the publishing, editing, and maintenance of content on a website from a central page. It changes and updates content, rather than the structural or graphic design of a web site.

Plugins, Widgets, Themes, Templates

These are features used in CMS websites to easily change their graphical interface, extend their functionality, and perform a specific task in a self-contained area. These useful tools are created by web developers to facilitate the creation of websites and to enrich user experience when using them.

Do you have any glossary and web terms links you find useful? If so let us know or share them with us. 🙂

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