ActionScript is the programming language used to animate Flash-based websites. Using ActionScript with Flash, the programmer can make objects move across the screen, incorporate video, play background music, and improve the user experience in a number of ways. For example, when a visitor slides the mouse pointer over a particular part of the screen, an animation may start, a sound effect can get triggered, a button could be made to light up, and so on.
ASP ("Active Server Pages") makes websites more personalized and dynamic. For example, a website using ASP could display the visitor's name, pending orders, and products or services that the visitor may like (based on their previous preferences). It could also be used to display a color scheme that the user had chosen previously, or to display current information such as time, weather, the "special deal of the day" on an e-commerce site, and more.
A blog is simply a "web log", an online journal created by an individual or company. Each entry, called a post, can contain text, images, video, web links, or any combination of these. Bloggers (people who blog) use special programs to create their blog entries and to add them to the blog. The blogging program typically adds the date and time to the post before adding it to the blog, and keeps the most-recent posts at the top of the blog. The subject of a post can be anything the author(s) wants, though blogs typically follow a theme or topic: companies may blog about public relation matters such as new products, new hires, and new offices; individuals may blog about cooking, politics, their dog, their family, their careers, or any other topic that interests them.
C++ (pronounced "C plus plus") is a powerful, general-purpose programming language. A standard since 1998, C++ is efficient, portable, and supports multiple programming styles that make it flexible enough for a variety of applications. It is widely used in the software industry for systems software, embedded software, device drivers, server and client applications, and even video games.
CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) is a language used to make web pages visually consistent. A CSS "stylesheet" contains the details of color schemes, fonts, font sizes, margins, and other features of the web pages that make up a website. Once the CSS stylesheet is created it can be used through an entire website. In some cases, the same stylesheet is used across multiple websites to give visitors the sense that the sites are related or even that the pages are all part of the same website. CSS stylesheets are a powerful tool for keeping web pages consistent. If a change is made to one element in the stylesheet, for example if a color is changed, that color change affects ("cascades through") all the web pages that use that style sheet. All the pages them display the new color.
ColdFusion is an application server and software development framework used for the development of computer software in general, and dynamic web sites in particular. In this regard, ColdFusion is a similar product to Microsoft ASP.NET, JavaServer Pages or PHP. ColdFusion was the first amongst these technologies to provide the developer the capability of creating dynamic websites that were attached to a backend database.
"Copy" is the written words used to promote a company or individual. Professional copywriters make their living by writing persuasive "copy" that publicizes (or just favorably describes) ideas, products, services, websites, and so on. Copywriters can create the text on a website, the slogan for a new product, direct mailings, advertising verbiage, scripts for commercials, and more. Search engine optimization may also rely on copywriters to unobtrusively seed the text of a website with select keywords in order to boost the website's search engine position.
The process of securing a domain name (www.somewebsite.com) is called "domain registration". Once registered, that domain name is the sole property of the owner for a set period of time, usually a year or more. While registered, the owner may "point" the domain name at a hosted website, and anyone who types the domain name into a browser will see the hosted website.
Electronic commerce, or e-commerce, is online shopping. Customers browse through goods and services on a website, add items to their cart, enter shipping information, type in credit card info or details of their online financial service (like PayPal or Google Checkout), and click "buy now". After verifying their payment, the web business provides the product, the service, or the access to the "members only" features of their website.
XML (extensible markup language) is a language used to store and arrange data. It can be thought of as similar to a database, but with much more flexibility; while database tables store information in a grid of rows and columns, XML can store information that is not organized "evenly". For example, XML might be used to store customer's names, addresses, additional addresses, one or several phone numbers, and a variety of customer preferences per record.
Adobe Flash is widely used to improve the appearance and interactivity of websites. Flash-based sites, unlike other websites, are not constrained to a "grid" layout. This allows web designers more freedom artistically. Flash-based sites typically have a more fluid, attractive appearance and typically incorporate video, photographs, drawings, complex animation, music and sound effects.
From logo design to page layout to color schemes, graphic artists set the tone of websites. Good graphic design guides the visitor's eyes to the most important element on the page, from there to the information associated with that element, and so on. Graphic artists also arrange information so it is simple for visitors to locate what they want.
HTML (HyperText Markup Language) is the language of the internet. Every web page, even those designed completely in Flash, uses HTML to describe what the page looks like, what fonts are used, text size, layout, graphic placement, colors, and most of the functionality on the page - what happens when you click a button or roll the mouse over a certain part of the screen.
Java is high-performance programming language. Supported by multiple hardware and operating systems, Java was designed to be robust and secure, yet simple. One application of Java is the Java applet, which is a small program designed to run within a web page, typically providing interactive features that cannot be created with HTML.
SQL (Structured Query Language) is the language used by the majority of databases. With SQL, records can be written to, updated within, retrieved from, or deleted out of a database. MySQL is a popular, open source database that is commonly used with languages such as PHP.
Perl is a simple yet powerful programming language. Used widely by programmers for a variety of purposes, Perl provides solid text-processing tools, graphics programming, system and network administration, database access and CGI access via websites. Because of its flexibility and comprehensive nature, Perl has been nicknamed "the Swiss Army knife of programming languages".
Professional photographers treat photography is both an art and a science. Whether shooting CEO headshots or architecture or products in a light box, photographers have to control the lighting and composition, wait for the clouds in the sky to pass, and get their subject to "smile!"
PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor is a widely used, general-purpose scripting language that was originally designed for web development to produce dynamic web pages.
Python is the general-purpose programming language that was used to create YouTube and parts of Google. Its pared-down, English-like syntax makes it more readable than many languages. Python remains open source and supports a variety of programming approaches.
Ruby on Rails is a web application framework for the programming language Ruby. Ruby on Rails (often called "Rails" or "RoR") provides simple ways to automatically construct several common models and views used by websites. This typically speeds up the web development process and eliminates or reduces common mistakes.
SEO (search engine optimization) is aimed at raising a website's rank on "natural" search engines such as Google, Yahoo, and Ask.com. Natural search engines rank websites based on site content, references to that site on other places on the internet, and a list of additional rules that are kept secret by the search engines. Knowing and leveraging those other rules is the job of SEO experts. Since three out of four people use a search engine to find new products and services, and half of Americans only look at the first page of results on a search engine, SEO is essential for websites.
Amateur videographers shoot content. Professional videographers pay attention to lighting, composition, volume levels, background noise, motion within the frame, and a myriad of other factors. Professional video production also includes video editing, including pacing of the vide, transitions between shots, titles and appropriate subtitles.
Every web page on the internet has a design. Professional web designers expertly craft the visitor experience, from the color selections to logo design, from font and text size to text flow and graphic placement. Good web design will lead a visitor's eyes to the most important element on the page, while organizing the rest of the page in an easy-to-understand, pleasant layout.
In order for websites to be available publicly, 24 hours a day, they are hosted on powerful computers (called "web servers"). A web server makes the websites available to millions of users simultaneously, and has enough power to handle each user's clicks and typing. Hosting services own and run web servers. For a fee, they host websites created by their clients, and make sure that the servers get all needed upgrades as well as keeping them running 24 hours a day.