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Tech Terms Defined

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Here's some terms I've explained recently when working with staff.


Google is more than just a search engine. It owns a huge suite of tools. Probably the most commonly known are:

  • Gmail (“Google-mail = Gmail”)
  • YouTube. Did you know Google owns YouTube? Google search is the world’s most used search engine, and YouTube is in the second spot
  • Google Apps - short for Google Applications. This is a package of tools for businesses or school that includes a whole suite of Google documents, spreadsheets, presentations and more.
  • Google Drive is a place to store all your photos, documents, spreadsheets and other files in the cloud
  • Chrome browser

The Cloud

Information is accessed over the internet vs. on a device.

Operating System

Type of program that runs your device

The top 3 are:

  • iOS- Apple products such as iPhone, iPad, iPod. Mac OS is short for Apple Macintosh computers
  • Windows - Microsoft software, phones and tablets
  • Android - Google operating system on phones and tablets

Microsoft Products (for NDSU Employees)

  • Office- includes Outlook Calendar and usually Word (word processing), Xcel (spreadsheets) and PowerPoint (presentations).
  • Office 365 - cloud-based Office. Access anywhere, not just at your work computer.

Clear your cache (pronounced "cash")

People will call me if they have problems with Ag CMS, like when they make a change but it’s not updating. I often tell them to clear their cache or refresh their browser to see what the updated page looks like. Here’s a good explanation of what clearing the cache is and how to do it.


Program that helps you navigate the web

Top used browsers:

  • Chrome (Google)
  • Internet Explorer (Microsoft)
  • Firefox (Mozilla)
  • Safari (Apple)


App - short for "application". Piece of software downloaded to a tablet or mobile device. Some are free. Android users get apps through the Google Play Store and iOS users go to the ITunes App Store. Windows device users can get apps at the Microsoft App Store.

CMS - short for Content Management System, like our Ag CMS. A CMS is software that allows you create and manage digital content like a website, without knowing all the coding that goes on behind the scenes.

If Bob or I ever use a tech term you're not familiar with, please don't hesitate to ask us to clarify.

, Web Technology Specialist, 701-231-6403

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