Business & IT Glossary - W

WAN A Wide Area Network links computers located in separate buildings or locations, enabling data to be shared or transferred between them.
WAP The Wireless Application Protocol is a series of communications standards devised to provide users of mobile devices with access to applications such as the internet. WAP has its own mark-up language, WML, and the use of WAP-enabled phones is now becoming more widespread.
Web server The computer on which an ISP stores HTML documents or distributes them over the internet.
Web space Many ISPs provide web or storage space on their servers so that users can publish their own HTML documents or web sites on the internet for other internet users to browse. Space is usually measured in Megabytes.
White paper Originally, white papers set forward proposals for discussion, but now they are commonly used by technology companies to promote products in the guise of research. Largely, a public relations tool, white papers are no longer considered as authoritative as before.
Window The practice of displaying text, graphics or other data in a self-contained rectangular area on-screen, which can be enlarged, reduced, moved or covered over by other windows. An integral part of a Graphical User Interface, the concept of the window has made computers easier to use for non-technical users.
Wireless The process of transmitting voice or data via radio. Wireless communication is set to revolutionise technology as new devices incorporating radio antennae enable users to make phone calls, send and receive email and faxes and access the internet without having to plug into a phone socket. Wireless transmission offers true mobile computing.
WLAN Wireless Local Area Networks are networks that use wireless technology to link groups of computers and other devices together without the need for cables. Wireless LANs are often used to provide an internet connection to groups of users.
World Wide Web WWW or the web are terms used to describe the information network that has developed on the internet. Comprising HTML documents linked together, millions of individuals and organisations have developed web sites, which like mini-databases contain information about themselves, their products or anything.
Working capital The capital actually used by a business for trading. Calculated by subtracting creditors and loans from assets, debtors, stock and cash.
Worm A worm is a self-replicating virus program that can spread very quickly across the internet and computer systems as an email attachment or can navigate its own way through the security flaws in a network. As it reaches a new machine, the worm can execute itself to cause disruptive damage or can replicate itself and spread to other linked machines, generating so much data traffic that it clogs up networks.
Writing down An allowance enabling the purchase cost of fixed assets to be offset against tax over a specified period.
WYSIWYG What You See Is What You Get (WYSIWYG) is used to describe those technologies and software programs which represent information on screen exactly how it will look when printed. Users should double-check such claims made about word processors, graphics programs, web browsers and other software before making a purchase, as often it is only high specification, specialist software that achieves true WYSIWYG performance.