Glossary of Computer Terms – The Letter ‘B’
Backup is a copy of your data files in case they’re lost, the computer hard drive fails or is infected with a virus. It’s THE most important thing to do when you own a computer or laptop.
Bandwidth refers to how much data you can send through a network. It is measured in bits per second (bps). Think of cars on a highway – the highway is the network and the cars are the data.
Biometrics – technologies used to detect and recognize human physical characteristics like fingerprints, face and voice recognition.
BIOS (Basic Input/Output System) is a program pre-installed on Windows-based computers (not on Macs) that the computer uses to start up. The CPU accesses the BIOS and the BIOS checks all your hardware connections and locates all your devices. The BIOS then loads the operating system into the computer’s memory and finishes the boot-up process.
Blog – Short for “Web Log,” this regular feature I write is a blog.
Bluetooth – A wireless communication between devices. It is used for short-range connections (up to 10m) and uses a standard 2.4GHz radio frequency.
Boot – When you boot a computer, you simply turn it on.
Buffering – a buffer holds data before it is used. When you download a video it may load the first 20% into a buffer and then begin to play. While the clip plays back, the computer downloads the rest of the clip and stores it in the buffer.
Bug – an error in a software program that may cause it to quit or behave in an unintended manner. A small bug may cause a button not to respond when you click it. A more serious bug may cause the program to crash.
Byte – is a set of 8 bits that make up a single character in the computer’s memory. Bytes measure file sizes, hard disk space, and computer memory. Large amounts of data are described as kilobytes (Kb) megabytes (Mb), gigabytes (Gb), and terabytes (Tb). A Gigabyte is 1052 Megabytes which is 1052 Kilobytes.