Glossary of terms and acronyms used in this manual

ADE (AutoCAD Data Extension) A program which adds the ability to "link" drawing attributes to information located in external databases.
AutoCAD An expensive, powerful, awkward, hard-to-learn computer program used for drafting and mapping.
AutodeskPublisher of AutoCAD.
BandwidthConcept of the information-carrying capacity of a medium. Comes from radio-electronics & telephony.
BarcodeMeans of using computer generated, machine readable icon to encode information. Read by laser scanner. Fast way to perform data entry, or locate item in database.
BOMBill of Materials. An inclusive list of all parts, pieces, etc. that become part of the product.
C,Y,M,K,GAcronym for color separations in Cyan Yellow Magenta Black Gamma, used in 4 and 5 color printing.
CADDComputer Aided Design and Drafting.
CAEComputer Automated Engineering.
CIMComputer Integrated Manufacture.
CNCComputer Numerical Control.
CPMCritical Path Method.
DFADesign for Assembly.
DFMDesign for Manufacture.
DFMADesign for Manufacture and Assembly.
DTPDesktop Publishing.
DeskjetLow cost personal "Inkjet" page printer. Based on technology which revolutionized printer pricing and document generation.
EnablerSoftware product which provides functionality at a broader scale than previous technologies: i.e. DTP.
FabsJargon: High-tech places where things like computer chips are made.
FlakeboardWood-based product formed from chips bonded with glue and pressed into panels. Substitute for plywood in many industries. Basis of cabinet industry.
FMSFlexible Manufacturing Systems.
HPWTsHigh Performance Work Teams. Empowered with decision-making. See Workgroups.
IterativeOne step, repeated over and over. Iterative processes can often be translated into operations suited to mechanization. Think of the way machines multiply by adding: We multiply 8 X 9 whereas a machine micht add 8+8 nine times. Procedure = Add 8 to 8, Iterate add 9 times.
JITJust In Time. An inventory reduction methodology based on partnering, production on demand, and rapid delivery.
KaizenContinuous improvement process introduced in Japanese factories. Based on empowerment, recruiting buy-in of production workers.
KanbanJapanese practice of "partnering" between manufacturers and their suppliers. Kanban acknowledges the inter-related production scheduling needs of both parties. Kanban provides the basis of the JIT model.
KnuthDonald Knuth, Computer Scientist. Author of first encyclopedic reference collection of computer algorithms. Will perhaps as be recognized as being as important as Miriam Webster by future generations.
LinotronicPhototypesetting machine based on Raster Image Processor. "Enabling" technology for DTP.
MacThe personal computer that popularized the Graphical User Interface(GUI).
MasterCAMPowerful software package combining functions of CAD and CNC. Controls NC routers, mills, etc.
MPSMaster Production Schedule. Developed from (WBS) Work Breakdown Schedule, resource allocation.
MRPMaterials Requirements Planning. Inventory management method based on analysis of intersections of products MPS and BOM.
MRPIISoftware system which implements refined version of MRP.
MSRPManufacturer's Suggested Retail Price. What you do not want to pay for goods.
MTCManufacturing Technology Center. Regional facility where end-users can learn to apply enabling technology.
OLE2Standard for implementation of "Object Linking and Embedding". Allows software to pass information and share resources.
OMOperations Manual. While you develop your business plan, develop your OM along with it. It explains the how and why of your business.
OSHAOccupational Health and Safety Administration. Supposed to make sure your operation is not killing your employees faster than the law allows.
PC'sPersonal Computers. As opposed to mini computers of mainframe computers, which are too big to fit on or under a desk. PC's are further distinguished from workstations, which are more powerful than PC's and require more knowledge to operate .
PDMProduct Data Management system. Part-level listing of all activities, materials and resources. Developed from WBS, BOM, MPS, includes cost and history.
PendaflexIndustry standard hanging file system. Rails support file folders with notched metal bars.
Photo-realistic Graphical presentation based on modeling the visual properties edges and lighting. Used for rendering of non-existent product proposal.
PIMPersonal Information Manager. A broad class of contact and time management software used primarily by sales people.
Plate makingMethods of etching plates to be used on printing press to allow selective pickup and transfer of ink. Based on photograhic process.
Pre-pressProcess of proofing 4 and 5 color printing projects. Tools and techniques used to approximate and predict the appearance of finished product prior to printing.
PrimaveraProject management software from mini-computer world, once popular with large firms, now available for the PC. Similar to MS-Project. Makes PERT and GANT Charts.
Producibility A measure of the fit between a design and the technology available.
PrototypingMeans of turning a concept into a useable product to allow users to evaluate its weaknesses.
REIRecreational Equipment Inc. The Sears of the Pepsi Generation.
RTAReady to Assemble (shipped "Knocked Down").
RouterSIMCNC software which operates inside AutoCAD, adding important features which allow MasterCAM-type functionality to be programmed within AutoCAD.
SLLSelective Laser Lithography. Fast prototyping technology based on CNC. Solid object is polymerized directly out of vat of liquid resin by energy from laser.
SLSSelective Laser Sintering. 2nd generation fast prototyping technology. Similar to SL. Allows wax or plastic model to be built up from powder fused by energy from laser.
SpringbackCharacteristic of materials, applied to interaction between material and cutter in a machining operation. Knowledge of springback provides numerical information which allows finished size and surface characteristics to be predicted, based on cutter geometry, feed rate, etc..
SQLStructured Query Language. Standard for software interoperability. Vocabulary and grammar which provides basis of Client-Server computing.
SilmaVirtual Factory enabler software.
SinteringFusing particles into a solid.
TimelineJargon: Common usage comes from Critical Path Method (CPM) and Gantt charts. Events are assigned durations, and linked to form a linear, graphic representation of the process. Time was invented to keep everything from happening at once.
TQMTotal Quality Management.
TapsertsBushings which are inserted and expanded into a hole in wood, plastic, sheet materials, etc., to provide metallic internal threads.
VOC'sVolatile Organic Compounds. Mostly refers to emissions from materials used as solvents and coatings.
WalkmanPlatform product created by Aikira Morita (CEO Sony Corp.). Story goes that the enormous success of Walkman resulted in resignation (in shame) of his board of directors, who did not approve product.
WBSWork Breakdown Schedule.
WIPWork In Progress.
WorkgroupsTeams working on common project or aspect of project, sharing data over computer network.

Glossary of common computer jargon

DOSThe operating system used on Computer. "Disk Operating System". Not all versions are "compatible" with all software.

Pronounced DAW-s

In a MAC system 6, System 7 etc.

In a PC MS-DOS 6.0, 6.2, 6.22, O/S-2, UNIX, etc.

NOSNetwork Operating System

Pronounced En-Oh-Es

Novell, AppleTalk, LANtastic, Windows for Workgroups, etc.
ProtocolRules of the road for network operation
RAMThe accessable, addressable, volatile electronic memory. Programs arrange themselves into memory. The operating system moderates between programs, to prevent conflicts.

3 basic kinds of RAM in your machine:

(Dynamic) DRAM up to 128MB; usually 4MB to 16MB.

(Static) SRAM up to 1MB; usually 256K

(Video) VRAM up to 2MB; usually 1MB

Pronounced like a male sheep.

Random Access Memory

DRAM comes in various formats, capacities and speeds. When upgrading, stick with same speed and same manufacturer. Not all DRAM fits all machines. Modern DRAM comes on small 72 pin cards.

You need a lot of it. Most motherboards have a limited number of RAM slots. This means you must plan original purchase carefully, or you will create limits on future expansion, or have to replace chips.

The speed difference between 8MB and 16MB of RAM ($300) is more than between 75 and 100 MHz CPU clock ($500) w/8MB.

The memory that you cannot access, but the computer can. ROM is programmed by the manufacturer.

Pronounced RAW-m.

Read Only Memory. Your machine has 2 ROMs. Each may use more than 1 chip.

BIOS (normally electronically reprogrammable CMOS).


DISKNonvolatile mass storage. HDD or FDD.
HDDThe mass storage device. A disk of magnetized metal sealed in a metal box. Fast, compared to a floppy disk or a backup tape, but slow compared to RAM. Hard Disk or Hard Drive.

2 common varieties, requiring different "interfaces":

IDE (cheap for PC's).

SCSI (expensive for PC's).

FDDRemovable mass storage. A plastic disk in a plastic sleeve, coated with barium ferrite (like the surface of a cassette tape).

Slow compared to Network.

Slow compared to HDD.

Fast compared to MODEM.

Floppy or Floppy Disk.

Come in 2 common sizes: 3.5" and 5.25"; 6 common formats. 360KB, 1.2MD, 720KB,1.44MB, Old MAC, Newer MAC.

The current standard is 3.5" 1.44MB.

FILEOrganized collection of digital data, readable by the program which created it, and if you are lucky, by some others, as well. Linked information magnetically encoded on the surface of a FDD or HDD according to the format of the Disk and the FAT.


ZIP, etc.

High density removable mass storage (fancy, expensive floppy disks). Various formats are not interchangeable. Solution to transfer large files between non-networked machines.

Disks are generally very expensive in terms of $ per MB.

Data Transfer is faster than tape.

TAPE BACKUPRelatively obsolete method of creating archive of data files on inexpensive, portable medium. Allows off-site storage of essential business information. Tape is very slow, capacity of individual tapes is very low. Cost of large HDD is now so low that backup requires multiple tapes.

Modern solution uses Digital Tape (generally look like Hi-8 cam-corder tapes). This allows up to 8GB of data on 1 tape.


the Microprocessor (CPU)


RAM (SIMM, SIPP, chips).

In a PC, this is the Intel (80) 286, 386, 486, 586 (Pentium).

In a MAC, this is the Motorola (68) 020, 030, 040.

The issue of SX, DX, DX-2, DX-4 relates to how much power the chip has, how fast it runs, and what voltage it requires. Buy DX-2 or DX-4 unless someone gives you a very good reason to buy something else (DX-50 or Pentium).

MATH-CHIPMath Co-processer (MathChip) Very useful upgrade to extend the life of fast 386 machines.
CARDA printed circuit board you install in your PC to provide functions not included in Motherboard. Adds functions not found on the motherboard, or updates functions provided on the motherboard.

UPSUninterruptable Power Supply.

Available in a range of sizes, with a range of features. If you run a Novell network, the advanced features may be important to you. Otherwise, all that matters is a test button and replaceable batteries.

Basically, a UPS is a set of gel-cells or motorcycle type lead-acid batteries, a trickle charger, a voltage sensitive trigger, an alarm and a small switching power supply in a box a little bigger than a loaf of bread.

Switches within 1/4 cycle if line voltage goes above or below appropriate levels. Puts out clean, sine wave 120vac. Runs the computer for a little while during power outages. Howls when power goes out. You don't need big ones, or fancy ones, but you need one for every computer. ($100 -$200).

MODEMCard or external box that allows computers to connect to one another over conventional phone lines. Allows access to the Internet. Buy 14.4 or 28.8. ($50 - $165) These are slow compared to moving files to and from disk, but much faster than previous modems (2400 - 9600 baud).
BIOSBasic In Out System Semi-programmable Chip-set which controls how the Computer connects to the rest of its components.

Latest versions of BIOS are called "Plug & Play". This means they are semi-automatic.

Mother-boardThe biggest "card" in your PC. Holds the BUS and SLOTS. Most motherboards hold the CPU, CLOCK, BIOS and main and cache MEMORY.
Bus16, 32 or 64 bit wide. Electronics jargon. Refers to how "wide" (how many lanes move at once) the data highway inside your PC is.
SlotThe connector (on the motherboard) you plug a card into. Gives card access to the BUS.

ISA is pronounced EYE-sa

VESA is pronounced VEE-SA

Cards come in several forms to fit into ISA (EISA) or VESA or PCI slots.