Telecom Dictionary - Definitions of terms
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Wafer - A thin slice of semiconducting material, such as a silicon crystal, upon which microcircuits are constructed by diffusion and deposition of various materials. Note: Millions of individual circuit elements, constituting hundreds of microcircuits, may be constructed on a single wafer. The individual microcircuits are separated by scoring and breaking the wafer into individual chips ("dice").
Wallpaper - A graphic image that serves as a background for a Web page or for a computer operating system's screen.
WAIS - Acronym for Wide Area Information Servers. A distributed text searching system that uses the protocol standard ANS Z39.50 to search index databases on remote computers. Note 1: WAIS libraries are most often found on the Internet. Note 2: WAIS allows users to discover and access information resources on the network without regard to their physical location. Note 3: WAIS software uses the client-server model.
WAN - Wide Area Network. A data communications network which expands a LAN to link up with other LANs in remote buildings. A physical or logical network that provides data communications to a larger number of independent users than are usually served by a local area network (LAN) and is usually spread over a larger geographic area than that of a LAN. Note 1: WANs may include physical networks, such as Integrated Services Digital Networks (ISDNs), X.25 networks, and T1 networks. Note 2: A metropolitan area network (MAN) is a WAN that serves all the users in a metropolitan area. WANs may be nationwide or worldwide.
Wander - Relative to jitter and swim, long-term random variations of the significant instants of a digital signal from their ideal positions. Note 1: Wander variations are those that occur over a period greater than 1 s (second). Note 2: Jitter, swim, wander, and drift have increasing periods of variation in that order.
Warm Boot - Synonym warm restart.
Warm Restart - 1. A sequence of operations that is performed to reset a previously running system, after an unintentional shutdown. Synonym warm start. 2. In computer operations, the restarting of equipment, after a sudden shutdown, that allows reuse of previously retained initialized input data, retained programs, and retained output queues. Note 1: A warm restart may be needed after a program failure. Note 2: A warm start or restart cannot occur if initial data, programs, and files are not retained after closedown. Synonyms hot boot, warm boot.
Warm Start - Synonym warm restart.
Warner Exemption - A statutory exemption pertaining to the acquisition of telecommunications systems that meet the exclusionary criteria of the Warner Amendment, Public Law 97-86, 1 December 1981, which is also known as the Brooks Bill. Note: Use of FTS2000 by U.S. Government agencies is mandatory when telecommunications are required. However, the Warner Amendment excludes the mandatory use of FTS2000 in instances related to maximum security.
Watermark - 1. A copyright-protection method of embedding a code into a digital audio or video file to attempt to thwart piracy or unlicenced use. 2. In desktop publishing, an inserted (and usually faint) overlay of an image or text onto pages of a document. Note: The watermark is usually visible on the computer screen in WYSIWIG fashion and on the printed pages of the final document. The watermark often verifies authenticity of authorship or release authority.
WATS - Acronym for Wide Area Telephone Service.
.wav - A file extension name for one format [i.e., a wave format] of a sound file.
Wave Equation - See Maxwell's equations.
Waveform - The representation of a signal as a plot of amplitude versus time.
Wavefront - The surface defined by the locus of points that have the same phase, i.e., have the same path length from the source. Note 1: The wavefront is perpendicular to the ray that represents an electromagnetic wave. Note 2: The plane in which the electric and magnetic field vectors lie is tangential to the wavefront at every point. Note 3: The vector that represents the wavefront indicates the direction of propagation. Note 4: For parallel, i.e., collimated, rays, the wavefront is plane. For rays diverging from a point, or converging toward a point, the wavefront is spherical. For rays with varying divergence or convergence, the wavefront has other shapes, such as ellipsoidal and paraboloidal, depending on the nature of the source.
Waveguide - A material medium that confines and guides a propagating electromagnetic wave. Note 1: In the microwave regime, a waveguide normally consists of a hollow metallic conductor, usually rectangular, elliptical, or circular in cross section. This type of waveguide may, under certain conditions, contain a solid or gaseous dielectric material. Note 2: In the optical regime, a waveguide used as a long transmission line consists of a solid dielectric filament (optical fiber), usually circular in cross section. In integrated optical circuits an optical waveguide may consist of a thin dielectric film. Note 3: In the rf regime, ionized layers of the stratosphere and refractive surfaces of the troposphere may also act as a waveguide.
Waveguide Dispersion - See dispersion. Dispersion, of importance only in single-mode fibers, caused by the dependence of the phase and group velocities on core radius, numerical aperture, and wavelength. Note 1: For circular waveguides, the dependence is on the ratio, a /, where a is the core radius and is the wavelength. Note 2: Practical single-mode fibers are designed so that material dispersion and waveguide dispersion cancel one another at the wavelength of interest.
Waveguide Scattering - Scattering (other than material scattering) that is attributable to variations of geometry and refractive index profile of an optical fiber.
Wave Impedance - At a point in an electromagnetic wave, the ratio of the electric field strength to the magnetic field strength. Note 1: If the electric field strength is expressed in volts per meter and the magnetic field strength is expressed in ampere-turns per meter, the wave impedance will have the units of ohms. The wave impedance, Z, of an electromagnetic wave is given by where is the magnetic permeability and is the electric permittivity. For free space, these values are 4× 10-7 H/m (henries per meter) and (1/36) F/m (farads per meter), from which 120, i.e., 377, ohms is obtained. In dielectric materials, the wave impedance is 377/n, where n is the refractive index. Note 2: Although the ratio is called the wave impedance, it is also the impedance of the free space or the material medium.
Wavelength - The distance between points of corresponding phase of two consecutive cycles of a wave. Note: The wavelength, , is related to the propagation velocity, v, and the frequency, f, by = v /f.
Wavelength-Division Multiplexing (WDM) - In optical fiber communications, any technique by which two or more optical signals having different wavelengths may be simultaneously transmitted in the same direction over one fiber, and then be separated by wavelength at the distant end.
Wavelength Stability - Of an optical source during a specified period, the maximum deviation of the peak wavelength from its mean value.
Wave Trap - A device used to exclude unwanted frequency components, such as noise or other interference, of a wave. Note: Traps are usually tunable to permit selection of unwanted or interfering signals.
WDM - Abbreviation for wavelength-division multiplexing.
Weak Bit - A bit intentionally written on a diskette with a weak magnetic field strength that may be interpreted as zero or one and that is written as part of a method of copy protection.
Weakly Guiding Fiber - An optical fiber in which the refractive index contrast is small (substantially less than 1%).
Web - See World Wide Web.
Web Browser - A user interface (usually graphical) to hypertext information on the World Wide Web.
Web Crawler - Synonym spider.
Web Document - An HTML (hypertext markup language) document available on the World Wide Web.
Webmaster - The person responsible for the production and maintenance of a Web site. A person or group of people responsible for the design, implementation, management, and maintenance of a Web site. Note: Webmastery often includes the fields of network configuration, interface, and graphics design, software development, business strategy, writing, marketing, and project management.
Web node - Synonyms Web site, Web server.
Web Page - An HTML document accessible on the World Wide Web. Note: The number and types of features that can be offered on a web page is growing almost exponentially.
Web Page Search Engine - Loosely synonymous with portal. See droid.
Web Phone - See Internet phone.
Web Ring - A confederation of (usually linked) Web sites that serve a particular special interest group or that have similar or related content.
Web Server - A software program or server computer equipped to offer World Wide Web access. Note: A web server accommodates requests from users, retrieves requested files or applications, and issues error messages.
Web Site - A collection of Web documents that Internet users can access to learn information about a particular subject or company. One or more web pages available on the World Wide Web, usually consisting of a home page and often additional pages accessed via the home page via hyperlinks. Note: Web sites have been expanded and now provide many online services such as free e-mail, news, chat, and personalized functions like stock quotes, local weather, and sports. Web sites get much of their revenue from advertising.
Webspace - The virtual space created by the World Wide Web or a subset of that space occupied by a particular Web site.
Web Spider - Synonym droid. See also spider.
Web Surfer: Synonym cybernaut. See also droid.
Web Television - The concept of providing Internet access (usually Web access and e-mail) in a format that can be viewed on a standard television set rather than on the customer's computer. The service usually consists of a set top box that is connected to the user's television, a keyboard, and a telephone line.
Webzine - Synonym for e-zine, which is an abbreviation for electronic magazine. A periodical publication that is stored on a file server and that may be distributed or accessed via a computer network.Note: An e-zine that is distributed primarily over the Web is also referred to as a webzine.
Weighted Standard Work Second: A measurement of traffic operating work which is used to express the relative time required to handle the various kinds of calls or work functions, and which is weighted to reflect appropriate degrees of waiting to serve time.
Weighting Network - A network having a loss that varies with frequency in a predetermined manner, and which network is used for improving or correcting transmission characteristics, or for characterizing noise measurements.
Whip Antenna - A flexible rod antenna, usually between 1/10 and 5/8 wavelength long, supported on a base insulator
White Area - The area or population which does not receive interference-free primary service from an authorized AM station or does not receive a signal strength of at least 1 mV/m from an authorized FM station.
White Facsimile Transmission - 1. In an amplitude-modulated facsimile system, transmission in which the maximum transmitted power corresponds to the minimum density, i.e., the white area, of the object. 2. In a frequency-modulated facsimile system, transmission in which the lowest transmitted frequency corresponds to the minimum density i.e., the white area, of the object.
White Noise - Noise having a frequency spectrum that is continuous and uniform over a specified frequency band. Note: White noise has equal power per hertz over the specified frequency band. Synonym: additive white gaussian noise.
White Pages - 1. A hard copy telephone directory listing of subscriber names, addresses, and telephone numbers. Note: White pages is associated with the residential subscriber listings in the standard direSctories distributed by the Bell System before divestiture. 2. An electronic information database that contains user names and their associated network addresses, in the manner of a telephone directory. Note : Electronic white pages usually contain additional information, such as office location, phone number, and mailstop.
White Signal - In facsimile systems, the signal resulting from scanning a minimum-density area, i.e., the white area, of the object.
Who-Are-You (WRU) Character - A transmission-control character used for (a) switching on an answer-back unit in the station with which the connection has been established, (b) triggering the receiving unit to transmit an answer-back code to the terminal that transmitted the WRU signal, and (c) initiating a response that might include station identification, an indication of the type of equipment that is in service, and the status of the station. Note 1: The WRU signal corresponds to the 7-bit code assigned to the WRU. Note 2: The receiving unit may be a telegraph unit, data terminal equipment (DTE), or other unit. Synonym WRU signal.
Wi-Fi – A technology that provides short-range, high-speed data connections between mobile data devices (such as laptops) and nearby Wi-Fi access points (hardware connected to a wired network).
Wide Area Information Servers (WAIS) - A distributed text searching system that uses the protocol standard ANS Z39.50 to search index databases on remote computers. Note 1: WAIS libraries are most often found on the Internet. Note 2: WAIS allows users to discover and access information resources on the network without regard to their physical location. Note 3: WAIS software uses the client-server model.
Wide Area Network (WAN) - A physical or logical network that provides data communications to a larger number of independent users than are usually served by a local area network (LAN) and is usually spread over a larger geographic area than that of a LAN. Note 1: WANs may include physical networks, such as Integrated Services Digital Networks (ISDNs), X.25 networks, and T1 networks. Note 2: A metropolitan area network (MAN) is a WAN that serves all the users in a metropolitan area. WANs may be nationwide or worldwide.
Wide Area Telephone Service (WATS) - A toll service offering for customer dial type telecommunications between a given customer station and stations within specified geographic rate areas employing a single access line between the customer location and the serving central office. Each access line may be arranged for either outward (OUT-WATS) or inward (IN-WATS) service or both. [47 CFR Pt.36-A] Note: The offering is for fixed-rate inter- and intra-LATA services measured by zones and hours.
Wideband - 1. The property of any communications facility, equipment, channel, or system in which the range of frequencies used for transmission is greater than 0.1 % of the midband frequency. Note: "Wideband" has many meanings depending upon application. "Wideband" is often used to distinguish it from "narrowband," where both terms are subjectively defined relative to the implied context. 2. In communications security systems, a bandwidth exceeding that of a nominal 4-kHz telephone channel. 3. The property of a circuit that has a bandwidth wider than normal for the type of circuit, frequency of operation, or type of modulation. 4. In telephony, the property of a circuit that has a bandwidth greater than 4 kHz. 5. Pertaining to a signal that occupies a broad frequency spectrum. Synonym broadband.
Wideband Channel - A communication channel of a bandwidth equivalent to twelve or more voice-grade channels.
Wideband Modem - 1. A modem whose modulated output signal can have an essential frequency spectrum that is broader than that which can be wholly contained within, and faithfully transmitted through, a voice channel with a nominal 4-kHz bandwidth. (188) 2. A modem whose bandwidth capability is greater than that of a narrowband modem.
Widescreen - 1. A term used generally to describe an aspect ratio wider than 4:3. For television, this refers to the 16 x 9 aspect ratio.
Wildcard Character - 1. A character that may be substituted for any of a defined subset of all possible characters. Note 1: In high-frequency (HF) radio automatic link establishment, the wildcard character "?" may be substituted for any one of the 36 characters, "A" through "Z" and "0" through "9." Note 2: Whether the wildcard character represents a single character or a string of characters must be specified. (188) 2. In computer (software) technology, a character that can be used to substitute for any other character or characters in a string. Note: The asterisk (*) usually substitutes as a wildcard character for any one or more of the ASCII characters, and the question mark (?) usually substitutes as a wildcard character for any one ASCII character.
Wild-Point Detection - A test to determine whether a value conforms to specified criteria. Note: A wild-point detection can be used to eliminate questionable data points from subsequent processing. Synonym reasonableness check.
WIN - Abbreviation for WWMCCS Intercomputer Network.
Window - 1. In fiber optics, a band of wavelengths at which an optical fiber is sufficiently transparent for practical use in communications applications. Synonyms spectral window, transmission window. See first window, second window, third window. 2. In imagery, a portion of a display surface in which display images pertaining to a particular application can be presented. Note: Different applications can be displayed simultaneously in different windows. 3. A period during which an event can occur, can be expected to occur, or is allowed to occur.
Windowing - Sectioning of a video display area into two or more separate regions for the purpose of displaying images from different sources. Note: In windowing, one window could display data, another motion video from a remote site, and another, graphics.
Wink - In telephone switching systems, a single supervisory pulse, i.e., the momentary presence of, or interruption of, a supervisory signal. Note: An example of a wink is the momentary flash of a supervisory light on an attendant's switchboard.
Wink Pulsing - In telephone switching systems, recurring pulsing in which the off-condition is relatively short compared to the on-condition. Note: On key-operated telephone instruments, the hold position, i.e., the hold condition, of a line is often indicated by wink pulsing the associated lamp at 120 pulses per minute. During 6% of the pulse period the lamp is off and 94% of the period the lamp is on, i.e., 30 ms (milliseconds) off and 470 ms on.
Wired Radio Frequency Systems - Systems employing restricted radiation devices in which the radio frequency energy is conducted or guided along wires or in cables, including electric power and telephone lines.
Wireless – Voice and data telecommunications technology that uses the radio-frequency spectrum rather than wires for transmitting and receiving voice, data and video signals. Wireless is a term used to describe telecommunications in which electromagnetic waves (rather than some form of wire) carry the signal over part or all of the communication path. Some monitoring devices, such as intrusion alarms, employ acoustic waves at frequencies above the range of human hearing; these are also sometimes classified as wireless.
The first wireless transmitters went on the air in the early 20th century using radiotelegraphy (Morse code). Later, as modulation made it possible to transmit voices and music via wireless, the medium came to be called "radio." With the advent of television, fax, data communication, and the effective use of a larger portion of the spectrum, the term "wireless" has been resurrected.
Descriptive of a network or terminal that uses electromagnetic waves (including rf, infrared, laser, visible light–and acoustic energy) rather than wire conductors for telecommunications.
Wireless Access - Terminal access to the network which uses wireless technology.
Wireless Access Mode - In personal communications service, interfacing with a network access point by means of a standardized air interface protocol without the use of a hardwired connection to the network
Wireless Mobility Management - In Personal Communications Service (PCS), the assigning and controlling of wireless links for terminal network connections. Note: Wireless mobility management provides an "alerting" function for call completion to a wireless terminal, monitors wireless link performance to determine when an automatic link transfer is required, and coordinates link transfers between wireless access interfaces..
Wireless Services Provider - A company that provides wireless telecommunication service to customers, e.g., cellular service providers, radio common carriers, paging companies.
Wireless Terminal - Any mobile terminal, mobile station, personal station, or personal terminal using non-fixed access to the network.
Wireline – A conventional (wired) telephone network versus a wireless network.
Wireline Common Carrier - Common carriers [that] are in the business of providing landline local exchange telephone service.
Wizard - An intelligent, trainable Web spider. Synonyms droid, smart bot, spider.
Word - A character string or a bit string considered to be an entity for some purpose. Note: In telegraph communications, six character intervals are defined as a word when computing traffic capacity in words per minute, which is computed by multiplying the data signaling rate in baud by 10 and dividing the resulting product by the number of unit intervals per character.
Word Length - The number of characters or bits in a word.
Word Processing: The use of a computer system to manipulate text. Note: Examples of word processing functions include entering, editing, rearranging, sorting, storing, retrieving, displaying, and printing text. Synonym text processing.
Work Space - In computers and data processing systems, the portion of main storage that is used by a computer program for the temporary storage of data.
Work Station - 1. In automated systems, such as computer, communications, and control systems, the input, output, display, and processing equipment that provides the operator-system interface. 2. A configuration of input, output, display, and processing equipment that constitutes a stand-alone system not requiring external access.
Working Loop - A revenue producing pair of wires, or its equivalent, between a customer's station and the central office from which the station is served.
World Numbering Plan - A plan created by the International Telegraph and Telephone Consultative Committee (CCITT--now, the ITU-T) that provides each telephone subscriber with a unique number. Each world telephone number consists of a country code followed by the national number. By international agreement, the number of digits in the country code plus national number is limited to a total of 15 digits.
World Time - Time scale, based on the second (SI), as defined and recommended by the CCIR, and maintained by the Bureau International des Poids et Mesures (BIPM). For most practical purposes associated with the Radio Regulations, UTC is equivalent to mean solar time at the prime meridian (0° longitude), formerly expressed in GMT. [NTIA] [RR] Note 1: The maintenance by BIPM includes cooperation among various national laboratories around the world. Note 2: The full definition of UTC is contained in CCIR Recommendation 460-4. (188) Note 3 : The second was formerly defined in terms of astronomical phenomena. When this practice was abandoned in order to take advantage of atomic resonance phenomena ("atomic time") to define the second more precisely, it became necessary to make occasional adjustments in the "atomic" time scale to coordinate it with the workaday mean solar time scale, UT-1, which is based on the somewhat irregular rotation of the Earth. Rotational irregularities usually result in a net decrease in the Earth's average rotational velocity, and ensuing lags of UT-1 with respect to UTC. Note 4: Adjustments to the atomic, i.e., UTC, time scale consist of an occasional addition or deletion of one full second, which is called a leap second. Twice yearly, during the last minute of the day of June 30 and December 31, Universal Time, adjustments may be made to ensure that the accumulated difference between UTC and UT-1 will not exceed 0.9 s before the next scheduled adjustment. Historically, adjustments, when necessary, have usually consisted of adding an extra second to the UTC time scale in order to allow the rotation of the Earth to "catch up." Therefore, the last minute of the UTC time scale, on the day when an adjustment is made, will have 59 or 61 seconds. Synonyms Coordinated Universal Time , Z Time, Zulu Time.
World Wide Web (WWW) - A HyperText system that allows users to navigate, or look through, linked documents and resources. Also Web, WWW, W3. A global, virtual-network based hypertext information system that uses the Internet as its transport mechanism to display computer screens (or Web pages) of graphical, video, textual, and even audio information. Note: In a hypertext system, one navigates by clicking hyperlinks, which display another document which also contains hyperlinks. In Web navigation, the next document seen could be housed on a computer next door or half-way around the world. Created in 1989 at a research institute in Switzerland, the Web relies upon browsers and the hypertext transport protocol (http), an Internet standard that specifies how an application can locate and acquire resources stored on another computer on the Internet. Most Web documents are created using hypertext markup language (html), a coding system for WWW documents. Incorporating hypermedia (graphics, sounds, animations, video), the Web has become a popular medium for publishing information on the Internet. With the development of secured server protocol (https), the Web is now a commercial medium whereby consumers can browse on-line catalogs and purchase merchandise using secure, encrypted credit card information that is protected from interception. Synonym Web.
The World Wide Web is an international, virtual-network-based information service composed of Internet host computers that provide on-line information in a specific hypertext format. Note 1: WWW servers provide hypertext metalanguage (HTML) formatted documents using the hypertext transfer protocol (HTTP). Note 2: Information on the WWW is accessed with a hypertext browser such as Mosaic, Viola, or Lynx. Note 3: No hierarchy exists in the WWW, and the same information may be found by many different approaches.
Worm - 1. A computer virus capable of disrupting a computer program. 2. A self-contained program that can propagate itself through systems or networks. Note: Worms are often designed to use up available resources such as storage or processing time. 3. [An] independent program that replicates from machine to machine across network connections, often clogging networks and computer systems as it spreads. 4. Acronym for write once, read many (times). Note: A worm drive is used in recording data on a disk such that the data can then be read but not erased.
Worst Hour of the Year - That hour of the year during which the median noise over any radio path is at a maximum. Note: This hour is considered to coincide with the hour during which the greatest transmission loss occurs.
W-Profile Fiber - A single-mode fiber that has two claddings. Note 1: Each cladding has a refractive index that is lower than that of the core. Of the two claddings, inner and outer, the inner cladding has the lower refractive index. Note 2 : A doubly clad fiber has the advantage of very low macrobending losses. It also has two zero-dispersion points, and low dispersion over a much wider wavelength range than a singly clad fiber. (from the fact that a symmetrical plot of its refractive index profile superficially resembles the letter W). Synonyms depressed-cladding fiber, depressed-inner-cladding fiber, doubly clad fiber.
Wrapping - 1. In a network using dual counter-rotating ring architecture, reconfiguration to circumvent a failed link or node. 2. In open systems architecture, the use of a network to connect two other networks, thus providing an increased interaction capability between the two connected networks. Note: Recurring application of wrapping usually results in a hierarchical structure.
Write - To make a permanent or transient recording of data in a storage device or on a data medium.
Write Cycle Time - The minimum time interval between the starts of successive write cycles of a storage device that has separate reading and writing cycles.
Write Head - A magnetic head capable of writing only.
Write Protection Label - See write-protect tab.
Write-Protect Tab - A movable or removable tab, label, or other device, the presence or absence of which on the casing of a recording medium prevents writing on the medium. Note: An example of a write-protect tab is the sliding tab on a 3½-inch (8.85-cm) magnetic diskette of the type used in conjunction with desktop computers.
WRU signal - Synonym who-are-you (WRU) character. A transmission-control character used for (a) switching on an answer-back unit in the station with which the connection has been established, (b) triggering the receiving unit to transmit an answer-back code to the terminal that transmitted the WRU signal, and (c) initiating a response that might include station identification, an indication of the type of equipment that is in service, and the status of the station. Note 1: The WRU signal corresponds to the 7-bit code assigned to the WRU. Note 2: The receiving unit may be a telegraph unit, data terminal equipment (DTE), or other unit.
WWMCCS - Abbreviation for Worldwide Military Command and Control System.
WWW - See World Wide Web
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