Here are some internet basics related to websites: from HTML 4.01 Basics Simplified ebook
What is the Internet?
The Internet is a giant network of computers communicating with each other. Your computer connects to the Internet through a system of computers at your Internet Service Provider (ISP). The Internet Service Provider connects to other networks of computers to provide you with access to the Internet.
An IP Address is a series of numbers that identifies your computer on the Internet. This address is used to transmit information to your computer and send your request for web pages when you are surfing the net.
When you type http://www.yoursite.com in the address bar of your browser and hit go your request goes to a server called a Domain Name Server. This server translates this human version of the website's address to an IP address then sends you off to the website.
Servers and Clients
Servers are the computers on the Internet that provide information. Your website is hosted (stored) on a web server. When someone requests to view your website the web server sends the page to the requesting computer.
Clients are the people who request to view your web page. They send a request to view your web page and the web server sends your page back to them.
Server-side Scripts and Client-side Scripts
Server-side scripts run on the web server. The script is processed on the web server and the results are sent back to your browser. These scripts can be slower, the web page asks the server for something and then you have to wait for the server's reply. E.g. CGI scripts
Client-side scripts are processed on your (the client's computer) by the browser. These can be faster as the browser does all the work and does not have to wait for a reply from the server.
What is a Browser?
A browser is a software program that allows users to access documents on the web. The browser can be either text or graphically oriented.
The user (client) enters www.yoursite.com in the address bar of the browser, hits go and is taken to the site. If the user did not indicate which page they wanted (e.g. www.yoursite.com/contact.htm ) then the browser shows the default.htm or index.htm page of the site (otherwise know as the home page).
Each web page is made up of different tags and scripts. The browser interprets these tags then displays the page in the order that the tags and scripts are written in. This is why on some sites it seems to take a long time to load the page. The browser is executing the code that the author of the site wrote in the order they wrote it. E.g. If you have a large sized image as your background or banner the page will load slowly because the browser has to download the file first from the web server then render it.
HTML - HyperText Markup Language
HTML is a non-proprietary standard mark-up language used for web pages that allows various computers to interpret the page information in the same way. The last version of HTML is HTML 4.01. The HTML 4.01 Specification is located at http://www.w3.org/TR/html4/ . W3C has now moved onto developing XHTML (The Extensible HyperText Markup Language) which is a combination of HTML 4.01 and XML. To learn more about XHTML visit http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml1/.
A web page (also known as a HTML document or HTML file) is a text file made up of text content and HTML tags (instructions).