Chapters 1 : Internet and the World Wide Web

Sections 2 : World Wide Web

Web Client Software

To view documents on the Internet, you need a piece of software called a browser. A browser provides you an interface to interact with the Internet. Browsers are also called clients. Any software that allows you to browse the Web is called a Web client. The most commonly used Web clients are Mosaic, Netscape, and Internet Explorer.

Mosaic was the first Graphical Web browser software that was made available on UNIX platforms. Since then Mosaic has been extended to Macintosh and Windows. Capabilities of Mosaic have set the standards for other browsers.

Web browsers include the capability to display HyperText and Hypermedia documents such as sounds and movies. Another feature useful is its ability to display electronic text in a variety of fonts, including normal text, bold, and italic.

Web browsers provide the capabilities to have forms that the user is able to fill-out. This forms are a specially designed section of HyperText Markup Language (HTML) documents. The forms allow user feedback, product ordering, and document searching.

Browsers have the ability to view Postscript files online in real time mode. With Postscript files, you can display scientific notation.

In addition to the already mention features, browsers make transparent Uniform Resource Locator (URL) redirection. The URL provides the addresses of documents stored in different locations.

Finally, browsers have the ability to authenticate the identity of users by user names and passwords. Once a user is authenticated on a server, the browser reuses the information without prompting for it again.

Another Web browser is Netscape Navigator. Netscape provides the ability to support inline images. Meaning the images can become apart of the web page and are coded into the HTML pages using the HTML language. Netscape also has built-in components for sending and receiving E-mail. Another built-in component is security features that provide the necessary security for various tasks the browser does.

Caching is used by Netscape as a temporary storage of files for quick response time. Caching allows files to be accessed on your hard drive instead of access the site it came from again. Access to links while the documents are being retrieved. Therefore all the links and images are live as they are downloaded. This allows web pages to be viewed as they are downloaded. Plus if while downloading one document, you click on a link on that document, the download will stop and the retrieval of the next document is begun. Despite different versions of Netscape on different platforms, the interfaces stay consistent.

Lynx is another Web browser, however, the slight difference is it is text based. It can connect users with information in the various methods as mentioned earlier. This feature allows it to be quicker, since it does not have to load in-line graphics.

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