Article or Item
A message written by a Usenet News user and posted to the network. Articles are similar to electronic mail messages, but are not private. They are intended to be seen by potentially hundreds of thousands of people. Also called "postings".
For each article in a group article-list window, an article number is shown. This is the number used by your news server to track the article. This number is local to your news server only. This number is not a meaningful identifier outside of your news server. If you need a globally (internet-wide) unique identifer for an article, use its message ID.
Bulletin Board System (BBS)
An electronic system in which users participate in discussions by leaving public messages for each other. Most BBS's are run on personal computers and are accessible only by dialup modem. Many have additional features, such as on-line games and a file repository.
Usenet News is not a BBS in the usual sense of the word, but it provides the messaging features of a BBS on a much grander scale than found on any existing BBS.
A type of hypertext link in Microsoft Help. A cross reference is a topic that appears in the Help window when you click on a term that appears in Help as green solid underlined text.
A type of hypertext link in Microsoft Help. A definition is a (usually) brief description of a term. Definitions appear when you press and hold the mouse button on a term that appears in Help as green text marked with a dotted underline.
Electronic Mail Message
The description disappears as soon as you release the mouse button.
Hence, it is not possible to access hypertext links within a definition. Some definitions contain hypertext links, however, because they are also available as cross-references. It is usually possible to reference a definition as a cross-reference via the Help Search button.
A message sent privately to one or more explicitly-named individuals. Electronic mail is not provided by Usenet News per se; electronic mail messages are not the same as news articles. However, many news readers provide the capability of sending (but usually not receiving) electronic mail because it is often desirable to respond privately to an article.
FAQ is an acronym for “Frequently Asked Questions”. A FAQ is typically a text on one subject organized as a list of common questions related to the subject and the anwers. FAQ’s on many subjects are frequently posted to the newsgroup news.answers. The WinVN FAQ can be found at the same location as the WinVN files.
A series of lines at the beginning of an article or electronic mail message that contain such information as the article's or message's author, its subject, its date and time of transmission, and so on. The header is separated from the actual text of the article or message by a blank line. When you are reading an article, normally WinVN starts displaying at the first line past the header. You can use the scroll bar to view the header.
Microsoft Mail Application Programmer’s Interface. Allows communication between WinVN and Microsoft Mail.
Every news and mail message sent over the internet has an absolutely unique message identifier. The identifier is contained inside angle brackets and typically looks something like . i.e. <email@example.com>.
Multipurpose Internet Mail Extensions - an international standard for the exchange of text
and binary files in Internet messages. It is presented in Internet Standard RFC-1341 by Nathaniel Borenstein and Ned Freed, June 1992.
A collection of articles on a given topic. When you write an article, you specify to which group or groups it should be sent.
Each newsgroup has a hierarchical name which suggests the topic of that group. Names consist of several words separated by periods. The first word in the newsgroup name states the general category covered by that group; the second, a sub category of that general category, and so on.
For instance, the newsgroups sci.chem and sci.math are scientifically-oriented groups which are dedicated to chemistry and mathematics, respectively. soc.culture.indian is a sociologically-oriented group devoted to the culture of India, and so on.
The person or person's responsible for running the news feed at each site. They define the type of newsgroups received by each site and determine whether news from particular newsgroups is transmitted to other sites. Based on local system resources, your news manager also determines how many days of news traffic can be kept for each newsgroup.
A computer program through which you interact with the Usenet News system. News readers allow you to select and read articles written by others, and to write and post articles of your own.
A number of news readers have been written over the years, many of them for computers running the UNIX operating system. The best-known news readers are probably rn, vn, nn, and xrn.
A computer that runs special software to exchange news articles with other computers in the Usenet network, and makes these articles available to local users. News readers require access to a news server, but they do not require you to have an account on a news server.
Network News Transport Protocol. This is the network protocol used by WinVN and most other newsreaders to carry Usenet News information. There is also a program named wNNTP that implements the NNTP protocol and runs on many news servers. (The program NNTP has been replaced by the program INN at many sites.) NNTP is defined in RFC-977.
Simple Mail Transfer Protocol. This is the network protocol used for the exchange of electronic mail messages on the internet. SMTP is defined in RFC-821.
Request For Comment. This is the common forum for presenting proposals for standards and protocols to the internet community. RFC’s of interest to news/mail enthusiasts include 821 (SMTP), 822 (Mail Messages), 977 (NNTP), 1036 (Usenet Messages), 1341 (MIME).
ROT13 is a very simple encryption mechanism for text. Imagine the 26 characters of the alphabet on a wheel. To ROT13 encrypt one character, simply rotate the wheel 13 positions from the original character position. To decrypt, turn the wheel another 13 positions. The purpose of ROT13 is not really encryption, but rather to shield the casual reader from potentially offensive material, or from what people call “spoilers” - i.e. giving away the end of a movie.
The act of sending an article to the Usenet network, to be seen by potentially hundreds of thousands of individuals. Also, a synonym for "article".
Each news article contains a computer generated reference message-Id which makes an article unique. This identifier looks something like <1993Jan21.firstname.lastname@example.org>.
Identifiers may appear a number of times in an article when someone quotes or references another article. In WinVN, clicking on a valid reference identifier will cause that article to be fetched from the server.
A short piece of text appended to a posting or mail message typically describing the author and his/her interests and affiliation. It's considered bad form for the signature to be more than four lines. See Usenet Etiquette.
A way of organizing and displaying the sequence of articles that make up a conversation. The News protocol and many news readers have built-in support for this mode of operation. WinVN has direct support for threading if you have the "Compute Threads" option enabled from the Config Miscellaneous menu. You can also use "poor man's threading" by moving to the next article on the same subject with the "Find Next Article Same Subject" menu command. There is also a hypertext support of accessing news reference headers. You can click the mouse on a news reference header and WinVN will fetch that article and display it for you.
A loosely-organized network of millions of computers worldwide. These computers are linked in a number of ways, including modems and TCP/IP based local area networks. The best known service provided by Usenet is Usenet News.
WinVN Documentation created by Jim Dumoulin / NASA - Kennedy Space Center.
HyperTexted by Michael Downs / NASA - Kennedy Space Center.