What Is the Difference Between the World Wide Web and the
Many people think of the World Wide Web and the Internet as the same thing. But the Web is
actually only part of the Internet. What distinguishes information on the Web from other
information on the Internet is the way it is formatted. Web pages can be read on virtually any
kind of computer that can access the Internet. Bold text or tables, for instance, can be displayed
as easily on a Macintosh as on a Windows computer or a UNIX workstation. Similarly,
computers can read and follow the links between documents on the Web, making it possible for
documents to be linked to each other—the characteristic that gives the Web its name. You could
be using a computer in Dallas, for instance, to read a document stored on a computer in
Toronto. By clicking on a link, you could read a document or view a graphic stored on a
computer in Zurich or Tel Aviv or Hong Kong.
How Can I Read a Web Page?
Web pages are read using Web browsers, which are much like word processors. You can open
Web pages, search for text on the pages, copy text from them, print them, and save them to
your own computer. Most Web browsers, such as Firefox, Safari, Camino, and Internet Explorer,
contain built-in electronic mail programs, newsgroup readers, and conferencing software so that
you can converse with other members of the Internet community.
How Does My Computer Know Where to Find a Web Page?
Every page on the Web has an Internet address, technically known as a Uniform Resource Locator, or URL. URLs identify
document being read, the computer on which the page is stored, the location of the page on the computer, and the name o
containing the page. The URL of this guide is http://www.bedfordstmartins.com/researchroom/websearch/index.asp:
is the protocol that your Web browser will use to access a particular kind of information on the Web. In this c
indicates that the source uses hypertext transfer protocol. Other protocols include gopher (used to access Gopher
(used to transfer files from one computer to another), and telnet (used to run programs on another computer on the
is the name of the computer on which the page is stored. The .com extension on the en
name of the computer indicates that the computer is in the Internet "domain" that supports commercial or business
the Internet. Other domains include .gov (government), .edu (education), .net (Internet infrastructure), .museum
(museums), .biz (business), .info (a generic extension for any form of information), and .org (typically nonprofit orga