ITGS Syllabus

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Topic 134

features of a web browser by Wilanth James

A software application that enables a user to display and interact with text, images, and other information is a web browser. It is typically located on a web page at a website. Text and images on a web page contains hyperlinks to other web pages. Web browsers allow you to access information easily and quickly.

John Bottoms created the first browser, Silversmith, in 1987. It included an integrated indexer, full text searches, hypertext links between images text and sound and a return stack for use with hypertext links. It included features that are still not available in today's browsers. These include capabilities such as the ability to restrict searches within document structures, searches on indexed documents using wild cards and the ability to search on tag attribute values and attribute names.

Variations of different browsers are available, but the Microsoft Internet Explorer, Firefox and Netscape Navigator are the most popular. At one time, Netscape (now owned by AOL) and Microsoft invested so much money into their browsers that competitors found it hard to keep up. The battle between the two companies to dominate the market led to continual improvements to the software.

The browser has several buttons across the top of the browser window that allows you to navigate around sites as well. These buttons include the home button, the back and forward buttons, the stop button and the go menu.

No matter where you wander on the Web, the home button will bring you back to the home page you have specified in your Preferences. The back and forward button will take you forth through the pages you have visited, since starting up the browser program. The stop button allows you to stop an attempt to retrieve a page from a Web server.

If a page is loading very slowly, you may want to use the Stop button to change your mind and look at something else. The Go menu maintains a list of the pages you have visited since starting the browser program. You can go back to any of these pages by selecting their titles. This is more efficient than clicking on the Back button repeatedly. The Go menu is erased when you close your browser.

Under the toolbar, there is a box labeled "Location," "Go To," or "Address." This is where you type the URL of a website you want to visit. After you enter it, press the Return or Enter key to access the site. You can also do this by clicking on the "Go" or Arrow button to the right of the address box.

The menu bar is located along the top of the browser window. This bar offers a selection of things you can do with a web page, such as saving it to your hard drive or increasing the size of the text on a page. Many of the choices are the same as the buttons on the toolbar.

Netscape Navigator, Internet Explorer and Firefox have a small graphic in the upper right-hand corner of the browser. When this image is animated, it means that your browser software is accessing data from a server. The server can be located across town or on another continent. Your browser downloads these remote files to your computer, and then displays them on your screen. The speed of this process depends on a number of factors such as the speed of your connection, the size of the files you are downloading, how busy the server is and the traffic on the Internet.

At the bottom of your web browser there is the status bar. It displays the progress of web page transactions, such as the address of the site you are contacting, whether the host computer has been contacted and the size and number of the files to be downloaded.

Different browsers can be distinguished from each other by the features they support

features of a web browser by Nitish

A web browser is an application which allows users to view a webpage and interact with information on the WWW or a local machine.

Web browsers allow users to quickly view and access the information they need, and with ease. A user can open multiple instances of browsers, allowing him greater functionality and a wide range of options. Examples of web browsers include Firefox, Internet Explorer, Opera, etc.

Some features of web browsers are listed below:

- Support for most file formats, including flash, JPG, wmv, movies and lots more.

- Support for languages such as JAVA, ruby, php, etc.

- Enables real-time protection for the user, such as Popup blocker and phishing filter.

- Autocompletion of URLs.

- Bookmarking system so that the user can bookmark his favorite sites

- Tabbed Browsing (now in IE too) so that the user can open multiple instances of windows in the form of tabs, without actually opening a new window. This saves memory (RAM) and time.

- Filters such as Adblock (Firefox), phishing filter, popup blocker. It also includes restrictions such as not to execute javascript, or not to display images at all (to provide protection ofcourse, from malware and content which installs itself)

- Annoymity . Most browsers have a function called proxies. This enables the user to change his/her IP address so as to prevent restriction to whatsoever reason. For example, in, Japan is blocked from downloading stuff (THIS IS TRUE). So, if I use a proxy, this would help me get past the restriction.

- The best feature I would say is the prescence of RSS. RSS is a type of feed system which frequenty updates digital content, such as blogs. Most web browsers have RSS enabled. For example, if I sign up for a RSS feed of Yahoo news, then I would get live news updated frequenty. I have done this in the past.

- Speech Support. Most browsers have speech support, enabling the computer to READ what is written. This can be useful for the disabled who can’t use computers that well, or who are physically not able to read.

As we can see, web browsers are getting better. Who knows what will happen to the future web browsers. But for now, those are the features.

By Nitish Gautam
Sources –


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