Name Description
P2P Stands for "Peer to Peer." In a P2P network, the "peers" are computer systems which are connected to each other via the Internet. Files can be shared directly between systems on the network without the need of a central server. In other words, each computer on a P2P network becomes a file server as well as a client.
PAL: PAL (Phase Alternate Line) is the dominant format in the World for analog television broadcasting and video display and is based on a 625 line, 50 field/25 frames a second, 50HZ system. The signal is interlaced, like NTSC into two fields, composed of 312 lines each.
Parallel Port: This interface is found on the back of older PCs and is used for connecting external devices such as printers or a scanners. It uses a 25-pin connector (DB-25) and is rather large compared to most new interfaces. The parallel port is sometimes called a Centronics interface, since Centronics was the company that designed the original parallel port standard. It is sometimes also referred to as a printer port because the printer is the device most commonly attached to the parallel port. 
Partition: A partition is a section of a hard disk. When you format a hard disk, you can usually choose the number of partitions you want. The computer will recognize each partition as a separate disk, and each will show up under "My Computer" (Windows) or on the desktop (Macintosh).
Password: A password is a string of characters used for authenticating a user on a computer system. For example, you may have an account on your computer that requires you to log in. In order to successfully access your account, you must provide a valid username and password. This combination is often referred to as a login. While usernames are generally public information, passwords are private to each user.
Paste: The paste function can be used to paste copied data into text documents, images, Web browser address fields, and just about any place where you can enter data. However, to paste data, you first need to copy it to the "Clipboard," which is a temporary storage area in your system's memory, or RAM. This is done by first selecting the data you want to copy and then choosing "Copy" from the program's Edit menu.
PC: Stands for "Personal computer." PCs are are what most of us use on a daily basis for work or personal use. A typical PC includes a system unit, monitor, keyboard, and mouse. Most PCs today also have a network or Internet connection, as well as ports for connecting peripheral devices, such as digital cameras, printers, scanners, speakers, external hard drives, and other components.
PCI Express: PCI Express can be abbreviated as PCIe or, less commonly and more confusingly, PCX. Unlike earlier PCI standards, PCI Express does not use a parallel bus structure, but instead is a network of serial connections controlled by a hub on the computer's motherboard. This enables PCI Express cards to run significantly faster than previous PCI cards.
PCI: Stands for "Peripheral Component Interconnect." It is a hardware bus designed by Intel and used in both PCs and Macs. Most add-on cards such as SCSI, Firewire, and USB controllers, use a PCI connection. Some graphics cards use PCI, but most new graphics cards connect to the AGP slot. PCI slots are found in the back of your computer and are about 3.5" long and about 0.5" high. So before you go buy that Firewire expansion card, make sure you have at least one PCI slot available.
PCMCIA: Stands for "Personal Computer Memory Card International Association. The term is most commonly associated with the actual cards standardized by the organization. These cards are referred to as "PCMCIA cards," or simply "PC cards." There are three types of PCMCIA cards, all of which are rectangular and measure 8.56 by 5.4 cm., but have different widths:
\n·         Type I: up to 3.3 mm. thick, mainly used to add additional ROM or RAM.
\n·         Type II: up to 5.5 mm. thick, typically used for fax/modem cards.
\n·         Type III: up to 10.5 mm. thick, often used to attach portable disk drives.
\nPCMCIA slots also come in three sizes -- a Type I slot can hold one Type I card, a Type II slot can hold one Type II card or two Type I cards, and a Type III slot can hold one Type III card or one Type I and one Type II card. PC Cards can be removed or inserted "on the fly," which means you don't have to turn your computer off to exchange them and you don't have to restart for your computer to recognize them.
PDF: Stands for "Portable Document Format." PDF is a multi-platform file format developed by Adobe Systems. A PDF file captures document text, fonts, images, and even formatting of documents from a variety of applications. You can e-mail a PDF document to your friend and it will look the same way on his screen as it looks on yours, even if he has a Mac and you have a PC. Since PDFs contain color-accurate information, they should also print the same way they look on your screen.
Peripheral: A computer peripheral is any external device that provides input and output for the computer. For example, a keyboard and mouse are input peripherals, while a monitor and printer are output peripherals. Computer peripherals, or peripheral devices, are sometimes called "I/O devices" because they provide input and output for the computer. Some peripherals, such as external hard drives, provide both input and output for the computer.
Ping: A ping is a test to see if a system on the Internet is working. "Pinging" a server tests and records the response time of the server. Pinging multiple computers can be helpful in finding Internet bottlenecks, so that data transfer paths can be rerouted a more efficient way.
Pixel Density: Pixel Density is the actual amount of physical picture elements on a screen surface or an LCD/DLP projection chip. LCD/DLP projectors have a fixed number of pixels on their chips and LCD/Plasma TVs have a fixed number of pixels on their screen surface.
Pixel: The term "pixel" is actually short for "Picture Element." These small little dots are what make up the images on computer displays, whether they are flat-screen (LCD) or tube (CRT) monitors. The screen is divided up into a matrix of thousands or even millions of pixels. Typically, you cannot see the individual pixels, because they are so small. If you set your monitor to a low resolution, such as 640x480 and look closely at your screen, you will may be able to see the individual pixels. As you may have guessed, a resolution of 640x480 is comprised of a matrix of 640 by 480 pixels, or 307,200 in all.
PLA Filament: Polyactic Acid (PLA), is another 3D filament which prints at 180 - 200 degrees C without a heated bed. Usually smells sweeter than ABS when printing.
Plasma TV: A Plasma television is a type of Flat Panel video display device.
\nPlasma television technology is based loosely on the fluorescent light bulb. The display itself consists of cells. Within each cell two glass panels are separated by a narrow gap in which neon-xenon gas is injected and sealed in plasma form during the manufacturing process. The gas is electrically charged at specific intervals when the Plasma set is in use. The charged gas then strikes red, green, and blue phosphors, thus creating a television image. Each group of red, green, and blue phosphors is called a pixel (picture element).
Plenum Cable: The term “Plenum Cabling” refers to structured cabling laid in the plenum of buildings (the space where air circulation – heating and air conditioning systems – are facilitated.) It has a slow-burning, fire-resistant casing.
Plug and Play: Plug and Play, sometimes, abbreviated PnP, is a catchy phrase used to describe devices that work with a computer system as soon as they are connected. The user does not have to manually install drivers for the device or even tell the computer that a new device has been added. Instead the computer automatically recognizes the device, loads new drivers for the hardware if needed, and begins to work with the newly connected device.
PoE: Power over Ethernet. The delivery of power to a remote device using the same cable lines used to deliver Ethernet data. This enables a single cable to provide both data and power to devices.
Port: This is a number that indicates what kind of protocol a server on the Internet is using. For example, Web servers typically are listed on port 80. Web browsers use this port by default when accessing Web pages, but you can also specify what port you would like to use in the URL like this: FTP uses port 21, e-mail uses port 25, and game servers, like a Quake server or use various other ports.
Power Amplifier: In home theater and stereo system applications, a power amplifier is a type of amplifier that supplies power to a speaker or speakers, but does not have any other functions, except for a master gain control (gain is analogous to volume). In other to provide further control, such as surround sound processing, bass and treble control, and input selection, for a power amplifier, a preamplifier must be used.
Power Cycle: To power cycle a device means to turn it off and turn it back on again. For example, the user manual of a router may ask you to power cycle the router if it stops responding. This may mean switching the power to OFF and then ON again or may require physically unplugging the device and then plugging it back in again. Power cycling is often synonymous with resetting a device.
Power Supply: A power supply is a component that regulates and provides power to an electrical device. It receives power from a wall outlet, battery pack, or other electrical source and converts the current and voltage to the correct amount required by the connected device. Most computers have internal power supplies, while other devices may use external power supplies that are attached directly to the power cable.
PPPoE: PPPoE is short for "Point-to-Point Protocol over Ethernet. It is a protocol commonly used by DSL providers for establishing a PPP connection over an Ethernet network. PPPoE is often seen as an alternative to DHCP, which is the standard network configuration used by cable Internet providers.
PRAM: Stands for "Parameter Random Access Memory”, PRAM is a type of memory found in Macintosh computers that stores system settings. These settings include display settings (like screen resolution and color depth), the time zone setting, speaker volume, and the startup volume choice. The system settings that are stored in the computer's PRAM differ from Mac to Mac, but the purpose of the memory remains the same.
Preamplifier: A Preamplifier is a device in which the user can connect all audio or audio/video source components (such as CD, DVD, or Blu-ray Disc players). The preamplifier then can switch between sources, process audio and/or video, but also supplies an audio output signal to what is referred to as a Power Amplifier. The Power Amplifier then supplies the signal and power needed to the loudspeakers. In other words, you cannot connect speakers directly to a preamplifier, unless they are self-powered speakers.
\nIn home theater, preamplifiers may also be referred to as Control Amplifiers, AV Processors, AV Preamps, or Preamp/Processors due their increasing role in providing both audio decoding/processing and video processing/upscaling capabilities.
Printer: A printer is an output device that prints documents from a computer. Common printers include inkjet and laser printers. Most inkjet printers can produce color prints, while laser printers are available in both monochrome and color versions. To print a document, select "Print" from the File menu within an application
Processor: This little chip is the heart of a computer. Also referred to as the "microprocessor," the processor does all the computations such as adding, subtracting, multiplying, and dividing. For computers, the most popular microprocessor used is the Intel Pentium chip and the AMD chip.
Program: Program is a common computer term that can be used as both a noun and a verb. A program (noun) is executable software that runs on a computer. It is similar to a script, but is often much larger in size and does not require a scripting engine to run. Instead, a program consists of compiled code that can run directly from the computer's operating system.
Progressive Scan: Progressive scan is a system in which images are displayed on a screen by scanning each line (or row of pixels) in a sequential order rather than an alternate order, as is done with interlaced scan.
\nIn other words, in progressive scan, the image lines (or pixel rows) are scanned in numerical order (1,2,3) down the screen from top to bottom, instead of in an alternate order (lines or rows 1,3,5, etc... followed by lines or rows 2,4,6).
\nBy progressively scanning the image onto a screen every 60th of a second rather than "interlacing" alternate lines every 30th of a second, a smoother, more detailed, image can be produced on the screen that is perfectly suited for viewing fine details, such as text, and is also less susceptible to interlace flicker.