What is the Internet, and how do I use it?
The Internet is a virtual library packed with useful information. No one owns the Internet, making it practically impossible to govern or secure every site. So along with the helpful information, keep in mind that some content may appear inappropriate to some users.
When you access the Internet through a Personal Computer (PC), a device called a modem will dial and connect to the network. (It’s like using the telephone to dial a friend). The network connection that the modem makes is delivered by an Internet Service Provider (ISP).
Some examples of ISPs include:
These providers usually offer extra services besides Internet usage. These services may include email, stock quotes, entertainment, news, etc.
Costs vary among service providers, so you may want to research your area for local ISPs that offer reasonable rates. Local ISPs sometimes offer lower cost, no-frills access to the Internet.
Once you have connected to your ISP, you may begin to connect to other sites by typing a specific Internet address. You can type a specific address (www.nccommerce.com) in the Location or Address window of your browser’s toolbar. You may also type the address by going to File and then Open or Open Page.
The server should dial and connect you to that site. If you are unable to connect to the site, the server of that site may be "down" or otherwise not in use. If the problem persists, you may need to contact your network administrator who oversees connections between your server and other servers.
Rather than using a specific Internet address, you may want to "surf" the worldwide Web (www). Surfing the Web simply means the user chooses a search engine and provides a key word or phrase that describes the information for which they are interested in receiving. The user can choose a search engine by selecting Search or Net Search at your toolbar.
Some examples of search engines include:
Search engines will locate all sites that contain the word or phrase that you have provided. You may need to separately search two or three search engines before finding the information that you have requested. You may also choose a site like Dogpile that simultaneously searches all the major search engines.
Utilizing quotations when providing a search engine with a keyword ("green") or phrase ("shades of green") will narrow your search. Using coordinating conjunctions such as "and" and "or" will narrow your search further.
For example, if you wanted to find information on mixing colors to form the color green, you may want to ask the search engine to find all sites containing the words ("green and shades of green"). If you wanted to narrow further, you could request that the search engine find all sites containing the words ("green or blue and yellow").