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Glossary of terms used on this site

There are 47 entries in this glossary.
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bit rate

in essence, a measure of how many bits describes each sound in an audio file. A low bit rate means lower quality and a smaller file size, while a high bit rate means better quality and larger files. The standard bit rate is 128 kbps.


An area of memory (usually on your hard drive) that is shared by two enabling processes, which run at different speeds to sync up with each other. For example, a buffer designed for streaming audio helps a patchy data stream from a server sound consistent when played by your computer's audio software.


The process by which streaming audio and video saves data in advance of playing it. Programs such as RealPlayer or Windows Media Player will download a part of the video or audio stream before starting to play, then continue the downloading as the stream plays. If the playing catches up to the end of the buffer, the stream will pause while further buffering occurs.

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