by Duncan Underhill, Circa Design Mentorship Spring '17
This Tech Dictionary is compiled to help businesses understand the basic design jargon. Eighteen common words and phrases used to explain the design process are defined. Use this as a cheatsheet to communicate needs and intentions with designers.
/ bak-end də’zīn/ - noun
An application that supports the front-end services and allow them to function effectvly. Back-end applications typically consist of three parts: a server, an application and a database.
/brand däkyəmənt/ - noun
A document containing an in-depth look into the company such as the brand guidelines, style guides, and core values. A brand document allows designers and investors to get an understanding of the company and its direction.
/cmyk/ - noun
CMYK is an acronym for Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Black which are the four inks utilized in color printing. Images or files saved in CMYK modes provide more accurate colors and a higher quality print when using a printer or similar services.
/eps/ - noun
Encapsulated PostScript is a post script image that is used when transferring image files between various graphic or design programs. The EPS file stores vector images and fonts. A EPS file is identified by the extension .eps.
/ frənt-end də’zīn/ - noun
/gif/ - noun
GIF, Graphics Interchange Format, is a widely used file type mainly used for its capability to support animation. A GIF file is identified by the extension .gif.
/hōsting/ - noun
A service provided by a variety of companies allowing individuals or other companies to view their cites on the Internet. Website will be hosted, and stored by the companies on servers.
/’ilə’strādər/ - noun
An application that is part of the Adobe Creative suite and is the industry standard for creating vector graphics. Illustrator is a vector based program allowing designers to create logos, images, and shapes that are scalable to any size without any loss of resolution.
/’in-də’zīn/ - noun
An application that is part of the Adobe Creative suite and is the industry standard for page layout. InDesign allows designers to seamlessly layout text and images for formatting documents or designing pages.
/’jāpeg’/ - noun
Joint Photographic Experts Group, is a commonly used method of lossy compression for digital images, particularly for those images produced by digital photography. JPEG is the most common image format used by digital cameras as well as on the World Wide web.
/’m.k ‘əp/ - noun
A working sample for reviewing format, layout, or content. Mockups allow images or designs to be shown digitally on the desired medium for easy visualization.
/’fōdō-SH.p/ - noun
An application that is part of the Adobe Creative suite and is the leader in photo manipulation software. Photoshop is a pixel based program that allows designer to edit, combine, and distort photos in order to create unique images.
’p’ŋg/ - noun
Portable Network Graphics are the most widely used lossless image compression format on the Internet. PNG files support transparent backgrounds. PNG files were made to transfer images on the web and should not be used for high quality prints. A PNG file is identified by the extension .png.
responsive website design
/rə’sp.nsiv web də’zīn / - noun
An approach to web design allowing desktop webpages to be viewed in various sizes such as that of phones or tablets. RWD focuses on allowing a webpage to receive the same support on any device.
/rgb/ - noun
RGB is an acronym for Red, Green, and Blue and is the standard color mode for web production. RGB uses lights tinted in these three colors in order to create a variety of colors on screens and other devices. RGB color should be used for web related projects and not for print.
search engine optimization
/sərCH ‘enjən ,.ptəmə’zāSHən/ - noun
A process used to maximize the number of visitors to a given website. SEO accomplishes this by moving the site higher on the returned list from search engines.
/’vektər ‘grafik/ - noun
Vectors are images or shapes comprised of paths not pixels. This allows vector graphics to be scaled to any size without losing resolution. These graphics are typically created in programs such as Adobe Illustrator and should be utilized for logos or icons.
/’wī(ə)r’frām/ - noun
Wireframes are an image or set of images that illustrate the layout and functionality of a website or page. Wireframes function as a way for designers to map out the website and receive feedback or edits from the client before development begins.