Web Browser Essay

Web Browser is a software application for retrieving, presenting, and traversing information resources on the World Wide Web. An information resource is identified by a Uniform Resource Identifier (URI) and may be a web page, image, video, or other piece of content. [1] Hyperlinks present in resources enable users to easily navigate their browsers to related resources. Although browsers are primarily intended to access the World Wide Web, they can also be used to access information provided by Web servers in private networks or files in file systems. Some browsers can be also used to save information resources to file systems.

Function The primary purpose of a web browser is to bring information resources to the user. This process begins when the user inputs a Uniform Resource Identifier (URI), for example http://en. wikipedia. org/, into the browser. The prefix of the URI determines how the URI will be interpreted. The most commonly used kind of URI starts with http: and identifies a resource to be retrieved over the Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP). Many browsers also support a variety of other prefixes, such as https: for HTTPS, ftp: for the File Transfer Protocol, and file: for local files.

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Prefixes that the web browser cannot directly handle are often handed off to another application entirely. For example, mailto: URIs are usually passed to the user’s default e-mail application, and news: URIs are passed to the user’s default newsgroup reader. In the case of http, https, file, and others, once the resource has been retrieved the web browser will display it. HTML is passed to the browser’s layout engine to be transformed from markup to an interactive document. Aside from HTML, web browsers can generally display any kind of content that can be part of a web page.

Most browsers can display images, audio, video, and XML files, and often have plug-ins to support Flash applications and Java applets. Upon encountering a file of an unsupported type or a file that is set up to be downloaded rather than displayed, the browser prompts the user to save the file to disk. Interactivity in a web page can also be supplied by Javascript, which usually does not require a plugin. Javascript can be used along with other technologies to allow “live” interaction with the web page’s server via AJAX. Information resources may contain hyperlinks to other information resources.

Each link contains the URI of a resource to go to. When a link is clicked, the browser navigates to the resource indicated by the link’s target URI, and the process of bringing content to the user begins again. Features Available web browsers range in features from minimal, text-based user interfaces with bare-bones support for HTML to rich user interfaces supporting a wide variety of file formats and protocols. Browsers which include additional components to support e-mail, Usenet news, and Internet Relay Chat (IRC), are sometimes referred to as “Internet suites” rather than merely “web browsers”. 5][6][7] All major web browsers allow the user to open multiple information resources at the same time, either in different browser windows or in different tabs of the same window. Major browsers also include pop-up blockers to prevent unwanted windows from “popping up” without the user’s consent. [8][9][10][11] Most web browsers can display a list of web pages that the user has bookmarked so that the user can quickly return to them. Bookmarks are also called “Favorites” in Internet Explorer. In addition, all major web browsers have some form of built-in web feed aggregator.

In Mozilla Firefox, web feeds are formatted as “live bookmarks” and behave like a folder of bookmarks corresponding to recent entries in the feed. [12] In Opera, a more traditional feed reader is included which stores and displays the contents of the feed. [13] Furthermore, most browsers can be extended via plug-ins, downloadable components that provide additional features. User interface Most major web browsers have these user interface elements in common:[14] Back and forward buttons to go back to the previous resource and forward again. A refresh or reload button to reload the current resource.

A stop button to cancel loading the resource. In some browsers, the stop button is merged with the reload button. A home button to return to the user’s home page An address bar to input the Uniform Resource Identifier (URI) of the desired resource and display it. A search bar to input terms into a search engine A status bar to display progress in loading the resource and also the URI of links when the cursor hovers over them, and page zooming capability. Major browsers also possess incremental find features to search within a web page. [edit] Privacy and security

Most browsers support HTTP Secure and offer quick and easy ways to delete the web cache, cookies, and browsing history. For a comparison of the current security vulnerabilities of browsers, see comparison of web browsers. [edit] Standards support Early web browsers supported only a very simple version of HTML. The rapid development of proprietary web browsers led to the development of non-standard dialects of HTML, leading to problems with interoperability. Modern web browsers support a combination of standards-based and de facto HTML and XHTML, which should be rendered in the same way by all browsers.

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