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  • Object-oriented technology The art and science of manipulating data, like programming, in the form of "objects", streamlining ways of identifying and addressing business problems and creating applications. Its applications are built up from objects containing both information and the intelligence needed to process that data in a single unit; particularly useful in workgroups where it lets a document contain its own security and routing information. Standards are being discussed by several bodies including the Object Management Group with its Object Management Architecture. Dogged by acronyms and competing methodologies, object technology is a growing phenomenon.
  • OC-1 Optical Carrier level 1 The lowest optical transmission rate in the incipient Sonet standard at 51.48Mbit/s.
  • OC-3 Optical Carrier level 3. The second fastest optical rate in the incipient Sonet standard at 155.52Mbit/s.
  • OCR (Optical Character Recognition) Software converting scanned images of documents into text files which can be wordprocessed.
  • Octet A grouping of eight bits in packet switched networks similar, but not identical to, a byte.

  • ODBC (Open Database Connectivity) Non-proprietary programming SQL interface specified by Microsoft for database connectivity. It offers access to a variety of PC, minicomputer and mainframe systems, plus Apple networks.
  • ODLI (Open Data Link Interface) A Novell technique similar in concept to Microsoft's NDIS, it enables PC adapter cards to support ODLI and so run multiple protocols to access various implementations of NetWare.
  • ODS Microsoft's Open Data Services: the part of Wosa supporting access from Microsoft's SQL Server to a wide range of data sources and formats, including information from major mainframe databases.
  • OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) The maker of equipment marketed by another vendor, usually under the name of the reseller. The OEM may make only certain components or complete devices, which can then be configured with software and/or hardware by the reseller.
  • OFSTP optical fiber system test procedure
  • OLE, OLE2 (Object Linking and Embedding) A Microsoft specification for implementing object-oriented software developments. An improved form of DDE, it adopts a layered approach and allows a file or program to be embedded as an object in another file. OLE2 (the most recent version) and ODBC drivers altered without affecting core software software applications from different vendors to be accessed seamlessly. More and more organizations are adopting this set-up.
  • ONMA (Open Network Management Architecture) IBM's network management architecture comprised of Entry Points, Service Points and Focal Points - implemented as NetView.
  • OPC OLE for Process Control
  • OS/2 An operating system devised by Microsoft and IBM for PCs based on Intel's 80286 and 80386 microprocessors. It supports multi-tasking and programs needing more than 640kbytes of memory, as well as program to program communications. It is a building block on which to base distributed processing. OS/2.2 is the current version. OS/2 EE (Extended Edition) - IBM's extended version of the original OS/2 with enhanced communications facilities.

  • OSF (Open Software Foundation) A consortium of hardware manufacturers aimed at setting common standards for open systems, including operating systems and networks. The OSF has defined the Distributed Computing Environment.
  • OSI Basic Reference Model (Open Systems Interconnection Reference Model) An architectural model describing how communications can be achieved between different vendors' systems. It is a logical structure for network operations standardized within ISO and containing seven primary layers. It enables any OSI compliant computer or device to communicate with other OS 1-compliant equipment. The seven Layers, starting with the lowest are the Physical, Data Link, Network, Transport, Session, Presentation and Applications.
  • OSN (Office Systems Node) An IBM concept describing a set of functions and services provided to connected nodes in an IBM office system. OSN has a central role in a Document Interchange Architecture-defined office system. Office systems with more limited IBM function sets are termed Source or Recipient Nodes. A typical OSN is a host computer running software as the IBM Distributed Office Support System (Dioss), while an SRN is typically a text-processing PC. A user at a workstation, through the use of commands defined in DIA, can request an OSN to supply document library, document distribution, fiber transfer and applications processing services. DIA enables an SNA network to build an office systems network with multiple remote locations sharing an OSN.
  • OSPF (Open Shortest Path First) A dynamic routing protocol based on a shortest path first algorithm, better suited to larger networks than RIP.
  • Out-of-Band signaling An extra signal transmitted alongside the information signal to monitor and control the transmission. It uses a separate channel of the LAN and allows network management devices to access LAN devices even when the LAN itself is not functioning, so providing an additional layer of resilience.

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