BT glossary - E

This glossary is here to help you understand some of the acronyms you may encounter in this site. Select a letter below that your word begins with.

A    B    C    D    E    F    G    H    I    J    K    L    M    N    O    P    Q    R    S    T    U    V    W    X    Y
Abbreviation Term Definition

e- (prefix)

Electronic or online (for instance an e-zine is an online magazine published only in an electronic form).



European designation for 2.048 Mbit/s services like MegaStream. The USA equivalent is T1 (1.544 Mbit/s). see T-carrier and T1.






In contrast to e-business, electronic commerce (e-commerce for short) is a precise term referring specifically to the technique of automating and simplifying routine commercial transactions such as orders, invoices and electronic payments. These are transmitted via the internet and early adopters are already discovering the savings to be made by handling routine business-to-business deals in this way. See also Mobile Commerce.


Electromagnetic compatibility

Broadly means equipment using electronics or that's electrically powered. Should be able to operate without being interfered with, or interfering with, other, usually neighbouring equipment.


Electromagnetic interference

An alias for this term is 'RFI' or 'RF' or 'induced noise'. In sensitive and/or badly designed equipment, EMI can cause serious malfunctions or loss of control. EMC aims to prevent this ever happening.


Electronic catalogues

Holding product information in electronic form and providing easy to use search tools.


Electronic Data Interchange

The process of automating the exchange of business information such as purchase orders, delivery notes and invoices over a data network.


Electronic mail

Messages containing text and possibly also image, sound, video and programs, are sent from one user to another using electronic transmission. The technique is widely used to send memos, reports and other documents from desktop to desktop by way of the internet.


Electronics Industry Association



Electronics Industry Association of Japan




A symbol used in a graphical user interface on a computer to indicate human feeling.



The transformation of plain text information into an unreadable secret code or cipher text. Encryption is used to ensure the security of all electronic transactions. It is the foundation stone providing the confidence on which all kinds of e-business rely.


Enterprise Information System

In the 1980s, EIS stood for executive information system, a specialist computer application for management support. Used mainly in large corporations but failed because executives found it too hard to use. Now reborn in the 1990s as enterprise information system and largely similar.



Used to ensure the security of all electronic transactions. It is the foundation stone providing the confidence on which all kinds of e-business rely.



Ethernet is the standard way of connecting computers and devices over a local area network (LAN) in the home or workplace. Recent computers will be factory fitted with an Ethernet card and socket. Ethernet cables linking computers and devices should not extend further than 100 metres.


European Computer Manufacturers Association.

An industry association. Now known as the European Association for Standardisation of Information & Communication Systems.


European Free Trade Area

Includes Norway, Sweden, Finland, Switzerland.


European Telecomm-unications Standard

These standards are laid down by the European Telecommunication Standards Institute (ETSI).


European Telecomm-unications Standards Institute

A pan-European standards-making body based in France. Many ETSI standards are now being adopted world-wide.


European Union

The 'new' name for the European Economic Community.


eXtensible Markup Language

(Extensible mark-up language) - defines an extremely simple dialect of SGML suitable for use on the WWW.



There are two definitions of an extranet. (i) A virtual intranet. Companies desiring an intranet but not having the internal bearer network on which to provide it, can look to an external service provider to supply it (rather like a Virtual Private Network in telephony). (ii) Two or more autonomous and separately owned intranets, connected together in order to form an extended intranet. For example, a car manufacturer and its suppliers may each have their own Intranets, accessible only to their respective employees. By allowing transfer of information or interconnectivity between these intranets - say, to link the teams from each company that are working together on a common project - an extranet is formed. Access to an extranet can be limited in a number of ways - for example, by usercode and password or by using a digital certification service like BT Trustwise.