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absolute path
aka "full path", a complete, unambiguous pathname, as opposed to a relative path.  The absolute path of a local file or folder begins with a drive-letter, followed by ":\".  UNC paths are another form of absolute path that is available in a networked (LAN) environment, and URLs are a kind of absolute path used in an Internet/intranet environment.
active control
the currently selected control, such as a text data entry field, checkbox, or command button with the focus, or a Shortcut that has just been clicked.
active window
the foremost window or form with the current focus, whose title bar is typically highlighted.
a Microsoft Windows programming technology for special types of controls that can be used to incorporate features from one application into another, based on Microsoft's Component Object Model (COM).  For example the WebBrowser ActiveX control allows applications to utilize browser windows based on Internet Explorer's core programs.
application intelligence
logic that uses application-specific knowledge to provide enhancements that can not be achieved entirely through generic features.  Montage uses application intelligence to do a better job of launching and detecting applications, and to provide extended state-saving and restoration capabilities.  For example, Montage understands and uses the COM capabilities of certain applications, and Montage employs an internal database of application-specific launching and detection parameters, some of which can be manually overridden via its Advanced Properties page.
in the Windows operating system, an association is defined through the registry, telling the Windows Shell to associate a particular program with a particular filename extension.  Thus, for example NOTEPAD.EXE might be the default program to open .TXT documents, and one would use MONTAGE3.EXE to open .MO3 files (montages).  When Windows doesn't know what to associate with a given extension, it prompts you to point it to the right program.  You can review and change associations through Window Explorer's Folder Options dialog.
(as opposed to synchronous) describes an activity that proceeds concurrently, independent of the state of progress of another activity.  For example, most separate Windows applications are running at the same time in asynchronous processes.
a Montage Shortcut feature whereby the presence of the target application window is automatically detected and monitored, even though it was not launched by this Shortcut.  An Auto-detected Shortcut has a distinctive mode of highlighting, and it can be used to control the target window, even though this Shortcut doesn't "own" the target.  This capability is particularly useful for exclusive document applications.  For example Montage uses auto-detection in Shortcuts to other montages, and a variation called lazy auto-detection for Shortcuts to Word documents.
basic access authentication
a widely supported Internet protocol for identifying a visitor before granting or denying access to password-protected web resources.  All popular browsers support this protocol, typically by displaying a login dialog requesting username and password, with an option to "remember" these credentials on future visits.  Montage's facility for dynamic fetching of content from password-protected sites uses basic access authentication programmatically, without requiring any user interaction,  For added security, basic access authentication can be combined with a secure communications protocol, i.e. using HTTPS URLs.
browser frames
divisions of a browser window into sub-windows, each called a frame, sometimes separated by movable bar to adjust their sizing.  (The Montage web site and Help file support an optional framed mode of viewing, which can be turned off by clicking on an unframe link.)
a temporary local repository of data whose function is to transparently speed up access to frequently used items, which would otherwise have to be obtained in a much more costly manner.  For example, Internet Explorer and other browsers rely on a cache of recently referenced web pages and images to avoid the expense of repeatedly retrieving the same files across the Internet.  Montage uses a similar but somewhat different scheme from conventional caching in its dynamic Internet fetching capability, to achieve comparable improvements in performance.  Montage also uses a sort of icons cache to avoid incurring the overhead of determining and extracting icon resources more than once.  The Windows operating system itself also makes extensive use of caching to reduce the need for disk accesses by keeping recently used portions of files in memory.  When Windows write-caching is enabled, there is a greater risk of file corruption in the event of a computer failure, so it is advisable to save your files and ensure that the cache is "flushed" on a regular basis.
something that is created by, contained in, or "owned" by a parent, in some sense.  For example a child window typically means a window that is inside another window (its parent), and a child application is one that was launched by a parent application.  In programming, the concept of parent-child relationships means that each entity has at most one parent, but a parent may have any number of children.
class identifier (CLSID)
a type of unique identifier, used in the Windows Registry, to refer to special system folders (among other things).  A class identifier may be written as a series of numbers (actually hexadecimal digits) surrounded by curly braces, prefixed by a double colon.  For example ::{20D04FE0-3AEA-1069-A2D8-08002B30309D} is the CLSID syntax that represents "My Computer".  Pathnames may also be constructed from a series of such class IDs, separated by backslashes, for example ::{20D04FE0-3AEA-1069-A2D8-08002B30309D}\::{21EC2020-3AEA-1069-A2DD-08002B30309D} represents the Windows Control Panel.  Note that some CLSIDs are universal, some depend upon the version of Windows or a particular application, and others are completely unique to your machine.  Montage supports the CLSID syntax (as well as other forms of pathnames) in its Shortcut target specifications.
(See Windows Clipboard.)
Component Object Model (COM)
Microsoft's broad architecture for inter-operability between applications running in the 32-bit Windows programming environment.  COM objects, including ActiveX controls, can provide a convenient way of exchanging information and directly controlling one application from another.  One of the aspects of Montage's application intelligence is its awareness of the specific COM capabilities of certain applications, and its ability to use these COM interfaces appropriately.
a programming term for just about any object on screen other than a form or other type of window.  For example, textboxes, images, and Montage Shortcuts are types of controls.
context menu
a popup menu that appears when you right-click over an object on the screen.  This is also sometimes referred to as a "shortcut menu", but we avoid that terminology so as not to further confuse the concept of shortcuts.  The Montage menu system includes both a main menu and a number of context menus.
context-sensitive help
the ability to obtain help from within an application, where one is taken directly to the appropriate topic related to the current context.  In Montage this is supported through the F1 key, the menus, and the "What's this?" help facility (e.g. in the Shortcut Properties dialog).  Note that the functioning of Montage's context-sensitive help features depend upon proper installation of VFP's runtime support of HTML Help.
current context
the state of having a certain selected or active object, for example imparting the focus to a selected Shortcut, active window, or a particular control within the active form.  When there is no active form or control, the current context is the Desktop.  This determines the subject of context-sensitive help (F1) and other main menu commands, e.g. Help, Context Menu (F11), which make reference to the current something.
refers to a Montage Desktop window when used in proper case (i.e. with the first letter capitalized), as contrasted to the Windows desktop (i.e. your entire computer screen), when this term is specified in lower case.  A Montage Desktop is actually a top-level window residing within the main Windows desktop.
determining that an application that has been launched, and correctly identifying its main window, so it can be monitored and controlled.  Due to intricacies of the Windows programming environment, instancing complications, and the fact that many applications are not well-behaved, detection is a non-trivial problem for application launchers.  Montage employs general heuristics, coupled with application intelligence to achieve reliable detection over a wide range of applications.  Montage also supports a feature called auto-detection, where some types of pre-existing openings are automatically detected, as indicated by a distinctive highlighting of their Shortcuts.
a feature supported by Windows and most modern Windows applications, enabling objects to be moved, copied, linked, or opened with a simple mouse action.  In the most basic form of dragging and dropping, the left mouse button is depressed over a source object, which is then dragged while holding down the mouse button, and finally dropped onto a target object by releasing the mouse button.  Special key combinations may be supported to indicate the choice of copying (typically via the Ctrl key), moving, linking, or performing other types of transfer operations.  Generally you can cancel a drag-and-drop while it's in progress by pressing the Esc key, or clicking the other mouse button.

Another mode of dragging and dropping uses the right mouse button instead of the left one.  In this case, a context menu appears when you perform the drop (i.e. release the right mouse button).  This gives you an opportunity to choose the desired operation, or Cancel, without having to touch the keyboard.  Montage supports both modes of dragging and dropping Shortcuts.
dynamic fetching
the capability of automatically retrieving missing files from across the Internet, based on the existence of a corresponding .URL type of link.  If such a link exists, it indicates the file is fetchable from the specified URL.  Montage supports dynamic Internet fetching for its wallpapers, icons, and target files.
dynamic Shortcut property
a Montage Shortcut parameter that has been defined in terms of a functional expression, rather than a literal value.  When the value of a Shortcut property (for example the target, arguments, or directory) is specified with a leading equals sign (=), the remainder in treated as a Visual FoxPro (VFP) expression, which can include built-in VFP functions, user-defined functions, and other types of internal variable and function references.  This is an advanced feature (unique to Montage) that can be useful as a way of increasing portability, as well as providing greater flexibility and power in general.
environment variable
a symbolic substitution that can be used (in some contexts) to construct pathnames and command lines.  Some environment variables are pre-defined, some are Windows version-dependent, and they can also be user-defined, e.g. via the SET command in a DOS window.  The percent (%) character acts as a delimiter when expanding a string of text containing environment variables.  For example the string "%windir%\EXPLORER.EXE" typically would expand to "C:\WINDOWS\EXPLORER.EXE", because there exists a standard environment variable named windir, which is automatically initialized to the path of the main Windows directory on your machine.  On some machines, the result may be different, because the Windows directory path might be C:\WINNT, or something else.  Montage supports the use of reserved environment variables (M3_ICONDIR, M3_SAMPDIR, and M3_AUTHDBF) to specify some of its global configuration options.  Environment variables also can be used in specifying basic Montage Shortcut properties, not only as a convenient abbreviation, but more importantly as a means of achieving portability.
exclusive application
an application with the instancing restriction that it can have at most one opening.  Many applications allow any number of instances to be open concurrently, but some (like the Windows Registry editor, REGEDIT) are exclusive applications, limited to one window.  Some MDI applications, like the Adobe Acrobat Reader, support multiple openings, but only in the limited sense of creating additional child windows within a single main application window.  Exclusive document applications are somewhat less restrictive, in that they permit multiple top-level window instances, but no more than one opening of a given document.
exclusive document application
an application with the instancing restriction that a given document can have at most one opening.  This applies to Word documents (when opened through Microsoft Word), as well as various other applications, including exclusivity in Montage.  On the other hand, depending on which text editor you use, a text file may or may not be treated as an exclusive document.  For example NOTEPAD will allow any number of openings of the same text file, which is sometimes handy, but also could lead to problems if the file is edited.  Montage supports a unique auto-detection feature, which can be useful with exclusive document applications.
when used in proper case, Explorer generally refers to Windows Explorer, although there may be some ambiguity as to whether the term is meant to include the closely related Internet Explorer.  As a generic term, an explorer (lower case) is program for navigating and viewing an organized body of information.
exterior window
relative to a Montage Desktop window, an exterior window is one that is "physically" outside of it, i.e. a separate top-level window on the main Windows desktopExternal applications generally run in exterior windows, but some "internal" Montage forms also use exterior windows, e.g. the About Montage and Shortcut Properties dialogs.  The opposite of an exterior window is most aptly referred to as an interior window (avoiding the ambiguity of calling it "internal"), such as a Montage's built-in viewers and Command Processors.
external application
relative to Montage, an external application is an independent Windows program running in its own exterior window on the Windows desktop, as a separate process.  This is contrasted to Montage's internal forms, which run in the same process, some in interior windows and some in exterior windows.  The window belonging to an external application is referred to as an external window, and a Shortcut to an external application is termed an external Shortcut.
external window
a window belonging to an external application, i.e. owned by a different process.  In Montage, an external window is generally also an exterior window, but the converse is not necessary true, because an exterior window may or may not belong to the current process.  An external window is the opposite of an internal window.
a file is fetchable if it may be retrieved from a known URL, using Montage's mechanism for dynamic Internet fetching.  By convention, an Internet shortcut (i.e. a .URL link) with the same name and in the same folder as a given file indicates that the file can be retrieved from Internet address specified by that link.  The existence of such a link is taken as a sign of fetchability, but this is not a guarantee that the specified URL is valid or that an attempt to access it will be successful.
the place where the user's attention is currently presumed to be, at the active control in the active window.  For data entry fields, this is where the cursor is displayed to indicate the destination of any keyboard input.  For other types of controls, the current focus may be indicated by some form of highlighting and/or a prompt message in the status bar.
in Montage, a form is a type of internal window that may be an interior window contained within a Montage Desktop window, or may be an exterior window residing anywhere on the Windows desktop.
used as a noun, refers to a browser frame, i.e. a single pane within a framed browser window.  Used as a verb, to frame a page means to load that page into a framed arrangement within the same browser window.  The opposite action is to unframe a page.  (Montage web pages and its Help file support a common set of framing conventions.)
techniques that tend to work in some cases, but are not rigorously assured of success in general.  One may be compelled to resort to heuristics in order to obtain practical solutions to difficult problems.  For example, Montage employs heuristics to improve its detection of some applications that are not well-behaved.
Microsoft's preferred vehicle for delivering documentation, which has become the de facto standard for building full-featured help systems since its inclusion with Internet Explorer 4.0.  The Montage Help file, MONTAGE.CHM, uses HTML Help, and you can obtain information about setting up HTML Help on the Montage installation page.
the type of link that appears in a web page as a highlighted or underlined piece of text specifying a URL (web address) to which you can jump by clicking on it in a web browser, such as Internet Explorer.  You can drag-and-drop hyperlinks, as well as other types of files, folders, and links into Montage, to create corresponding Shortcuts.
aspects of how programs and program objects are instantiated, and any restrictions placed upon multiple instances (occurrences) of an application or document window.  For example exclusive applications permit only a single instance of themselves, while other applications may allow any number of instances to run concurrently.  Exclusive document applications, like Word and Montage, support multiple instances of the application program, but not more than one concurrent opening of a given document.  Instancing restrictions are typically enforced by performing a pass-off (e.g. via DDE) to an existing window, rather than creating a new instance.  Another variable instancing characteristic is whether each instance belongs to a separate process, or shares its process with other instances (which may be a significant factor in the ease of detection).
interior window
as contrasted to an exterior window, an interior window is one that is "physically" contained within the Montage Desktop window.  An interior window is bounded by the window that contains it, moves with its parent window, and so on.  Interior windows are nested within one or more levels of surrounding windows that fully contain them.
internal window
a window that belongs to a given process, as opposed to an external window.  In common usage, an internal window is sometimes regarded as what we refer to as an interior window, i.e. a window contained within another window.  However, we prefer to confine our use the terms "internal" and "external" to describe the logical parent-child relationship of containment within a program or process.  In that sense, a form may be internal to an application, even though its window happens to be an exterior window (as in the case of Montage's Shortcut Properties dialog).  A Shortcut to an internal window, e.g. referring to a built-in viewer form, is referred to as an internal Shortcut.
Internet Explorer (IE)
Microsoft's web browser, originally integrated into the Windows Shell as a type of Shell Explorer, which may be used for navigating and viewing folders in the Windows filing system.  (As of Windows Vista and IE version 7, however, IE is no longer integrated into the Windows Shell.)  Internet Explorer is the program named IEXPLORE.EXE, residing in the directory where IE was installed, typically C:\Program Files\Internet Explorer.
Internet shortcut
a type on Windows link, stored in a file with the .URL extension, specifying an Internet address (i.e., a URL) as its target. Montage employs Internet shortcuts in conjunction with its dynamic fetching features.  Montage also has its own internal type of Shortcuts, which are roughly equivalent, but offer some advantages.  For example, Montage Shortcuts support a flexible description and tip, but Windows' Internet shortcuts do not.  (A confusing feature of Windows Explorer is that the .URL extension is not displayed, even when Windows has been configured to display all file extensions.  You can see this more clearly by issuing a DIR command in a DOS window.)
lazy auto-detection
a variation of Montage's auto-detection feature, where the presence of an already-existing opening is not immediately detected until the point where an attempt is made to launch that Shortcut.  This avoids the overhead of monitoring for the window's spontaneous appearance, as is done for normal (non-lazy) auto-detection.  (Montage uses lazy auto-detection for Word, which is an exclusive document application.)
a Windows shortcut, which is represented by a special type of file having either the .LNK or .URL extension.  To avoid confusion with Montage Shortcuts, we use the term link as the preferred way of referring to Windows "shortcuts".  The .URL flavor of links are also referred to as Internet shortcuts.
loosely, a metafile is a file that contains data about data, i.e. intermediate information that describes another kind of information.  Many types of programs use some sort of metafile as an internal representation of data not directly seen by end users, e.g. the Windows Registry is a sort of metafile.  Montage creates its own special type of metafile, referred to as a montage (lower case), to store configuration information in a more portable, modular way.  Unlike the Windows Registry, there may be any number of montages, each corresponding to an alternate view.

An entirely different usage of the term metafile refers to a type of vector graphic file, called a Windows Metafile.  These files have the .WMF extension, and they really aren't metafiles in the usual generic sense (because they are the data).  To avoid any confusion, we never refer to WMF files simply as "metafiles", despite the popularity of this unfortunate misnomer.
(as contrasted to modeless) a modal form requires you to finish with it before you can access other forms or the main menu (within the same application).
(as contrasted to modal) a modeless form is one that allows you to go away and come back to it.  You do not have to close a modeless form to deactivate it, and you can access the main menu while the form is active.
the design feature of being cleanly divisible into separate modules than can be moved, replaced, or adjusted more easily and independently than would otherwise be possible.  Modularity is generally desirable, because it contributes to both program maintainability and data portability.
a Montage metafile, containing the stored representation of a saved Montage Desktop configuration, including the states of all the objects (e.g. Shortcuts) it contains.  Note the use of lower case, to distinguish montage (the metafile) from Montage, the program.  A montage actually is composed of multiple files, but the primary one has a .MO3 file name extension, and this is the file to which one normally refers.  Strictly speaking, "montage" refers to a metafile, but we sometimes use the term more loosely to mean an opening of that metafile, i.e. the Montage Desktop window associated with the open metafile.

As a generic term, a "montage" is an arrangement of images (static or moving pictures) into a single larger image.  In that sense, Montage (the program) is indeed a way of creating conventional montages, but it extends the concept of images to include live applications, running on your computer.
Montage Help file
the HTML Help file, MONTAGE.CHM, which accompanies the Montage program, MONTAGE3.EXE, both normally residing in the Montage program directory.  When MONTAGE.CHM is properly installed on your machine, Montage supports a number of integrated help features.
Montage program directory
the directory in which Montage was installed on your computer, typically C:\MONTAGE3.  This is where the program, MONTAGE3.EXE, and the help file, MONTAGE.CHM, would normally reside.  See more about the Montage program directory on the Montage installation page.
nested montages
an arrangement of interconnected instances of Montage where one montage has opened one or more other montages, which in turn may have opened still more child montages.  When a parent montage is closed, it closes its children, so the entire arrangement can be closed simply by closing the top-level parent.  Unlike most parent-child relationships, those that hold between montages can vary, depending one which one opened the other.
nested windows
an arrangement of windows where there is a parent window, which contains one or more child windows, which may contain their own children, etc.  A child window is confined to the space within its parent window, and the children move with the parent.
we use the term normalize to mean putting a window into its "normal" zoom state, as opposed to using the even more confusing and ambiguous Windows terminology of restoring a window (not to be confused with state-saving and restoration).  (Normalize has many other meanings in different contexts, but this definition applies only to the state of a window.)
a programming term for a single "object-oriented" entity, e.g. a control or a formObjects typically correspond to visible screen elements, but Montage also uses some non-visual objects, e.g. a timer and other internal "classes" of objects.
an entity that contains, "owns", or was responsible for creating any number of children.
parent-child relationship
a type of one-to-many logical relationship of ownership, containment, or causation where there exist parent entities, which may have some number of children, and each entity is the child of at most one parent.  For example parent-child relationships apply to windows, folders, and montages.

Depending on the type of relationship, there may be some ambiguity as what is meant by parent and child.  For example a top-level window may have no parent (or the parent is the Windows desktop) in the sense of physical containment, yet the window may "belong to" or be subordinate to another application window.  For example, Montage's Shortcut Properties dialogs are top-level windows, but they are internal to a Montage process.  In the context of nested montages, the determination as to which is the parent and which is the child depends upon how they were opened: the one that opened the other is its parent.  This implies that a montage may sometimes be the parent of another, and sometimes be its child, but never both at once.
the action of passing control to to an another Window when an attempt is made to open an application or document.  This is often done as a way of enforcing instancing restrictions, such as those for exclusive applications and exclusive document applications.  For example, when a given Word document is already open, and you attempt to open it again, Word does a pass-off the the previously opened instance, as opposed to opening a second window on the same document.  (Often DDE is used to implement this behavior.)  Montage generally detects pass-offs in well-behaved applications, with the result being that the existing target window is simply activated, but the Shortcut remains un-highlighted.  Montage also supports lazy auto-detection for some types of pass-offs (e.g. for Word), allowing the target window to be monitored and controlled from this Shortcut, even though the target is not its true child.
the ability of an application and its data to be moved easily to a different location or environment.  This includes portability in the sense of moving to a different path in the filing system, a different user profile, a different version of the operating system, or to an entirely different computer.  Montage supports a number of features aimed at providing a high degree of portability.
an operating system resource that embodies an independent task or executing program, which runs concurrently with other processes on your computer.  Most well-behaved applications run within their own separate process, reducing the risk of a failure in one application causing problems in another application, or another instance of the same application.  Since some additional overhead is required to support each separate process, some applications (especially older ones from Microsoft) have been optimized to support multiple instances within a single process, in a way that is usually transparent to the user.  This implies that each running instance of an application does not necessarily have a unique process ID, a fact which greatly complicates the problem of detection in application launchers, like Montage.
process ID
a number that uniquely identifies each running process on your computer.  In Windows these numbers are unique only for the duration of the process, i.e. after a process terminates, its process ID may be reassigned to a new process.
(see Windows Registry.)
relative path
a form of incomplete pathname that represents a filing system location relative to the current directory or drive, as opposed to an absolute path.  The special characters "." and "..", when specified at the start of a path, represent the current directory and the parent of the current directory, respectively.  (Also a local pathname without a drive-letter + ":\" prefix is interpreted as being relative to the current directory.)  For example, Montage allows the user to specify the target, initial directory, or icon path of a Shortcut in terms of relative path (relative to the location of the montage), as a method of achieving greater portability.  In addition, Montage supports a Relative Paths option, which automatically puts pathnames into relative or absolute form by default, without requiring this to be done manually.
a general programming term for the outermost layer, i.e. the user interface, of an application or the operating system itself.  The Windows Shell (sometime referred to simply as the "Shell", in proper case) is one example, as are the various shells available for Unix/Linux, and other operating systems.  Montage is in some respects like a shell for the Windows Shell.
Shell Explorer
an application for viewing and navigating through the Windows filing system, integral to the Windows Shell.  There are two basic types of Shell Explorer windows, those belonging to Windows Explorer, and those belonging to Internet Explorer (IE), but the differences are fairly technical and not readily apparent.  Adding to the confusion, there are version-dependencies and no consistent, widely accepted terminology for making this distinction clear, so Shell Explorer may be taken by some to mean specifically Windows Explorer.  However, we use the term Shell Explorer to mean either Windows Explorer or IE.

A Shell Explorer window may be split into two panes, with a collapsible TreeView (folder navigation) pane showing the directory structure on the left side, and a pane showing the current folder's contents at the right.  (The more basic "cabinet" mode is single-paned, without a navigation pane.)  The primary folder contents pane displays a list of files and sub-folders in one of several view modes, e.g. Large Icons, Small Icons, List, or Details mode.  (Montage can save and restore both the TreeView ON/OFF mode and primary pane's view mode for Shell Explorer windows, in addition to the window's sizing and placement.)
short application name
most applications have a short name by which they can be referred to in some contexts, even if they do not reside in the Windows directory or on the default search path.  The short application name is the program name, without its explicit directory path, and possibly without its .EXE extension, for example the short name of Internet Explorer is IEXPLORE.EXE (or just IEXPLORE will do).  For no apparent reason, Windows links do not support such short names, although Windows' Start, Run... command does.  Montage also supports short application names in its Shortcut target specifications, in order to provide a greater degree of portability.
refers to a Montage Shortcut when used with proper case (i.e. with the first letter capitalized), as opposed to meaning a Windows link when this term is used in lower case.  A Montage Shortcut resembles a Windows shortcut as displayed in Explorer's "large icons" view mode, but it resides within a Montage Desktop window.  Some Montage commands make the distinction between internal and external Shortcuts, the difference being that internal Shortcuts launch Montage forms, such as built-in viewers, while external Shortcuts launch arbitrary external applications.
Shortcut tip
a flexible kind of tooltip that Montage displays when you hover the mouse over a Shortcut.  This feature is controlled by options on the Tips page of the global Shortcuts dialog, in combination with the Shortcut's description and/or basic target informationShortcut tips may be displayed either in a wait window, or the status bar, or both.
the condition of something, i.e. its arrangement or configuration.  The state of a computer, for example, describes what it is currently doing, i.e. which applications are running, and the states of those applications.  The state of an application refers to how it has been adjusted, its layout, what options and parameters are in effect, the states of its constituent objects, etc.  (Also see state-saving and restoration.)
state-saving and restoration
the ability to capture the state of a program, retain it, and later restore it.  Many programs support some such capability, based on a variety of approaches.  The required information may be stored along with the primary data or documents upon which the program operates, or it may be stored separately, in some sort of metafile.  For example, the Windows operating system and many applications use the registry as their repository for saved state information.  Instead of using the registry for this purpose, some applications (like Montage) employ their own specialized type of metafile.
status bar
the gray region along the bottom edge of a Montage Desktop or other application window, where prompts, tips, and assorted transient messages are displayed.  (Montage has a menu command for toggling the status bar ON/OFF setting, and another toggle option that controls whether to display Shortcut tips in the status bar.)
the opposite of asynchronous.  Activities are synchronous if they require some form of synchronization.  For example when a program calls another program and waits for a result before proceeding, the invocation is synchronous.
the designated file, folder, or URL associated with a Montage Shortcut or a Windows link.  When a Montage Shortcut is open, the target window is the one belonging to the external application or form launched by that Shortcut.  You can examine or change the setting of a Shortcut's target via the Properties dialog.  Note that there is a difference terminology between Montage and Windows as to the target of a Shortcut.  In Montage, the target is just a path to a file, folder, or URL, with any optional arguments being specified separately in a second Args field.  In the Windows shortcut properties dialog, the field labeled "Target" contains the combination of these two components, forming a complete command line.

An entirely different meaning of target applies in the context of drag-and-drop operations: the "drop target" is the object onto which the thing being dragged (the drop source) is dropped.  For example the drop source could be a Shortcut or a link, which has its own fixed target.  The target of a link or Shortcut is not the same as the target of the drop, which depends on where you choose to drop it.
a brief, descriptive message that appears when you hover the mouse over a control, such as a command button or a textbox.  This feature can generally be turned on or off.  For example Montage has a tooltip toggle command that affects its Shortcut Properties dialog.  Also see Shortcut tips, which are similar to tooltips, but apply to Shortcuts themselves.
a graphical Microsoft ActiveX control for displaying and navigating a dynamic, collapsible outline of headings and subheadings.  TreeViews are integrated into Windows' Shell Explorer to support the familiar, split-paned TreeView mode of Explorer windows, where the TreeView (folder navigation) pane at the left shows the filing system directory structure, and the pane at the right displays the current folder contents in one of various view modes.
TreeView mode
the split-paned mode of a Shell Explorer window, where the directory structure is displayed in the left (folder navigation) pane and the current directory contents are displayed in the right pane.  When TreeView mode is turned off, the Explorer window reverts to its single-paned mode, which simply displays the contents of a single folder.  Microsoft discontinued support of TreeView mode for Internet Explorer as of version 7, and in versions of Windows Explorer subsequent to Windows XP.  (See MKB00004 for additional details.)
to remove the browser frame surrounding a given page, causing that page to be reloaded by itself in a normal, unframed browser window.  This is essentially the opposite action to framing a page.
Uniform Resource Locator (URL)
a way of addressing information on the Internet or a local intranet.  The most familiar types of URLs are web addresses, beginning with "http:", where http stands for HyperText Transfer Protocol.  Different prefixes are used for other standard URL protocols, for example: file (host-specific file), ftp (File Transfer Protocol), https (Secure HTTP), mailto (electronic mail), news (USENET news), outlook (Microsoft Outlook), and a variety of less common protocols.  (An authoritative reference on URLs can be found in this article by T. Berners-Lee.)  Montage supports URLs in the specification of target and directory paths for Shortcuts.
Universal Naming Convention (UNC)
a machine-independent way of referring to files, folders, and other shared resources in a Windows networked (LAN) environment.  UNC pathnames have a syntax of the form \\servername\sharename\pathname, where servername is the name of a server on the network, sharename is the name of a specific shared resource (e.g. a drive or a printer), and the remaining pathname is of the same form as used in a local file system path.  Montage supports UNC syntax in the specification of target and directory paths for Shortcuts.
the entire state or configuration of a Montage Desktop and the application windows it controls.  This includes the Desktop window's sizing and placement, option settings, the layout of its Shortcuts, viewers, and other forms, and the state of any external applications it has launched.  The view is what you see when you open a montage; it does not include elements of the Windows desktop and other application windows that were launched outside of the control of this montage.
speaking generally, a viewer is a program that displays some type of "document" or data file.  In Montage, the concept refers to Montage's built-in viewers, which are program components that show the contents of a file within a control residing in a form window.  The term also may be used in a somewhat looser sense, in that a viewer might be an editor, and Montage itself could be regarded as a sort of recursive, multi-windowed viewer.
view mode
the Windows Shell Explorer attribute that specifies the display mode for viewing a folder's contents, e.g. Large Icons, Small Icons, List, Details, Thumbnails, etc.  Exact terminology and available choices depend upon the version of Windows, for example Windows XP has a "Tiles" mode corresponding to what was previously called "Small Icons", and XP's "Icons" mode corresponds to the earlier "Large Icons" mode.  Montage saves and restores this setting, and also provides a field for selecting a view mode in the Shortcut Properties dialog.
Visual FoxPro (VFP)
A powerful, object-oriented, Microsoft programming language, used in the implementation of Montage.  Visual FoxPro (VFP) is especially well-suited to dynamic, data-driven applications, because of its tight integration with a high-performance, local database.  VFP is compatible with every version of Windows since Windows 95, and its self-contained runtime requirements facilitate installation and help to ensure application portability.
wait window
A floating, gray text window used by Montage to display various transient messages, including Shortcut tips.  Usage is similar to the status bar prompt area, but wait windows are more conspicuous.  Depending on context, a wait window message may disappear automatically upon the completion of some action, or a residual message may remain only until you move the mouse, or the message may persist until you click the mouse or press a key.
A background image displayed behind all other objects, as in a Montage Desktop window or on the Windows desktopMontage wallpapers support a number of unique features that provide the basis for building graphical montages.
well-behaved application
an application that is easy to launch, detect, monitor, and control, without requiring special knowledge about its peculiarities.  From Montage's perspective, well-behaved applications are those without instancing complications or unusual window characteristics.  Detection is easiest when each instance of an application runs in a separate process, but there are a number of important applications (especially from Microsoft) which require exceptional treatment.  Montage has a certain amount of built-in application intelligence to cope with special cases automatically, and Advanced options may be used to assist Montage with any ill-behaved applications that it doesn't yet know about.
What's This help
a standard way of accessing program help by pointing to a specific form or control and clicking the mouse.  This is done by first entering into What's This mode, e.g. by clicking on the "?" symbol in the right-hand corner of the window title bar, whereupon the mouse cursor takes on a special appearance until you click on something.  (Montage supports What's This help for its Shortcut Properties and global Shortcuts dialogs, along with other integral help features.)
Windows Clipboard
aka simply the "Clipboard", an integral component of the Windows operating system that supports copy and paste operations between different applications, including both text and non-textual information.
Windows Explorer
aka just "Explorer" (but not to be confused with Internet Explorer), is the primary Shell Explorer interface to the Windows desktop and filing system.  Windows Explorer is the program named EXPLORER.EXE, which resides in the main Windows directory.
Windows Registry
aka simply the "registry", a system file containing all sorts of information about the Windows operating system itself, along with global default configuration information for any number of specific applications installed on your computer.  (Instead of relying on the Windows Registry, Montage uses its own metafiles to store program configurations in a way that is more modular and portable.)
Windows Script Host (WSH)
the scripting facility built into recent versions of Windows (since Windows 98) and Internet Explorer (since IE 4.0), supporting VBScript and JScript.  WSH also provides general Windows filing system functions that are useful to Montage.  Information about setting up WSH can be found on the Montage installation page.
Windows Shell
the interface to the Windows desktop and filing system, including a collection of program libraries and functions related to the way that applications are launched, documents are opened, etc.  The primary user interface to the Windows Shell is a Shell Explorer, which may be either Windows Explorer or Internet Explorer.  The abbreviated term "Shell" (proper case) generally refers to the Windows Shell, as opposed to the generic concept of a shell (lower case).
Windows System directory
sometimes referred to as just the "System" directory, this is the primary subdirectory of the main Windows directory, where various libraries (e.g. .DLL files) are stored.  The actual path of the Windows System directory may vary, depending on the version of Windows and how it has been set up, for example C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM would be typical under Windows 95, whereas it would usually be C:\WINNT\SYSTEM32 under Windows 2000, or C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM32 under Windows XP.  A standard setup of Montage updates (and registers) all of the required files in the Windows System directory.  If you perform a manual quick-install, certain Montage features, i.e. context-sensitive help, may not be available unless you manually install (and register) the necessary System files.
Windows workspace
the central portion of the Windows desktop screen area, where icons and open windows are displayed, but not including the Windows Taskbar and any toolbars that are docked around the edge of the screen.  Since users can customize the appearance of Windows, e.g. by turning off, moving, or auto-hiding the Taskbar, the dimensions and offset of the Windows workspace can vary.  Montage saves and restores window positions relative to the Windows workspace coordinate system, to achieve the greatest degree of portability across different configurations of the Windows desktop.
XCOPY deployment
a program installation procedure that simply entails copying one or more files into a directory structure, without the need for manipulations of the Windows Registry or other complex registration steps.  In other words, XCOPY deployment can be accomplished entirely through the DOS XCOPY command.  A quick installation of Montage can be performed in this manner, except for optional support of context-sensitive help, which can be achieved by a separate registration step.
the sequence of layering or stacking visual objects to achieve a 3-dimensional effect on a 2-dimensional display, i.e. the ordering along an imaginary z-axis, corresponding to depth.  In a group of overlapping windows, for example, the one that is behind all of the others is at the bottom or back of the z-order and the foremost window is at the top or front of the z-order.  Montage has commands to send a Shortcut to the back or send its target window to the back of the z-order.
ZIP file
ZIP files (i.e. files with the .ZIP extension) are the most widely used format for compact storage and distribution of files, and this is the format used for compressed montages.  There are numerous ZIP utilities available, including an integral "Compressed (zipped) Folder" facility built into Windows XP.  One popular third party ZIP tool is WinZip, but you can use any equivalent file compression utility (many of which are free) that supports the standard ZIP format.  A ZIP file can contain many files, and these can be further organized into any sort of directory structure within the ZIP.  When extracting the ZIP contents, it is important to be aware of its internal sub-directory structure, because you will generally want to preserve that organization, relative to the primary directory into which the files are extracted.  (Using WinZip, for example, you would check the "Use folder names" option to preserve the sub-directory structure.)
zoom state
whether a window is minimized, maximized, or in its "normal" display mode (aka normalized).  (Montage uses a distinctive method of highlighting Shortcuts to indicate the zoom state of the associated application window.)

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Montage Help page, last edited: 12/31/10 16:20
Copyright SpaceTime Systems 2003-2011