Glossary of Terms

Attachment – A file linked to an email message. Many programs use MIME encoding to attach files.

Click-Through Event – A trackable occurrence available with text and HTML email messages that records each time a URL contained in the message is clicked.

Column – A vertical set of data, as in a table or spreadsheet.

Database – A large collection of data organized for rapid search and retrieval, and managed by a DBMS.

Database Plugin – Used to connect LISTSERV Maestro to a database and to allow the user to select recipient data from a database table in the Define Recipient wizard. The user selects the matching plugin for the database he/she wants to access then provides the connection data (like host name, port, user name, password, etc.) and LISTSERV Maestro is then able to access that database to select the recipients.

Datasets – A collection of data organized into fields and pertaining to recipients. The fields making up a dataset can have different types of properties that determine the kind of data within them, such as text, numbers, menu selections, dates and so on. The data administrator designs the datasets within a recipient warehouse, defining each field and the type of data it holds. The recipient dataset also contains mailing lists created by the data administrator that use the recipient data for job definition. The data is shared across all mailing lists that are created within the dataset. Individual lists within the dataset are allowed to have additional fields of data that pertain just to those lists.

DBMS – Stands for Data Base Management System. A complex set of programs that control the organization, storage, and retrieval of data for many users. Data is organized into fields, records, and files. A database management system must also control the security of the database. Examples of Database management systems are Oracle, Sybase, and Datacom. A DBMS provides the possibilities for users to connect LISTSERV to a database back-end and hence send out personalized messages to customers, according to demographic information and preference.

Delimiter – The character or symbol that is used to separate one item from another. In text files that are imported into databases, commas are often used as delimiters.

Email Job – In LISTSERV Maestro an email job is the creation of a customized list of recipients matched with a customized email message that is scheduled for delivery and then sent out.

Email Merge – Placing variables that are extracted from a database into an email message template. This operation permits individual personalization of otherwise bulk email messages.

Encoding – The transformation of data into digital form. With text encoding, different character sets encode text files differently based on language and other variables. If a special character set was used to encode a text file, then that same encoding scheme needs to be used to interpret the data correctly. LISTSERV Maestro allows for the selection of encoding based upon the original encoding scheme of the uploaded text file. For example, if special encoding was used to initially create (and save) the text file  (e.g. ISO-7 encoding for a file with Greek characters, or a Unicode encoding), then the same encoding will have to be selected in LISTSERV Maestro so the system interprets the uploaded data in the same way it was saved.

Header – A special row of data that defines and labels the columns in a database file.

Hosted Lists – Hosted lists contain data from the dataset. They can also have their own data fields that are not shared among lists in the dataset, but belong exclusively to the list. Lists that do have their own fields will also have their own web subscription forms generated when the list is created. All the fields that appear in the dataset and in a particular list can be used as merged fields for messages sent to that list.

Hosted LISTSERV List – On some platforms, it is possible for LISTSERV Maestro to create traditional LISTSERV lists and store the subscription data for these lists such that they are accessible from the LISTSERV Maestro subscription pages. These types of lists are referred to as Hosted LISTSERV Lists or HLLs because their data is “hosted” within LISTSERV Maestro’s system database.

Hosted Recipient Data – A collection of data organized in columns and rows, related to recipients, and stored inside LISTSERV Maestro.

Hosted Recipient List – Lists that are controlled completely by LISTSERV Maestro.

Link Alias – Gives each trackable link a special name. Aliases can be used to differentiate between two different links that go to the same URL. Each link in this case would be given a different alias. Aliases can also be used to group different links together into a larger group in order to measure the overall number of clicks in a message. In this case, all the links would be given the same alias. If aliases are not defined for tracked links (aliases are optional), then LISTSERV Maestro will only be able to find the URL of the link in the tracking data.

LISTSERV® – The most prevalent email list management software in the world today. It is an application that allows users to create and maintain email lists on their corporate networks or on the Internet. LISTSERV supports all types of email lists: newsletters (moderated and un-moderated), discussion groups, and direct marketing campaigns. List sizes can range from a few participants in a discussion group to several million in a newsletter. Every list and its archives can be maintained through a simple web interface, which can be fully customized to match a website profile.

Lookup Table – A set of values that is used for the values in a selection menu. Lookup tables are shared across a recipient warehouse so multiple datasets can use them

MIME – Stands for Multipurpose Internet Mail Extensions. Extensions to the Internet mail format that allow it to carry multiple types of data as attachments to email messages.

Multiple Selection List – In hosted recipient data, a field that appears as a drop-down menu that allows one or more items to be selected.

Open-Up Event – A trackable occurrence available with HTML email messages that records each time a message is opened by a recipient.

Parse – A software routine that analyzes a statement in natural or artificial language and resolves it into a form that can be understood by the computer. In LISTSERV Maestro a database file exported as a text file will be parsed – sorted into categories or columns of data before it can be used by the system.

Plugin – A LISTSERV Maestro database plugin allows the Maestro User Interface to gain access to different databases. Plugins need to be registered and configured by the LISTSERV Maestro system administrator. For more information, see the Administrator’s Guide.

Quote Character – In a SQL statement: a character (usually the single quote) used to enclose string literals, to set them off from the rest of the SQL statement.

In a text file (CSV-file) containing data: a character or symbol used to surround a separator character that is used in the actual data in a column so that the separator character is not confused with the character that appears in the data. For example, if a comma (,) is used as the separator character in a database file, all the fields of data are separated by a comma. If the comma is also used within a field, a quote character must surround the entire field. If the quote character is used in a field, it must be used twice or “escaped.”

RFC – Stands for Request for Comments. These documents explain the rules that email and other software products must follow in order to work cooperatively with each other on the Internet. Understanding the rules is often helpful for understanding and troubleshooting problems. See Appendix D for links to various RFCs.

Select Statement – A SQL statement in the form of a query that is issued to a database to retrieve data.

Separator Character – A character or symbol used to separate one item from another. In databases, commas are often used as separator characters.

SQL – Stands for Structured Query Language. It is a language used to create, maintain, and query relational databases. SQL uses regular English words for many of its commands, making it easy to use. It is often embedded within other programming languages.

Target Groups – Predefined recipient lists, complete with name and description, created by the data administrator. Target groups can simplify and streamline the use of data sources, including databases, uploaded text files, and email lists, to select recipients and recipient data to the point where end users do not need to know anything about how and where data is stored.

URL – Stands for Uniform Resource Locator (formerly “Universal Resource Locator”). URLs are Internet addresses that tell browser programs where to find Internet resources. The URL for L-Soft is