There are lots of sites and blogs out there that provide a glossary of terms and acronyms, including the official Microsoft glossary available here.  Some of these are quite extensive and technical, so I’ve tried to include all the common terms with ‘plain English’ descriptions to help those new to SharePoint understand what they mean.

Alerts To notify users of changes to existing information or the addition of new information as well as track new matches to a search query.
Approval Process The process of reviewing a document before publishing it.
Breadcrumbs Text-based navigation that displays a series of sequential links to show a user where the current page is located within the web site.
Check-in To release the lock for editing and allows other users to check-out and modify a file.
Check-out To lock a file while editing to prevent other users from overwriting.  Only the user that checks out a document can modify it.
Content Source A location, either in SharePoint, a web site or file system, that contains items to be crawled by the search component.
Crawl rule A set or preferences to determine which items should be crawled or excluded.
Discussions SharePoint supports two types of discussion: discussion boards are similar to news groups.  Web discussions are a new way to comment on documents and share them with others.
Document Workspace A site that contains a document library, task list, links list and other information.
Farm A collection of servers that work together in large SharePoint environments
Gallery A library that is used to store site resources, such as web parts, lists and templates.
Index Server A server that has been assigned the task of crawling.
Library Use libraries to store documents, pictures or forms.
List A collection of information items including announcements, links, calendar items.
Managed Metadata A collection of terms that can be defined and used as attributes for items within SharePoint.
Query Server A server that has been assigned the role of fulfilling search queries.
Recycle Bin A container to store deleted items.  Deleted items are visible to users with appropriate permissions and can be restored or removed.
Ribbon A context sensitive toolbar (this means the buttons change depending what you click on).
Sandboxed Solution A custom solution that can be deployed to a site by a site administrator without approval from the farm administrator.
Search Scope A list of attributes that define the items to be returned in search results.
Secure Store A user authentication process that enables a user or group of users to enter a user name and password to access multiple applications.
Server Farm A collection of networked servers that work together in order to provide better performance and redundancy than a single server.
SharePoint Designer A Microsoft application to edit web pages in a SharePoint site.
Site Collection A set of web sites that are in the same content database and have the same owner.  A site collection contains a top-level site and one or more sub sites.
Survey A component that allows users to respond to a set of questions.  Results are available in a graphical summary.
Theme A group of files (CSS, images) that define the appearance of web pages within a site.
User Profile Service A database used to store and provide information about users.
Versioning The process of creating a copy of a file whenever a revision is saved.
Web Part The building blocks of a web part page that consist of a title bar, frame and content.
Workflow The automation of business processes where documents and tasks are passed from one user to another for action as part of a configurable sequence.
WSS Windows SharePoint Services
Zone An area in a web part page in which web parts are arranged.
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