Using natural English, let's see what instructions, or code, we might write to make a cup of coffee.
Put coffee in cup.
Fill kettle with water.
Put kettle on to boil.
Has the kettle boiled? If so, then pour water into cup; otherwise, continue to wait.
The alternative compiled language is one where the program code is converted to machine code before it's actually run, and this conversion only has to be done once. The programmer uses a compiler to convert the code that he wrote to machine code, and it is this machine code that is run by the program's user. Compiled languages include Visual Basic and C++. Using a real-world analogy, it's like having someone translate our English document into Spanish. Unless we change the document, we can use it without retranslation as much as we like.
Basically the job of a web server is to hold lots of web pages on its hard drive. When a browser, usually on a different computer, requests a web page that is contained on that web server, the web server loads it from its own hard drive and then passes the page back to the requesting computer via a special communications protocol called HyperText Transfer Protocol (HTTP). The computer running the web browser that makes the request is known as the client. Think of the client/server relationship as a bit like a customer/shopkeeper relationship. The customer goes into a shop and says, "Give me one of those." The shopkeeper serves the customer by reaching for the item requested and passing it back to the customer. In a web situation, the client machine running the web browser is like the customer and the web server getting the page requested is like the shopkeeper.
When we type an address into the web browser, how does it know which web server to get the page from? Well, just as shops have addresses, say, 45 Central Avenue, SomeTownsville, so do web servers. Web servers don't have street names; instead they have Internet Protocol (IP) addresses, which uniquely identify them on the Internet. These consist of four sets of numbers, separated by dots; for example, 127.0.0.1.
If you've ever surfed the net, you're probably wondering what on earth I'm talking about. Surely web servers have nice www.somewebsite.com names, not IP addresses? In fact, the www.somewebsite.com name is the "friendly" name for the actual IP address; it's a whole lot easier for us humans to remember. On the Internet, the friendly name is converted to the actual IP address by computers called domain name servers, something your Internet service provider will have set up for you.