Owner = the files user (you)
Group = the files group
Others = others
r = read access
x = execute access
w = write access
r = 4
w = 2
x = 1
You will come to recognize, if you do not already, Chmod as a word used for changing Permissions from within Telnet or your FTP client.
Some scripts will tell you to chmod 775 (for example). When using the numeric system, the code for permissions is as follows:
4 + 2 + 1 (rwx) = 7
The first number applies to the Owner, the second number applies to the Group, and the third number applies to Others. Therefore the first 7 of the chmod 775 tells Unix to change the Owner's permissions to rxw (because r=4 + w=2 + x=1 adds up to 7, this giving the Owner Read, Write, and Execute Permission. The second 7 applies to the group, this giving the Group Read, Write, and Execute Permission, and the last number 5, refers to Others (4 + 1= 5), giving Others only Read and Execute Permission. The permissions for chmod 775 look like this:
Permissions are always broken up into three groups of letters, however if there is a dash, this dash simply means that Permission wasn't given for that particular function, for example in the chmod 775, Permission to Write was not given to Others.
Remember: the first 3 letters always apply to Owner, the second 3 apply to Group, and the third 3 apply to Others