NIC - Acronym for Network Interface Card(NIC). This is a generic term for a piece of hardware that is inside a PC/laptop that connects it to a network. This can be a number of different adapter ports. They can be wired or wireless
Network Card - Basically the same as NIC
LAN Card - Basically same as a NIC.
Network Adapter - Another name for NIC
Ethernet Adapter - This is a NIC with a specific port to plug in. In this case Ethernet.
PCI Adapter - This is a card of some kind that plugs into a PCI slot.
USB Adapter with Ethernet Connection - This is a NIC that plugs into a USB port. Most times on the other end is a Ethernet port.
To answer your question - Yes they are all pretty much different names for the same thing.
Edited by CaveDweller2, 18 August 2009 - 04:12 PM.