Bioluminescent - Emission of visible light by living organisms such as the firefly and various fish, fungi, and bacteria. (Editor note: and most recently a rabbit. Seriously.)
Chemiluminescent - Emits light as a result of a chemical reaction at environmental temperatures. Translation: Chemical reaction creates light.
Cyalume glow sticks, which are the tubes filled with glowing material that last for a single night and are popular at firework shows are a good example.
Electroluminescent - Directly converts electric energy to light by a solid phosphor subjected to an alternating electric field. Emits light caused by electric discharge in a gas. Translation: a light bulb, fluorescent tube, or neon light.
Fluorescent - Emits electromagnetic radiation, especially of visible light, stimulated in a substance by the absorption of incident radiation and persisting only as long as the stimulating radiation is continued. Translation: Light of one spectrum hits it and it produces light in another spectrum.
Fluorescent paint translates ultraviolet light into visible light. It has the real life effect of making things look bright or 'neon.' Often used in laundry detergent to "make your whites, whiter".
Luminescent - Produces low-temperature emission of light. Translation: It produces light.
Phosphorescent - Persistent emission of light following exposure to and removal of incident radiation. Translation: It collects light, then releases it slowly, commonly known as 'glow in the dark.''
Photoluminescent - Luminescent by exposure to light waves. Translation: Light hits it and it produces light, possibly in another spectrum or color.