Originally Posted by Couling
I'm a bit confused by what to put where.
Can someone explain the difference in use between these directories.
I'd like to know that I'm putting things in the right place....
You have received other answers to the question that you have asked, but I'm a little concerned about why you are asking it. If it is for general information, that can only be encouraged, but...
As a relative neophyte, you should be using a distro which makes things easier for you. In my opinion, all of those use a package manager of some kind. There is a bit of a split between the .deb system (Debian and a whole host of derivatives such as the *buntus, Mepis etc) and .rpm system (RedHat, SuSE, Mandriva and derivatives) and a few less popular ones but, the installer/updater system that works with the packages takes care of where you put the program, what libraries it needs and where those libraries need to go.
(The exception to all of this is Slackware and derivatives, and I wouldn't really describe Slackware as a newbie-friendly distro. Has its virtues and has its adherents, of course, but its 'do-it-yourself' style does not make the learning curve any easier for newbies. But, if it happens that you are convinced that Slackware or a derivative is the only thing for you, I'm sure you'll find how-tos and tutorials for your favourite distro which will include exactly these points.)
So, support your local package manger and use locate and/or find if you need to discover where it has put stuff (for general interest). Otherwise, it should just happen.