I know this may seem like a trivial question, but I really didn't know where else to ask it. My textbook doesn't do a very good job of explaining how a permutation differs from a standard problem in which you are given multiple "slots" in which various items can be "deposited" and are asked how many ways this can be done.
For instance, the text provides the following example problem:
A wedding party consisting of a bride, a groom, two bridesmaids, and two groomsmen line up for a photo. How many ways are there for the wedding party to line up?
In total, there are 6 different people. I labeled them $A, B, C, D, E,$ and $F$ for convenience. There are also six slots in which these people can stand. The number of possible combinations, then, is $6! = 6 \cdot 5 \cdot 4 \cdot 3 \cdot 2 \cdot 1$. This is simply by the generalized product rule for combinations.
Have I just been finding permutations all along in these "how many different ways can X be arranged" problems without knowing that's what I've been doing? Any clarification would be greatly appreciated, as I'm pretty confused.