Android like other language have containers, these containers hold components together to form the design of your application. Having knowledge in java and in other xml based design, you sometimes what to jump into knowing what the containers and components are.
For the people who don't have knowledge in flex,xul,wpf or even html, in every layout you have components or view(in android) and these components have a parent that holds them, these parent components are called container or layouts or view group(android), now parents have different layouts and this is what this post is about. In the following post after this article, i shall give you some example of the basic view.
But for now i want to link to other sites that might help you to understand it, these sites might explain it better then i do so on our future post i'll try to limit the explanation and focus more on examples.
Update [Dec 30,08]:
LinearLayout in Android (Horizontal, XML)
LinearLayout in Android (Vertical, XML)
Update [Dec 29,08]:
TableLayout in Android (XML)
http://www.androidlab.cn/archiver/ [Translate from Chinese]
Update [Jan 3,09]:
RelativeLayout in Android (XML)