INFORMATION COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY BLOCK REVISION QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS Dec 2009

QUESTION ONE

  • A computer user might buy hardware and software direct from the vendors. Given that the expense is often considerable, the purchasing procedure must be carefully controlled.

Required:

In a sequential narrative, name and describe the procedure of acquiring hardware and software. (8 marks)

  • There are four major change-over strategies that may be adopted during the implementation phase of information systems development process.




Required:

Recommend and justify the changeover strategies to be adopted for the following systems:

  • i) Electronic point of sale systems for chains of supermarkets countrywide. (2 marks) ii) Secondary school admission system. (2 marks) iii)Airline seat reservation system.(2 marks)
  • Describe any three features of information needed for strategic planning in an organisation. (6       marks)

(Total: 20 marks)

SYSTEMS THEORY AND MANAGEMENT OF INFORMATION SYSTEMS

QUESTION ONE

  • Procedure of acquiring hardware and software:

Hardware refers to all physical or tangible devices involved in the process of data processing. These may be the mechanical, electric mechanical or electronic devices for input, output, processing and storage of data.

Software refers to all programs, instruction and control devices which influence or facilitate the data processing work. They include application packages operating instructions or programming languages. For a computer user to acquire hardware and software, the following procedure needs to be followed:

  • Feasibility study

The aim of a feasibility study is to make informed decisions whether or not resources should be committed to development or acquisition of the required hardware and software facilities. It must reach some conclusions about the hardware and software requirements for the system. Requirements can only be established from an investigation of the current system. The most important questions or matters to be resolved during a

feasibility study are:

  • What equipment is needed to handle the software and what software is needed to handle the equipment ii) Should the equipment and software be bought, rented or leased.
  • Vendor hardware and software proposals

The stage invoices the selection of the suppliers of the hardware and software required.

In making the decision of the most appropriate supplier the following points may be  borne in mind.

  • How well established is the supplier‘s company. A firm with a reasonably long

history of trading would generally be the most appropriate supplier.

  • Do the supplier‘s staff appear to have a good knowledge of the application to which the software relates? For example, a firm that sells accounts software packages ought to have staff who know something about accounts as well as computers.
  • Can the supplier introduce the customer to any other users of the hardware or software who would be willing to demonstrate it and recommend it

 



Vendors proposals are then obtained through an invitation to tender to a range of suppliers or simply by shopping around. An invitation to tender sets out the specifications for the

required system explaining hot it is to be used and setting out the time scale for implementation. The target price will also be stated. Supplier are required to submit tenders and if they require further information before submitting their tenders, they will be able to contact the organisation to obtain further details.

Once vendor proposals are obtained they are evaluated using such procedures as bench making as simulation tests. The customer needs to be aware of other factors such as the cost of the equipment, availability of utility software and software tours supplied with the hardware; warranty and maintenance contract, software support by the supplier, training offered to the customer‘s staff by the supplier and tailor made amendments to software packages.

  • Delivery and installation of equipment

The supplier after delivering the equipment to the customer may agree to install them for the customer. If he does not, the customer may have to install the hardware himself. In this case, he should carefully follow the manufacturer‘s instruction manual provided.

  • Testing

The system installed should then be thoroughly tested before its use starts otherwise there is a danger that the new system will run with faults that might prove costly.

  • Change-over strategies

The four major change-over strategies are:

  • Direct change-over
  • Parallel running iii) Pilot tests iv) Phased or staged implementation.

The following systems should be implemented using such changeover strategies as  recommended below:

  • Electronic point of sale systems for chains of supermarkets countrywide.

For this system, I would recommend a phased or staged implementation. This is a method best suited to projects where distinct parts of the system are geographically dispersed. For example, the management may start by first implementing the system in branches which are located in the capital cities followed by those in major towns. This will guarantee a smooth change over without the need to recruit additional trained staff all at once. Existing staff are therefore given ample time to learn the new procedure well

in hand by way of familiarisation courses.

  • Secondary school admission system

In this system, I would recommend the direct change over. This is a changeover method in which the old system is completely replaced by the new system in one move. This method may be unavoidable in the case of a secondary school admission system because the old and the new system may be substantially different and parallel running is unrealistic. It is a cheap method and most appropriate for this situation, which mainly

happens once in a year.

  • Airtime seat reservation system

I would recommend the parallel running form of changeover. In this case, the old and the new system of seat reservation will be run in parallel for a period of time thus enabling cross checking to be made. In this case, the effectiveness of the new system will be known and its reliability made apparent.

This method is safer should there be problems with the new system as such it is better than the direct change over which might end up confusing the travellers.

  • Features of information needed for strategic planning in an organisation:

Strategic planning involves formulation of long-term objectives and goals and the ways by which these will be achieved. It concerns decisions which have a major impact on the longterm future of an organisation. Strategic planning in the context of information technology – must contain vital information features on how such a strategy can be formulated.

These include:

  • This organisations overall business needs and information technology needs as a
  • The organisation‘s current sue of information technology
  • The potential opportunities that information technology can bring.

QUESTION TWO

  • ―Everything an expert system can do, a decision support system (DSS) can also do‖.

Discuss any four grounds that consistently support or disapprove this statement. (8 marks)

    • Whenever a user buys a software, it is essential that the software comes with a seller maintenance contract. As an outside consultant, you are required to explain to the user whata seller maintenance contract is and the specifications required by the user in a sellermaintenance contract.                                                                              (8 marks)
      • In the context of programming, differentiate between source code and object code. (4 marks)

      (Total: 20 marks)

      QUESTION TWO

      • Grounds that disapprove the statement that everything that an expert system can do a decision support system can do.

       

      An expert system is a computer-based system that solves problems requiring a lot of human professional knowledge. They act as expert consultants to the users.

       

      • decision support system (DSS) refers to a set of programs and hardware that allows users to interact with so as to help them make decisions.

       



      It is quite untrue to state that everything that an expert system can do a decision support  system can do due to the following grounds:

      • Decision support systems help users in decision making. In this case, they never place the judgement or make the decision for the user. This is not the case for expert systems because expert system makes the decision for the user when the user presents it with the
      • The process of decision making in decision support system is user controlled as opposed to that of an expert system which is controlled by the system.
      • Expert systems can only handle one given area for example in legal expertise. Decision support systems can sometimes be general or ad hoc systems, which can handle a wide

      variety of managerial decision problems.

      • Decision support systems are only appropriate when personal or professional judgement are required instead of programmable decisions. Expert systems are appropriate for decisions, which do not require a personal judgement as decisions are already programmed.

       

      • Seller maintenance contract and specifications required by the user in a seller maintenance
        • seller maintenance contract refers to an agreement between the vendor of software and the buyer to offer any technical assistance in future for items supplied by the vendor in case they fail to perform as specified. Such technical assistance may include specialist assistance in case the buyer runs into difficulty with the program or software in future.

       

      The customer will need to sign a maintenance contract after clearly understanding the terms of the contract and how much it cost him. Such terms include such specifications as:

      • How quickly the supplier promises to have a repair maintenance engineer out to visit the customer in case he runs into difficulty. This will help the customer to be assured of a

      minimum idle time or loss of time in case the software breaks down.

      • If the whole system is to be put on hold pending correction of faulty software, the supplier might promise to provide backup or a standby system to stand in for the one being corrected.
      • The customer will need to be aware of the cost effects on the contract in that the costs should be lower than the ordinary market costs of maintenance.
      • The customer should avoid clauses that could lead him in being locked in the vendor such that all his requirements must have to be sourced from the supplier.

       

      • Difference between a source code and object code
        • source code is an instruction which is written using memory aids or mnemonics. Memory aids or mnemonics are instructions written in the programming language which can only be interpreted directly by the programmer.

       

      An object code is an instruction which has been translated into a machine code or machine readable form by use of a specialised translation program called compilers, which translate a source code to a machine code before it can be used by a computer.

      QUESTION THREE

      • Identify and describe the main criteria which should be met by a local area network design.

      (6 marks)

      • What reasons would you put forward for adopting a database as a basis for an information system?       (6 marks)
      • It has been cited that Information Technology has caused ―more harm than good‖. One of       the vices sited is computer related crime.  Outline and briefly describe four categories of

      computer related crimes.                                                                          (8 marks)

      (Total: 20 marks)QUESTION THREE

       

      • Main criteria which should be met by a local area network design:

       

      A local area network refers to a transmission process involving computer terminals and peripherals which are physically linked within a room(s) in a building or one site.

       

      A local area network design should meet the following criteria:

       

      • It should enhance the sharing of experience resources. For example, management at various levels should be able to share information and as such, design making should be

      fast and effective. It should also allow program sharing.

      • It should help in faster data processing and retrieval. This means that the design should facilitate faster access to data from the file servers so as to help in the faster transaction
      • The network should also help in reducing data processing costs. Costs may be saved due to minimised job queue.
      • It should allow sharing of work loads in that the various terminals can be used to process data and transmit it through the network to the required terminal.
      • It should help in decentralisation of data processing activities. Activities can be easily performed in the terminals and transmitted through the network to the head office or to

      the main data office.

      • The network should enable the communication of one system to another so as to detect multi-accessing and curtail unauthorised access.
      • Reasons for adopting a database as a basis for an information system.

      A database is a collection of structured data. It is a non-redundant collection of logically related files organised in a manner that satisfies the needs of an organisation where typical

      needs of an organisation are for carrying out administrative duties. A database: –

      • Fulfils organisations information needs
      • Is designed in such a way that it is only accessible to authorised persons.

       

      • It is organised in such a way to enable access and updating of records to be made by different people in different ways without changing its design.

       

      I would adopt a database as a basis of an information system due to the following reasons:

       

      • A database avoids the problem of data duplication or redundancy by allowing a single data element to be used in a number of applications. Unlike the traditional approaches whereby data files are created when need arises resulting to a lot of duplication and

      wastage of storage space.

      • With database as a basis of information system, it is easier to update files as and when need arises. This process may be very tiresome and time consuming in case of traditional

      file processing approaches.

      • Database enhances data integrity as only those who are authorised to make changes in the files can gain access to the system.
      • Data is independent of the programs which use it. Thus database remove data and program dependence.
      • Database form of information system ensures consistency in an organisation‘s use of data since all data is integrated and homogeneous in nature.
      • It brings about greater formality over security control especially over access to the system.

       

      • Categories of computer related crime

      Computer related crime refers to the use of computer and software for illegal purposes. They include:

      • TrapdoorsThis is an undocumented entry point into a computer system It is not founding design specifications but may be put in by software developers to enable them to bypass access controls while working on anew piece of software. In this case, a secret special responsecan be entered and to bypass controls and access confidential information
        • Logic bombs

        This refers to a piece of code triggered by certain events. For example a program will behave normally until a certain event occurs. For example, when disk utilisation reaches a

         certain percentage and thus activates the large bomb which then maximises damage. 3) Time bombs

                    These are similar to large bombs except that they are triggered at a certain date.

        • Electronic eavesdropping

        This refers to tapping without authorisation into communication line say a network cable  over which computer data and messages are transmitted.

        • Trojans

        This is a program installed in a computer that performs one function while secretly carrying out another. For example, a program could be running a computer game while simultaneously destroying a data file or another program. Trojans may be used to cover illegal activities or facilitate the destruction of certain vital information.

        QUESTION FOUR

         

        • Decisions can either be classified as structured (programmed) or unstructured (nonprogrammed).

         

        Required:

        • Distinguish between programmed and non-programmed decisions. (4 marks) ii) Identify each of the following with the type of decision to which it may apply.

        Computer program;        (1 mark)

      •       Stock ordering; (1 mark)               Judgement;        (1 mark)
      •         Regulation.        (1 mark)
        • You recently attended a seminar organised by the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Kenya (ICPAK) on information management into the 21st One of the topics covered was on Internet and its impact on the society. Your first task is to explain to the

        senior management the effect of Internet on the following sectors of society.

        • (6 marks) ii) Service provision industry.    (6 marks)

        (Total: 20 marks)

        QUESTION FOUR

         

        • Programmed and non-programmed decisions
          • Programmed decisions refers to those decisions on which the quality standards and guidelines are already established. These decisions are mainly routine in nature and can be made by reference to previously established standards. They are usually made by the lower level management, say a junior officer or a clerk. Examples of such decisions include; credit granting decisions to a customer based on order value credit worthiness or credit limit.

         

        Non programmed or unstructured decisions are those decisions that deal with problems or applications that cannot be clearly defined or identified. They are characterised with uncertainty and mainly concern the future operation containing variables or data where impact cannot be estimated. Such decisions thus require high and qualified managers who are able to make correct judgement based on environment understanding as there is no precedence or reference to guide the decision making. Unstructured decisions require

                    managers to use their intuition or intelligence and skills to make decisions.

        • Type of decision to which it may apply:
        • Computer program – programmed or structured decisions
        • Stock ordering – programmed or structured decisions
        • Judgement – unprogrammed or unstructured decisions
        • Regulation – programmed or structured decision

         

        • Effects of the internet on the following sectors

         

        The Internet is the name given to the technology that allows any computer with telecommunications link to exchange information with other similarly equipped computers. The following are the effects of Internet on the following sectors of the society: –

         

        • Education
          • The internet is emerging as a major educational tool. For example, many magazines, newspaper and journals are now available on the web thus availing users of internet a lot of information.
          • The internet also facilitates education by availing information cheaply to users through the web pages. Users are not required to pay anything to access those pieces of information

           

          • It also facilities exchange of information and ideas between various persons thus facilitating sharing of ideas.

           

          • Service provision industry
            • The internet reduces the need for paperwork and all clerical work that accompanies it in the service industry. For example, the printing postage, processing and handling mail costs related to the service are not necessary. For example, a traveller does not require to send mails or travel to a booking office to have a reservation, all he requires is to send an email.
            • The internet reduces the overall costs incurred by players in the service provision industry in that cost of stationery and staff needed to take orders over the telephone. There are also reduced telecommunication costs and transaction costs become automated. This makes business more efficient and economical thus improved
            • Internets can transform local industries into global players. For example, services consumers will be able to know of the existence of a company and the services it offers by accessing the web.
            • It improves customer relationship as it brings closer the service providers and their customers. Customers can access computers of their suppliers thus it helps them to

          do their job better. This leads to increased business and thus profitability.

          • Internetworking reduces transaction time thus saving variable time in the end customer get improved services with efficiency.
          • The ease of use of online markets is characterised by the fact that systems are so easy to use compared with placing manual service provision requests. Orders can be entered at any time in 24 hours a day with confirmations arriving almost immediately. Customers can check their account status at any time and do not have to wait for monthly statements. This positively affects the operations of the service provision business.

           

          For example an industrialist any needs to access his machine technician‘s web and call upon him in case of machine failure.

          QUESTION FIVE

           

          • For applications such as banking, it may be argued that security is a major concern when implementing database systems. As a database administrator, you are expected to explain

          five security features expected to be included with the design of the database systems.

          (10 marks)

          • What is meant by cost/benefit analysis? Illustrate its relevance to the System Analyst during       systems development life cycled. (6 marks)
          • Examine four any four desirable features which should be inherent in an operating system.

          (4 marks)

          (Total: 20 marks)

           

          ANSWERS TO QUESTION FIVE

           

           

          The database through the database management system should have in built procedures

           

          which allows only the authorised persons to access the system or to make modifications

          such as updating the data.

          Specify features to be included with the design of the data base system

          1. Strict operating procedures
          • Back-up proceduresThe design of a database system should include backup procedures to ensure that data is  not lost in case of malfunction or accidental loss of data.
            • Protection against remote access

            Data contained in the system should be protected against remote access through the use  of passwords and data encryption.

            • Controlled access to the system

            Physical security measures should be put in place to limit physical access to the system by  unauthorised users.

            • Database administration

            A database system should have an administrator who is responsible for its administration. He performs such functions as maintaining the database the data dictionary and helping users overcome the problems that they encounter.

             

            • Cost/benefit and its relevance

             

            Cost benefit analysis refers to the economic feasibility a evaluation of a system to determine whether it is a good investment or not. It seeks to establish whether the benefits that are to be reaped from the system outweigh the costs incurred to implement it.

             

            QUESTION SIX

             

            • Due to complexity of information systems development, a number of tools and methodologies have been used to resolve this complexity. Some of such tools and methodologies include Computer Aided Software Engineering (CASE) and Prototyping.

             

            Required:

            Identify those aspects of information systems development life cycle for which these tools or techniques are available illustrating their application in each case. (12 marks)

          •  Examine the role of a database administrator in an organisation.(8 marks)(Total: 20 marks)ANSWERS TO 

            QUESTION SIX

             

            • Aspects of information system development life cycle for which CASE and prototyping tools and techniques are available and their application in each case.

            Computer Aided Software Engineering (CASE) tools refers to a set of programs used to automate thus improve system development by enabling analysts and designers to integrate and analyse documentation of several analysts and programmers who may be working on different phases of the system. They ensure accuracy, consistency and speed.

             

            A prototype refers to a model of all or part of a system built to show uses how a system will appear. The process of creating a prototype is called prototyping and helps in capturing users‘ requirements faster at a lower cost.

             

            The following aspects of system development life cycle can be performed using the above  tools and methodologies:

            • Capturing user requirements during the design stage. This can be done using a prototype

            to determine actual user needs.

            • Creation of design diagrams during the procedure design stage. CASE tools called analyst work benches can be used to produce flow charts and data flow diagrams in the system design stage.
            • Checking adherence to design standards can be achieved through the use of CASE tools such as analysts work benches programs.
              • They can be used in calculating the time frames or duration to system completion. This can be achieved using programs such as integrated program system environment to carry out such the Critical Path Analysis (CPA) or the Program Evaluation Review Techniques (PERT) during initial development stage.
              • The tools can also support separate or individual phases of the system development

              cycle. This can be achieved through the use of stand-alone CASE tools.

              • Automation of some of the processes of system development involved in turning system specifications into a working program. Such include generation of codes and diagnostic aids. This can be achieved by use of CASE tools such as the programmers work benches.

               

               

              1. a) Role of database administrator
              • To maintain the database. The database administrator is responsible for making additions deleting information and ensuring that there is no duplication of data.
              • Maintaining the data dictionary. A data dictionary is an index of data held in a database which can be used in the maintenance and access of the database. It contains a pool of

              information concerning a database.

              • Helping users to overcome the problems that they may encounter when using the database.
              • Resolving conflicts between users and the technical people.
              • Overseeing the database security.
              • Evaluating the Database Management System (DBMS) performance so as to determine whether it meets the organisation‘s needs.
              • Enhancing backing up of data and making sure that data recovery is in place.
              • Ensuring compliance with the rules and regulations, for example, statutory legislation i.e. Data Protection Act.

             

            The relevance of cost benefit analysis to the system analyst during system development arise              due t the fact that: –

            • The analyst carries out a methodological study at the current system so that a system that suits user requirements and which is feasible is obtained. Thus, cost benefit analysis is
            • The system analyst specifies the input output and storage files as well as the processing hardware and software. Thus, he must be conscious about the costs of such facilities and

            the benefits to be accrued from each of them.

            • The analyst is also involved in the post in the post implementation review stage and as such he is able to know and appreciate whether the system is working in conformity with desired costs and benefits.

             

            • Features which should be inherent in an operating system

            An operating system is an organised collection of a suite of programs which controls and supervises computer system hardware and provides services to programmers and users of a computer system.

             

            Operating systems should have such features as:

             

            • It should be able to perform control oriented tasks such as multiprogramming, multi processing and batch processing.
            • It should allow for time-sharing such that multiple users can access a single computer system at one time.
            • It should allow for concurrent execution of programs so as to enhance speedy processing of data.
            • Operating systems should handle interruptions caused by program abnormalities or machine failure and be able to report this to the user.
            • System security is inherent to any operating system as all security routine checks are controlled by the operating system.
            • Ease of use or need for basic training.
            • Portability of the program from one system to another.
            • Speed and productivity of the software.
            • Its cost of maintenance.
            • Popularity of goodwill of the software amongst users.
            •  Ability to be used in networks.
            • QUESTION SEVEN
              1. The trends towards distributed data processing and end user development can have significant effect on the structure and operation of Information Technology in an organisation. Although the underlying trends and advantages are favourable, managers have to aware of potential problems.

               

               

               

              What problems would you envisage arising as a result of widespread end-user computing  and how might such problems be avoided? (8 marks)

              • Your company has decided to replace it‘s existing accounting system. The company has identified the requirements of the system. The company wishes to make a decision on how to acquire this application-software.

               

              Required:

              Identify the three main sources of applications-software and discuss the appropriateness of         each source.       (6 marks)

              • Identify and  describe  the  application  of  fourth  generation  languages  (4GLs)  during

              information system development.                                                              (6 marks)

              (Total: 20 marks)

              ANSWERS TO QUESTION SEVEN

               

              • Problems arising as a result of widespread end user computing and how they might be

              Distributed systems refers to several interconnected processors situated in separate localities where each processor has its own local peripherals for example, disc storage and terminals. Each processor acts automatically but at other times can co-operate in handling a common problem. Distributed processing gives end users control and responsibility for their own data.

               

               

              End user computing refers to direct hands on use of computers by users – not indirect use through systems professionals or data processing staff. End users include executive managers, professional staff, secretaries, office workers, etc.

               

              Problems arising as a result of widespread end user computing include:

              • Lack of user education about personal computing.
              • User requests for assistance that overwhelm the IT department.
              • Lack of users knowledge or concern about microcomputer control measures such as fire back up.
              • Lack of integration in the micro-mainframe data exchange and control.
                • Poor maintainability of user developed systems.
                • Mismatching of user problems and computer alternatives for system development.
                • Lack of centralised management of corporate data resources that support personal      
                • Lack of user concern about equipment security. 9) Lack of user friendly mainframe software to compete with micro computers.

                 

                However, these problems can be overcome through: –

                • Institution of physical and logical access controls to systems such that only legitimate users use the systems.
                • Proper training of staff or users.
                • Proper system administration especially the IT department.
                • Providing support functions such as the information resource centres user groups. 5) Proper system documentation.

                 

                • Three main sources of applications software and their appropriateness.

                Applications software consists of programs which carry out a specific activity task for the  user.

                The various sources of application programs are:

                • Application packages

                These are also known as off the shelf programs and are ready made programs written by a manufacturer to perform a particular task which is common to many potential users and could be adopted by all of them. Packages may contain add-on facilities to allow for minor alterations required to suit certain businesses. Packages are normally appropriate in       that:

                • The come with an assurance of system compatibility.
                • They require minimum start up time and training cost during implementation.
                • They can be tailored to meet certain unique needs.
                • They can be sold to other users since they can use standard

                 

                • Do-it-yourself programs

                This application programs designed and developed by users themselves. They are also known as in-house programs and are normally not very complex. These programs are

                appropriate because: –

                • The invoice only a low cost since no specialists need to be hired.
                • They are fast to develop and complete.          iii) They can be revised when need arises.
                • They are a morale booster to electronic data processing staff.
                • They are naturally customised to the system being developed.

                 

                • Specialist built or customised programs

                These are application programs developed by software experts normally information analysts with experience in system analysis who are contracted by the organisation to develop an application program for its use. They are ideal where the program required is

                complex. These programs are appropriate in that:

                • The can be revised by the developer to suit changing demands.
                  • They are easy to learn and use.
                  • They are free from errors since they are thoroughly tested before being released as opposed to do-it-yourself programs.

                   

                  • Fourth generation languages and their application during system development.

                  Fourth generation languages (4GLs) describes a set of computer based tools or facilities which assist program users in the design and preparation of an application. They help the user to develop their own application more readily and cheaply without consulting analysts and programmers.

                   

                  Fourth generation languages can help users during an information system development in the  following ways: –

                  • 4GLs are non-procedural and as such, program functions are not produced by the user but the 4GL itself. Users simply request for the data processing result or output instead of providing the detail physical and logic used. This helps to come up with applications more quickly and cheaply with minimal errors. This aspect is critical in the case of

                  program development and results to increased programmers productivity.

                  • 4GLs are problem oriented in that programs are designed to solve particular problems using English like structures. Being problem oriented makes the language more

                   

                  productive to specific applications. This is vital in the case of information system

                  development since it ensures quality and productivity of applications developed.

                  • 4GLs enhance user creativity and productivity. Unlike procedural languages, 4GL tends to promote user computing spirit and skills. User acceptance acknowledgement and understanding will enhance reduction of technophobia: thus more quality and reliable
                  • System maintenance and flexibility is enhanced. 4GLs facilitate a continuous process of application development. The rigid requirement and the technical requirement involved in system development life cycle is reduced. Change in user requirements can always be

                              incorporated in the systems design from time to time.

                  • 4GLs enhance end user computing and so limiting the use of IT staff.
                  • They help the organisation to top over creativity thus new information systems will be of higher quality.

                  4GLs help in the diffusion of information technology throughout the organisation.

                               QUESTION EIGHT

                  • Give four  examples  of  industries  and  business  organisations  that are  currently  using  computer networking.          (4 marks)
                  • What are the implications of increased electronic networking on computer security?

                                          (4 marks) c) What  is  active  participation  of  senior  management  in  design  of         information  systems      important?         (8 marks) d) Using a practical example, explain what is meant by sub-optimisation.           (4 marks)

                  ANSWERS TO QUESTION EIGHT

                   

                  • Industries and business organisations using computer networking

                   

                  • Banking Industry

                  Networking in the banking industries is used to provide such services as CHAPS and

                  BACS.

                  • Retailing industry

                  Chain stores and supermarkets use computer networking to facilitate branch accounting  by linking branches with the head office.

                  • Service provision industries

                  These industries are networked with their customers so as to facilitate faster delivery of              services.

                  • Educational institutions

                  These may use networking so as to have homogeneous information regarding every aspect. For example, fees collected form students.

                   

                  • Implications of increased electronic networking on compute security.

                  Compute security refers to the protection of data and programs from threats which may cause unauthorised changes and modifications of data or programs as well as protection of information systems to ensure that the system operate as designed.

                  Electronic networking affects computer security in that: –

                  • It may result to unauthorised access to personal or confidential information.
                  • It may result to deliberate modification of important data to act as cover-ups to illegal
                  • Electronic networking exposes data held in computers which can hurt businesses by exposing their secrets.
                  • It could lead to system degradation, for example, where viruses, worms and computer related crimes are transmitted through networks.

                   

                  • Importance of active participation of senior management in design information system.
                    • Information system development involves high costs and is often characterised by high investment and as such, would require sound decisions and proper control.
                    • The design of an information system is critical to the success of an organisation and so senior management must be involved.
                    • Information system design can be used as a commercial strategy and so proper designs may put an organisation on a competitive edge.
                    • New information systems may mean a resolution in the way information is created and presented to management and so senior staff should be involved in the design stage.

                   

                  • Information systems development is not just about the speedy processing of high volume routine transactions but also to provide information for decision making and so senior

                  management should be involved in its design.

                  • A properly designed system not only affects the organisations but also other stakeholders and so senior management must be aware of such stakeholders.
                  • Senior management must be involved in the design of a system so as to make a real difference to successful information technology.

                   

                  • What is sub optimisation

                  This refers to a condition of non-fulfilment of the overall goal of a system. It occurs when the objectives of a subsystem directly conflicts with the overall objection of another subsystem. This means that the subsystems could be meeting their goals but the whole system could be meeting its goals in substandard.

                   

                  An example of sub-optimisation is where a factory might use high technology plant in its operations but if as a consequence employees are neither expected to use any skill nor able to work in a group with other, the optimisation of the technological subsystem would affect the social and psychological structure and lead to inefficiency amongst employees. For example, low productivity or poor quality; thus sub-optimisation of the factory system results.

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