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Study Notes

Information System- performs seven information processes

Purpose- reason for a systems existence
Environment- everything that influences or is influenced by an information system
and its purpose
Information Technology
Hardware- physical Equipment
Software- detailed instructions used to direct the hardware to perform a particular
task, part of operating system.
Data/Information- input/ output
Data- Raw material, may not be relevant or useful, is processed into info. In the form
of audio, images, video, texts and numbers.
Information- ordered, given meaning.
Participants- people who carry out the information processes, people who do the
Information Processes- refers to the creation of information by processing data using
info tech. The 7 processes describe the procedures that an info system performs to
process data into info. COASPTD.
Collecting- involves deciding what to collect, how, locating it and getting it.
Primary Source- First hand
Secondary Source- collected or created by someone else
Organising- arranges, represents, formats data for use by other information
processes. Gives some structure to data.
Analysing- interprets data, transforming it into info. Examining data and giving
meaning to it. Charts and graphs.
Storing and retrieving- prevents loss of data
Storing- saves data for later
Retrieving- obtains data that has been previously saved.
Processing- manipulation of data and information whenever the data/ info is
modified/ updated. Carried out by the CPU.
Transmitting and Receiving- transfer of data within and between info systems e.g.
internet and email.
Displaying- presentation of info from an info system
Data Security
Hackers- people who gain illegal access to info systems
Computer Crime- crimes go unreported, not viewed in the same light as other
Data Security- series of safeguards to protect the data from deliberate or accidental
damage e.g. passwords, objects (P.I.N), waste, people.
Data encryption- used to prevent data from being intercepted and read. Data is
scrambled so it is meaningless to anyone but the user.
Firewalls- computer networks, check all data coming form outside sources
Backup Procedures- need to be secure and reliable.
Data accuracy- easy to publish; the less accurate/ reliable
Data validation- the accuracy of data must be checked before processed into info.
Ensures data is up-to-date, current, complete and correctly entered.
Copyright- right to use, copy or control the work of authors/ artists. Protected by law.
Copyright ownership is automatic. It is against the law to use or copy the work of
another person without the permission.
Shareware- software the is provided free and can be copied and distributed but
requires users to pay.
Impact of Technology on Society- more efficient, raised standard of living, saves
time, reduces effort, increase output, develop new products, saves money
Education- access to range of software to improve learning, improved skills.
Input devices- devices used to enter data into a computer system
Operating Systems- software that supervises and controls hardware. Link between
the hardware and application software
Non- computer tools- literature (books, reports, magazines) surveys and interviews
Digitising- process of generating digits or numbers that can be stored/ processed by a
Application software- computer program used for a specific task
Non- computer tools- hard copy systems, pen and paper
CPU- Central Processing Unit, dependant on memory capabilities. The brain of the
computer, CPU accepts data from any input device, changes this data according to the
instructions given and sends results to an output device.
Clock speed- number of electrical pulses per second. Indicates speed of CPU (Hz)
CPU utilisation- the amount of time the CPU is working
Memory- part of the computer that holds data and programs before and after it has
been processed by the CPU
RAM- random access memory, data and instructions are held temporarily
Centralised processing- type of processing controlled by a central computer. Allows
data and resources to be shared.
Distributed processing- type of processing consisting of workstations connected to
share data and resources at a local site
System Development Cycle- UMDIT
1. Understanding the Problem- indentifying requirements of a system that
would solve the problem. The exact nature of the problem must be determined.
Preliminary Investigation- quick fix will solve the problem, or a new system
is necessary.
Requirement Report- statement about the needs of new system. Used to
develop potential solutions.
Project plans- organises a project by specifying who, what, how and when
Gantt Chart- project schedule
2. Making Decisions- determines the feasibility of a new system to solve the
Feasibility Study- analyses potential solutions and makes a recommendation.
Economic Feasibility- compares cost with benefits
Technical- determines info tech requirements of the new system and technical
Schedule- determines whether time is available to implement the new system
Organisational- new system will fit into the organisation and meet its current
goals, have enough support.
Three recommendations- no change, develop a new system, investigate other
Analysis- report containing details of the new system with recommendations
for design, implementation and maintenance. Existing system is investigated
in greater depth to ensure problems are understood.
3. Designing solutions- creating a new system
Context Diagram- graphical method of representing a system and its inputs
and outputs
Process- Represent the entire system, transforms inputs to outputs

Data flow- between process and external entities, inputs/ outputs

External entity- person or organisation.

Data flow- same symbols + storage/ location

Data store- where it is located/ stored

4. Implementing- using the system to solve the problem

Direct conversion- immediate change to the new system
Parallel- old and new systems working together
Phased- gradual implementation
Pilot- trialling the new system
Training- ensure that participants can use the new system and understand its
5. Testing and Evaluating- ongoing operation of the system
Testing- ensuring it works
Evaluating- whether the system is working as expected
Maintenance- modification of the system by making minor improvements
Machine-centred systems- system designed to simplify what the computer
must do at the expense of participants. Assume people will follow procedures
that may be confusing in order to get the end result they want. Blame
Human -centred systems- system that makes participants work as effective
and satisfying as possible. User- friendly
Rules for group work- working cooperatively
• Work together: contribute to all sections
• Roles: specific responsibilities, complete tasks on deadline
Data compression- compacting a file
Data integrity- quality of data
Digital- data represented in the form of digits or numbers
Graphical User Interface- communicating with the computer
Internet- global collection of computer networks
ISP- Internet service provider
Privacy- ability of an individual to control personal data
Protocol- set of rules that govern the transmission of data