Sie sind auf Seite 1von 245

Introduction to Information


Eliezer A. Albacea

University of the Philippines

Introduction to Information Technology
By Eliezer A. Albacea

Copyright 2009 By Eliezer A. Albacea and UP Open University

Apart from any fair use for the purpose of research or private study,
criticism or review, this publication may be reproduced, stored
or transmitted, in any form or by any means
of the author and the UP Open University.

Published in the Philippines by the UP Open University

Office of Academic Support and Instructional Services
2/F National Computer Center
C.P. Garcia Avenue, Diliman, Quezon City 1101
Telephone (632) 426-1515

First printing, 2009

Layout by Cecilia Geronimo-Santiago and Helen M. Creer

Printed in the Philippines

Table of Contents

Module 1 Introduction, 1
Objectives, 1
What is Information Technology?, 1
What is a Computer and Computer Science?, 3
What is Telecommunications Technology?, 5
Evolution of Computing and Computing Machines, 5
Evolution of Digital Computers, 9
First Generation (1939-1954): Vacuum Tube, 10
Second Generation (1954-1959): Transistor, 14
Third Generation (1959-1971): Integrated Circuits, 15
Fourth Generation (1971-Present): Microprocessors, 17
Types of Computers, 20

Module 2 Computer Systems Organization, 25

Objectives, 25
Processors, 25
Execution of instruction, 29
Memories, 30
Random access memory, 31
Read-only memory, 33
Memory caches, 34
Magnetic disks, 35
Optical memories, 36
Other secondary memories, 38
Flash memory, 39
Input/Output System, 40
Switches and lights, 41
Keyboards, 41
Video displays, 45
Cursor-tracking devices, 47
Printers, 48
Other input/output devices, 52
Computer Buses, 52
Bus operation, 54
Bus addressing, 54
Example of address decoding, 55
Bus synchronization, 56
Bus contention and arbitration, 56
Module 3 Systems Software, 59
Objectives, 59
What is an Operating System?, 60
Evolution of Operating Systems, 64
First generation operating systems (1945-1955), 64
Second generation operating systems (1955-1965), 65
Third generation operating systems (1965-1980), 67
Fourth generation operating systems (1980-Present), 68
Current Trends, 69
Compilers or Translators, 73
Assemblers, 75
Device Drivers, 77
Utilities, 77

Module 4 Applications Software, 81

Objectives, 81
Database Management Systems, 81
Database concepts, 82
Phases of database design, 84
Querying the database, 85
Implementing a database, 85
Office Automation Software, 86
Word processing, 86
Desktop publishing, 87
Graphics software, 88
Presentation/visual aids software, 89
Electronic spreadsheets, 90
Communications Systems, 91
Electronic mails, 91
Bulletin board system, 91
Voice mails, 92
Teleconferencing, 93
Groupware, 94
Artificial Intelligence (AI), 95
AI Technologies, 98
Natural language processing, 99
Speech recognition and synthesis, 101
Robotics, 102
Computer vision, 104
Fuzzy logic, 104
Neural networks, 104
Intelligent agents, 105
Expert systems, 107
Multimedia Systems, 110
Module 5 Computer Networks and Data Communication, 113
Objectives, 113
Networks, 113
Network Topologies, 116
Networking Protocols, 118
Ethernet, 119
Fast ethernet, 121
Token ring, 122
Token bus, 123
Fiber distributed data interface, 124
Networking Hardware, 125
File servers, 125
Workstations, 126
Network interface cards, 126
Hubs or concentrators, 127
Repeaters, 127
Bridges, 128
Routers, 128
Gateway, 129
Network Cabling, 130
Unshielded Twisted Pair (UTP), 130
Shielded Twisted Pair (STP), 131
Coaxial cable, 132
Fiber optic cables, 133
Wireless Transmission Media, 134
Microwave communication, 134
Terrestrial microwave, 135
Satellite communication, 135
Broadcast radio communication, 136
Infrared communication, 136
Data Communication, 138
Evolution of telecommunication networks, 138
How telephones work, 141
How cell phones work, 145
Transmission modes, 146
Channel capacity, 149
Sending data through an analog channel, 151
Modulation methods, 152
Switched or leased lines, 156

Module 6 The Internet and the World Wide Web, 157

Objectives, 157
What is the Internet?, 157
Services Provided by the Internet, 160
Electronic mail, 160
File Transfer Protocol (FTP), 164
Remote login, 164
E-mail discussion groups, 165
Usenet news, 166
FAQ, RFC, FYI, 167
Chat and instant messaging, 167
World wide web, 168
What Makes Up the Internet?, 170
How to Access the Internet?, 171
How is a Host Identified?, 172
What are Domain Names?, 173
What are Email Addresses?, 174
World Wide Web (WWW), 174
What is a Web Browser?, 176
Plug-ins, 177
Programming languages and functions, 178
How Do Web Servers Work?, 180
What is a Hyperlink?, 181
What is a URL?, 182
What is HTML?, 185
Search Engines and Searching, 186
Electronic Commerce, 188

Module 7 Computer Ethics, 193

Objectives, 193
Computer Abuse Issues, 194
Denial of service, 194
Hacking, 196
Flaming, 198
Spamming, 199
Worm and virus, 200
Internet hoaxes, 201
Privacy Issues, 204
Social Justice Issues, 205
Free Speech Issues, 206
Intellectual Property Rights, 208
Software piracy, 208
Plagiarism, 210
Software and copyright law of the US, 211
Computer Crimes, 212
Credit card fraud, 212
Virus creation and unleashing it to the network, 213
Hacking, 214
Stock fraud, 215
Spamming, 216
Hate and vengeance case, 216
IT-Related Laws in the Philippines, 217
E-Commerce Law of the Philippines (Republic Act Number 8792), 222
Index, 234
Module 1

What is Information Technology?

I nformation Technology is a term that

encompasses all forms of technology used to
create, store, exchange, and use information in its
various forms (text, voice conversations, still At the end of the module, you
images, motion pictures, multimedia should be able to:
presentations, and other forms). It is a technology
created by the convergence of the computer 1. Define and discuss
technology and telecommunications technology. information technology,
computer technology
Computer technology deals with the computer and telecommunication
hardware and the software that run on them. technology; and
While telecommunication technology deals with 2. Trace the evolution of
the transmission, emission, or reception of signs, computers.
signals, writing, images and sounds or intelligence
of any nature by wire, radio, optical or other
electromagnetic systems. The computer technology
is responsible for the creation, storage and use of information while the
telecommunication technology is responsible for the transmission or
exchange of information.

A very good example of an information technology system is the Automatic

Teller Machine (ATM) that can be found in banks in the Philippines. When
somebody wants to use an ATM, one will enter what he wants on a local
computer found in the ATM. The information is then transmitted by the
ATM via communication lines to a central computer found may be in the
main office of the bank. The computer in the main office processes the
2 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

request of a client then sends back its reply to the ATM instructing the
ATM what to do. For example, if the client wants to withdraw some money,
then this information is sent to the main computer that debits from the
account of the client the amount he wants to withdraw. Then, the main
computer instructs the ATM to release an amount equivalent to the amount
being withdrawn by the client.

Another example is the mailing system in the Internet. Suppose one wants
to send (sender) an electronic mail to another person (receiver)
geographically located somewhere else. The system allows a user to enter
his mail through a local computer. Then, the local computer sends the
message via communication lines to the computer where the account of
the receiver resides.

Information technology, however, is a very wide area of study. It includes

but is not limited to the following:

1. Internet - World Wide Web, E-commerce technologies

2. Virtual environments - virtual reality, virtual reality technologies
3. Artificial Intelligence - artificial life, computer vision, speech recognition
and synthesis, natural language processing, fuzzy logic, neural
networks, expert systems, robotics
4. Multimedia
5. Gaming
6. Agent technologies
7. Object technologies
8. Geographic Information Systems

Activity 1-1
E-commerce or electronic commerce is the purchasing, selling, and
exchanging of goods and services over computer networks (such
as the Internet) through which transactions or terms of sale are
performed electronically.

Argue that this application is an Information Technology

application by illustrating that this involves the creation, storage,
exchange, and use of information.

UP Open University
Module 1 3

What is a Computer and Computer Science?

A computer is an electronic device that accepts information, manipulates
this information for some results that is based on a stored program or
sequence of instructions on how the information is to be processed. The
stored program may be written by a user and may be changed depending
on the problem being solved. Thus, a computer can solve an almost
unlimited number of problems. Modern computers inherently follow the
stored program concept, i.e., the program is stored in the memory of the
computer, read and executed one instruction at a time. Recently, multiple
programs and computers have been devised to work on a common
problem, thus allowing the computers to execute the programs in parallel.

During the early days of computers, the programs were simply designed
to carry out elaborate mathematical calculations. You write a program to
perform the desired calculations, submitted the program to the computer,
and wait. The computer crunched your numbers and produced the results
onto several reams of wide paper. The computer, in short, was used as a
number-cruncher during the early days of computers. But now, computers
can manipulate almost any type of data. Not only is it used to manipulate
numbers but also text, sound, graphics and video data.

With the above definition, can we consider a calculator a computer?

Consider the problem of computing the sum of 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5. In order to
solve this using a calculator, we press the following keys in sequence:

This will produce the result 15 on the display of the calculator. The
calculator accepts information and manipulates the information based
on a certain sequence of instructions, unfortunately the sequence of
instructions is inputted by the user one by one (by pressing the keys).
Hence, it cannot qualify as a computer based on the definition because
the instructions need to be stored inside the calculator before it can be
considered a computer.

How about the scientific calculators that have built-in (stored) functions
in them? Can they be considered computers? For example, we want to

UP Open University
4 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

compute the 99 . Using a scientific calculator, we solve this by pressing


Again, the calculator accepts information and manipulates the information

based on stored program. Unfortunately, the stored program is fixed and
cannot be changed by the user. Hence, the calculator can solve only a
fixed number of problems. Hence, again we cannot consider a scientific
calculator a computer.

Computer Science, on the other hand, is the science that deals with the
theory and methods of processing information in digital computers, design
and development of computer hardware and software, and the
applications of computers. Computer science combines concepts in
mathematics, engineering and psychology.

A computer scientist therefore is concerned with problem solving using

computers. The problem may be solved through computer programming
or it could be abstract problems like determining what problems can be
solved by computers and the complexity of the algorithms that solve them.
It could also be practical problems like designing a computer that is easy
for human use. Computer scientists also build computational models of
systems including physical phenomena (weather forecasting), human
behavior (expert systems, robotics), and computer systems themselves
(performance evaluation). Such models often require extensive numeric
or symbolic computation.

Principal areas within computer science include artificial intelligence,

computer systems, database systems, human factors, numerical analysis,
programming languages, software engineering, theory of computing and
many other areas.

Activity 1-2
Which of the following involved computers?

a. Cell phone
b. A programmable washing machine
c. Transistor radio
d. PlayStation 2
e. Airplane Black Box
f. Airline reservation system

UP Open University
Module 1 5

What is Telecommunications Technology?

Wikipedia ( defines
telecommunication as the assisted transmission of signals over a distance
for the purpose of communication. In earlier or ancient times,
telecommunication may have involved the use of smoke, drums,
semaphores, or flags for communication. But in modern times,
telecommunication typically involved the use modern technologies that
are basically electronic transmitters like the telephone, television, radio,
radar, telegraph, fax or computer. Usually these technologies involved
the transmission of all types of data like text, image, voice or video.

A telecommunication system has three basic components, namely: a

transmitter that takes information and converts this into a signal, a
transmission medium that carries the signal and a receiver that receives
the signal and converts this back to useful information. For example,
information in a radio station are converted into signals and these signals
are broadcasted by the transmitter of a radio station. Then, transistor radios
catch these signals and convert these signals to sound that is played over
by the transistor radios.

Activity 1-3
Which of the following involved telecommunication technology?

a. Cell phone
b. A programmable washing machine
c. PlayStation 2
d. Airplane Black Box
e. Airline reservation system

Evolution of Computing and Computing

The Abacus (300 BC). The abacus is one of the earliest known calculating
machines. Calculating instrument that uses beads that slide along a series
of wires or rods set in a frame. The standard abacus can be used to perform
addition, subtraction, division and multiplication. Further, the abacus can
be sued to extract the square root or cubic root of a number.

UP Open University
6 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

The oldest surviving counting board, though, is the Salamis tablet, used in
Babylonia circa 300 BC., discovered in 1899 on the island of Salamis. It is
a slab of marble marked with 2 sets of eleven vertical lines (10 columns), a
blank space between them, a horizontal line crossing each set of lines and
Greek symbols along the top and bottom.

The abacus as we know it today, appeared circa 1200 A.D. in China. In

Chinese, it is called suan-pan. Beginning in about 1600 A.D., use and
evolution of the Chinese abacus was begun by the Japanese via Korea. In
Japanese, the abacus is called soroban. It is thought that early Christians
brought the abacus to the East.

Activity 1-4
The first computing device was _____.

a. Chinese abacus
b. Japanese abacus
c. Salamis tablet
d. Korean abacus

The Numeral Zero (650 AD). The Hindus invented the written zero that
led to the development of written decimal arithmetic. The Hindu people
in India invented a written symbol for zero, an essential step to doing
written calculations. The concept of zero and place values was integral to
the use of the abacus (a zero value was represented by a bead in the down
position), but, before a symbol zero was introduced by the Hindus there
could be no real decimal arithmetic calculation in writing.

The First Standard Mathematics Textbook (830 AD). The Indian

mathematics spread to the Arabs. In 830 AD a Persian scholar named
Mohammed Ibn Musa Abu Djefar wrote a standard textbook on the subject
mathematics. He was known as Al Khwarismi and the subject of his book
was Al Gebr Wel Mukabala or Algebra for short. An example calculation
from the Algebra book is:

6X2 + 60 + 12 = 2X2 + 36x

4X2 + 72 = 36x

which is clearly an algebraic equation.

UP Open University
Module 1 7

Activity 1-5

__ 1. The numerical zero was a. Persian

invented in ____ b. 830 AD
c. 650 AD
__ 2. The book on algebra was d. Hindus
invented in ____

__ 3. The numerical zero was

invented by ____

__ 4. The first math textbook was

written by ____

Hand written Multiplication Tables (1100 AD). The Europeans learned

mathematics from the Arab by 1100. But anyone using this mathematics
has to memorize his multiplication table. By 1100s copies of the
multiplication tables were used to help merchants do their calculations.

Napiers Bones (1617 AD). Memorizing multiplication tables was

unpopular then at it is now. This lead John Napier (1550-1617), a very
eccentric Scotsman rumored to be half mad, to devise a set of logarithm
based multiplication tables carved on ivory sticks called Napiers Bones.
Instead of memorizing a multiplication table, Napier inscribed the
multiplication table on ivory sticks that can be used when multiplying
numbers. Although Napier is most famous for logarithms his sliding sticks
lead to the development of the slide rule.

Activity 1-6
True or False.

______ When using Napiers Bones, one needs to memorize


UP Open University
8 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

The Slide Rule (1621 AD). The slide rule was invented by William Oughtred
in about 1621. The slide rule is based on Napiers ideas about logarithms -
it has logarithmic scales that can be slid past each other to allow
approximations to multiplication to be carried out quickly and easily. It
consists of at least two divided rules or scales, namely: a fixed outer pair
and a movable inner one. It has a movable sliding window cutting across
the rules. The slide rule is primarily used for multiplication, division and
scientific functions like taking the roots and logarithms. It does not
generally perform addition and subtraction.

The Calculating Clock (1623 AD). The calculating clock is the first real
machine that was designed by Wilhelm Schickard in Germany. It is
considered a real machine because it is gear driven. It was called the
calculating clock and was based on Napiers logarithms but this time they
were etched on rotating cylinders with gears in a large machine housing.
The machine could add, subtract, multiply and divide.

The Pascaline (1642 AD). The Pascaline was invented by Blaise Pascal in
1642. This device is a gear-driven one-function calculator. The device is
able to add two decimal numbers. Using tens complement it is also possible
to subtract. Example: 65 - 27 can be computed as 65 + 73 without carry,
where 73 is the complement of 27.

The Leibniz Wheel (1673). The Leibniz Wheel is the first general-purpose
calculating machine invented by Gotfried von Leibniz in Germany. Leibniz
improved the Pascals design by operating using a cylinder of stepped
teeth instead of using interconnected gears. The Leibniz wheel is a four-
function (addition, subtraction, multiplication and division) calculator.

Activity 1-7
Which of the following is the first real machine for computation?

a. Slide rule
b. Calculating clock
c. Leibniz wheel
d. Pascaline

The Jacquard Loom (1801). The industrial revolution (mid 1700s) brought
about advances in the weavers loom that allowed it to use a system of
punched cards to program patterns of colors in woven fabric. Joseph Marie
Jacquard invented a power loom with an automatic card reader.

UP Open University
Module 1 9

The Babbages Analytical Engine (1832). Charles Babbage constructed the

Difference Engine. This was a special machine whose purpose was to
evaluate and print mathematical tables by adding sequentially the
difference between certain polynomial values.

Due to technical limitations, budget constraints, and Babbage interest in

developing a more advanced design called the Analytical Engine, the
Difference Engine was not completed. A prototype, however, was
constructed. Babbage envisioned a memory or STORE for the Analytical
Engine. As OUTPUT, he designed the worlds first automated type setter
to type the results of computations. Babbage, however, never finished the
analytical engine. He is credited for designing a machine based on the
concept of stored information.

The Herman Holleriths Census Calculators (1890). The 1880 US census

took 7.5 years to analyze. Herman Hollerith proposed to put each persons
information on a punch card and analyze the information with the help
of an electrical and mechanical tabulating machine. Inspired by the
Jacquard Loom, Hollerith invented a machine purely for accumulating
and classifying information and thus founded the field of Data Processing.
Hollerith founded, to manufacture his card-operated data processors, the
company IBM.

Activity 1-8
True or False.

______ The analytical engine of Charles Babbage is a machine

based on the concept of stored information.

Evolution of Digital Computers

Digital computers were first using the vacuum tubes technology. But
because vacuum tubes are bulky and prone to overheating, this technology
was later replaced by the smaller and less prone to overheating the
transistor technology. Then, in an attempt to make computers smaller,
they packed several transistors into a small space thus creating the
integrated circuit technology. Much later, they designed integrated circuits
to include all the necessary components for it to function like a computer.
This created the microprocessor technology.

UP Open University
10 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

The functions of vacuum tubes and transistors (including the transistors

used in the integrated circuits) remain the same, i.e., they function as a
switch and as a modulator/amplifier. As a switch, vacuum tubes and
transistors can stop or start the flow of electricity. As modulator/amplifier,
they can take a very weak electrical signal and make the signal stronger
(amplify) or it can take a strong signal and weaken it (modulate). This
amplification and modulation of electrical signal is necessary in the
representation of 0s and 1s in digital computers.

First Generation (1939-1954): Vacuum Tube

It all started with the invention of the incandescent light bulb by Thomas
Edison. The first lights were very short lived and were prone to darken.
This darkening was termed the Edison effect.

Sir John Ambrose Fleming worked to develop the first rectifier and in
1904, while working for the Marconi Company, he was faced with the
problem of detecting weak wireless signals. He was inspired by his work
with Edisons lamps back in 1889 and decided to try inserting one of the
lamps in an oscillatory circuit containing a galvanometer. He had found
the solution to the problem of rectifying high frequency wireless circuits.

The next big step in the development of the vacuum tube came along with
Lee de Forest. In 1905, de Forest was working with lamps as well and
developed what would become one of the most important developments
in vacuum tube history; the Audion. In all great developments, there must
come some controversy. Lee de Forest held steadfast in his assertion that
he developed the Audion independently from Flemings research. Lee de
Forest applied for and was granted a patent for the Audion on November
13, 1906.

The Audion was brought to AT&T with the idea of using them in telephone
repeaters for longer distance signal transmission. AT&T was so impressed,
they purchased some of Lee de Forests patents for $50,000 and assigned
their electrical unit, Western Electric (WECo), to develop and improve the
Audion. Western Electric was the critical step in the evolution of the
vacuum tube. WECo took a crude, unreliable device and converted it into
a high standard of reliability and longevity. The advancement of the WECo
tubes started with a 101A. There were many refinements and adjustments
applied to the WECo line. These refinements gave us such beauties as the
101D, the 205D, the 252A, and the venerable 300B.

UP Open University
Module 1 11

Activity 1-9

___ 1. Invented the light bulb a. Lee de Forest

b. Thomas Edison
___ 2. Produced the first rectifier to c. John Ambrose Fleming
Edison effect

___ 3. Invented the Audion

Using vacuum tubes, John V. Atanasoff in 1937 designed the first digital
electronic computer and in 1939, Atanasoff and Clifford Berry
demonstrated the Atanasoff-Berry Computer (ABC) prototype.

The ABC was the worlds first electronic digital computer. The ABC was
built by John Vincent Atanasoff and Clifford Berry of Iowa State University
during 1937-42. It incorporated several major innovations in computing
including the use of binary arithmetic, regenerative memory, parallel
processing, and separation of memory and computing functions.

Konrad Zuse in Germany and in 1941 developed in secret the Z3. The
Z3s architect was a German engineer called Konrad Zuse, who developed
his first machine, the Z1, in his parents living room in Berlin in 1938.
Although based on relays, the Z3 was very sophisticated for its time; for
example, it utilized the binary number system and could perform floating-
point arithmetic.

Across the Atlantic a major need for supporting the war effort was to
decrypt the intercepted messages of the German forces. Encrypted in the
early years using the US designed ENIGMA (The Enigma is a complex
mechanical encoder used by the Germans and they believe it to be
unbreakable), a team at Bletchley Park halfway between Oxford and
Cambridge Universities, including Alan Turing, built a series of machines
culminating in 1943 with Colossus.

UP Open University
12 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Activity 1-10
The first electronic digital computer is ___.

a. Z1
b. Z3
c. Atanasoff- Berry Computer
d. Colussus

Howard Aiken in 1944 developed the Harvard Mark I mechanical

computer for the US Navy. Mark I is considered to be the one of the first
digital computers, its architecture was significantly different from modern
machines. The device consisted of many calculators which worked on
parts of the same problem under the guidance of a single control unit.
Instructions were read in on paper tape, data was provided on punched
cards, and the device could only perform operations in the sequence in
which they were received.

John W. Mauchly and J. Presper Eckert built in 1946 the ENIAC computer,
the first large-scale general-purpose electronic computer. Built at the
University of Pennsylvanias Moore School of Electrical Engineering ENIAC
is an acronym for Electronic Numerical Integrator and Computer, but
its birth lay in World War II as a classified military project known only as
Project PX. The ENIAC is important historically, because it laid the
foundations for the modern electronic computing industry.

Howard Aiken developed in 1948 the Harvard Mark III electronic

computer with 5000 tubes.

Activity 1-11
True or False.

____ Howard Aiken is the developer of Harvard Mark I and III.

UP Open University
Module 1 13

The University of Manchester in Britain developed in 1948 the Small-Scale

Experimental Machine (SSEM) Baby electronic computer with CRT
memory. It is the first computer in the world that can store not only data
but user programs as well.

Commander William Norris in 1950 led Engineering Research Associates

to develop the Atlas, based on the secret code-breaking computers used
by the US Navy in WW II; the Atlas was 38 feet long, 20 feet wide and
used 2700 vacuum tubes.

SA Lebedev in 1951 developed the MESM computer, the first Soviet

electronic digital stored-program computer. MESM was practically the
only computer in Russia which was solving the most important scientific-
technical problems from the fields of thermonuclear processes, space flights
and rocket technology, long-distance electric transmission lines, mechanics,
statistical quality control and others.

Remington Rand bought in 1952 Mauchly-Eckert Computer Corp. and

Engineering Research Associates companies and introduced the UNIVAC
(Universal Automatic Computer) computer, the first to feature a magnetic
tape storage system and was used to calculate the presidential election
returns in 1952.

Activity 1-12

__ 1. Developer of Atlas a. Remington Rand

__ 2. Developer of MESM b. SA Lebedev
__ 3. Developer of UNIVAC c. William Norris
__ 4. Developer of SSEM d. University of Manchester

In 1953, the first 23 SAGE (Semi-Automatic Ground Environment) aircraft-

warning stations were built, each with two 55,000-tube computers built
by IBM, MIT and Bell Labs. The stations were connected to form a network
and SAGE during the 1950s pioneered the development of the modem
and graphics display. The SAGE system is a semi-automatic surveillance
and early-warning air defense network, involving military personnel
stationed at air, sea, and land radar stations, computer-based information
processing centers, aircraft and missile bases, weather stations, and air
route traffic control centers. Its task is to detect, track, identify, intercept,
and destroy enemy aircraftfunctions not unlike tracking, intercepting,
and hitting a tennis ball.

UP Open University
14 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Activity 1-13
True or False.

_____ The SAGE system is a semi-automatic surveillance of extra

terrestrial objects.

Second Generation (1954-1959): Transistor

John Bardeen and Walter Brattain of Bell Laboratories were supposed to
be doing fundamental research about crystal surfaces. The experimental
results had not been very good, though, and there is a rumor that their
boss, William Shockley, came near to canceling the project. But in 1947,
they switched to using tremendously pure materials. And it dawned on
them that they could build the circuit in the picture. It was an amplifier!

The three shared a Nobel Prize. Bardeen and Brattain continued in research
(and Bardeen later won another Nobel Prize). Shockley quit to start a
semiconductor company in Palo Alto. It folded, but its staff went on to
invent the integrated circuit (the chip) and to found Intel Corporation.

Activity 1-14
Which of the following is not involved in the discovery of

a. William Shockley
b. John Brattain
c. John Bardeen
d. Walter Brattain

The following are some of the computers based on transistors:

The National Bureau of Standards (NBS) in 1950 introduced its Standards

Eastern Automatic Computer (SEAC) with 10,000 newly developed
geranium diodes in its logic circuits, and the first magnetic disk drive
designed by Jacod Rabinow.

UP Open University
Module 1 15

Tom Watson, Jr. led in 1953 IBM to introduce the model 604 computer, its
first with transistors, that became the basis of 608 model in 1957, the first
solid-state computer for the commercial market.

IBM introduced in 1955 the IBM 702 business computer.

In 1956, Bendix G-15A small business computer sold for only $45,000,
designed by of NBS.

General Electric Corporation in 1959 delivered its first Electronic Recording

Machine Accounting (ERMA) computing system to Bank of America in
California, the ERMA system employed Magnetic Ink Character
Recognition (MICR) as the means to capture data from the checks and
introduced automation in banking that continued with ATM machines in

Activity 1-15

__ 1. The ERMA was developed a. National Bureau

by __. of Standards
b. General Electric
__ 2. The 702 business computer Corporation
was developed by ___. c. IBM
d. Bank of America
__ 3. The SEAC was developed
by ___.

__ 4. The Bendix G-15A

Third Generation (1959-1971): Integrated

Jack Kilby, an engineer with a background in ceramic-based silk screen
circuit boards and transistor-based hearing aids, started working for Texas
Instruments in 1958. A year earlier research engineer Robert Noyce had
co-founded the Fairchild Semiconductor Corporation. From 1958 to 1959,
both electrical engineers were working on an answer to the same dilemma:
how to make more of less.

UP Open University
16 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

In designing a complex electronic machine like a computer it was always

necessary to increase the number of components involved in order to make
technical advances. The monolithic (formed from a single crystal)
integrated circuit placed the previously separated transistors, resistors,
capacitors and all the connecting wiring onto a single crystal (or chip)
made of semiconductor material. Kilby used germanium and Noyce used
silicon for the semiconductor material.

The original IC had only one transistor, three resistors and one capacitor
and was the size of an adults pinkie finger. Today, an IC smaller than a
one peso coin can hold 125 million transistors.

Activity 1-16
True of False.

______ Jack Kilby used silicon for the semiconductor material in

his chip.

The first commercial product using IC was the hearing aid and this was
done in 1963.

IBM announced in 1964 the System/360 all-purpose computer, using 8-

bit character word length (called byte).

DEC in 1968 introduced the first mini-computer, the PDP 8; named after
the mini-skirt.

In 1971, Intel produced the large-scale integrated (LSI) circuits (100+

components in one chip).

Activity 1-17
True or False.

____ The first commercial product using IC was the hearing aid.

UP Open University
Module 1 17

Fourth Generation (1971-Present):

Gilbert Hyatt took the integrated circuit a step further by including in one
place all the pieces necessary to operate a computer (except memory and
interface). This circuitry is called a microprocessor. He applied for a patent
on this microprocessor in 1970 titled Single Chip Integrated Circuit
Computer Architecture. The following year, while his paper work wended
its way through the patent office, three engineers (Hoff, Mazor, Faggin)
from Intel Corporation created the first commercially viable
microprocessor. Thus, they have usually been credited with its invention.
But in 1990, the U.S. Patent Office gave that recognition to Hyatt, then
five years after the Patent Office overturned the award in favor of Hoff,
Mazor and Faggin. Intels 4004 (4-bit) microprocessor was the first on the

Activity 1-18
The first to apply for a patent for microprocessor is ____.

a. Hoff
b. Mazor
c. Faggin
d. Hyatt

Intel Corporation was instrumental in the development of several

microprocessors. Specifically Intel developed microprocessors for the
desktop Personal Computers (PCs). We outlined these microprocessors
below. The discussion below is based on the article Intel Consumer
Desktop PC Microprocessor History Timeline available in http://

UP Open University
18 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Year Microprocessor Number of


1971 4004 Microprocessor - this is the first commercially

available microprocessor. This was originally used in
a calculator called Busicom. 2,300

1972 8008 Microprocessor - approximately twice as powerful

as the 4004. This was used in the circuits of the first
computer for the home called the Mark-8. 3,500

1974 8080 Microprocessor - This was used in the circuits of

the first personal computer the Altair (Altair is the
destination of the Starship Enterprise of the television
series Star Trek). Altair became very popular because
you can buy one kit for a price of $395. 6,000

1978 8086-8088 Microprocessor - This was used in the circuits

of the hit product of IBM the IBM PC (or IBM Personal
Computer). 29,000

1982 80286 Microprocessor - also known as the 286 is the

first Intel processor that can run all the software written
for its predecessor. This means it could run software
written for the 8086-8088. 134,000

1985 80386 Microprocessor - the processor can run all the

popular operating systems including Windows. It was
also multitasking. 275,000

1989 80486 Microprocessor - this processor was meant to

replace the command level computing (as exemplified
by DOS) to point and click computing as exemplified
by Windows. It was the first processor with a built-in
math co-processor. 1.2 million

1993 Intel Pentium Processor - also known as 586 is fully

compatible with earlier processors. Hence, it can run
software running on 486 at much faster speed. 3.1 million

1997 Intel Pentium II Processor - incorporates Intel MMX.

MMX is a technology that is designed to process at
a faster rate video, audio and graphics data. 7.5 million

UP Open University
Module 1 19


Year Microprocessor Number of


1999 Intel Celeron Processor - this processor was initial version

designed for gaming and educational applications has 7.5 million
and is intended for the value PC market segment. transistors but
the latest
version has
44 million

1999 Intel Pentium III Processor - the processor has

additional 70 new instructions designed for Internet
Streaming. Hence, it dramatically enhanced the
performance of advanced imaging, 3D, streaming
video, audio and speech recognition applications. 9.5 million

2000 Intel Pentium 4 Processor - allows the creation of

professional-quality movies, deliver TV-like video via
the Internet, communicate with real-time video and
voice and quickly encode music for MP3 players. 42 million

Activity 1-19

1. Intended for the value PC market a. 4004

2. Allows the creation of professional-quality b. 80286
movies b. 80286
3. First commercially available micro-processor c. Pentium
4. Can run all the software written for its d. Celeron
predecessor e. Pentium II
5. Incorporates Intel MMX f. Pentium 4
6. Used in the personal computer Altair g. 8080
7. Also known as Intel 586

UP Open University
20 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Aside from Intel microprocessors there are other microprocessors in the

market. Two of these microprocessors are the Advanced Micro Devices
(AMD) microprocessors and IBM-Cyrix microprocessors.

Activity 1-20
In the evolution of computers, one will notice that the technology
goes from big components to small components. In Pentium 4, for
example, packed in one microprocessor chip are 42 million
components or transistors. Will this trend of making the
components smaller and smaller ever end? When will it end?

Types of Computers
Up until the late 1980s, computers were classified as a mainframe, a
minicomputer or a microcomputer. The classification is actually based on
the number of users using the computer at a time.

A mainframe computer is a centralized computer capable of serving large

numbers of users at the same time. In the 1970s, the large number users
simply submit their jobs to the mainframe computer for processing. That
is, the system is not interactive. However, later users can interact with the
computer through dumb terminals. The number of users is large and may
number to more than 200 users at a time. Mainframe computers are large
computers that usually fill a room. Examples of applications running in
this type of machines are Automatic Teller Machines (ATMs) and airline
reservation systems.

A minicomputer, on the other hand, is a smaller less powerful version of

a mainframe. The lower processing power and storage capacity means
that minicomputers cannot handle more users. Hence, the capacity of
minicomputers is good only from 4 to 200 users at a time. They are
obviously less powerful than a mainframe but more powerful than
microcomputers. The size of a minicomputer is smaller that it can take up
one or few cabinets. Typical applications are office systems with at most
200 employees.

UP Open University
Module 1 21

A microcomputer is computer that can be accessed by one user at a time.

Because only one user is using it at a time, its processing power and storage
capacity is much less than a minicomputer or a mainframe. The size of
this computer is also small usually it can be placed on top of a desk.

Activity 1-21
A type of computer that can be accessed by one user at a time is

a. Mainframe
b. Minicomputer
c. Microcomputer
d. Supercomputer

In terms of computing power, another classification of computers was

used. We have the ordinary computers like the mainframe, minicomputer
and microcomputer, but we also have computers that run at high speed
and these are called supercomputers. Supercomputers lead the world in
terms of processing power and they are usually used to solve problems
involving immense amount of mathematical computations. If a problem
can be solved in years by an ordinary computer, it may take only seconds
to solve in a supercomputer.

Lately, with the popularity of computer networks a classification of

computers into workstations and servers also evolved. A workstation may
vary from an ordinary microcomputer to a high-end general-purpose
microcomputer designed for use by only one person. The high-end general-
purpose microcomputer usually offers higher performance than an
ordinary microcomputer especially with respect to graphics, processing
power and the ability to carry out several tasks at the same time. However,
both have the same purpose and that is to access the facilities offered by
network servers. A server is defined as a physical computer on which the
software runs. Originally, server software used to reside in mainframes
and minicomputers, but mainframes and minicomputers have largely been
replaced by computers built using a more robust version of the
microprocessor technology and the term server was adopted to describe
microprocessor-based machines designed for this purpose.

UP Open University
22 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Activity 1-22
True or False.

____ A mainframe can also served as a server.

Microcomputers have microprocessors for their CPUs. Because of this,

they usually occupy a very small amount of space. Microcomputers are
classified into desktop computers, laptop (also known as notebook),
handheld devices and wearable computers.

A desktop computer is a microcomputer small enough to fit in your desk.

Usually, this is the most powerful microcomputer. As in the other types of
microcomputers, desktop is design for use by only one user. Businesses
use desktop computers for word processing, accounting, desktop
publishing, and for running spreadsheet and database management
applications. At home, the most popular use for desktop computers is for
playing games.

A laptop (or a notebook) is a small mobile computer that is capable of the

same tasks that desktop performs, although typically less powerful.
Laptops contain components that are similar to those in their desktop
counterparts and perform the same functions but are miniaturized and
optimized for mobile use and efficient power consumption. A notebook
usually has a dimension similar to that of an A4 size bond paper. When a
notebook weighs around 1 kilogram, this is sometimes called a sub-
notebook and when it weighs about 5 kilograms it is called a desknote.

Activity 1-23
What are the characteristics of laptops that make them suitable to
be called mobile computers?

UP Open University
Module 1 23

Handheld devices are pocket-size mobile computing devices that are

gaining popularity as information gets accessible anywhere. Examples of
these devices are:

1. smartphone
2. PDA
3. cell phone
4. handheld game console.

A PDA or Personal Digital Assistants are handheld devices designed

originally as personal organizers. As personal organizer, it usually includes
a clock, a date book, address book, task list, memo pad and a calculator.
PDAs, nowadays, however, has also access to the Internet. One major
advantage of using PDAs is their ability to synchronize data with desktop
and notebook computers.

A wearable computer is a small portable computer designed for wearing

on the body of a person. Wearable computers are usually either integrated
into the users clothing or can be attached to the body through some other
means, like a wristband. They may also be integrated into everyday objects
that are constantly worn on the body, like a wrist watch or a hands-free
cell phone.

Activity 1-24

___ 1. Will fit in your desk. a. wearable computer

___ 2. A small mobile computer b. handheld device
capable of the same tasks c. laptop
as desktops d. desktop
___ 3. Pocket-size mobile computing
___ 4. Small portable computer
designed for wearing on the body

UP Open University
Module 2
Computer Systems

A computer system is composed of

processors, memories, and input/output
systems connected together by computer buses.
Though each component has its own At the end of this module,
specialized function, the said component has you should be able to:
to work cooperatively with the other
components for the whole computer system to 1. Explain the fetch-
work. In this chapter, we provide an decode-execute cycle of
introduction of each component. Whenever it instruction execution;
is necessary we discuss the interconnection of 2. Identify the different
this component with the other components. components of the CPU
and describe their
Processors 3. Explain the roles of the
different types of
The heart (or should it be the brain) of any memories, input/output
computer is the processor (more commonly systems and buses that
called the Central Processing Unit or CPU), may be present in a
which performs control, logical and arithmetic computer system; and
operations. It contains logic circuitry to 4. Identify the other
perform these operations, registers for the peripheral devices that
storage of intermediate results, and additional may be used in a
circuitry to control its own operations. The computer system.
central processor is the part of the computer
system that actually do the execution of a
program, which is a sequence of instruction codes stored in the main
26 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

A typical processor has three major components: an Arithmetic Logic

Unit (ALU), a register set, and a control unit. These components usually
communicate with each other and they communicate with the storage
system (memories) and I/O system using the buses that are provided.

The ALU is the functional unit that performs the arithmetic, logical, and
shift operations demanded by the computers instruction set. Basically, it
is a combinational circuit for doing arithmetic, logical, and shift operations.
The ALUs of most computers have a status register and associated logic.
The status register has a carry flag, an overflow flag, a negative-result
flag, and a non-zero flag. These flags are set when the ALU executes
instructions that warrant the setting of these flags. For example, when
executing an instruction that produces an overflow, the ALU will
communicate this through the overflow flag. A dedicated control bus
carries control signals from the control unit to the ALU, and a dedicated
status bus carries status signals from the ALU to the control unit.

One of the major differences between computers is the nature of their

register sets. Some are large in number; others are small. Some are special-
purpose registers; others have general-purpose registers. All processors,
however, have a program counter (PC). This register holds the main
memory address of the next instruction to be executed in the sequence of
instruction comprising the program.

Activity 2-1
It is desirable to have a large set of registers in a computer. Why?
What is the advantage of a computer with a large set of registers
over that of a computer with a small set of registers?

In addition, most computers have a register for holding the instruction

that is currently being executed. This register is called the instruction
register (IR). Generally, however, the programmer cannot manipulate what
is in the IR, hence it is not usually counted as part of the register set of the
processor. When the computer access the memory, they hold the address
for the reference in a programmer-invisible register called the memory-

UP Open University
Module 2 27

address register (MAR), and another programmer-invisible register the

memory-data register (MDR) is used to hold the data for a store operation
or used to receive the data during a load operation. Neither the MAR nor
the MDR is part of the register set of the machine. Still other registers that
are not usually part of the register set are the ALU input register and the
ALU output register. The ALU input register holds one of the input for
arithmetic and logical operations; while the ALU output register receives
the result of arithmetic and logical operations.

Most computers provide a set of general-purpose registers that are usually

used by programmers for storing operands and results. Although the
provision of general-purpose registers is sufficient to program a computer,
most modern day computers provide a set of index registers for the
programmer to use. An index register is one that holds an index, which is
an address displacement. When an instruction specifies both an operand
address and an index register, the computers addressing circuitry
automatically adds the content of the index register, the index, to the
operand address. The result is the true address where access is to be made.

Activity 2-2

____ 1. The register that holds the address

of the next instruction to be executed a. MAR
b. MDR
____ 2. The resister that holds the instruction c. IR
Currently being executed d. PC

____ 3. The register that holds the address of

that part of memory being access

____ 4. The register used to hold the data during

a store operation

Also provided in most computers is a set of bits called the processor-status

bits, or flags. Each flag has its own special purpose. Some hold the status
of the results of a logical or arithmetic operation. For example, a status bit
indicating a positive result, zero result, negative result, carry out, arithmetic
overflow and so on. On some machines, the processor sets the pattern,
called the condition code, in several bits. Taken together, the condition-

UP Open University
28 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

code bits are often called the condition-code register; this takes the place
of the individual status bits.

Finally, let us look at the control unit. While the CPU is executing the
current instruction, the PC points to the next instruction to be executed.
The job of the control unit is to control the machine cycle (fetch-decode-
execute cycle), which in a very simple computer can be summarized as:

1. Fetch from memory the next instruction to be executed, place this in

the IR, modify the PC to point to the next instruction to be executed.

2. Decode and execute the instruction just fetched.

As mentioned, only the simplest computer operates in this manner. In

reality, the machine cycle is more complicated than this.

The control unit generates the control signals that regulate the computer.
Normally, the control unit may send microorders, individual signals sent
over dedicated control lines, to control individual components and devices.
An example is the control signal that sets or clears the status flags (or
condition-code register). Such signal may be needed, for example, to carry
out a CLEAR CARRY instruction.

There are basically two types of control units: microprogrammed and

conventional (hardwired). In microprogrammed control, the sets of control
signals for each step of each instruction are stored in an internal memory
called the control store. An address within the control store is computed
from the instruction and the step counter. The appropriate set of control
signals is then read from the control store into the various lines of the
processor. This leads to a very flexible arrangement. This is because the
instruction set of the processor is changed by changing the contents of the
control store. In a conventional control, on the other hand, the control
mechanism is a combinational circuit which simply decodes its inputs
and produces the appropriate set of control signals for each step.

Activity 2-3
True or False.

_____ The control units controls the operations of the whole

computer system including the operations of the CPU, the
memory and the I/O systems.

UP Open University
Module 2 29

Execution of instruction
Earlier, we have shown the machine cycle of a simple computer. Basically,
it is composed of three major steps: fetch, decode and execute. The cycle
starts with an instruction being fetched from memory. The fetch part can
actually be decomposed into several steps:

1. Initiate the reading of the memory location pointed to by the PC. Then,
feed the PC into the ALU and the ALU sets it up so that the PC points
to the next instruction to be executed. When the instruction does not
involve a jump, then the PC is simply incremented by the size of the
instruction; otherwise the location of the jump will be used to set the

2. The modified value of the PC is transferred back to the PC register.

3. Initiate a data read of the instruction from memory. The processor

then waits for the memory read to finish. The data read from memory
is transferred to the IR.

Once the instruction is in IR, the decode step starts. Here, the decoding
circuitry attached to the IR sets the sequence of events for the execution of
the instruction. That is, the instruction is translated into a sequence of
microinstructions that can be handled by the control unit and the ALU.
For example, suppose we have the instruction: ADD R1, R0 (add the
contents of the memory location whose address is in R0 to register R1).
This will be translated to the following:

1. Transfer the value of R0 to MAR. Then, read using the address in


2. Transfer the value of R1 to the ALU input register. Wait for the memory
read in (1) to finish.

3. Take the value in the MDR. Add this to the contents of the ALU input

4. Take the result from the ALU output register and then place it in R1.

After this sequence of instructions has been set by the decoding circuitry,
the CPU is instructed to start executing these microinstructions. It should
be made clear that the decoding circuitry will usually produce a unique
sequence of instruction for each instruction in the instruction set of the
computer. Hence, we can see that a computer with many instructions
will usually have a more complex circuitry than a computer with very
few instructions.

UP Open University
30 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Activity 2-4
A computer with more instructions is more expensive to construct
than a computer with less instructions. Explain why?

The memory is that part of the computer system where programs and
data are stored. In fact, in our discussion of the processor, we mentioned
that instructions are fetched from the memory. Hence, in our picture of a
program in execution, the program is actually found in the memory and
only the current instruction being executed is in the CPU.

The basic unit of memory is the binary digit called the bit. As we discussed
earlier, a bit may contain a 0 or a 1. Although a bit is the basic unit,
memories are composed of a number of cells (or locations) each of which
can hold an information. If a memory has m cells then they will have an
address 0 to m-1. All the cells of the memory have the same number of
bits. In most computers, the size of a cell is either equal to a byte or equal
to a word. If the cell size is equal to a byte, then the memory is said to be
byte-addressable; while if the size is equal to a word, then the memory is
said to be word-addressable.

Activity 2-5
When a location in memory that is associated with an address
contains 8 bits, then the memory is ____.

a. Bit-addressable
b. Cell-addressable
c. Byte-addressable
d. Word-addressable
e. None of the above

UP Open University
Module 2 31

The maximum size of main memory in any computer is determined by

the addressing scheme. For example, a 16-bit computer that generates 16-
bit addresses is capable of addressing up to 216 (= 64K) memory locations.
The number 216 = 64K represents the size of the address space of the
computer. The actual number of bits in a computer with a given address
space depends on whether it is byte-addressable or word-addressable.

From the standpoint of the users and the system, the memory is viewed as
a black box. Data transfer between the memory and the CPU takes
place through the use of two CPU registers: Memory Address Register
(MAR) and the Memory Data Register (MDR). In a computer where the
MAR is k bits long and MDR is n bits long, the memory will be addressable
up to 2k. During a memory cycle, n bits of data are transferred between
the memory and the CPU. The transfer takes place in a data bus with n
data lines and address bus with k address lines. It also includes several
control lines.

Activity 2-6
What is the size of the main memory of a computer that generates
32-bit addresses?

There are two types of memories in terms of whether it is directly accessible

by the CPU or not. Those that are directly accessible are part of the main
memory of the computer and those that are not are part of the secondary
memory of the computer. In the succeeding sections, we look at some of
these memories.

Random access memory

The most popular of the main memories used in computers is the Random
Access Memory (RAM). A RAM is a memory where any location can be
accessed for a read or write operation in some fixed amount of time that is
independent of its position or address. That is, every location in the address
space is directly accessible. The most commonly used medium for the RAM
is large-scale integrated circuitry. There are two main types: the static
RAM (SRAM) and the dynamic RAM (DRAM).

UP Open University
32 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

In static RAMs, once the information is written, it does not need to be

further addressed or manipulated for the information to stay in the place
where it is stored. SRAMs are composed of flip-flops that use a small
current to maintain their logic level. SRAMs are used mostly for CPU
registers and other high-speed storage devices although some computers
use them for caches or main memory. SRAMs are currently the fastest
and the most expensive of the semiconductor memory circuits.

The most common device use for main memory is actually a capacitor
(capable of holding an electric charge) together with single transistor. This
pair of devices is smaller than the gates required for each flip-flop in one
SRAM. Unfortunately, the capacitors slowly lose their charges due to
leakage, hence there is a need to provide a refresh circuit to maintain the
charges in them. The refresh circuits must refresh the charges every 4
milliseconds in some computers. This change in charges over time is the
reason why this type of RAMs is called dynamic RAMs. Though cheaper
than SRAMs, DRAMs are slower.

Activity 2-7
What is dynamic in dynamic RAM?

Dynamic RAMs are important because fewer elements are required to

store a bit, so that more bits can be packed into an integrated circuit (IC)
of a given physical area. However, the refreshing cycle requires additional
circuitry that is often external. Therefore, there are a certain number of
memory elements required before dynamic memory becomes profitable.
Smaller memories are generally static elements, whereas larger memories
are typically dynamic. The break point is gradually moving lower as more
of the refresh circuitry is included in the IC. In so far as programming is
concerned, however, there is no difference between the two types of

Finally, there is a special type of RAM purely dedicated to the video display.
This type of RAM is the Video RAM. The Video RAM is used to display
and manipulate graphic images.

UP Open University
Module 2 33

Activity 2-8

____ 1. RAM type where once information a. video RAM

are written it does not need to be b. dynamic
further addressed RAM
c. static RAM
____ 2. RAM type where a refresh circuit
Is required

____ 3. RAM type dedicated to the display

Read-only memory
Information in a writable memory is destroyed when the computer is
switched off. It is useful also to have read-only memory where the contents
are permanently fixed, and remain valid even with no power. Of course,
the information in ROM has to be written there at some stage. In a true
ROM, the content is built in at the time of manufacture. The data in a
ROM are inserted during manufacture, essentially by exposing a
photosensitive material through a mask containing the desired bit pattern
and then etching away the exposed (or unexposed) surface. In a
programmable ROM (PROM), it can be written under computer control,
but only once, and only under special conditions. An EPROM (E for
erasable) is a PROM whose contents, once written, can be erased and
written again. Erasure is usually done with ultra-violet light.

Whatever kind of memory is used, the bits are organized within the circuit
chip so that an address value can be fed in, and the value of the
corresponding word or byte then read or (if not ROM) written. An attempt
to write into read-only memory has no effect.

UP Open University
34 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Activity 2-9
Information in ROM is considered permanent but not in EPROM.
Why is it impossible to change the information in a ROM?

Memory caches
The time required to access memory is the main limitation on the speed of
a processor. A technique sometimes used for making access to memory
faster is the use of a memory cache. This is a set of fast memory registers
into which are copied, in advance, those locations in main memory most
likely to be accessed in the near future. Most computers use a memory
cache, and it is estimated that 95% of memory accesses are found in the
cache. The rest must actually access main memory. A write into an address
held in the cache must also write through into the main memory, but not
necessarily immediately.

Normally, the memory is accessed by transferring data using the registers

MDR and the MAR through the bus. In a cache, this access mechanism is
replaced by a register-to-register transfer which is usually about 5 to 10
times faster.

When the CPU requests for data, it will request it as if the data is in memory.
In reality, however, the cache will be checked first if such data is there.
The memory will be accessed only after a CPU request when the requested
data is not buffered in the cache.

Activity 2-10
What makes a cache faster than an ordinary main memory?

UP Open University
Module 2 35

Magnetic disks
The magnetic disk is the most popular high-capacity secondary storage.
Magnetic disk technology essentially uses magnetic spots on a magnetized
disk. The presence of a magnetic spot represents a 1 and the absence of a
spot represents a 0. Information is recorded on a surface of a disk where
each surface is divided into a number of concentric circles, called tracks.
Typically a disk has several tracks per surface. The number of tracks/
surface of the disk may go up to a few hundreds. Tracks are further divided
into sectors, normally between 8 to 100 sectors. In a floppy disk for example,
single density disks have 8 sectors/track and double density disks have 9
sectors/track. However, the current floppy disks have 36 sectors/track.

To read the magnetic disks, computers are provided with a disk drive.
Each disk drive has a small special-purpose computer associated with it
called the disk controller. The controller helps to transfer information
between the main memory and the disk. To specify a transfer, the program
must provide information on the disk and surface numbers, the track
number, the sector number, the number of bytes to be transmitted, the
main memory address where the information comes from or goes to, and
whether the information is to be written or read.

Activity 2-11
True or False.

_____ Magnets are used to read magnetic disks.

Examples of magnetic disks are diskettes and hard disks are given. A
diskette is made up of a thin mylar plastic housed in a hard plastic case.
The most popular is the 3.5" diskette. A hard disk is a metal platter. Several
disks stacked together with space in between form a disk pack. The disk
pack is mounted on a disk drive mechanism that reads the constantly
rotating disk. An access arm accesses the data on the tracks. The access
arms fit in between each of the disk spaces and have read/write heads
that read the magnetic spots on the disk. The read/write head never
actually touch the disk. They float at a very very small distance from the
surface of the disk. Some hard disks are removable. Example of this is the
Zip drive. Zip drive is a drive that reads a removable hard disk. Removable
disk cartridges have faster access time than diskettes, but are slower than
hard disks. Finally, there is the redundant array of inexpensive disks

UP Open University
36 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

(RAID). RAID is made up of many hundreds or more disks. A RAID is

usually used for data security. RAID has built in method of mirroring
data, a method of spreading data across many disks so that if one disk
fails the data can be recreated.

Activity 2-12
A hard disk access is faster than a floppy disk access. Why?

Optical memories
Optical memories uses laser technology to create tiny microscopic spots
on the disk surface and use this laser to read from the disk. By reflecting
light off of the disks surface the system can read the binary digit. If there
is no reflection from the light, meaning that the light was shone on a spot
(sometimes called the pit), it is read as 0, if there is a reflection, meaning
that the light was shone on area without a spot (sometimes called the
land), it is read as 1.

Optical disks started mostly as read-only. They are recorded on the disks
by the vendor and cannot be altered or erased. This type of disks are
popularly called write once and read many (WORM) media. One very
popular example of WORM media is the CD-ROM (Compact Disk - Read
Only Memory). A CD-ROM drive is needed to read a CD-ROM. The
technology used for CD-ROM is similar to the technology used in audio
CD. This is the reason why one can listen to an audio CD in a CD-ROM

Activity 2-13
True or False.

_____ Infrared light is used in reading an optical disk.

UP Open University
Module 2 37

How does a CD-ROM work? A CD-ROM is made with polycarbonate

plastic, during manufacturing this plastic is impressed with microscopic
pits arranged in one single spiral track. Reflective aluminum is sputtered
into the plastic. The laser beam passes through the polycarbonate layer,
reflects the aluminum layer and hits an opto-electronic device that detects
changes in light. The pits reflects light differently from the land, the
opto-electronic device detects the change in reflectivity.

Another write-once read-many optical disk storage is the CD-Recordable

(CD-R). A CD-R disk may be read by a CD-R drive or a CD-ROM drive. A
CD-R drive allows a user to record his own personal data on the CD-R
disk. The user, however, is allowed only to record once, after which it
cannot be changed anymore. Being written once is like a CD-ROM, but in
a CD-ROM the data is recorded by the manufacturer of the CD and not
by the user.

The CD-R disk consists of microscopic gold reflective layer and a

photosensitive dye layer sandwiched between a protective lacquer coating
and a polycarbonate substrate. The substrate has a microscopic groove
spiraling around the data track of the disk, which helps the laser stay on
course. The data burned on the disk consists of pits and lands. To
make a pit, the CD-R burns off pieces of the dye with short bursts of
the laser. The untouched parts of the disk, the gold portions, become the
lands. The lands are a highly reflective surface, which is then read by
the laser of a CD-ROM drive. The player interprets the data by reading
the 0s and 1s represented by the pits and lands.

Lately, another optical disk storage became very popular. This is the CD-
ReWritable (CD-RW) disk. CD-RW allows the user to write data on the
disk, possibly erase this data and replaced it with some other data. In
short, one can write as many times as one wishes on the disk. The principle
behind the representation of 0s and 1s is similar to that of CD-ROM and
CD-R. Instead of the microscopic gold reflective layer and a photosensitive
dye layer in CD-R, a reversible material is used in order to make the area
erasable and reusable.

Activity 2-14
Which optical disk storage is not writable?

a. CD-ROM d. CD-W
b. CD-R e. None of the above
c. CD-RW

UP Open University
38 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Finally, there is the Digital Video Disk (DVD) ROM. A DVD-ROM disk is
very similar to CD-ROM disk with much more capacity. The capacity is
up to seven times more than the CD-ROM capacity. DVD-ROM was
originally used to store digital video data. But recently, it has been used to
store data manipulated by computers. This is the reason why DVD is
sometimes called Digital Versatile Disk.

A DVD-ROM is of the same diameter and thickness as a CD-ROM, and it

is made using some of the same materials and manufacturing methods.
Like a CD-ROM, the data on a DVD-ROM is encoded in the form of small
pits and lands in the track of the disk. A DVD-ROM can store more data
because the pits and the lands are much closer than in a CD-ROM and
the spiral track is much closer too. Besides a DVD-ROM may have multiple
layer storage. As in CD, there is also a DVD-Recordable disk and a DVD-
ReWritable disk.

Activity 2-15
Why do DVD-ROMs have more capacity than CD-ROMs?

Other secondary memories

There are several other earlier technologies that have been used for
secondary memories. Some of them are the magnetic tapes and magnetic

The magnetic tape was the first kind of secondary memory. A computer
tape drive is similar to a home tape recorder: a tape of usually 2400 feet
long is wound from the feed reel past a recording head to the take up reel.
By varying the current in the recording head, the computer can write
information on the tape in the form of little magnetized spots. Normally,
a magnetic tape has nine tracks and the tracks are divided into frames.
One frame can store 9 bits with the first eight used to store a byte of
information and the 9th bit is a redundant bit, called a parity bit.

Magnetic drums are a variation of the magnetic disks. Here, we have a

drum which is a cylinder on which information can be written
magnetically. Along the length of the drum are many fixed read/write

UP Open University
Module 2 39

heads. Each head can read/write on one track. Hence, we can see that
the tracks are circles running on the outside surface of the drum. The
tracks, therefore, are of the same radius all throughout.

Activity 2-16
Magnetic tapes are highly unreliable. Why?

Flash memory
Most secondary memory storage devices like magnetic disks, optical
memories, magnetic drums and magnetic tapes all operates with moving
parts. Hence, these secondary memory devices operate mechanically and
are very slow when it comes to accessing information from them. On the
other hand, random access memory is implemented using integrated
circuitry hence they operate without moving parts or access of information
is done fully electronically. Hence, accessing information from random
access memory is much faster. The only problem with random access
memory is that information is stored only while power is applied to it.
Once power is gone, all information stored in it is also gone.

A flash memory (also popularly known as a memory stick) combines the

advantages of these two memory storage devices. A flash memory operates
in fully electronic fashion but its content is not erased when power is
gone. In particular, a flash memory is actually a type of erasable
programmable read only memory (EPROM). Thus, it is not only read only
but it can be rewritten as many times as you like for a duration of usually
ten years. Normally an EPROM allows erasure or rewriting in one location
at a time. This is speeded up by flash memory by allowing the device to
read or write at different locations at the same time. Hence, the use of the
word flash in flash memory.

UP Open University
40 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Activity 2-17
True or False.

______ A flash memory is type of erasable programmable read

only memory.

Flash memories just like magnetic disks may be inserted and taken out of
the computer by the user as he wishes. Normally, a flash memory is inserted
in the Universal Serial Bus (USB) port of your computer.

Before their use as secondary memories for computers, flash memories

were popularly used in battery-powered devices like mobile phones,
personal digital assistants (PDAs), MP3 players and digital cameras.

Activity 2-18
Explain how the flash memory got the adjective flash before its

Input/Output System
A vital component of the computer system is the I/O system. This is the
set of I/O devices in the system, including both physical I/O devices and
I/O interface devices. Physical I/O devices are those that actually perform
I/O such as keyboards, line printers, and video displays. These parts of
the system are necessary as it is through these devices that humans
communicate with the computer and for computers to communicate its
responses to humans.

UP Open University
Module 2 41

Switches and lights

The simplest input and output devices are switches and lights respectively.
You have seen how these can be used in digital systems. These simple
devices can be arranged in arrays to allow more sophisticated input/
output. For example, a keyboard is just an array of switches, and lights
can be arranged in a 7-segment display (to show digits) or a starbust or
dot matrix display to show letters.

The keyboard is an input device that is used mainly for providing computers
with textual input. A typical keyboard has four types of keys, namely:
typing keys, numeric keypad, function keys and control keys.

The typing keys section of the keyboard is where the letter keys are found.
The normal layout of the letter keys is adopted from the layout used by
typewriters. This layout of letter keys is known as the QWERTY layout.
The arrangement of the keys in the QWERTY layout was deliberately made
awkward in order to slow down fast typist. The reason that typewriter
manufacturers did this was because the mechanical arms that imprinted
each character on the paper could jam together if the keys were pressed
too rapidly. Jamming of the mechanical arms, however, is not an issue
anymore in computers. That is why, critics of the QWERTY layout pushed
forward another layout called the Dvorak layout. In this layout, the most
commonly used letters are placed in the most convenient position.

Figure 2-1. Dvorak layout.

UP Open University
42 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Figure 2-2. QWERTY layout.

The numeric keypad is added to the keyboard to facilitate data entry.

Most data entry jobs involves entering numbers and most of those who
did data entry are clerks who are accustomed to using calculators and
data entry machines. That is why the layout of the numeric keypad is
patterned after calculators and adding machines. It is actually composed
of 17 keys added at the right side of the keyboard.

Num / * -

7 8 9
Home PgUp +

4 5 6

1 2 3
End PgDn Enter

0 .
Ins Del

Figure 2-3. Numeric keypad.

UP Open University
Module 2 43

The function keys, arranged in a line across the top of the keyboard, could
be assigned specific commands by the current application or the operating
system. Control keys provided cursor and screen control.

F1 F2 F3 F4 F5 F6 F7 F8 F9 F10 F11 F12

Figure 2-4. Function keys.

The control keys allow the user to make large jumps in most applications.
Four keys arranged in an inverted T formation between the typing keys
and numeric keypad allows the user to move the cursor on the display in
small increments. Other common control keys found between the numeric
keypad and typing keys are:
Page Up
Page Down

Insert Home Page


Delete End Page


Figure 2-5. Control keys.

There are also control keys found at the bottom of the typing keys. Some
of them are:
Control (Ctrl)
Alternate (Alt)
Escape (Esc)

UP Open University
44 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Activity 2-19
The part of the keyboard where the letter keys are found.

a. Typing keys
b. Function keys
c. Numeric keypad
d. Control keys
e. None of the above

How does the keyboard work? Underneath the keys is a key matrix that is
basically a grid of circuits. Each circuit is broken at the point just below a
specific key. When you press a key, the broken point below is connected
to each other allowing a tiny amount of current to flow through. A small
processor is provided each keyboard and the job of this processor is to
monitor the key matrix for signs of continuity at any point on the grid.
When the processor finds a circuit that is closed, it simply compares the
position of this with the corresponding position in the character map. The
corresponding position in the character map will produce the code for
the character. The character map usually resides in the Read Only Memory
of the processor. Note that the user may press more than one key, e.g.
Shift key plus the letter A. The keyboard still behaves the same way, i.e. it
detects which points in the grid are closed and check this with the character

Activity 2-20
Why does the key map usually reside in the Read Only Memory of
your computer?

UP Open University
Module 2 45

Video displays
The most common output device used for communicating from computer
to human beings is a display screen. There are two important types of
display in terms of how the information to be displayed is represented.

1. a character display, where a stream of character codes is sent to the

display, and is transformed by the device into patterns making up the
shape of the characters on the screen. This form of display is inflexible,
but is suitable for use when the display is remote from the computer,
because a comparatively small amount of information needs to be

2. a bit-map graphics display, where a large section of memory is

dedicated to representing the display. The display is broken up into
dots or pixels with one bit representing each dot. Changing memory
automatically changes what is on the display. The display of characters
requires that the bit patterns making up the shape of the character be
put into the appropriate memory.

Activity 2-21
True or False.

______ A character display can display all patterns that can be

displayed by a bit-map graphics display.

In terms of technology used, video display falls into two categories: Cathode
Ray Tubes (CRTs) and Liquid Crystal Displays (LCDs).

1. The CRT is probably the most ubiquitous electronic display device

because it is at the heart of every television set. Beams of electrons
(cathode rays) from three electron guns are fired through a shadow
mask. This shadow mask is a sheet of metal with regular apertures
which focus the beam to strike phosphor dots on the screen surface.
There are three types of phosphor, as there are three electron guns,
one for each primary color - red, green and blue. When phosphor is
struck by the electron beam from its gun, it emits its characteristic
color. The strength of the emission (luminance of the phosphor) is
proportional to the power of the beam and the combination of the
three phosphors at their different intensities produces the color of the

UP Open University
46 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

picture element, or pixel. The electron gun build up the picture, or

frame, line by line from top to bottom, and each line (or scan) is
composed of many pixels.

Different colors are produced on the CRT by assigning different voltages

to each electron gun thus lighting phosphor to different intensities.
The color range of a monitor is determined by how many voltage levels
can be supported by the guns.

2. The LCD systems use long crystalline molecules (liquid crystals) which
change their position when an electric field is applied. An LCD display
consists of a thin layer of liquid crystal sandwiched between two
densely-packed sets of thin wires, one horizontal one vertical. Together
these wires form an interlocking grid, each intersection representing a
dot on the display. This sandwich is in turn sandwiched by two
polarizing filters, again one horizontal and one vertical. The display is
created by matrix addressing whereby each dot is addressed in turn
by passing a current through each horizontal and vertical wire in
sequence, and whenever the combined currents at an intersection are
sufficiently strong the resulting field moves the crystals at that point
so that when seen through the polarizing filters they are opaque (the
dot becomes dark).

Color LCDs operate on the same principle of molecules changing their

orientation under electric fields but use three liquid crystal layers - one
each for red, green and blue - and colored polarizing filters to generate
a palette of colors.

Activity 2-22
Explain further how color LCDs operate.

UP Open University
Module 2 47

Cursor-tracking devices
These provide for the input of 2-dimensional positional information. There
are many varieties, e.g. joysticks, light pens, mice, trackballs, touch pads
and graphics tablets.

The most popular of these cursor-tracking devices is the mouse. The main
objective of the mouse is to translate the motion of your hand into signals
that can be used by the computer in order to move the cursor to a desired
position. At present, there are two types of mouse in existence, namely:
the optomechanical mouse and the optical mouse.

The optomechanical mouse uses a ball inside the mouse that touches the
surface of a desktop and that rolls when the mouse moves. Inside the
mouse are two rollers that touch the ball. One of the rollers is oriented to
detect motion in the horizontal direction and the other roller detects motion
in the vertical direction. Each roller is connected to a shaft that spins a
wheel with holes near the outer circumference. When the roller rolls, the
shaft and the wheel spin. On one side of each wheel there is an infrared
light emitting diode (LED) and on the other side of each wheel there is an
infrared sensor. The holes in the wheel break the beam of light coming
from the LED so that the infrared sensor sees pulses of light. The rate of
the pulsing is directly related to the speed of the mouse and the distance it
travels. An on-board processor chip is found in the mouse that is
responsible for catching the rate of pulsing and converts this to speeds
and distances. The chip catches the pulses and converts these to binary
data that is understood by the computer. The chip then sends the binary
data using the mouse cord.

Activity 2-23
Which light emitting diode is used by optomecahnical mouse?

a. Ultraviolet light emitting diode

b. Infrared light emitting diode
c. Laser light emitting diode
d. Natural light emitting diode
e. None of the above

UP Open University
48 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

The optical mouse, on the other hand, uses a camera that takes 1,500
pictures per second. The mouse has a red light emitting diode (LED) that
emits light and bounces this on the surface of a desktop to a complimentary
metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) sensor. The CMOS sensor sends each
image to a digital signal processor (DSP) for analysis. The DSP, operating
at 18 MIPS (million instructions per second), is able to detect patterns in
the images and see how those patterns have moved since the previous
image. Based on the change in patterns over a sequence of images, the
DSP determines how far the mouse has moved and sends the
corresponding coordinates to the computer.

Activity 2-24
An optomechanical mouse is prone to malfunction due to the
accumulation of dirt while an optical mouse is not. Explain why.

Printers are used for hard-copy output of text and graphics. Methods for
the production of the printed image vary. There are several categories:

1. Movable type - A drum, chain or wheel of type is moved so that each

character can appear over the print position. At the appropriate time,
a hammer strikes the paper against the type, and an ink ribbon prints
the required symbol.

2. Dot matrix - The symbols are built up as they are printed from patterns
of dots. The printing itself may be done mechanically with an ink ribbon,
by charging the paper electrostatically for later development, or by
propelling ink droplets under the control of electrostatic fields.

UP Open University
Module 2 49

The hammer where the pattern of dots is formed is usually from 9 to 24

pins. The English language can be printed using a 9-pin hammer while
the Japanese characters need 24 pins. An example of a 9-pin dot matrix in
action is given below.

Figure 2-6. Dot matrix printing.

The hammer moves from left to right printing the dots in each column.
For example in the figure above the darkened pins are the pins that
protrude and impact into the ribbon up to the paper at the back.

Activity 2-25
Dot matrix printers are sometimes called noisy printers. How is
this noise generated by dot matrix printers?

3. Inkjet - This device produce an image by spraying individual, very

fine drops of ink at the paper from inkwells or print head of the four
primary colors. The print head can have 48 or more separate nozzles
for each color of ink. For example, Epson Stylus Photo 1270 has 48
nozzles each for five different colors: cyan, magenta, yellow, light cyan,
and light magenta. It has another 48 nozzles for black. Different color
dots are overlaid on the same spot. With a microscope, you can see
dots look green at the spot where yellow and cyan inks were shot. So
you can say that primary colors are mixed in the ink jet coating layer.

UP Open University
50 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Each nozzle or jet is smaller in size than a human hair. Each nozzle is
provided with a heater or resistor that heats and cools the ink inside
the cartridge. When the ink is heated, a bubble forms. When the heat
source is removed, the bubble bursts sending dots of ink on the page
through the 48 nozzles. These dots form the print characters on the

Such devices are capable of producing good quality, low-cost color prints
quickly and quietly, and at a very low cost. The main disadvantage is that
colors can look muddy or washed out because of inks mixing at dot

Activity 2-26
The documents produced by inkjets can look muddy or washed
out. Why is this so?

4. Thermal wax - This technology uses a thermal print head to melt wax
from a possibly multicolored ribbon on to the paper. Due to the
elimination of the flow of ink over dot edges, the picture produced is
sometimes grainy but the color quality is superb.

5. Die sublimation - Die sublimation printers also use colored ribbons

and thermal print heads. However, instead of melting the ink on to
the paper the print head vaporizes the ink which then condenses on
to special paper very close to the ribbon. In this method, the size of the
dots can be controlled and the primary colors can be blended together

6. Laser printers - This works by using a laser and a photosensitive or

photoconductive drum to place electrostatic charges on the paper
corresponding to the printing positions: when the paper is taken
through a toner reservoir the magnetically-charged toner is attracted
to the paper as dust and is later head-bonded to fix it. The results are
images that are indistinguishable from photographs.

UP Open University
Module 2 51

The photoconductive drum is initially charge (via a corona wire) and

then the drum rotates to a high intensity laser which is used to discharge
selected areas on the drum. The discharged areas correspond to the
white areas in the printed document. Hence, the drum being charge
initially means that the drum produces all black areas on the paper.
The toner is attracted to parts of the drum with high charge. The drum
rotates and transfers the toner to the paper which has an even greater
electrical charge (for the toner to transfer the paper must have a greater
electrical charge). Finally the heater fixes the toner onto the paper.

Figure 2-7. Laser printer.

Activity 2-27
Laser printers are using technology very similar to photocopying
machines that use toners. Explain the similarity.

7. Plotters - These devices are usually used for graphical output. A plotter
may be using a pen or electrostatic. This is often used for very large
printouts of few texts and with very limited color range.

UP Open University
52 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Activity 2-28

___ 1. A hammer containing the a. inkjet

pattern of the character strikes on b. laser printer
the paper with the ribbon in c. plotters
between d. dot matrix
e. die sublimation
___ 2. The pattern to be printed are built f. thermal wax
from pattern of dots g. movable type

___ 3. The pattern is produced by spraying

fine drops of ink at the paper

___ 4. Uses a thermal print head to melt


___ 5. Vaporizes the ink which then

condenses on to special paper

___ 6. Uses toner that is attracted to

photosensitive drum

___ 7. Usually used for graphical output

Other input/output devices

There are other input/output devices using forms of recording paper which
include OCR (optical character reader) and OMR (optical mark reader).
There are also devices like bar code reader, image scanner, digital camera
and magnetic card reader.

Computer Buses
Most computers are built around a bus that is simply a set of wires or lines
to which the components of the computer (processor, memory, I/O devices,
etc.) are connected. In this section, we discuss the different types of buses

UP Open University
Module 2 53

and how the size of the bus can affect the size of the address space. Also,
the size of the bus is one of the factors that affect the speed of I/O operation
in the system. Hence, it is important to look at how information is being
handled in the bus.

The bus lines can be divided into four groups:

1. The data bus carries items of data from one component to another.
The number of lines is usually equal to the number of bits in a word.

2. The address bus carries addresses. Its size determines the size of the
address space of the computer. The address space is the total number
of memory locations defined in the memory. In a byte-addressable
memory, this is the total number of bytes in the memory, while in a
word-addressable memory it is the total number of words. Small
computers usually have a 16-line address bus, giving a 64K address

3. The control bus carries signals which coordinate the components of

the computer. On small systems about 12 lines are required.

4. The power bus carries power at various voltages to the components of

the computer.

Each line in the data, address and control buses represents a bit, and can
be in either the low or high logic state. Normally, only one device at a
time may determine the state of a line, but any number of devices at a
time can sense it.

Activity 2-29
The bus that carries signals which coordinates the components of
the computer is the ____.

a. Data bus
b. Address bus
c. Control bus
d. Memory bus
e. None of the above

UP Open University
54 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Bus operation
One of the devices attached to the bus, usually the processor, is the bus
master. It is the only device that can initiate activity on the bus. The other
devices are slaves.

For each transfer of information on the bus, the bus master is responsible
for identifying the transmitter (the device that will put the information on
the data bus) and the receiver (the device that will read the information
from the data bus). The bus master itself will be one of these, and the
other will be identified by its address being put on the address bus. The
direction of transmission (master slave or slave master) is determined
by the read/write control line.

For example, if the processor is reading from memory, then it is the master
and receiver, and the memory device is the slave and the transmitter. To
read the data stored at address A, the processor places the number A on
the address bus, and activates the read control signal (send signal using a
control bus); the memory responds by placing the contents of address A
on the data bus. To write a value V at address A, the processor places A
on the address bus and V on the data bus and activates the write control
signal (similarly, send signal using a control bus); the memory immediately
writes the value V in the specified location. Subsequent reading of address
A will now return the value V.

Activity 2-30
True or False.

____ The bus master is responsible for identifying the master,

the client, the transmitter and the receiver.

Bus addressing
Devices attached to the bus are identified by addresses. By continually
monitoring the address lines, a slave can recognize its own address when
the bus master puts it in the bus. The slave must then act as either the
transmitter or receiver in a bus transfer, as determined by the read/write
control line.

UP Open University
Module 2 55

Some devices (e.g. memory units) have a range of addresses, and must
recognize any address in the range. The offset within the range identifies
a location within the device. The interpretation of bus addresses is called
address decoding.

Example of address decoding

A typical memory chip of 16K 8-bit bytes has pins as follows:
14 address pins (connected to address bus)
8 data pins (connected to data bus)
1 read/write pin (connected to the appropriate control line)
1 chip enable pin (decoded from the address bus)

Suppose we want this chip to represent the first 16K bytes of 64K memory.
The address pins, connected to lines 0 to 13 of the address bus, determine
which of the 16K bytes is accessed, but we also have to decode lines 14
and 15 of the address bus to ensure that the chip is active only when they
are both 0. In short, the values of lines 14 and 15 determine which chip is
supposed to be accessed. In a 64K memory there are four chips each with
16K bytes.

Value of Lines Position of Chip

14 15
0 0 First
1 0 Second
0 1 Third
1 1 Fourth

Activity 2-31
True or False.

____ Devices attached to the bus are identified by addresses.

UP Open University
56 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Bus synchronization
The operations on the bus must be synchronized. For example, the slave
devices must respond to the address bus only when it contains a valid
address, not when it is in the process of changing. A receiving device
must not read the data bus until the transmitter has put the data there.

There are a number of approaches to this problem. The simplest is to

have a synchronous bus. In a synchronous bus, timing is controlled by a
clock control line carrying a signal from a common clock to all the devices.
Devices only look at the bus when the clock is high, leaving the low clock
periods for changes to the bus. Devices must be fast enough to make
changes to the bus within a low period and to respond to the bus within
a high period.

An asynchronous bus has no common clock, and devices can take their
own time for operations. There are various schemes or protocols for
providing synchronization, which is still necessary. The protocol for an
asynchronous bus with fully-interlocked transmission (also called
handshaking) is usually taken in more advanced courses in computer

Activity 2-32
Why is there a need to synchronize the operations of a bus?

Bus contention and arbitration

The processor is the usual bus master, but some systems have several
potential bus masters. There may be several processors sharing a bus, or
fast peripheral devices may communicate directly with memory using a
technique called DMA (direct memory access). If several devices want to
be bus master at the same time, we have bus contention, and the choice of
a winner is bus arbitration. A simple approach to bus arbitration uses
three control lines, bus busy (indicating if there is a bus master), bus
request (indicating that one or more devices wishes to become bus master)
and bus grant (set by the bus controller to indicate that one of the
requesting devices may become bus master. There remains the problem of
sorting out which of several competing devices receives the bus grant.

UP Open University
Module 2 57

One solution to this problem is by daisy chaining. The discussion of this

technique is not part of this course anymore. However, if you are interested
please see the references for more details.

Activity 2-33
True or False.

The memory is the usual bus master.

UP Open University
Module 3
Systems Software

S ystems software are software that con-

trol the operations of a computer and that
control the execution of other programs in
the system. Some systems software also At the end of this module,
manages the computer resources for efficient you should be able to:
utilization of the said resources. The most
popular systems software is the operating 1. Define what an
system. Also included in the systems software operating system is;
category are device drivers, programming 2. Trace the history of
languages, compilers, linkers, assemblers and operating systems; and
translators. It also includes utility software 3. Discuss the nature of
that carries out all the day-to-day tasks in the other systems
maintaining a computer system and its data software.
files. Some common utilities are screensaver,
virus checker, and system tools like disk
defragmenter and disk scanners. Certain utility programs are usually
bundled along with the operating system like printing the current time
and date.

Activity 3-1
Differentiate systems software from applications software.
60 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

What is an Operating System?

An operating system is first a program (system program) that is
implemented in either software or firmware. As to what this program
does is the subject of the succeeding discussions.

In order to get an idea of what operating systems provide, we consider a

specific system, say an IBM PC running the Disk Operating System (DOS).
When power is first turned on, the instruction register (IR) is set to a fixed
value by the internal hardware inside the CPU, and the CPU then starts
to execute whatever program is at the address. The program located at
the address is usually contained in a special type of memory chip called a
Read Only Memory (ROM). This program is permanently etched in the
chip. In the PC, the CPU starts to execute the program in ROM, and this
program tells the computer to load in a more elaborate program from the
floppy disk or hard disk called the Disk Operating System (DOS). The DOS
program controls the screen and keyboard and permits other programs to
be loaded into the memory at your command. Once loaded, DOS acts as
an interface between the user and the computer. Every command issued
by the user will be processed and interpreted for execution by DOS.

Now, to further understand what an operating system provides, consider

a computer system with no operating system. Without an OS, a user who
wanted to run a program that uses some of the resources of the system
will need to write a program that includes code for driving the resources
required. Code for handling the keyboard, printers, etc., aside from the
codes for the actual problem the user wanted to solve have to be written.
Also, only one user will be allowed to use the system at a given time and
one can imagine the difficulty of writing a program that uses several
resources of the system. Also, the duplicity of effort is apparent since
another user who maybe using the same set of resources will need to
write exactly the same set of procedure for driving the devices.

Activity 3-2
What are the advantages of having an operating system over a
system without an operating system?

UP Open University
Module 3 61

To alleviate the problems and difficulties described above, an operating

system is usually introduced into the system. The operating system can be
viewed, therefore, as a set of procedures for driving the resources of the
system. Thus, the OS frees the users from the dirty details of writing these
drivers for the devices involved in the problem being solved. The users
simply ask the OS to lend them the device drivers of the devices they
wanted to use, if one is available in the OS.

In the new set-up, the difficulty of programming is alleviated, but there is

still the problem of only one user being allowed to use the system at any
given time. To solve this problem, most operating systems allow several
users to start. To coordinate the activities of these users, the operating
system provide a set of procedures for managing the resources (or devices).
These procedures are often called the schedulers (or resource manager).
With this, when several users want to use the same resource, say the CPU,
these users must request the said resource from the OS which decides
who among those requesting for the resource gets it first. We can therefore
view operating systems as resource managers.

Activity 3-3
An operating system can be viewed as _____.

a. Ordinary program
b. Resource manager
c. Program manager
d. Set of programs that executes in the system
e. None of the above

In summary, an operating system (OS) is a program, implemented in either

firmware or software, which acts as an interface between the user of a
computer and the computer hardware. As an interface between the users
and the hardware, this function is achieved by providing procedures for
easy and maximum usage of the computing resources. As a program, its
size and complexity depend on a number of factors, most notably:

1. The characteristics of the computer system (e.g., does it have one or

more processors?);
2. The facilities it has to provide (e.g., will it allow interactive use of the
system or not?); and
3. The nature of the applications it has to support (e.g., will it allow
several users to use the same applications program simultaneously or

UP Open University
62 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

For example, an operating system for a single-user microprocessor can be

relatively simple compared to a multi-user, interactive multiprocessor

However, regardless of size, the OS is the first program that gets loaded
into the memory of the computer when the machine is started. Once loaded,
some parts of the OS remains permanently in memory while the computer
is running user programs (memory resident). This is usually done for those
set of procedures in the OS that are often requested by the users (or are
involved in the smooth execution of users programs). Other portions of
the OS are swapped in and out of the memory when (non-memory

Activity 3-4
Why is it important that most of the operating system code is
memory resident?

To further understand what an operating system is, we state the main

objectives of why they were introduced. Some of these objectives are
implied above, but we state them explicitly below. These are:

1. To provide a convenient environment for the development and

execution of programs.

2. To schedule computational activities to insure good performance of

the computing system.

These said objectives are not mutually exclusive and so a compromise has
to be made in the design of the OS in order to provide an acceptable level
of each objective.

Some of the services offered by the OS that makes it a convenient

environment for program development and execution are:

UP Open University
Module 3 63

1. Convenient input / output operations - usually the users do not want

to know the detail of how a particular peripheral has to be driven in
order to say read or print a character. A higher-level interface than
this, called a device driver, is provided by the OS.

2. CPU scheduling - the operating system usually employs a CPU

scheduler that schedules computing time between several processes
in execution. The main objective of this scheduler is to make sure that
the CPU is busy most of the time if not all the time.

3. Memory management - allocate the main memory to several processes

with the aim of making sure that a process that is about to take control
of the CPU is already in memory.

4. File systems - the OS manages the organization of the secondary storage

and provides a file abstraction that is convenient to the applications
running in the system and to computer users.

5. Protection and security - keep processes from interfering with each

other and prevent unauthorized access by applications and users to
data and other resources.

6. Communication and resource sharing - provide a way for processes

to communicate and cooperate to accomplish a certain task.

7. Utilities - provide utilities for the users like date and time, accounting
utilities, and debugging utilities.

8. Command interpreter - provide an interface between the user the

computer that allows high level commands to be issued by the user.

In the absence of an operating system, all the functions just described will
have to be written by the user and incorporated in the user program.

UP Open University
64 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Activity 3-5

____ 1. A service of an OS where a. memory management

the CPU is made to busy b. protection and security
most of the time c. CPU management
____ 2. A service of an OS where d. command interpreter
an interface between the
user and the computer is
____ 3. A service of an OS where
processes are kept from
interfering with each other
____ 4. A service of an OS where
memory is managed primarily
to maximize the use of the CPU

Evolution of Operating Systems

First generation operating systems (1945-1955)
The prevalent technology used to build computers was the vacuum tubes
and plug boards. Computers were fitted with a fairly elaborate control
console that allowed the operation of the computer to be monitored. Many
lights were provided to display instructions, and keys enabled alterations
to be made to instructions and allowed a program to be obeyed instruction-
by-instruction under the control of a programmer. The instructions
displayed were in machine language. An expert programmer would
manipulate his program, which is composed of a sequence of binary
numbers, by memorizing the binary equivalent of the instructions. It was
customary to prepare a program in machine code on punched cards or
punched paper tapes, and this program is fed into the computer and the
programmer sat at the console and proceeded to test and amend the
program until it executed correctly. Hence, most operating systems during
those days were single-user and were interactive.

UP Open University
Module 3 65

Activity 3-6
True or False.

Although, first generation operating systems are single-user, they

can be used by more than one programmer simultaneously.

Second generation operating systems

A new hardware technology was introduced. This technology is the
transistor. With the new technology came a new look for operating systems.
Specifically, the batch operating system was introduced.

Since programming in machine language is obviously very difficult and

are prone to errors, most computer systems were slowly provided with
additional software and hardware. Examples of software introduced were:

1. Aassemblers, loaders and linkers

2. Libraries for common functions.

Almost at the same time card readers, line printers and magnetic tapes
became available. Thus consoles were replaced by these new input devices.
Consequently, device drivers were written for these I/O devices and were
made available to the users.

Then, in the pursuit of making program development more convenient to

users, language translators were introduced. Although this made it more
convenient for users to write programs, the operations of the computer
became more complex. For example, with a high-level language translator
like COBOL, to run a program in COBOL, the following steps have to be
followed by the user:

1. Load the COBOL compiler from the magnetic tape into the computers
memory. Then, initiate the execution of the compiler. Once running,
the compiler will read the COBOL program of the user from the card
reader. Finally, the compiler will write the assembler equivalent of the
COBOL program into a magnetic tape.

2. Load the assembler from the magnetic tape into the computers memory
and initiate its execution. This will produce the binary object of the
program from the assembler version.

UP Open University
66 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

3. Load the binary object of the program and initiate its execution.

With high-level languages, a considerable amount of time is clearly spent

setting up the job.

Attempts were made to reduce the job set-up time. Some of these attempts
were done by:

1. Hiring professional operators

2. Batching together similar jobs.

In the first solution, since a considerable amount of time is spent on loading

assemblers and loaders, less time is spent if the one doing this has experience
rather than leaving the said activities to programmers themselves. On the
other hand, by batching similar jobs, the loading of a particular compiler
can be minimized. For example, given a job request like


will require the loading of the COBOL compiler three times and the
FORTRAN compiler twice. Rearranging the sequence to:


will only need the loading of COBOL and FORTRAN compilers once each.

Later, automatic job sequencing and program loading were introduced.

These were achieved by creating a small program, called a supervisor,
whose function is to automatically load and transfer control from one
program to another. The supervisor program understood a certain
language called the job control language. This language contains
instructions like where to read the compilers, linkers, and loaders which
are needed by a particular user program. With this supervisor program,
together with the idea of waiting for a number of jobs (batch), form the
core of the early batch operating systems.

A variation of the early batch systems is a system where input and output
operations are done off-line. In this system, an inexpensive processor is
used to do input by transferring data and programs from card readers to
magnetic tapes. These input tapes are then transferred to the main
computer where processing occurs. Outputs of the processing are similarly
placed in an output tape, which as in the input operation are printed on
the line printer using another inexpensive processor. Throughput is
obviously improved since doing the input directly from a card reader and
the output to a line printer are much slower than doing it using magnetic

UP Open University
Module 3 67

Activity 3-7
Batch processing is basically introduced to ___.

a. Speed up the execution of one program

b. Reduce job set up time for some programs
c. Allow multiprogramming
d. Speed up I/O operations
e. None of the above

Third generation operating systems (1965-1980)

Then, came the integrated circuits. Together with this technology is the
introduction of multiprogramming.

In most of the batch systems, when the current job pause to wait for an I/
O operation to be completed, the CPU lay idle until the I/O operation is
done. For computation-intensive jobs, these waits may be minimal, but
for jobs that require a lot of I/O operations, the CPU might be idle most of
the time. Their solution to this waste of CPU time was the introduction of
multiprogramming. The idea is to divide the memory into several partitions.
Then one user program is loaded into each partition. One of these loaded
programs gets control of the CPU. When the said user program pause to
wait for an I/O operation to be completed, the CPU is given to another
loaded program that can make use of the CPU, i.e., loaded program that
is not waiting for any I/O operation to be completed.

As the services of the operating systems improve, the demands for

convenience in using them also increase. Clearly, batch systems are very
poor when it comes to response time. When a user submits a job, it may
take hours before he can get his output. The solution given for this was
the introduction of time-sharing on top of multiprogramming. Instead of
allowing a user to take control of the CPU for as long as it could make full
use of it, the user is given only a certain amount of time (time slice) after
which control of the CPU is given to another user. The user after losing
control of the CPU will then have to wait for its next share of the CPU.
Since response times in these systems are quick, this made possible the
online interaction of the users to the computer system. This gave birth to
systems with one CPU and other computer resources but provided with
several terminals to access these centralized resources.

UP Open University
68 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Activity 3-8
By allowing time sharing, the response time of the system also
improves. Explain.

Fourth generation operating systems

Finally, Large Scale Integration circuits came. This made computers
smaller and this gave birth to the Personal Computers (PCs). Personal
computers (PCs) are each provided with operating systems. The
environment has somehow returned back to the original set-up where the
whole computer is programmed and used by one user and communicating
with it interactively. The difference is that some of the later facilities like
automatic program loading, high-level language support and
multiprogramming are already incorporated. Program development and
computer usage, however, are now very conveniently done with PCs
compared to the original set-up.

The PCs are then allowed to communicate with one another via a local
area network. Some of the resources of one particular PC became available
to other PCs in the network. To facilitate this the operating system was
extended to include facilities for computer communication. Copying files
from one PC to another became very easy do as an example of a facility
provided in this set-up. This gave birth to network operating systems.

With a network, it has opened some other possibilities. One is the set-up
where a departmental server is set-up to contain all the software needed
by all the users in the network. The PCs in the network can switch function
to being a terminal for the departmental server accessing its resources or
it can operate independently of the departmental server.

The network has also expanded from a mere local area network to one
called wide area network. The geographical locations of the computers in
the network have also expanded. Hence, this created some inconvenience
to users keeping track of where the resources are located in the network.
The solution being put forward for this is the distributed operating system.
In this type of system, all computer systems connected to a network is

UP Open University
Module 3 69

viewed as one. Hence, a user sees just one system but in reality it is composed
of several computer systems. The facility that makes this single view of all
systems connected to the network is the distributed operating systems.

Only recently, global computing has become possible. The Internet has
essentially made each individual computer a component in a single global
computer system. We have now moved to a situation where each user
uses multiple computers at a time. In this set-up communication, rather
than CPU cycles, is the dominant cost.

Activity 3-9
Define the following operating systems:

1. Batch operating system

2. Multiprogramming operating system

3. Time-sharing operating system

4. Distributed operating systems

Current Trends
At present, there are two types of operating systems that dominate. These
operating systems are the UNIX systems and Windows System.


UNIX was developed in the late 1960s by Ken Thompson and Dennis
Ritchie at AT&T Bell Labs.

UNIX is an operating system provided with facilities unique to itself only

during its introduction. It features multiuser and multitasking capabilities,
device independence, and what is known as a tools approach, and

UP Open University
70 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

UNIX is a multiuser operating system. Being multiuser, it allows more

than one user or person to use the computer at the same time. Each user
can basically do its own task and the view created is that as if the user has
the undivided attention of the computer. This view of having the computer
as if owned by one user is created by UNIX through time-sharing. Although
the computer seems to be attending to one particular user, it actually spends
a very small amount of time to a user and rapidly switches its attention to
another user.

UNIX is also a multitasking operating system. The system can perform

more than one task at a time for each particular user. This is achieved in
UNIX through background processing and windowing/task switching
capability. In background processing, a task that does not require user
interaction may be placed in the background. Background processes
operates just like ordinary task except that they do not use the interactive
resources of the computer. The windowing capability on the other hand,
allows the user to create several windows in the screen area. Each window
is doing one specific task.

UNIX has one view of data and this is called a file. It provides a uniform
view of devices and this view is again a file. Keyboards, video screens,
printers, etc., are considered files in UNIX. Hence, the specific way by
which these devices are accessed is transparent to the user. To illustrate,
processes do not need to distinguish between input coming from a
keyboard from that coming from a legitimate file.

Portability is the most notable feature of UNIX. It is the capability of the

operating system to run on a wide range of different computer hardware
model. Most other operating systems are proprietary - written to run on
one specific hardware model. It was UNIX that started the concept of
open systemssystems that can run on a variety of hardware models.
UNIX runs in a variety of machines from PCs to mainframe. Some UNIX-
based operating systems that exists are: Linux for PCs, Solaris for SUN
SPARC machines, SCO UNIX for PCs, and many others.

Instead of solving a problem using narrowly focused programs that solve

a large, complex task, UNIX allows programmers to write small programs
that accomplish a small task in a very general way. This allowed the creation
of small built-in programs called tools each accomplishing a small task.
Large tasks can be accomplished by combining these small tools in various

One implementation of UNIX systems is Linux. Linux is a freely-distributed

open source implementation of UNIX that runs on a number of hardware
platforms, including Intel and Motorola microprocessors. There is,
however, a long list of Linux distributions which includes:

UP Open University
Module 3 71

1. Debian GNU/Linux
2. Fedora Legacy Linux
3. Gentoo Linux
4. Mandrake Linux
5. Red Hat Linux
6. Slackware Linux
7. SuSE Linux

Activity 3-10
Which of the following is not a feature of UNIX ?

a. Multiuser and multitasking

b. Device independence
c. Tools approach
d. Portability
e. None of the above


The Windows operating system was first developed by Microsoft in 1981.

It was then called Interface Manager. It was officially released in 1983.

The first version is Windows 1.0. Its major features are the following:

1. graphical user interface with drop-down menus;

2. cooperative multitasking of applications; and
3. device independent screen and printer graphics.

This was later extended to include overlapping windows. This went

through several modifications until Windows 95 and 98 were released.
These versions feature full pre-emptive multitasking, advanced file systems,
threading and networking.

The multiuser version of Windows is Windows NT. This was designed to

be used in network servers, workstations and software development.
Although the user interface of Windows 95/98 is similar to Windows NT,
the inner working of Windows NT is totally different. It features

1. fully protected applications with virtualized hardware access;

2. installable file systems;
3. built-in networking; and
4. symmetric multiprocessor support.

UP Open University
72 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Windows 2000 was released in 2000. The Windows 2000 server builds on
the strengths of Windows NT technology, integrating standards-based
directory, Web, application, communications, file and print services with
high reliability, efficient management, and support for the latest advances
in networking hardware. Windows 2000 features

1. Plug-n-Play: similar to Windows 98;

2 AGP Support: Accelerated Graphics Port, a new initiative by Intel;
3. USB & FireWire Support: Universal Serial Bus and 1394 IEEE high-
speed interfaces;
4. DVD: Digital Video/Versatile Disk support, the successor to CD-ROMs;
5. Easier Migration: an upgrade path from Windows 95 to Windows
2000 included;
6. Disk Volume Management: An updated Disk Administrator tool; and
ATM Support: Native ATM support will be included with Windows

Lately, Windows XP was released. Windows XP, Microsofts first OS to

combine the Windows 9x code with the NT code, finally removing the
MS-DOS layer from under Windows 9x, was released October 25, 2001.

UP Open University
Module 3 73

Activity 3-11

____ 1. The first version of Windows a. Windows XP

b. Windows 2000
____ 2. The multiuser version of c. Windows 95/98
Windows d. Windows 1.0
e. Windows NT
____ 3. Feature full pre-emptive multi- 95/98 with the
tasking, advanced file system, NT code
threading and networking

____ 4. Integrates standards-base directory

web, application, communication, file
and print services with high reliability,
efficient management, and support for the
latest advances in networking technology

____ 5. OS that combines the Windows

Compilers or Translators
A compiler is a program that reads a program in one language, the source
language and translates it into an equivalent program in another language,
the target language. The target language is usually the machine language
of the computer where the program is to be executed and the source
language is any of the available high-level programming languages.

A compiler simply translates a high-level programming language to

machine language, so basically it accepts a high-level programming
language input and outputs the machine language equivalent of the

UP Open University
74 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

high-level programming


machine language
Figure 3-1. Operation of a compiler

However, in some cases the program may be calling procedures found in

the library of the corresponding high-level programming language. When
this happens, the machine language equivalent of the program is linked
to the machine language of the procedure called from the library. The
software used for this purpose is the linker. The linker simply combines
the machine language equivalent of the program and the machine language
of the procedure in the library into one executable program.

high-level programming


machine language

procedure in machine

language found in the

executable program

Figure 3-2. Compilation process

In general, a high-level programming language program may be divided

into modules and compiled separately. The separate modules may be
combined together using the linker.

UP Open University
Module 3 75

high-level programming high-level programming high-level programming

language language language

compiler compiler compiler

machine language machine language machine language

procedure in machine

language found in the

executable program

Figure 3-3. Separate compilation process

Activity 3-12
Why is there a need to translate a high-level programming
language to machine language before execution can occur?

Some compilers do not directly produce machine languages, but rather
they produce the assembly language equivalent of the high-level
programming language program. In this case, there is a need for another
software called the assembler. The assembler is a software that translates
assembly language programs to their machine language equivalents.

UP Open University
76 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

high-level programming high-level programming high-level programming

language language language

compiler compiler compiler

assembly language assembly language assembly language

assembler assembler assembler

machine language machine language machine language

procedure in machine

language found in the

executable program

Figure 3-4. Compilation with an assembler

Activity 3-13
Why do most compilers do not directly produce machine languages
but rather they produce assembly languages instead?

UP Open University
Module 3 77

Device Drivers
A software that controls a device. Every device, whether it be a printer,
disk drive, CDROM drive, screen or keyboard, must have a driver program.
Many drivers, such as the keyboard and screen drivers, come with the
operating system. For other devices, you may need to load a new driver
when you connect the device to your computer. For example, when
connecting a new printer into your computer or connecting a flash disk
into your system will need a separate device driver for each. A device
driver essentially converts the more general input/output instructions of
the operating system to messages that the device type can understand.

Activity 3-14
Why are device drivers for new hardware usually not included in
the operating systems?

Utilities are tools provided for housekeeping services that are not readily
available in the operating system. There are so many of these utilities but
some examples are given below.

Anti-virus software - is a class of programs that searches your hard drive

and floppy disks for any known or potential viruses. It protects a computer
against viruses by identifying and removing any computer viruses found
in memory, on storage media, or on incoming files.

Zip/Unzip software - is a software that compress and uncompress files.

UP Open University
78 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Disk Defragmenter is a software utility that rearranges the fragments or

discontiguous parts of each file stored on a computer hard disk so that the
small, empty storage spaces adjacent to fragments can be used, effectively
creating new storage space and possibly making file access faster. The
defragmenter places all the free spaces in one contiguous space so that
succeeding files to be stored are stored contiguously.

Disk Scanner - is a utility that detects and corrects both physical and
logical problems on a hard disk or floppy disk and searches for and removes
unnecessary files.

Spam Filter - is a program that is used to detect unsolicited and unwanted

e-mail and prevent those messages from getting to a users inbox.

PDF Viewer is a utility program that allows a user to view files that are
in PDF formats.

Firewall - is a set of related programs, located at one part of a network,

usually the gateway of the network, that protects the resources of a private
network from users of other networks.

Temperature Conversion Tool a simple program that converts

Centrigrade to Fahrenheit temperature readings and vice versa.

Date and Time Utility a utility that prints the current time and date.

Process Viewer a utility that prints on the screen the status of all running
processes in the system.

Whois utility that prints the login name of the user making the query.

Man a UNIX utility that prints the manual entry for a particular UNIX

Cat a utility program that prints on the screen the contents of a file.

UP Open University
Module 3 79

Activity 3-15
Which of the following are utilities?

a. Web browsers
b. Mail client
c. Payroll program
d. Airline reservation system
e. Count the number of characters in a file
f. Find the difference between two files
g. Database management system

UP Open University
Module 4
Applications Software

A n application program is a program designed to perform a specific

function directly for the user or, in some cases, for another application
program. There are so many examples of this type of software, but only
the database management systems, office automation software,
communications systems, artificial intelligence systems and multimedia
systems will be discussed in this module.

Database Management
Systems At the end of the module, you
should be able to:
A database is an organized collection of
1. Survey the different
related information or data. An office worker
applications of
may probably encounter several databases in
computers; and
the office. For example, an office usually
2. Differentiate one
keeps track of the addresses and phone
computer application
numbers of its clients and an inventory of its
from another.

There are problems with the traditional and

manual database management that is usually implemented in an office.
This problem results from viewing each database application
independently. Hence, we usually end up with one procedure for each
database task. The solution to this problem is to organize the different
databases in the office into one integrated database. The task of controlling
access to all the data can then be concentrated in a centralized database
management system (DBMS). A DBMS is a computer application that
can help the office store, retrieve, sort, update, view, and print information
82 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

in a database. In many ways a DBMS is like a programming language. To

create a database, a user specifies the various data and their relationships;
the DBMS then translates these logical specifications into the necessary
physical data and links. Once the database has been created, the DBMS
functions like a super access method accepting high-level queries. A query
language, a feature of many DBMS, makes it easy for even non-technical
office workers to access the database by essentially asking questions. A
DBMS usually allows users to do the four basic operations on data: view,
update, delete, and modify.

There are so DBMS available in the market. Microsoft has Microsoft Access
and Microsoft SQL. Other products like Visual FoxPro, InterBase, SyBase
and Oracle are also available in the market.

Activity 4-1
Explain how a DBMS is able to speed up the process of accessing
data from the database compared to a manual database system.

Database concepts
Given below are some of the basic concepts in database. We only give
those concepts necessary for designing a database.

1. Entity a thing that exist and distinguishable. An entity is the subject

that we gather data on. For example, a person or a school is an entity.
A collection of similar entities forms an entity set. For example, the set
of all persons in a school is an entity set.

2. Attributes an entity has properties or characteristics called its

attributes. For example, a person entity can have the following
attributes: name, age, height, weight, educational attainment, etc.

3. Key an attribute or attributes that uniquely identifies an entity is an

attribute key. For example, the student number attribute of a student
entity or the name and address attributes of a person entity.

UP Open University
Module 4 83

4. Database File a file containing the values for the attributes of the
entities. A database file can be viewed as a matrix of data, where the
columns indicate the attribute fields (or just fields) and the rows
indicate the entities but more commonly called the records. For
example, a database file of students may look like the following:

Name Age Sex Course Address

J.M. de la Cruz 20 M BSCS 12 Rizal St, Calamba City
R.B. San Pedro 17 F BSMath 32 Rizal St., Bacolod City
E.F. Corpuz 18 M BSAgri 56 Ipil St., San Pablo City
H.J. Rodriguez 21 F BSHumEco 43 Blue St., Quezon City

5. Database is a collection of database files.

6. Relationships a condition that holds among entities or records in the

same database file like:

sibling(student 1, student 2)

that means students 1 and 2 are siblings. Or, it could be a relationship

between records coming from different database files. For example,

takes(student, course)

that means student is taking course.

Activity 4-2

____ 1. A thing that exist and a. relationship

distinguishable b. attributes
c. key
____ 2. Properties of an entity d. entity

____ 3. An attribute that uniquely

identifies an entity

____ 4. A condition that holds

Among entities

UP Open University
84 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Phases of database design

The following the steps followed when designing a database:

1. Entity Identification Identify all the entities involved in the database.

In a student record system, for example, we might identify the entities
student, course and degree program.

2. Data Definition Make a list of the important attributes involved in

each entity. For example, the student entity might have the attributes

student number
name of parents

3. Data Refinement Refine the attributes identified by decomposing

them into parts if they can be decomposed. For example, the following
attributes can be refined to:

name is refined to first name, middle initial and family name

address is refined to street number, street name, barangay, town or
name of parents is refined to fathers name and mothers name
where both names are refined further similar to the name of the

4. Establish Relationships Identify relationships among entities in the

database. For example, we can relate the course with the student
entities by identifying the relationship

takes(student, course).

Relationships are important because during database implementation, a

relationship file is usually created. For example, given the above
relationship the following relationship file may be created:

78-15144 STAT 1
78-15144 CMSC 56
87-56848 ECON 1
87-56848 MATH 17
90-46352 STAT 1

UP Open University
Module 4 85

Activity 4-3
A phase in database design where attribute are decomposed into

a. Entity identification
b. Data definition
c. Data refinement
d. Establishing relationships
e. None of the above

Querying the database

Once the database has been designed and the corresponding database
files have been created, then the database is ready for querying. The query
is basically formulated based on what relationships can be established
among entities or between entities. For example, in the student record
system one can give the query:

What are the courses taken by J.M. de la Cruz?

This query can be answered using the database files for the entities student
and course and the relationship file created from the relationship

takes(student, course).

Implementing a database
Normally, there is a database management system (DBMS) that is used to
implement a database. The procedure is that all the database files and
relationship files identified will be entered into the DBMS. The DBMS
include a query language that can be used by the user to query the entered
database. For example, one may want to list all male students. A typical
query for this in the query language of a DBMS is:

LIST sex = M.

The query language of a DBMS is usually command driven like the

command given above.

UP Open University
86 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Activity 4-4
True or False.

A database management system is a hardware used for

implementing databases.

Office Automation Software

In this section, we look at some tools used in the office to automate some
of the office tasks. Most of these tools are designed to manipulate documents
in the office.

Word processing
Word processing software usually allows the creation, editing, formatting,
storing, and printing of a text document. A text document is anything
that can be keyed in, such as a letter and a report. Although originally
intended for text document, current word processing software allows
graphics to be embedded into a text document.

Most word processing software allows:

Creation is the original composing and keying in of the document.

Editing is making changes to the document to fix errors or improve its
content - for example, deleting a sentence, correcting a misspelled word,
or moving a paragraph.
Formatting refers to adjusting the appearance of the document to make
it look appropriate and attractive. For example, you might want to
center the heading, make wider margins, or use double spacing.
Storing the document means saving it on a data storage device like a
hard disk or a diskette.
Printing is producing the document on paper, using a printer connected
to the computer.

In short, word processing is the use of an electronic device that facilitates

the task of preparing a typed or printed document. When it was first
introduced, it simply simulated the functions of a typewriter. But as the
technology improved, word processing does not only cater to typed text
but it now allows the inclusion of graphics and even sound and video in

UP Open University
Module 4 87

the text. The cut and paste facility provided in most operating systems
(like Windows and MacOS) made possible the transfer of non-text data
from other software to the word processor. In fact, most word processors
can be linked with existing database systems to produce exactly the same
document for different entries in the database. This is often referred to as
mail merging. Online spelling checker, grammar checker and thesaurus
are now included in most word processors. Hence, it is now unacceptable
to have a document with misspellings in them. This manual, for example,
was prepared using a word processor.

Word processing programs, as mentioned above, help people create, edit,

format, store and print documents at a speed several times faster and
several times higher in quality than when using typewriters. Word
processing program packages are the most widely used of personal
computer applications. Many personal computer owners and users even
use their machines solely for word processing. Also, there are probably
more word processing packages in the market than any other type of
software. In the next section, a description of the word processing software
called Microsoft Word will be discussed.

Activity 4-5
Enumerate the things that can be done by a word processor that
cannot be done by a typewriter.

Desktop publishing
If the objective is to come up with well-designed pages that combine
elaborate charts and graphics with text and headlines in a variety of
typefaces, then what one need is a desktop publishing software. You can
use a desktop publishing software to design sophisticated pages and, with
a high-quality printer, print professional looking final document. Before
desktop publishing came about, people had two alternatives when they
wanted to publish: the traditional publishing process (through the printing
press) or through word processing. However, both had their significant
disadvantages. For example, the quality of the word processors output

UP Open University
88 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

was not so high and facilities like printing text diagonally are not available
in word processors. On the other hand, the service of a printing press was
expensive, and some functions cannot simply be done.

Desktop publishing is one step beyond word processing. It refers to the

preparation of printed output whose quality is very near that produced
by a typesetter. A desktop publishing setup is usually composed of a high-
resolution screen, a laser printer, an optical character recognizer such as
your scanner, and the desktop publishing software. The high-resolution
screen will obviously allow the user to view the image of the document in
the form that is almost as clear and sharp as it will be printed in the laser
printer. In desktop publishing, what you see (on screen) is what you get
(on paper). Desktop publishing can be used to solve administrative tasks
like the preparation of documents for such internal use as correspondence,
and the preparation of reports and newsletters. It can also be used for
technical tasks like the preparation of slides, overhead transparencies,
and even manuals. Finally, it can be used for tasks involving graphics like
advertisements, brochures, and flyers which are used outside the office.

Activity 4-6
What are the facilities available in a desktop publisher that are not
provided by word processors?

Graphics software
Graphics software, also called business-quality graphics software, are
programs that lets you produce charts, graphs, and other visual aids that
look as if they were prepared by a professional graphics artist. While you
can produce graphics faster and make last-minute changes if necessary,
you cannot usually control the appearance of the product when you do it
yourself. Most presentation graphics programs allow you to do the

Edit and enhance charts created by other software.

Create charts, diagrams, drawings, and text slides from scratch.

UP Open University
Module 4 89

Use a library of symbols, drawings, and pictures (commonly called

clip art) that comes with the graphics program.

Usually, you can produce high-quality output on a variety of media like

the CRT screen, printers, plotters, overhead transparencies, or slides for
projection. Finally, the software allows you to store the images you created
for future reuse.

If word processors allow you to edit text documents, graphics software

allows you to edit graphics documents.

Activity 4-7
Differentiate graphics software from a desktop publisher.

Presentation/visual aids software

A presentation software is usually designed to help anyone quickly and
easily produce professional looking presentation. Most state of the art
presentation software allow one to create on-screen presentations,
augment presentations with speakers notes, and print out outline pages
and audience handouts. Other software like word processors and graphics
software may even import the materials produced in this software.

Activity 4-8
Give examples of presentation software that are sold in the market.

UP Open University
90 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Electronic spreadsheets
An accountants spreadsheet is a piece of paper with horizontal and
vertical lines dividing it into rows and columns The spreadsheet program
allows the user to simulate a spreadsheet on screen. Working with a
spreadsheet on a computer eliminates much of the toil of setting up a
manual spreadsheet. In general, it works like this: you enter the data you
want in your spreadsheet and then key in the types of calculations you
need. The electronic spreadsheet program automatically does all the
calculations for you and produces the results. The program does not make
any calculation errors, and if you want a printed copy of the spreadsheet,
it can be done quickly. Also, you can store your electronic spreadsheet on
your disk so that it can be used again. But the greatest labor saving
contribution of the electronic spreadsheet is that when you change one
value or formula in your worksheet, all the rest of the values on the
spreadsheet are recalculated automatically to reflect the change.

Activity 4-9
Get access to any electronic spreadsheet available in your office.
Using the spreadsheet enter the following data

Q1 Q2 Q3
10 15 12
13 19 15
16 18 11

Given the data, automatically compute the row and column

averages and the general average, i.e., you will produce in your
spreadsheet the table

Q1 Q2 Q3 Row Average
10 15 12 12.33
13 19 15 15.66
16 18 11 15.00

13.00 17.33 12.66 14.33

UP Open University
Module 4 91

Communications Systems
A lot of work that takes place in an office involves multiple participants.
Message handling systems are usually designed to support this type of
collaborative work. The earliest system was to simply send the document
to the intended receiver. Then, the use of telephones together with the
printed document on paper gained popularity and served this purpose.
This was further improved by the use of fax machines. Now, computers
are used to basically add more functionality and to integrate what the
telephone and fax machines have been providing. Some examples of
communications systems are the electronic mail, bulletin board system,
voice mail, teleconferencing and groupware.

Electronic mails
Electronic mails are messages, usually text, sent from one person to another
via computer. E-mail, as it is commonly called, can also be sent
automatically to a large number of addresses (mailing list). With e-mails,
the bulk of the source-to-destination (and vice versa) correspondence can
be implemented via mailing lists. Information from managers to other
office workers and the responses of the office workers to their manager
are delivered whether they want it or not. With e-mails, no arrangements
as to the schedule of sending and receiving of messages are needed.

Activity 4-10
Obtain an email address from Using this email address
send an email to If you get a reply, then
you must have successfully used an email system.

Bulletin board system

E-mails are usually quite private. If you want to send a message that
everyone can read, a bulletin board system (BBS) is appropriate for this. A
BBS is a computerized meeting and announcement system that allows
people to carry on discussions, upload and download files, and make
announcements without the people being connected to the computer at
the same time.

UP Open University
92 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

There are many thousands (millions?) of BBSs around the world, most
are very small, running on a single IBM clone PC with 1 or 2 phone lines.
Some are so large that the line between a BBS and a system like CompuServe
gets crossed at some point and is not clearly drawn.

In an office, a BBS may be used for posting specific inquiries on any topic
related to the work in the office and for the others to place their responses.
Although an inquiry-response transaction can be handled by e-mail,
implementing it as a bulletin board allows for a kind of interaction wherein
inquiries are visible to all the office workers concerned and who may
perhaps have the same inquiry.

Activity 4-11
In the Internet, there is a bulletin board system on the topic Quit
Smoking. You can access this bulletin board using the address Your job is to read some
of the messages in this bulletin board and reply to one of the
messages. If you can see your reply, then you must have successfully
participated in the discussion in the bulleting board.

Voice mails
Voice mails are basically an automation of the telephone. It is exactly
similar to e-mails except that you send messages by speaking them on
your telephone rather than typing them on your keyboard. Also, you have
to use your telephone for retrieving messages. In this technology, one can
still hear the voice of the sender of the information. However, unlike in a
telephone system where both the sender and receiver have to be on the
phone at the same time, voice mails just like e-mails, can be sent anytime
and played back anytime. Hence, this can be very useful to offices whose
employees are spread across time zones. That means you wouldnt have
to get up at two in the morning just to report to your boss in the United
States anymore.

UP Open University
Module 4 93

Activity 4-12
What can you do in voice mails that cannot be done by an ordinary

Teleconferencing applications usually include audio conferencing, video
conferencing, and computer conferencing. This is a technology that uses
electronic transmission to permit two or more people to virtually meet
and discuss an idea or issue.

Audio conferencing requires the use of voice communications equipment

to establish an audio link to geographically dispersed persons for the
purpose of conducting a conference. The conference call that allows more
than two persons to participate in a telephone conversation was the first
form of audio conferencing and can still be used today. This application
does not usually require the use of a computer. All you need are two-way
audio communication facilities like the PABX phone system.

In video conferencing, the audio signal is supplemented with a video

signal. As in audio conferencing, this does not require the use of computers.
Television equipment are usually used to send and receive audio and video
signals. Persons in one location can both see and hear persons in other
locations as the conference is conducted.

Computer conferencing involves the use of networked computers to allow

persons to exchange information during the conference. This application
is very similar to e-mails and in fact the same hardware and software are
used. The conference can be asynchronous where all participants do not
have to be on line at the same time. Or it could be synchronous where
everybody have to be there at the same time just like in the audio and
video conferencing.

UP Open University
94 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Activity 4-13
What are the hardware requirements of a computer conferencing
set up?

Groupware is a software designed to enable people to collaborate on real
work. It is a new and somewhat unshaped category of commercial
products that help groups and teams worked together by sharing
information and by controlling work flows within the group. The term
groupware has attained wide recognition because of a combination of the
need for groups to work together more effectively and the technical
progress in networks and group support products. Groupware is still new
that its long-term direction is unclear. What is clear, however, is that the
downsizing and rapid organizational change of the 1990s makes the
effective operation of work groups an even more important competitive

Many groupware products are related to specific group-related tasks like

project management, scheduling meetings, and retrieving data from shared
databases. The most popular commercial groupware package is the Lotus
Notes. Essentially, Lotus Notes is the facility that integrates e-mails, flexible
bulletin boards, and database facilities. This provides users with a variety
of communication facilities and with a way of creating systems that do
real work. Other types of groupware systems include the brainstorming
support systems and negotiating support systems. Mosaic is a good example
of the basic database facilities that could be used as part of a groupware

UP Open University
Module 4 95

Activity 4-14
When teams work together by sharing information, there is a
possibility that team members will attempt to access (worst modify)
the same set of information. How does groupware ensure the
correctness of the job being worked by the team?

Artificial Intelligence (AI)

Have you heard about Deep Blue? It is the intelligent computer chess
playing system designed by International Business Machines (IBM) that
once defeated Gary Kasparov the worlds champion in chess in 1997.
Probably, you now have an idea about what artificial intelligence is and
what they can do. This chess playing program is a good illustration of
how intelligence is acquired by a system and applied to engage an opponent
and win at that.

Figure 4-1. Deep Blue Wins

Activity 4-15
In the chess playing program that was pitted against Gary
Kasparov, where is the intelligence in the program?

UP Open University
96 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Before we formally describe artificial intelligence (AI), lets look at some

more applications of AI in different areas:

Mycin, created in the mid 1970s by Edward H. Shortliffe at Stanford

University, is one of the most famous expert systems. Mycin was designed
to be a medical diagnosis tool. Given information concerning a patients
symptoms and test results, Mycin attempt to identify the cause of the
patients infection. Mycin gains any additional information it needs by
asking the user questions like Has the patient recently suffered burns? or
Does the patient have a known allergy to Colistin?. Once Mycin
determines the most likely cause of infection and accounted for the patients
allergies, it will suggest a course of medication.

In 1997, NASAs unmanned probe, the Pathfinder, became the latest visitor
to land in Mars successfully, enchanting the public here on Earth with a
series of visually stunning panoramic shots that have inspired scientists to
conduct more extensive exploration of the red planet.

Figure 4-2. NASAs Pathfinder

Recently, SONY Corp. has released an artificially intelligent robotic dog,

named AIBO. The first part of the word means Artificially Intelligent and
the second part comes from the Japanese word meaning, pal. What
makes AIBO different from other robots is that it can think, feel, mature,
and learn as it goes. It can be taught tricks like a normal dog such as
chasing a pink ball or sitting. It can express its feelings by waging its tail,
nudging you, or making sounds. You can communicate with it by how
much attention you give it, or by touching its sensors on its head. It can
recognize colors, some shapes, and some audible commands.

UP Open University
Module 4 97

Figure 4-3. SONYs AIBO

Activity 4-16
Which of the following is not example of an AI ssytem?

a. Mycin
b. NASAs Pathfinder
d. Automatic Teller Machine
e. None of the above

These are but a few examples of AI systems that has been built. The
following are some more examples of systems that uses AI:

give advice in firing employees

give advice in granting welfare benefits
help choose the most suitable job applicant
schedule airline flights
give advice about the companys tax payment
help managers recommend investment strategies
help in planning the processing of perishable goods by estimating the
expected demand
diagnose illnesses and suggest treatment
diagnose water-waste treatment plants
diagnose problems in complicated electronic devices
control assembly robots in factories
control nuclear power plants

Now, you see that this thing called AI has a very large potential of being
applied to anything where human intelligence is required. Can you
imagine a future where everything is run by machines? At this point,

UP Open University
98 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

many questions may ring through your mind. But we have to answer the
most basic one first: What is artificial intelligence?

Computer systems that possess intelligence are said to have artificial

intelligence. Just like the term intelligence, the term artificial intelligence is
defined by many experts in different ways. But all of them have these
two general ideas: (1) it relates to the study of the processes of human
thinking, and (2) it is concerned with the representation of these processes
so that machines, (e.g. computers, robots, etc.) can exhibit an intelligent
behavior. We say an intelligent behavior is present if there is the ability to:

understand and to learn from past experiences,

deduce ideas from uncertain and contrasting messages,
make fast and efficient response to new situations,
use knowledge in solving problems,
face complex situations,
make inferences in simple but logical manner, and
distinguish the relative importance of the different elements of a

Barr and Feigenbaum (1981) defined Artificial Intelligence, as a part of

computer science concerned with designing intelligent computer systems,
that is, systems that exhibit the characteristics we associate with intelligence
in human behavior, such as understanding language, learning, reasoning,
and solving problems. As a very broad discipline, AI also relates to
physiology, biology, philosophy, mathematics and other fields of studies.
The key element that these fields have in common is the creation of
machines that can think.

Artificial intelligence may also be defined as the study of computer

programs that behave intelligently. Technically speaking, AI is the field
that studies methods of using symbols to represent knowledge or
information and using heuristics in processing the said information. To
build a machine that possesses mans intelligence is the ultimate goal of
AI. However, the capabilities of current technologies are far from
supporting this yet. Computers dont have the ability (yet) to learn from
experiences at the same level as humans do.

UP Open University
Module 4 99

Activity 4-17
True or False.

____ Artificial Intelligence is concerned with providing computer

system with intelligence.

AI Technologies
Although AI found its applications in many areas, there are several
technologies by which these applications can be classified.

Natural language processing

Natural language processing (NLP) is the branch of AI which is concerned
with understanding and generating natural languages like English,
Japanese, Spanish and Filipino. Important applications of NLP include
textual analysis, machine translation, and providing interface between
computers and its users. Textual analysis systems attempt to summarize
or interpret text, and machine translation systems attempt to automatically
translate text from one language to another. The understanding and
generation of natural language has been a major AI research area mainly
because it has greatest potential to revolutionize the way users
communicate with machines. Although menu-driven and icon-based
systems (like in Windows) have simplified the end-users communication
with computers, its still best if there are machines that can understand
and respond appropriately to spoken word.

Machine translation (MT) is one application of natural language processing

that has been very popular. Machine translation is a technology that
automatically translates text from one human language into another. For
instance, an English-to-German MT system translates English (the source
language) into German (the target language). The source and/or the target
language medium might be text or speech, but most MT systems work
with text. If speech source or speech target is of interest, then speech
recognition or speech synthesis modules could convert speech to or from
text, and then MT could work with the text form.

Machine Translation is undergoing continuous refinement, but nine

language pairs are already supported and offered as a product. The
language pairs offered include English to/from French, English to/from

UP Open University
100 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Italian, English to/from German, English to/from Spanish, English to/

from Simplified Chinese, English to/from Traditional Chinese, English
to/from Japanese, English to Korean, and English to Brazilian Portuguese.

Activity 4-18
What is difficult in translating one natural language to another?

Another application of NLP is on providing an interface to users and

computers. One example of such is the START. The START Natural
Language System is a software system designed to answer questions that
are posed to it in natural language. START parses incoming questions,
matches the queries created from the parse trees against its knowledge
base and presents the appropriate information segments to the user. In
this way, START provides untrained users with speedy access to
knowledge that in many cases would take an expert some time to find.

Activity 4-19
An application of NLP where it attempt to automatically translate
text from one language to another.

a. Textual analysis
b. Machine translation
c. Providing interface to users
d. Speech synthesis
e. None of the above

UP Open University
Module 4 101

Speech recognition and synthesis

Closely related to NLP, speech recognition and synthesis is the research
area in AI whose goal is to develop machines that can respond to, interpret,
and generate spoken words. When we combine the speech recognition
system and the natural language processing system, the result is a system
that does not only recognize human voice but also understands human
speech. Speech recognition gives the machine the ability to hear you
while you speak which entails mere identification of individual words
and does not include analysis of the meaning of the words spoken. NLP
is the process devoted to do the latter.

Speech synthesis gives the machine the ability to speak to its users. Simple
playback of recorded voice is not speech synthesis. What speech synthesis
refers to are the real creation of words from the basic phonemes of a
language and the formulation of different male and female voices. Any
type of software can benefit from this technology as a user you need not
read the output on screen because it can provide output you can simply
listen to while doing whatever it is you might be doing.

The combination of these technologies with NLP provides the easiest,

fastest, and most natural way of communicating with computers its
always faster and easier to speak than to type commands and inputs. If
we have such systems, we can actually access databases and other
information in remote locations through telephones.

One example of speech recognition system is the IBM ViaVoice. ViaVoice

can offer a more satisfying computer experience not merely as an
alternative to the mouse and keyboard, but by transforming the way we
interact with our computers. Available around the world in over 10
languages, millions of people are using ViaVoice to talk instead of type
boosting their productivity while enjoying the ease of use speech can bring
to their computer activities.

Figure 4-4. IBMs ViaVoice

UP Open University
102 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Activity 4-20
Aside from accessing databases and other information in remote
locations through telephones, what other applications of speech
recognition and synthesis can you identify?

Robotics is the area of AI concerned the study of robots. It aims to simulate
human motor abilities in machines.

If you think robots are mainly the stuff of space movies, think again. Right
now, all over the world, robots are on the move. They are painting cars at
Ford plants, assembling Milano cookies for Pepperidge Farms, walking
into active volcanoes, driving trains in Paris, and defusing bombs in
Northern Ireland. As they grow tougher, nimbler, and smarter, todays
robots are doing more and more things humans cantor dont want

Robots wouldnt become possible until the 1950s and 1960s, with the
invention of transistors and integrated circuits. Compact, reliable
electronics and a growing computer industry added brains to the brawn
of already existing machines. In 1959, researchers demonstrated the
possibility of robotic manufacturing when they unveiled a computer-
controlled milling machine that made ashtrays.

Today, robots are enjoying a resurgence. Faster and cheaper computer

processors make robots smarter and less expensive. Meanwhile, researchers
are working on ways to make robots move and think more efficiently.
Although most robots in use today are designed for specific tasks, the goal
is to make universal robots, robots flexible enough to do just about anything
a human can do.

UP Open University
Module 4 103

What is a robot? Theres no precise definition, but by general agreement a

robot is a programmable machine that imitates the actions or appearance
of an intelligent creatureusually a human. To qualify as a robot, a machine
has to be able to do two things:

1. get information from its surroundings, and

2. do something physicalsuch as move or manipulate objects.

The word robot comes from the Czech word robota, meaning drudgery
or slave-like labor. It was first used to describe fabricated workers in a
fictional 1920s play by Czech author Karel Capek called Rossums
Universal Robots. In the story, a scientist invents robots to help people by
performing simple, repetitive tasks. However, once the robots are used to
fight wars, they turn on their human owners and take over the world.

Figure 4-5. Robot

Activity 4-21
Which of the following are not robots?

a. Traffic light
b. Microwave oven
c. Photocopier
d. Bicycle
e. Car

UP Open University
104 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Computer vision
Computer vision aims to provide machines with the ability to analyze
sensor data and recognize objects in the physical world. The visual images
are used to control the operations or to instruct computers and other
devices, such as robots.

Fuzzy logic
Uncertainty is the key idea in fuzzy logic. Most often, things arent always
right or wrong, true or false. In making decisions, answers are always
clouded by maybes. In fuzzy logic, everything has a degree of certainty.
This degree of certainty is a value from 0 to 10 for false and 1 for definitely
true. The numbers between 0 and 1 are used to indicate to what extent an
answer is uncertain. These numbers are very important in arriving at a
good solution to the problem. I will not elaborate more on how fuzzy
logic really works because Im sure that if I do it here, youll just get bored
and fall asleep. You may read on this topic later if you are really interested.

Neural networks
Although expert systems have been successfully applied to many business
problems, there are some difficulties that have severely hampered their
development, namely (1) the enormous time and effort required to extract
the experts knowledge and translate it into rules; and (2) the inability of
an expert system to use inductive learning and inference to adapt to
changing relationships in the decision environment. A new technology
called neural network provides solutions to these problems. After it has
been given an initial training set, the system can learn and adapt to new
configurations of the problem.

Neural networks simulate the biological processes of the human brain

(composed of neurons) and nervous system in general. Neural nets, as
they are commonly called, attempt to tease out meaningful patterns from
vast amounts of data. Neural nets can recognize patterns too obscure for
humans to detect, and they adapt as new information is received. It has
been used in digitizing hand-written text, proofreading, remote sensing,
medical imaging, target tracking and classification, and other pattern-
recognition tasks. Here are some actual systems used in the US. Bank of
America uses a neural network to evaluate commercial loan applications.
American Express uses a neural system to read handwriting on credit
card slips. The state of Wyoming in US uses a neural system to read hand-
printed numbers on tax forms. The oil giants Arco and Texaco are using

UP Open University
Module 4 105

neural networks to help pinpoint oil and gas deposits below the earths

Many major businesses around the world are currently devoting significant
resources to investigate ways in which expert systems, neural networks,
and other AI technologies in general can be used to help them cope with
problem situations and make better and more consistent decisions fast.

Activity 4-22
Which of the following are possible applications of neural network?

a. Real Estate Appraiser predicts the sale price of residential

house and lot.

b. Stock Price Predictor predicts the price of certain stocks in

the stock market.

c. Building Height Meter measures the height of a building.

Intelligent agents
An agent is defined as a software and/or hardware component capable
to fulfill various tasks on behalf of its user. Essentially, the agent must
manifest personalization to adapt to its user, authorization to act in the
name of the user and specialization to have knowledge in a certain field.
Agents are one of the most important and exciting areas of research and
development in computer science today. Agents are currently being applied
in domains as diverse as computer games and interactive cinema,
information retrieval and filtering, user interface design, and industrial
process control.

There are various classifications of agents. First, agents may be classified

by their mobility, i.e. by their ability to move around some network. This
yields the classes of static or mobile agents. Secondly, they may be classed
as either deliberative or reactive. Deliberative agents derive from the
deliberative thinking paradigm: the agents possess an internal symbolic,
reasoning model and they engage in planning and negotiation in order to
achieve coordination with other agents. Third, agents may be classified
along several ideal and primary attributes which agents should exhibit.

UP Open University
106 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

An agent should have three attributes: autonomy, learning and

cooperation. Autonomy refers to the principle that agents can operate on
their own without the need for human guidance. A key attribute of any
intelligent agent being is its ability to learn. Cooperation with other agents
is paramount: it is the main reason for having multiple agents in the first
place in contrast to having just one. In order to cooperate, agents need to
possess a social ability, i.e. the ability to interact with other agents and
possibly humans via some communication language.

Figure 4-6 derives four classifications of agents: collaborative agents,

collaborative learning agents, interface agents and truly smart agents.

Learning Agents



Collaborative Interface
Agents Agents

Figure 4-6. A Part View of an Agent Typology

Truly smart agents do not exist yet.

One example of an intelligent agent is Internet Search Agent (ISA). Internet

Search Agent is a 100% Java web search tool that queries several popular
search engines, automatically downloads the results and then displays
them in your browser. ISA is configurable so that you can choose which
search engines you wish to use, how many results you want to get back
and whether or not to download images and follow html links. This
flexibility allows you to use ISA for anything from an unattended download
agent that retrieves web content for viewing offline to an improved search
engine that returns full web pages (with or without images) instead of a
title and 2 or 3 lines of text.

UP Open University
Module 4 107

Activity 4-23
Which of the following are possible applications of intelligent

a. Location detector a mobile device (like a cell phone) will inform

a central server of the location of the device.

b. Medical information search search the Internet for medical


c. Map drawer draws the map of certain city or town.

Expert systems
Among the intelligent systems, expert systems (also called knowledge-
based systems) are the most common since they emerged early and were
in fact the first applications of AI. These systems imitate the abilities of a
human expert in solving problems. Expert systems function as consultants.
MYCIN and MACSYMA, the systems I mentioned to you earlier, are
examples of expert systems. (Note: We will discuss the other intelligent
systems on the list in the last section of this module.)

The first expert system installed for business use was built by General
Electric to capture the knowledge of a senior locomotive repair expert
who was approaching retirement. The system was built to help
repairpersons diagnose mechanical problems. Once the problem is found,
a video tape instructs the repairperson in making the needed repairs.

Each expert system has the ability to make inferences, explain its actions
or decisions, give solutions to complex problems given uncertain
information, and acquire new knowledge.

To avoid confusion, I think its necessary to point out the difference

between an expert system and a decision support system. An expert system
is very similar to a DSS since both intend to provide a high level of problem-
solving support to their users. But they differ significantly in that an ES
has the ability to explain its line of reasoning in reaching a particular
solution. This is deemed significant because very often, the explanation
on how a solution is reached is more valuable than the solution itself.

UP Open University
108 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

An expert system is usually used by non-experts so they can perform the

job of an expert. With this, you can clearly see why expert systems have
been so prevalent. But lets look closely at the other benefits of such systems.

Now, lets see what makes an expert system act like a human expert. An
expert system is composed of five general parts: (1) knowledge base, (2)
inference engine, (3) user interface, (4) explanation subsystem, and (5)
knowledge acquisition/refining system. Lets look at each part in more

Knowledge base. It contains the pertinent knowledge so the problem will

be understood and solved. Knowledge base has two elements: (1) facts
and (2) rules that will be applied so that the facts can be used to solve a
particular problem.

Inference engine. Its the brain of the system. Reasoning and coming up
with a conclusion are its main functions. In the process of doing these, it
determines which rule will be applied and what questions to ask the user.
It then makes inferences from the rules applied on the information given.
The newly inferred knowledge is added to its memory.

User interface. It allows the system and the user to communicate. This
communication is usually in a question-and-answer format. Graphical
interfaces may also be used. But in the future, it is expected that users will
use voice and natural languages to communicate with the system.

Explanation subsystem. It explains the decisions and actions of the system

by answering the following questions: (1) Why did the system ask a
particular question? (2) How was the conclusion reached? (3) Why was a
certain alternative solution is rejected? (4) What is the plan to reach a
particular solution? For instance, What remains to be known before a
final diagnosis is determined?

Knowledge acquisition/refining system. An expert system must be able

to refine and expand its knowledge just like a human expert. By adding
new knowledge to its knowledge base and by providing more effective
reasoning, it will be able to refine its knowledge and improve its

UP Open University
Module 4 109

User User Interface Inference Interface

Search Module

Subsystem Control Module

Knowledge Base
Working Memory

Knowledge Expert and

Rules Acquisition Knowledge
Subsystem Engineer

Figure 4-7. Parts of an Expert System

Activity 4-24

____ 1. contains the pertinent a. knowledge acquisition

knowledge so the problem b. user interface
will be understood and c. explanation
solved subsystem
d. inference engine
____ 2. the brain of the system e. knowledge base

____ 3. allows the system and

the user to communicate

____ 4. explains the decisions

and actions of the system

____ 5. responsible for expanding

the knowledge stored in
the expert system

UP Open University
110 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

After knowing the parts of the system, its good if you see the interaction
of these parts. You will see the relationship of these parts in the following

You will notice that in the diagram, the inference engine has two modules.
The search module contains a searching algorithm for finding facts and
rules. The control module, of course, controls the process of inference.
The working memory is a kind of database which contains descriptions of
the current problem, the input information, and for storing intermediate

Activity 4-25
Which of the following are possible applications of expert systems?

a. Orchid specie identifier identifies the specie of a described


b. Furniture builder accepts raw materials for furniture then

provides a design of the furniture required by the user.

c. Green House Temperature Control maintains the temperature

of a green house at a fixed level.

d. Matrix multiplier multiplies two compatible matrices.

Multimedia Systems
Multimedia has a very simple definition. It involves any combination of
two or more of the following elements: text, image, animation, sound,
speech, video, and computer programs. These media are digitally controlled
and processed by a computer. In order to get information across, one can
use multimedia to convey their message. Multimedia enhances the
information for better communication and understanding.

With this definition of multimedia, we can easily identify several existing

multimedia systems and applications. The World Wide Web is therefore a
form of multimedia system since you can view web pages that combine
text with graphics, animation, sound and even video. Any presentation
software is also a multimedia system since you may combine text, image,

UP Open University
Module 4 111

animation, and sound in one presentation. Teleconferencing systems are

multimedia systems since you can play video in these systems.

The most popular multimedia systems are the multimedia players.

Multimedia players allow one to view video and hear audio files on your
computer. Examples are: Windows Media Player, Real Player, Quicktime
Player. These players allow you to play data formats like MP3, WAV,

Some of these multimedia players are capable of playing both streaming

and non-streaming input. Streaming media means the input file is coming
from the web, the programs do not have to wait for the entire file to be
downloaded before playback begins. Instead, the downloading file is
buffered (allowed to accumulate in temporary storage) and once enough
of the file has been stored on your computer, the player can begin to work
on the part of the file that has already been transferred. Thus playing can
commence even as the rest of the file continues to download.

Activity 4-26
Which of the following are possible multimedia applications?

a. Transistor radio
b. Television
c. Electronic mail
d. Voice mail
e. Bulletin Board System

UP Open University
Module 5
Computer Networks and
Data Communication

A computer network is an interconnected set of
autonomous computers. The computers are
connected to the network and are called hosts or
At the end of the module, you
should be able to:
nodes. Each host is connected to the network by
means of an interfacing device called a packet 1. Discuss the different
switcher or interface message processor (IMP). The networks in existence;
IMPs are usually in the form of a network interface 2. Identify the different
card. The IMPs are connected to each other by network protocols and
transmission lines or communication channels, topologies;
which are often called the subnet or transport 3. Identify the different
system. Figure 5-1 illustrates the different parts of network hardware and
the network. cabling; and
Communication 4. Discuss how data are
Channel transmitted through a
communication channel.


Hosts or Nodes
Figure 5-1. Computer Network
114 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Activity 5-1
For what purpose are the IMPs in the network?

There are many types of networks, including:

1. Local area network (LAN) a network where the hosts are

geographically close together (e.g., in the same building). Most LANs
connect workstations, file servers and peripherals. The usual set up is
that there is one computer designated as the file server. It stores all the
software that controls the network, as well as software that can be
shared by the computers attached to the network. Computers attached
to the file server are called workstations. The workstations can be less
powerful than the file server, and they may have additional software
on their hard drives.

2. Wide area networks (WAN) a network where the hosts are farther
apart and are connected by telephone leased lines, radio waves or
satellites. A system of LANs connected in this way forms a WAN. The
largest WAN is the Internet.

Activity 5-2
UPLB has a diameter of about 8 kilometers. The buildings (at least
45 of them) are connected to each other using fiber optic cables.
Obviously, we cannot consider the buildings in UPLB as
geographically close to each other. But, why do we still consider
the network of UPLB as a local area network?

UP Open University
Module 5 115

Networks may also be classified based on how messages are sent from the
sender to the receiver. There are two main categories of networks based
on this, namely, point-to-point networks and broadcast networks.

In point-to-point networks (Figure 5-2), the transmission lines (wires, radio

links, telephone lines, etc.) connect pairs of nodes. Messages move from
one host to another until they reaches their destination. The main issues
with the design of this type of networks are the topology of the network
(which nodes are connected to each other) and the routing of information
from one node to another.

Figure 5-2. Point-to-point network

In the broadcast networks, on the other hand, all nodes share a single
communication channel. A message is broadcasted to everybody in the
network. The main problem with this type of networks is the arbitration
between competing nodes that want to use the channel at the same time.
One example of a broadcast network is the satellite network. A satellite
networks is an application of broadcast network where a satellite provides
a shared channel between nodes that may be widely distributed
geographically (Figure 5-3).


Earth Station

Figure 5-3. Satellite network.

UP Open University
116 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Activity 5-3
What the advantages and disadvantages of point-to-point networks
over broadcast networks?

Aside from these categorizations, networks may also be categorize by:

1. Topology this is the geometric arrangement of the hosts, e.g., bus,

star and ring topologies.

2. Protocol this is an agreed upon format for transmitting data between

two hosts. The protocol determines the following: the type of error
checking to be used, data compression method, if any, how the sending
and the receiving devices will indicate that it has finished sending or
that it has received the message.

3. Media hosts may be connected by twisted-pair, coaxial cables, or

fiber optic cables. Some networks do without connecting media
altogether, communicating instead via radio waves.

Network Topologies
There are three popular physical topologies that are used in networks.
These topologies are the bus, star and ring topologies.

The bus topology consists of a main run of cable with a terminator at each
end. All nodes (file server, workstations and peripherals) are connected
to the linear cable. See Figure 5-4 for an illustration of a bus topology.

UP Open University
Module 5 117



Figure 5-4. Bus topology

In a bus topology, it is very easy to connect a new node (computer or

peripheral) to the network. However, the entire network shuts down when
there is a break in the main bus cable.

The star topology is designed with each node (file server, workstation, or
peripheral) connected directly to a central network hub or concentrator.
Messages on a star network pass through the hub or concentrator before
continuing to their destination. The hub or concentrator manages and
controls all functions of the network. It also acts as the repeater of the
flow of messages. Figure 5-5 illustrates a star topology.


hub or concentrator

Figure 5-5. Star topology.

In a star topology, new nodes can be installed very easily and the network
is not disrupted when connecting and removing new nodes. However,
the cable length required is much more compared to other topologies.

A ring topology network consists of stations directly linked to each other

by a single communication line forming a ring. Messages travel from node
to node around the ring until it reaches its correct destination. As with
the bus network, each interface must be capable of recognizing its own
address to receive a message. If a message is passed to a node, which is

UP Open University
118 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

not the correct destination, the message is re-transmitted to the next node
in the ring. Figure 5-6 illustrates a ring topology.



Figure 5-6. Ring topology

Activity 5-4
Why is the star topology more reliable (more fault-tolerant) than
bus and ring topologies?

Networking Protocols
A protocol is a set of rules that governs the communications between
nodes in a network. These rules includes guidelines that regulate the
following characteristics of a network: access method, allowed physical
topologies, types of cabling and speed of data transfer.

There are five very popular protocols: ethernet, fast ethernet, token ring,
token bus and Fiber Distributed Data Interface (FDDI).

UP Open University
Module 5 119

Ethernet was invented at Xerox Palo Alto Research Center in the 1970s.
The first Ethernet system ran at approximately 3 Mbps and was known
as the experimental Ethernet. The formal specification of Ethernet were
published in 1980 by a multi-vendor consortium that created the DEC-
Intel-Xerox (DIX) standard. This effort turned the experimental Ethernet
into an open production-quality Ethernet system that operates at 10 Mbps.
Ethernet was then adopted for standardization by LAN standards
committee of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE

The IEEE standard was first published in 1985, with the formal title of
IEEE 802.3 Carrier Sense Multiple Access with Collision Detection (CSMA/
CD) Access Method and Physical Layer Specifications. The IEEE standard
has since been adopted by the International Standards Organization (ISO),
which made it a worldwide standard.

A newer version of Ethernet, called 100Base-T (or Fast Ethernet) supports

data transfer rates of 100 Mbps. The newest version, Gigabit Ethernet
supports data transfer rates of 1 gigabits per second (1000 Mbps).

Activity 5-5

____ 1. Data transfer rates of 3 mbps a. Gigabit Ethernet

b. Fast Ethernet
____ 2. Data transfer rates of 10 mbps c. First Ethernet
d. Ethernet
____ 3. Data transfer rates of 100 mbps

____ 4. Data transfer rates of 1000 mbps

The Ethernet system consists of three basic elements:

1. the physical medium used to carry Ethernet signals between computers;

2. a set of medium access control rules embedded in each Ethernet

interface that allows multiple computers to fairly arbitrate access to
the Ethernet channel;

UP Open University
120 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

3. an Ethernet frame that consists of a standardized set of bits used to

carry data over the system. The topology of 10 Mbps Ethernet is the
bus topology. Each Ethernet-equipped computer, the host, operates
independently of all other hosts on the network. All hosts attached to
an Ethernet are connected to a shared signaling system, also called
the medium. Ethernet signals are transmitted serially, one bit at a time,
over the shared signal channel to every attached host. To send data a
host first listens to the channel, and when the channel is idle the host
transmits its data in the form of an Ethernet frame or packet.

After each frame transmission, all stations on the network must contend
equally for the next frame transmission opportunity. This ensures that
access to the channel is fair and that no single host hugs the shared signaling
system. Access to the shared channel is determined by the medium access
control (MAC) mechanism embedded in the Ethernet interface located in
each station. The MAC mechanism is based on a system called Carrier
Sense Multiple Access with Collision Detection (CSMA/CD).

The CSMA/CD protocol can be likened to a group of people discussing a

common topic. Everyone listen for a period of quiet before speaking (carrier
sense). Once moment of silence is sensed, everyone has an equal
opportunity to say something (multiple access). If two people start talking
at the same time they detect that fact and quit speaking (collision detection).

In the Ethernet, each interface must wait until there is no signal on the
channel, then it can begin transmitting. If another interface is transmitting,
there will be a signal on the channel, which is called the carrier. All other
interfaces must wait until a carrier ceases before trying to transmit, and
this process is called carrier sense.

All Ethernet interfaces are equal in ability to send frames on the network.
No interface is prevented from accessing the channel, they all have equal
access to it. This is what is meant by multiple access. Since signals take a
finite time to travel from one end of an Ethernet system to the other, the
first bits of a transmitted frame do not reach all parts of the network
simultaneously. Therefore, it is possible for two interfaces to sense that
the channel is free and to start transmitting their frames simultaneously.
When this happens, the Ethernet has a way to sense the collision of signals
and to stop the transmission and resends the frames (collision detection).

In the event of a collision, the hosts are notified and instantly reschedule
their transmission using a specially designed back off algorithm. A part of
this algorithm, the hosts involved each chooses a random time interval to
schedule the retransmission of the frame. This avoids the same hosts to
have frames colliding in succession.

UP Open University
Module 5 121

Activity 5-6
Why does a host wait a random amount of time in Ethernet before
re-sending after a collision has occurred?

Fast ethernet
For Ethernet networks that need higher transmission speeds, the Fast
Ethernet standard (IEEE 802.3u) was established. Fast Ethernet raises the
speed limit from 10 Mbps to 100 Mbps with only minimal changes to the
existing cable structure. There are three types of Fast Ethernet:

1. 100Base-TX for use with level 5 UTP cable;

2. 100Base-FX for use with fiber optic cables;
3. 100Base-T4 which uses an extra two wires for use with level 3 UTP

Most Fast Ethernet networks use the star topology, in which access is
controlled by a central interface. Two types of star topologies are possible:
broadcast star and switched. In a broadcast start, the central interface is a
hub that sends the messages to all the hosts; while in a switched type, the
central interface is a hub (or switch) that sends messages to their destination

Activity 5-7
What is the basic difference of Fast Ethernet from ordinary

UP Open University
122 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Token ring
Token ring networks consist of stations directly linked to each other by a
single communication line. Messages travel from host to host around the
ring until it reaches its correct destination. As with the bus network, each
interface must be capable of recognizing its own address to receive a
message. If a message is passed to a host, which is not the correct
destination, the message is re-transmitted to the next host in the ring. To
avoid collision, a method called token passing is usually used.

A token is a frame of bits, which is passed from one host to the next. A
token may be empty or it may contain a message. If an empty token is
received and the station wishes to transmit data, it holds the token and
writes into it: the destination address, its own address and the message.
The token is then passed to the next host. As the token is no longer marked
empty, it means that no other host can transmit a message until this token
becomes empty again. When the token finally reached its destination, the
destination host reads the message and then marked the message as read.
Then it passes this token to the next host. The passing continues until it
reaches the sender. The sender then marks the token empty. The same
token was used to send a message and at the same time it served as an
acknowledgement that the message was received.

At the implementation level, the token may be a special 8-bit pattern, for
example, 11111111. With 11111111, this means that the token is empty.
Bit stuffing is used to prevent this pattern to appear in the data being
passed. When a station wants to transmit a packet, it is required to seize
the token and remove it from the ring before transmitting. To remove the
token, the ring interface, which connects the host to the ring, must monitor
all bits that pass by. As the last bit of the token passes by, the ring interface
inverts it, changing the pattern to 11111110 known as the connector. With
the pattern 11111110, this will be interpreted as what follows is a message.
Those monitoring the channel will never seize the token. Immediately
after the token has been so transformed, the host making the
transformation is permitted to begin transmitting.

Activity 5-8
Why is there no collision in token rings?

UP Open University
Module 5 123

Token bus
Token-bus systems provides a horizontal channel (bus), yet provide access
to this bus channel as if it were a ring. The protocol eliminates the collisions
found in carrier sense channels and allows the use of a non-ring channel.

The protocol uses a control frame called an access token or access right.
Once held by a host, this token gives the hosts exclusive use of the bus.
The token-holding host uses the bus for a period of time to send and receive
data, then passes the token to the next designated host. In the bus topology,
all hosts listen and receive the access token, but only the host allowed to
seize the channel is the host designated in the access token. All other
hosts must wait their turn to receive the token.

The hosts receive the token through a cyclic sequence (Figure 5-7), which
forms a logical ring on the physical bus. This form of token passing is
called explicit token system, because the bus topology causes the ordering
of the hosts use of the channel.

Figure 5-7. Token bus topology

Activity 5-9
The hosts receive the token in cyclic sequence. How is this achieved
in a token bus?

UP Open University
124 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Fiber distributed data interface

The Fiber Distributed Data Interface (FDDI) is a high-speed network
capable of transporting data at the rate of 100 Mbps and can support up
to 500 hosts on a single network. FDDI is designed to run through fiber
optic cables, transmitting light pulses to convey information between
stations, but it can also run on copper using electrical signals.

FDDI is highly reliable because it consists of two counter-rotating rings

(Figure 5-8). A secondary ring provides an alternate data path in the event
a fault occurs on the primary ring (Figure 5-9). FDDI hosts incorporate
this secondary ring into the data path to route traffic around the fault. A
dual-attached rooted host on the network is attached to both these rings.

single-attached M-port host double-attached

hosts hosts

Figure 5-8. Counter rotating rings in FDDI

A dual-attached host on the ring has at least two ports an A port, where
the primary ring comes in and the secondary ring goes out, and a B port
where the secondary ring comes in, and the primary goes out. A station
may also have a number of M ports, which are attachments for single-
attached hosts. Hosts with at least one M port are called concentrators.

The sequence in which hosts gain access to the medium is predetermined.

A host generates a special signaling sequence called a token that controls
the right to transmit. This token is continually passed around the network
from one node to the next. When a station has something to send, it captures
the token, sends the information in well-formatted FDDI frames, then
releases the token. The header of these frames includes the address of the
host(s) that will copy the frame. All nodes read the frame as it is passed
around the ring to determine if they are the recipients of the frame. If they
are, they extract the data, re-transmitting the frame to the next host on
the ring. When the frame returns to the originating host, the originating
host strips the frame.

UP Open University
Module 5 125


Single-attached M-port host Double-attached

hosts hosts

Figure 5-9. A fault in the network occurred

Activity 5-10
How is fault-tolerance achieved in FDDI?

Networking Hardware
Networking hardware includes all the computers, peripherals, interface
cards and other equipment needed to perform communication and
processing within the network.

File servers
The file server is the most powerful computer in the network. It is usually
a very fast computer with very large RAM and storage space along with
a very fast interface card. The operating system of the network together
with the software applications that is shared by the different users of the
network usually resides in the file server. The file server is also responsible
with the communication between nodes in the network.

UP Open University
126 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Activity 5-11
A file server is usually provided with a large RAM and a fast CPU.

All the other computers connected to the network and that use the
resources in the file server are called workstations. Hence, a workstation
does not really need a separate storage (like hard disk space and floppy
disk space). All a workstation need is a network interface card, networking
software and appropriate cables to be able to operate.

Network interface cards

The network interface card provides the physical connection between the
network and the computer workstation. The most popular network
interface card is the Ethernet card. Ethernet cards contains connections
for coaxial or twisted-pair cables (or both). BNC connection is provided
when coaxial cables are used and RJ-45 connection is used when twisted-
pair cables are provided.

Figure 5-10. Ethernet Card

UP Open University
Module 5 127

Hubs or concentrators
A hub is a device that provides a central connection point for cables from
the nodes (workstations, file servers, and peripherals) in the network. In a
star topology, for example, twisted-pair cables are used to connect each
node to the central hub. A hub is actually a multislot concentrator into
which one can plug a number of multi-port cards to provide additional
access as the network grows. Some hubs are passive. In which case, the
hub simply allows the signal to go from one node to another. However,
there are active hubs. An active hub electrically amplifies the signals that
pass through it. Hence, this type of hubs acts as repeaters to extend the
length of the network.

Activity 5-12
What are the advantages of active hubs over passive hubs?

When a signal travels along a cable, naturally it slowly losses strength. A
repeater is a device that is used to catch signals on the cable and retransmit
them at a strength equal to the original strength. This obviously is used to
extend the length of the network.

Activity 5-13
Why are repeaters needed in networks where the nodes are far

UP Open University
128 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

A bridge is a device that allows to segment a large network into two local
area networks or to connect two local area networks into one. The
requirement is that both networks must be using the same protocol. A
bridge manages the traffic of information to maintain optimum
performance on both sides of the networks. The bridge examines the traffic
of information passing those known to be in one local area network and
forwarding those for the other network.

Activity 5-14
What is the difference of a bridge from repeater?

A router is like a bridge except that it selects the best path to route a
message based on its source and destination addresses. The difference
between a bridge and a router is that a bridge simply forward messages
from one local area network to another, whereas a router determines an
optimal route for the messages before forwarding them. Obviously, a router
may have more than one outgoing connection because it selects which
path a message should go, while a bridge has only one outgoing connection
and that is to the other local area network.

Activity 5-15
When do we use a router and when do we use a bridge instead?

UP Open University
Module 5 129

A gateway connects two local area networks with totally different
protocols. Hence, a gateway serves to translate messages coming from a
network with a certain protocol to another network with a totally different

Activity 5-16
Can a router be the gateway? Can a bridge be the gateway?

Activity 5-17

____ 1. Most powerful computer a. router

in the network b. gateway
____2. Computers that use the c. network interface
resources in the file server card
____ 3. Provides the physical d. file server
connection between the e. workstation
network and the computers f. bridge
____ 4. Provides a central connection g. repeater
point for cables from the h. hub
nodes in the network
____ 5. Used to catch signals on the
cable and retransmit them at a
strength equal to the original strength
____ 6. Allows to segment a large
network into two local area
____ 7. Selects the best path to route
a message
____ 8. Translates messages coming
from a network with a certain
protocol to another network
with a totally different protocol

UP Open University
130 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Network Cabling
The cable is the medium through which information usually moves from
one node to another. The cables used in a network usually depend on the
topology, protocol and size of the network.

Unshielded Twisted Pair (UTP)

A UTP cable is composed of four pairs of insulated copper where each
pair is twisted around each other. The number of twisting in each pair is
different from the others in order to reduce interference. The difference in
number of twisting, however, protects the signal in one pair from signals
flowing in the other pairs. There is still the outside interference like
electrical noises or radio frequency noises that penetrates the cable. The
longer the cable, the more likely noises affect the signal flowing through
the cable. Radio frequencies that travel through the air are generated by a
wide variety of equipment like radios, television, electrical motors and
many other equipment. In order to reduce the noises coming from the
outside, the cable is usually shielded, but for UTP a plastic material is
used for this purpose. This plastic material is unable to protect the signal
in the wires that is why UTP is considered unshielded. To overcome this
problem, computer designers turned to a technique of transmitting
computer signals called differential method.

With the differential system each signal is transmitted on two lines at the
same time. On one, the signal is transmitted as a positive (+) signal, on the
other as a negative (-) signal. At the receiving end of the cable the receiver
device gets two signals. Both of them however, have been changed by the
noise that penetrated the cable. The changes came in the form of unwanted
voltage added to the wanted signal. At this point it is important to note
that the unwanted voltage got added to both lines at the same time and
by the same amount. The essence of the differential system is that the
receiver is designed to take the difference between the two signals on the
two lines. In doing that, the noise part of the signal, equal on both lines,
gets eliminated, and what remains is clear signal.

As indicated above, the differential system works well if the noise added
is equal on the two lines, i.e. the positive (+) and the negative (-). To ensure
that the noise hits both of these lines identically, both of them need to
occupy theoretically the same physical space. Practically, the closest we
can get to this requirement is to have the two lines twisted together tightly.
The tighter the twist of (+) and (-) lines the cleaner the transmission, and
the longer the acceptable length of the cable.

UP Open University
Module 5 131

Since a UTP is composed four pairs of wires, one pair is used for outgoing
data and another pair is used for incoming data. The other two pairs are
reserved for telephone use.

Figure 5-11. Unshielded Twisted Pair

Figure 5-12. UTP Connector

Activity 5-18
UTP are not usually used for outdoor wiring. Why?

Shielded Twisted Pair (STP)

Shielded Twisted Pair (STP) is basically UTP with extra shielding. The
shield is usually metal mesh wire that also function as a ground. One
biggest problem of UTP is that it is very susceptible to radio and electrical
interference. STP solves this problem. Shields achieve their beneficial effects

UP Open University
132 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

by first providing a reflective barrier which prevents radio frequency

interference from coupling with the differential mode signals on twisted
pairs, and second by providing a reflective barrier which prevents energy
from broadcasting out of the cable. However, the extra shielding makes
the cables quite bulky.

Figure 5-13. Shielded Twisted Pair

Activity 5-19
What is the purpose of the metal mesh wire in STP?

Coaxial cable
Coaxial cable is called coaxial because it includes one physical channel
that carries the signal surrounded (after a layer of insulation) by another
concentric physical channel, both running along the same axis. The outer
channel serves as a ground. The inner physical channel in a coaxial cable
is in the form of a copper conductor that runs at its center. A plastic layer
provides insulation between the center conductor and a braided metal
shield. The metal shield serves as the outer channel. Aside form being
used as a ground, the metal shield is used to block any outside interference
from lights, motors, radio signals and other signals that will interfere with
the signal on the copper wire. Thus, the shield makes coaxial cable highly
resistant to signal interference.

UP Open University
Module 5 133

Figure 5-14. Coaxial Cable

Figure 5-15. Bayone-Neill-Concelman (BNC) Connector

Activity 5-20
Coaxial cables are less prone to interference than UTP. Why?

Fiber optic cables

A fiber optic cable consists of a center glass core coated with plastic and
surrounded by several layers of protective materials. The plastic coating
creates the mirror effect on the glass core. Thus, the glass core can be
viewed as a tube with inner mirror. It transmits light through the tube
rather than electrical signals, eliminating the problem of electrical
interference. Fiber optic cables are capable of transmitting signals over
much longer distances than coaxial and twisted pair cables. Its speed is
basically equal to the speed of light and is therefore faster than the
technology where current is made to run on copper wires.

A laser at one end of the fiber optic cable switches on and off to send each
bit. Modern fiber systems with a single laser can transmit billions of bits
per second the laser can turn on and off several billions of times per
second. Fiber system with single laser is called single mode fiber optics
system. A newer system uses multiple lasers with different colors of light
to fit multiple signals into the same fiber. This is called multimode fiber
optics systems.

UP Open University
134 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Figure 5-16. Fiber Optic Cable

Activity 5-21
Fiber optic cables are much faster than UTP and coaxial cables.

Wireless Transmission Media

Unlike wired communications where a physical conductor (like UTP, STP,
coaxial cable or fiber optic cables) is needed to transport information,
wireless communication transports electromagnetic waves without using
a physical conductor. Examples of wireless communication equipment
are: cellular phones, Global Positioning equipment, cordless computer
peripherals like a cordless mouse, cordless telephone sets, home
entertainment remote controls and many others.

Microwave communication
Microwave communication is the transmission of signals by sending
microwaves, either directly (terrestrial microwave) or via a satellite (satellite
communication). Electromagnetic waves with a wavelength on the order
of a few inches are used. Microwaves are longer than infrared radiation
and shorter than radio waves. Microwaves are used extensively for
communication, both in satellite television and for the transmission of
long-distance telephone signals. The receivers for microwave signals are
usually disc-shaped antennae from a foot to a few feet across and are
often seen installed in business locations or near private homes.

Microwave communication products operate typically in the frequency

range of 1-58GHz. Such products have higher bandwidth and can be
operated at lower cost than wired communication links. The allocation of
frequencies is usually controlled and distributed by governments.

UP Open University
Module 5 135

Terrestrial microwave
Terrestrial microwave communication employs earth-based transmitters
and receivers. Usually terrestrial microwave communication is point-to-
point. The microwave frequencies used are in the low-GHz range, which
limits all communications to line-of-sight. Microwave transmissions
typically use a parabolic antenna that produces a narrow, highly
directional signal. A similar antenna at the receiving site is sensitive to
signals only within a narrow focus. Because the transmitter and receiver
are highly focused, they must be adjusted carefully so that the transmitted
signal is aligned with the receiver.

Figure 5-17. Terrestrial microwave.

Activity 5-22
True or False.

Terrestrial microwave requires that antennas to have line of sight.

Satellite communication
Satellite communication is almost similar to terrestrial microwave. The
only difference is that signals are sent from an earth station to a satellite
station (orbiting the earth) that beams back the signal to earth stations.
Usually, however, it beams this back to several earth stations (point to
multipoint) instead of just one station just like in terrestrial microwave.
This requires that the sending and receiving antennas be locked onto each
others location at all times. The satellite must move at the same speed as
the earth so that it seems to remain fixed above a specific spot. These
satellites are said to be in geo-synchronous orbits.

UP Open University
136 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Figure 5-18. Satellite communication.

Activity 5-23
What is the basic difference of terrestrial microwave from satellite

Broadcast radio communication

As mentioned earlier, radio waves are longer than microwave. As in
microwave communication, the frequencies are assigned by the
government and people wanting to use them have to apply for license to
use a frequency. Unlike microwave communication where line of sight is
required, the signals in a broadcast radio communication are broadcasted
and received by all receivers within the range of the transmitter. The signals
can pass through walls and other opaque objects. The transmitter,
therefore, transmits signals in all directions. Examples of this type of
communication are broadcast radio and television. Another computer-
related application of this is the WiFi.

UP Open University
Module 5 137

WiFi is short for Wireless Fidelity. It allows one to connect a mobile

computer to an access point that is connected to the Internet from the car,
hotel room or the beach. WiFi is a wireless technology very much like the
cell phone. WiFi enabled computers to send and receive data indoors and
outdoors; anywhere within the range of a base station or access point.
The access point is a computer that is connected to the Internet via wired
or wireless means. The idea is that computers connect to the network or
access point using radio signals and the computer and access point can be
100 feet or so apart.

The radios in WiFi have the ability to transmit and receive and they have
the ability to convert 1s and 0s into radio waves and then back to 1s and
0s. Some version of WiFi operates at 2.4 GHz while there is another version
that operates at 5 GHz. These frequencies are similar to the frequencies in
your cordless telephone receivers and are not regulated by the government.
These higher frequencies allow for higher data rates. That is why WiFi is
now a popular technology for networking.

Activity 5-24
Why is line of sight not required in broadcast radio communication?

Infrared communication
Infrared communication is suitable for short-range wireless
communication. It cannot penetrate through walls and therefore line of
sight is required. The same infrared frequencies can be reused as many
times as you like, so that infrared frequencies, unlike microwave and radio
frequencies, are not regulated by the government. The most popular
examples of this are the remote controls of home equipment.

UP Open University
138 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Activity 5-25
True or False.

The remote control of your television set uses infrared


Data Communication
Data communication refers to the electronic transmission of data. Data
communication is the term used in reference to data that is manipulated
by computers. This should not be confused with telecommunication which
refers to the electronic transmission of any kind of electronic information,
including telephone calls, television signals, data, facsimile and telemetry
from spacecraft. The most common data communication system takes the
form of people at terminals or computers communicating with distant

What connect the computers and terminals to distant computers are

communication channels. The purpose of a data communication channel
is to take a bit stream from a processing machine at one location and
transmit the bit stream without error to another processing machine at a
distant location. When bit streams are transmitted through the
communication channel, electrical properties like capacitance, resistance
and inductance may cause transmitted data to be distorted. In addition,
outside factors like magnetic fields, considered as noises may affect the
transmitted data. Hence, communication channels are usually provided
with bit repeaters (a device that detects the bits that are being sent and
then retransmits them with their original strength and sharpness) at
frequent intervals along the line to make sure that transmitted data reached
their destination undistorted.

Evolution of telecommunication networks

The history of modern electronic communications began with Alexander
Graham Bells telephone experiments, where speech was converted into
electrical energy, transmitted along physical wires and reconstructed at
the receiver. Speech, which is actually vibration of the air, vibrated a paper
cone to which a small coil was attached. This induced an electrical signal
into the coil, which was proportional to the vibration of the paper cone.

UP Open University
Module 5 139

The sound waves caused by speech make the paper cone move. The paper
cones movement is directly proportional to the strength of the air waves
caused by speech. As the cone moves, the coil of wire also moves, being
attached to the cone. Inside is an iron bar which helps to increase the
effect. A corresponding electrical signal is created in the coil, which can
then be sent along a pair of wires to a receiving device that would convert
the electrical signal back into sound waves (vibration of the air).

Paper Cone

Iron Bar


Figure 5-19. Conversion of sound wave to electrical signal.

When Bell started to experiment with his telephone, the telegraph has
been around for almost 30 years. Although a highly successful system,
the telegraph, with its dot-and-dash Morse code, was basically limited to
receiving and sending one message at a time. Bells extensive knowledge
of the nature of sound and his understanding of music enabled him to
conjecture the possibility of transmitting multiple messages over the same
wire at the same time. Although the idea of a multiple telegraph had been
in existence for some time, Bell offered his own musical or harmonic
approach as a possible practical solution. His harmonic telegraph was
based on the principle that several notes could be sent simultaneously
along the same wire if the notes or signals differed in pitch.

On the morning of February 14, 1876, Bell filed a patent for his invention
entitled Improvements in Telegraphy. A few hours later, another
inventor Elisha Gray went to the same patent office and filed a warning
to other inventors that he was working on far speaking telephone. Both
gentlemen were later locked in a legal battle as to who owns the patent
for the telephone. Because Bell was ahead by a few hours, the legal claim
to the telephone patent was awarded to him.

UP Open University
140 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Two years after the invention of the telephone, i.e., in 1878, Bell set up the
first telephone exchange in New Haven, Connecticut, and in 1884, long
distance connections were made between Boston, Massachusetts and New
York City.

As the telephone became popular, more and more people wanted to

communicate with each other, so a switching center (telephone exchange)
evolved. Each customer was connected to the telephone exchange via a
pair of wires, which carried the signal from their telephone.

As the need to inter-connect telephone customers grew, they were

connected via overhead wires to a central switching center, where the
physical wires from each customer was connected to the physical wires
of another customer via a manual operator.

Figure 10-20. Manual telephone exchange

As more and more customers were connected, the need for more and
more operators to connect calls was required. This quickly became
unworkable, so development began on automating the connection process
between customers, hence, automatic telephone switching exchanges
became a reality and replaced local operators, who were still used to
connect toll (long distance) calls.

At the same time, demand grew to connect customers who lived further
and further away, in rural areas. Electrical signals can only travel so far,
and to provide service to rural customers meant using better cable that
allowed the signals to travel longer distances. Unfortunately, this was
costly, so something had to be done to provide them with service.

Rural customers began sharing cables, so that one cable supported a

number of customers, either one at a time (which was known as party
line), or at the same time using radio signals to separate each conversation.

UP Open University
Module 5 141

In addition, customers also wanted to be able to talk to other people in

different cities, so there developed a need to interconnect telephone
exchanges together.

Activity 5-26
How does a party line work?

How telephones work

Each telephone is actually connected to a telephone exchange. When one
dials a number to call such number is received by the exchange. At the
exchange, you are then connected to the number you want to talk to. The
older technology uses human beings by physically making a connection
between you and the number you are calling. But as stated earlier this
was later replaced by automatic telephone switching.

When your phone, whose number is 1234567, is connected to another

phone, whose number if 7654321, the line connecting the two of you is
dedicated to both of you. Hence, any call from outside the two numbers
will basically get a busy signal if they try to call either of the two numbers.
Other numbers will be able to connect to either 1234567 or 7654321 when
you release the line or hang up the phone after conversation.

Now, suppose you want to call a number from other exchanges. That is,
you want a long distance call. Long distance call will require you to dial
an extra number. This number we usually call the area code (or exchange
number). This extra number will be used by the exchange to connect to
another exchange. For example, from an exchange in Laguna you want
to connect to a number in Manila then the number you must dial must
include the exchange number of Manila which is 02. When the exchange
in Laguna receives a number prefix by 02 this phone call will be directed
to the Manila exchange and the Manila exchange will connect the number
to the number being called.

UP Open University
142 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Telephone Exchange

Figure 5-21. All phones connected to a telephone exchange

UP Open University
Module 5 143


Telephone Exchange


Figure 5-22. A connection between 1234567 and 7654321 is established.

UP Open University
144 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology


(02) 9876543

Laguna Exchange Manila Exchange

(049) (02)

Negros Occidental
Exchange (034)

Figure 5-23. A long distance call.

Activity 5-27
Differentiate how a telephone local call is connected compared to
how a telephone long distance call is connected.

UP Open University
Module 5 145

How cell phones work

Aside from being used for communications, cell phones nowadays are
becoming very popular information technology equipment. Hence, we
look at how it works in this section.

Necessary for the operation of a cell phone are:

1. cell phone this has a special code or number (sometimes called the
cell phone number) associated with the cell phone. The code is used to
identify the phone, the owner and the service provider of the cell phone.

2. Mobile Telephone Switching Office (MTSO) a central office that

handles all of the phone connections to the normal land-based phone
system or other cell phones and controls all of the base stations in the

3. cell site handles connection between the cell phone and MTSO.

Let us trace what happens from the time you turn on your cell phone to
the time somebody wants to call you.

When you first turn on the cell phone, the phone listens for a System
Identification Code (SID), a unique five digit number assigned by the carrier
and National Telecommunication Commission (NTC) on the control
channel. The control channel is a special frequency that the phone and
cell site use to talk to one another about things like call set-up and channel
changing. If the phone cannot find any control channels to listen to, it
knows it is out of range and displays a no service message.

When the cell phone receives the SID, the phone compares it to the SID
programmed into the cell phone. If the SIDs match, the phone knows that
the cell site it is communicating with is part of its home system.

Along with the SID which contains information about the cell site, the
phone also transmits a registration request (the registration request contains
the cell phone number), and the MTSO keeps track of your phones location
in a database this way, the MTSO knows which cell site you are in
when it wants to ring your phone.

When the MTSO gets a call from somebody else for your cell phone number,
the MTSO tries to find you by looking in its database to see which cell site
you are in.

UP Open University
146 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Once MTSO identified which cell site you can be contacted to, the MTSO
picks a frequency pair that your cell phone will use in that cell site to take
the call.

The MTSO communicates with your cell phone over the control channel
to tell it which frequencies to use, and once your phone and the cell site
switch on those frequencies, the call is connected. You are talking by two-
way radio to the caller.

What happens when you travel outside the range of the cell site where
you are in? As you move toward the edge of your cell site, your cell site
base station notes that your signal strength is diminishing. Meanwhile,
the base station in the cell site you are moving toward (which is listening
and measuring signal strength on all frequencies, not just its own) sees
your phones signal strength increasing. The two base stations coordinate
with each other through the MTSO, and at some point, your phone gets a
signal on a control channel telling it to change frequencies. This hand off
switches your phone to the new cell site.

Activity 5-28
Which of the following is not necessary for the operation of a cell

a. Cell site
b. Mobile Telephone Switching Office
c. Cell phone
d. Land line
e. None of the above

Transmission modes
There are three modes of transmission namely: simplex, half-duplex and

Data in a simplex transmission mode is sent one way from the sender to
the receiver. It is not often used because it is impossible to send back error
signals when errors are detected during data transmission. Examples of
communication channels that use simplex transmission are the
communication channel used by television and radio. Note that television

UP Open University
Module 5 147

and radio stations simply send their signals to the receiver and the receiver
is unable to send back signals to the television and radio stations.

Simplex Channel Operation

one way only

Figure 5-24. Simplex line

Activity 5-29
Give other examples of communication system that uses the simplex

A half-duplex transmission mode allows data to be transmitted in both

directions, but not at the same time. One end transmits data while the
other end receives data. One end cannot transmit and receive data at the
same time. One example of this is the walkie-talkie where when a person
talking wants the other person to respond then he ends his statement
with the word over. This word over will signal the other person that
he can use the line to send his statement.

UP Open University
148 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Half Duplex Operation



Figure 5-25. Half-duplex line

Activity 5-30
Give other examples of communication system that uses the half-
duplex transmission.

A full-duplex transmission mode allows data to be transmitted in both

directions and possibly at the same time. In this mode, one end can transmit
and receive data at the same time. An example of this is the transmission
of data in telephone networks. Note that one can talk and listen at the
same time when using the telephone.

Full Duplex Operation



Figure 5-26. Full-duplex line

UP Open University
Module 5 149

Activity 5-31
Give other examples of communication system that uses the full-
duplex transmission.

Activity 5-32

____ 1. Data is sent one way from a. half-duplex

the sender to the receiver b. full-duplex
c. simplex
____ 2. Data is transmitted in both
directions, but not at the same time

____ 3. Data is transmitted in both

directions and possibly at the same time

Channel capacity
The capacity of a communication channel is the maximum rate at which
information can be transmitted through it without error. For data
communication purposes, it is often measured in bits per second (bps). It
should, however, be differentiated from the term baud that has also been
used as a channel capacity measure by some authors. The term baud refers
to the signaling speed of a line. Signaling speed, or baud, refers to the
number of times in each second the line condition changes. If the line
condition is either the presence or absence of a 1 bit, then the lines signaling
speed in baud is the same as the lines capacity in bits per second (bps).
However, some lines can be in one of four states, which means one line
condition can be used to represent 2 data bits and 1 baud equals 2 bits per
second. If the signals are coded into 8 possible states, then one line
condition represents 3 bits and 1 baud is equal to 3 bits per second. Hence,
we should note that baud rate is not always the same with bits per second.

UP Open University
150 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

There are, however, communication channels that transmit data that are
not digital. For example, telephone lines are used to transmit non-digital
data. In this case, the signals that are sent through this type of
communication channels are described in terms of frequencies. What
happens is that the amplitude of a signal at a given point oscillates rapidly.
The rate of oscillation is referred to as the frequency of the signal and is
described in terms of cycles per second, or hertz (Hz). One thousand cycles
per second is one kilohertz (KHz) and one million cycles per second is one
megahertz (MHz).

Analog lines are designed to carry specific ranges of frequencies. The

capacity of an analog line is measured by the range of frequencies that the
line is designed to carry. This is called its bandwidth. Telephone channels
are designed to transmit approximately in the range 300 to 3100 Hz. The
difference of 3100 and 300 is 2800 Hz or approximately 3 KHz is the
bandwidth of a normal telephone line. The number of bits per second that
an analog line can carry is related closely to the lines bandwidth

Activity 5-33
If a channel is able to transmit in the range 4500 to 10000 Hz.
What is the bandwidth of this channel?

The transmission speeds vary from just a few bits to millions of bits per
second. First there are the sub-voice-grade lines that transmit at rates 45
to 600 bps. These are lines that are not sufficient to carry telephone calls.
Telegraph circuits are example of these. Then, there is the voice-grade
lines which are generally normal telephone channels. The voice-grade
lines are used to carry telephone voice signals but can be used to carry
computer data at speeds from 300 to 19,200 bps. Finally, there are the
wideband lines. These lines can go at speeds of 48,000, 56,000, 64,000, 1.5
millions and even 44.7 million bps. Some of the long distance
communication channels in used today belongs to the wideband channels.

UP Open University
Module 5 151

Activity 5-34
The number of bits per second that an analog line can carry is
related closely to the lines bandwidth. Explain why?

Sending data through an analog channel

When data is sent through telephone channels, the digital data must be
converted into analog signals that must fit into the available bandwidth
of the channel. This is usually achieved through a modulation process
whereby the bit stream produced by a data machine is converted into
audible tones that can be transmitted over a standard telephone channel.

In order to use analog lines to transmit digital data, the bits must be
converted first into a continuous range of frequencies. The process of
converting a digital bit stream into an analog signal is a form of modulation.
The device that performs this conversion is called a modem (modulator/
demodulator). To connect two digital machines using an analog line, there
must be a modem in between the analog line and the digital machine.

To facilitate sending of digital data through analog lines, a modem is used.

A modem converts data from analog to digital and vice versa (modulating
and demodulating), thus enabling two computers to communicate with
each other over an analog line or phone line.

UP Open University
152 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Figure 5-27. Modulation/demodulation

Activity 5-35

How does a modem works?

UP Open University
Module 5 153

Modulation methods
Modulation methods refer to how the digital signal is altered so that it can
be sent via the analogue communication line. There are a number of
different methods. The more complex methods allow much higher
transmission rates (bits per second) than the simpler methods. The methods
are: amplitude, frequency and phase modulations.

Amplitude modulation uses a single carrier frequency, on for high, off for
low. Note that there is no carrier signal being sent for approximately half
the time. This amplitude modulation method is suitable only for low speed

digital signal

carrier signal

modulated signal

Figure 5-28. Amplitude modulation

Activity 5-36
The amplitude modulation method is suitable only for low speed
transmission. Why?

UP Open University
154 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

The frequency modulation uses two carrier signals, one for high one for
low. The higher frequency is associated with binary 1, the lower frequency
with binary 0. Also called frequency shift keying, this frequency
modulation method is used for 1200 bps modems or slower speeds. This
modulation is usually used to broadcast music and speech compared to
amplitude modulation that is usually used for broadcasting voice data.

Figure 5-29. Frequency modulation

Activity 5-37
Frequency modulation usually uses higher frequencies than that
of amplitude modulation. Why?

Phase modulation uses a single carrier frequency and alters the phase of
the carrier. Normally, a change from binary 1 to binary 0 is represented as
a phase shift of 180 degrees. This modulation is the rate at which the
signal changes its relationship to time, expressed as degrees. One complete
cycle of a wave begins at a certain point, and continues till the same point
is reached again. Phase shift occurs when the cycle does not complete,
and a new cycle begins before the previous one has fully completed.

UP Open University
Module 5 155


Figure 5-30. Phase modulation

Activity 5-38
Phase modulation and frequency modulation are similar. What is
the similarity between the two?

Activity 5-39

___ 1. Modulation that uses a single a. phase modulation

carrier frequency, on for high, b. frequency
off for low modulation
c. amplitude
___ 2. Modulation that uses two modulation
carrier signals, one for high
one for low

___ 3. modulation that uses a single

carrier frequency and alters
the phase of the carrier

UP Open University
156 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Switched or leased lines

When one makes a telephone call, a public switched line is usually used.
When the number is dialed, a communication line is made available to
you through the facilities of the switching offices between you and your
destination. As soon as the phone is hanged up, the switches disconnect
your circuit so that the connection can be used by someone else.

It is different in a leased line. When a leased line is used, a permanent

circuit is established between you and another. The line may still go
through switching offices, but the switches are permanently set so the
circuit is always connected.

Activity 5-40
Leased lines are more expensive than switched lines. Why?

UP Open University
Module 6
The Internet and the
World Wide Web

What is the Internet?

I n 1957, the Soviet Union launched the first
satellite, Sputnik I, triggering US President
Dwight Eisenhower to create the Advanced
At the end of this module,
you should be able to:
Research Project Agency (ARPA) for the US to
regain the technological lead in the arms race. 1. Define the Internet;
ARPA created the Information Processing 2. Discuss the services of
Techniques Office (IPTO) with a mandate to the Internet; and
further the research of the Semi-Automatic 3. Discuss how web
Ground Environment (SAGE) program and help servers work.
protect the US against a space-based nuclear
attack. SAGE established the first wide area
network during that time. The leaders of IPTO evangelized about the
potential benefits of a country-wide communications network. This
network was later implemented based on the new idea of packet switching
discovered by Paul Baran at RAND, and a few years later by Donald
Davies at the UK National Physical Laboratory. A special computer called
an Interface Message Processor was developed to realize the design, and
the ARPANET, the first wide-area packet switching network and is
considered also as the first Internet, went live in early October, 1969.

The first networking protocol used on the ARPANET was the Network
Control Program. In 1983, it was replaced with the TCP/IP protocol
developed by Bob Kahn, Vinton Cerf and others, which quickly became
the most widely used network protocol in the world.
158 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

In 1990, the ARPANET was retired and transferred to the National Science
Foundation Network (NSFNET). The NSFNET was soon connected to the
Computer Science Network (CSNET), which linked universities around
North America, and then to the European Network (EUnet), which
connected research facilities in Europe. Fueled by the popularity of the
world wide web, the use of the Internet exploded after 1990, causing the
US Government to transfer management to independent organizations
starting in 1995.

As they say, the rest is history.

Synonymous with the Internet is TCP/IP. TCP/IP is an entire package of

data communication protocols. It gets its name from two of the many
protocols that belong to the package: the Transmission Control Protocol
(TCP) and the Internet Protocol (IP). TCP/IP was developed after
ARPANET was operational, but this was later adopted as Military
Standards in 1983. Since then, networks connected to the ARPANET were
required to convert to TCP/IP. Now, the Internet is a worldwide collection
of interconnected networks that uses TCP/IP to connect various physical
networks into single logical network. In short, TCP/IP is required for
Internet connection.

TCP/IP is very popular because of the following features:

1. It adopts open protocol standards. TCP/IP is freely available and

developed independently from any specific computer hardware or
operating system.

2. It is independent from specific physical network hardware. TCP/IP

can be used to integrate many different kinds of networks like Ethernet,
token ring, dial-up line, X.25 net and virtually any other kind of physical
transmission media.

The Internet is the most wide spread network in the world. It connects
large and small networks together and even connects individual computer
from the lowly PCs to the large server computers. Once connected to the
Internet a computer can communicate with other computers in the

No one is in charge of the Internet. There are organizations which develop

technical aspects of this network and set standards for creating
applications on it, but no governing body is in control. The Internet
backbone, through which Internet traffic flows, is owned by private

UP Open University
Module 6 159

As mentioned earlier, all computers on the Internet communicate with

one another using the Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol
suite, abbreviated to TCP/IP. Computers on the Internet use a client/
server architecture. This means that the remote server machine provides
files and services to the users local client machine. Software can be installed
on a client computer to take advantage of the latest access technology.

An Internet user has access to a wide variety of services: electronic mail,

file transfer, vast information resources, interest group membership,
interactive collaboration, multimedia displays, real-time broadcasting,
shopping opportunities, breaking news, and much more.

Activity 6-1
The Internet is the most wide spread network in the world. Why is
this so?


Figure 6-1. The Internet Cloud

UP Open University
160 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Services Provided by the Internet

Electronic mail
Electronic mail (E-mail) is a method of sending a message from one user
on a computer, called a source host, to a recipient user on a destination
host. The message is made up of a set of header lines which tell the
computer system how to deliver the message.

The usual header of an email is the following:

Attachment: picture.jpg
Date: May 30, 2002
Subject: Picture

The body is usually a text which basically is the message being sent. For

Hello! Attached is the picture taken during the seminar.



The destination header lines (indicated by To: and cc:) indicate the email
addresses of the recipients of the email message. It obviously tells the system
where to deliver the message.

The originator header line (indicated by From:) indicates where the

message came from.

The attachement line includes all files that goes with the message. The
attachment file may be of any format (pictures, sound, text, etc.).

In general, two distinct sets of programs are used to handle e-mail. E-mail
is based on the client-server model.

UP Open University
Module 6 161

The first is called the user agent (client), which is the program that the
user interacts with to compose outgoing mail, read incoming mail, and
perform all the housekeeping chores necessary to deal with mail messages
(such as deleting old mails and arranging the order of the e-mails, etc.).
The user agent can appear in various forms but the most popular are:

1. Application-based - these are installed onto users machines which

includes Microsoft Outlook and the freely available Outlook Express
and Eudora. These user agents runs in Microsoft Windows Operating
Systems. In UNIX system, there is the user agent called Pine.

Figure 6-2. Pine

2. Web-based - these appear in a web browsers window. It includes

Hotmail and Yahoo user agents.

UP Open University
162 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Figure 6-3. Yahoo User agent

User agents vary in functionality, but all provide a basic level of

functionality that assists the user. Functions include the ability to create
new e-mails, display and store received e-mails, hold address lists of
contacts and many other functions that will help organize the users e-

The second set of programs which the user cannot see operating are the
mail delivery programs (server). These programs are responsible for taking
a mail message from the user agent program and delivering the mail
messages to the destination hosts. Mail delevery programs talk with other
mail delivery programs via the Internet. It is this program that is responsible
for routing messages to the Internet and making sure that an e-mail is
received at the other end.

UP Open University
Module 6 163

User Agent Mail Delivery



Mail Delivery
User Agent

Figure 6-4. How E-mail is delivered

Activity 6-2
Programs responsible for taking a mail message from the user and
delivering the mail messages to the destination hosts is called ___.

a. User agent
b. Mail delivery programs
c. Mail sending programs
d. User account
e. None of the above

UP Open University
164 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

A powerful aspect of e-mail is the option to send electronic files to a

persons e-mail address. Non-ASCII files, known as binary files, may be
attached to e-mail messages. These files are referred to as MIME
attachments. MIME stands for Multimedia Internet Mail Extension, and
was developed to help e-mail software handle a variety of file types. For
example, a document created in Microsoft Word can be attached to an e-
mail message and retrieved by the recipient with the appropriate e-mail
program. Many e-mail programs, including Eudora, Netscape Messenger,
and Microsoft Outlook Express, offer the ability to read files written in
HTML, which is itself a MIME type.

Activity 6-3
Create a short letter using any word processor available to you.
Using the your Yahoo account created earlier, send this letter as
an attachment to the address

File Transfer Protocol (FTP)

This is a facility that will allow a user to interactively examine files,
directories, and exchange files. The idea is that a computer server that
supports FTP defines a directory in its file system as an FTP directory.
Other users can interactively view the contents of this directory and will
allow the user to download or upload a file to this directory. You can
view the FTP directories of other host computers as an extension of your
file system.

Remote login
A facility called telnet is usually provided to allow remote login to another
computer in the Internet. This facility allows a user to execute commands
(use online databases, library catalogs, chat services, and more) on a remote
host as though you were logged in locally. Hence, you can use your own
computer as a terminal to a remote host.

UP Open University
Module 6 165

Activity 6-4
Explain the basic difference of remote login from file transfer

E-mail discussion groups

One of the benefits of the Internet is the opportunity it offers to people
worldwide to communicate via e-mail. The Internet is home to a large
community of individuals who carry out active discussions organized
around topic-oriented forums distributed by e-mail. These are administered
by software programs. Probably the most common program is the listserv.

A great variety of topics are covered by listservs, many of them academic

in nature. When you subscribe to a listserv, messages from other subscribers
are automatically sent to your electronic mailbox. You subscribe to a listserv
by sending an e-mail message to a computer program called a listserver.
Listservers are located on computer networks throughout the world. This
program handles subscription information and distributes messages to
and from subscribers. You must have a e-mail account to participate in a
listserv discussion group.

Majordomo and Listproc are two other programs that administer e-mail
discussion groups. The commands for subscribing to and managing your
list memberships are similar to those of listserv.

Activity 6-5
Visit the web page of Yahoo Groups in
Create your own group using your email address and the email
addresses of three to four of your friends. Then, send an email to this
group. If you receive your email then you have successfully created
an email discussion group.

UP Open University
166 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Usenet news
Usenet is short for Users Network. Usenet is a collection of machines that
receive network news. The idea is that a user can post a message to one of
the news server and this posting is propagated to other news servers in
the network. In other words, the network news is a mechanism for
broadcasting messages, form a local host to large number of hosts across
the world. The mechanism used is called store and forward, which means
that each host that receives a net news article stores it locally and then
forwards or feeds it to other host that is part of the Usenet. People who
have access to the news groups can read messages, post messages and
reply to a particular posting from a local news server.

Usenet News is a global electronic bulletin board system in which millions

of computer users exchange information on a vast range of topics. The
major difference between Usenet News and e-mail discussion groups is
the fact that Usenet messages are stored on central computers, and users
must connect to these computers to read or download the messages posted
to these groups. This is distinct from e-mail distribution, in which messages
arrive in the electronic mailboxes of each list member.

Usenet itself is a set of machines that exchanges messages, or articles,

from Usenet discussion forums, called newsgroups. Usenet administrators
control their own sites, and decide which (if any) newsgroups to sponsor
and which remote newsgroups to allow into the system.

There are thousands of Usenet newsgroups in existence. While many are

academic in nature, numerous newsgroups are organized around
recreational topics. Much serious computer-related work takes place in
Usenet discussions. A small number of e-mail discussion groups also exist
as Usenet newsgroups.

Activity 6-6
Some newsgroups are moderated. What is meant by a moderated

UP Open University
Module 6 167


FAQ stands for Frequently Asked Questions. These are periodic postings
to Usenet newsgroups that contain a wealth of information related to the
topic of the newsgroup. Many FAQs are quite extensive. FAQs are available
by subscribing to individual Usenet newsgroups. A Web-based collection
of FAQ resources has been collected by The Internet FAQ Consortium
and is available at

RFC stands for Request for Comments. These are documents created by
and distributed to the Internet community to help define the nuts and
bolts of the Internet. They contain both technical specifications and general

FYI stands for For Your Information. These notes are a subset of RFCs and
contain information of interest to new Internet users.

Chat and instant messaging

Chat programs allow users on the Internet to communicate with each
other by typing in real time. They are sometimes included as a feature of a
Web site, where users can log into the chat room to exchange comments
and information about the topics addressed on the site. Chat may take
other, more wide-ranging forms. For example, America Online is well
known for sponsoring a number of topical chat rooms.

Internet Relay Chat (IRC) is a service through which participants can

communicate to each other on hundreds of channels. These channels are
usually based on specific topics. While many topics are frivolous,
substantive conversations are also taking place. To access IRC, you must
use an IRC software program.

A variation of chat is the phenomenon of instant messaging. With instant

messaging, a user on the Web can contact another user currently logged
in and type a conversation. Most famous is America Onlines Instant
Messenger. ICQ is another commonly-used chat program.

MUD stands for Multi User Dimension. MUDs, and their variations listed
above, are multi-user virtual reality games based on simulated worlds.
Traditionally text based, graphical MUDs now exist. There are MUDs of
all kinds on the Internet, and many can be joined free of charge.

UP Open University
168 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Activity 6-7

____ 1. Allows a user to a. chat program

interactively examine b. email discussion groups
files, directories and c. usenet news
exchange files d. file transfer protocol
e. remote login
____ 2. Allows a user to login
to another computer
in the Internet

____ 3. Allows users to carry

out active discussion
on a topic

____ 4. Global bulletin board

where users exchange

____ 5. Allows users to exchange

information online

World wide web

The World Wide Web (abbreviated as the Web or WWW) is a system of
Internet servers that supports hypertext to access several Internet protocols
on a single interface. Almost every protocol type available on the Internet
is accessible on the Web. This includes e-mail, FTP, Telnet, and Usenet
News. In addition to these, the World Wide Web has its own protocol:
HyperText Transfer Protocol, or HTTP.

The World Wide Web provides a single interface for accessing all these
protocols. This creates a convenient and user-friendly environment. It is
no longer necessary to be conversant in these protocols within separate,
command-level environments. The Web gathers together these protocols
into a single system. Because of this feature, and because of the Webs
ability to work with multimedia and advanced programming languages,
the World Wide Web is the fastest-growing component of the Internet.

UP Open University
Module 6 169

The operation of the Web relies primarily on hypertext as its means of

information retrieval. HyperText is a document containing words that
connect to other documents. These words are called links and are selectable
by the user. A single hypertext document can contain links to many
documents. In the context of the Web, words or graphics may serve as
links to other documents, images, video, and sound. Links may or may
not follow a logical path, as each connection is programmed by the creator
of the source document. Overall, the WWW contains a complex virtual
web of connections among a vast number of documents, graphics, videos,
and sounds.

Producing hypertext for the Web is accomplished by creating documents

with a language called HyperText Markup Language, or HTML. With
HTML, tags are placed within the text to accomplish document formatting,
visual features such as font size, italics and bold, and the creation of
hypertext links. Graphics may also be incorporated into an HTML
document. HTML is an evolving language, with new tags being added as
each upgrade of the language is developed and released. The World Wide
Web Consortium, led by Web founder Tim Berners-Lee, coordinates the
efforts of standardizing HTML.

The World Wide Web consists of files, called pages or home pages,
containing links to documents and resources throughout the Internet.

The Web provides a vast array of experiences including multimedia

presentations, real-time collaboration, interactive pages, radio and
television broadcasts, and the automatic push of information to a client
computer. Programming languages such as Java, JavaScript and Visual
Basic are extending the capabilities of the Web. An increasing amount of
information on the Web is served dynamically from content stored in
databases. The Web is therefore not a fixed entity, but one that is in a
constant state of flux.

Activity 6-8
The World Wide Web is a collection of computer servers. What
does this mean?

UP Open University
170 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

What Makes Up the Internet?

The Internet consists of a number of computers called hosts, workstations,
and interconnecting equipment such as routers and telecommunication
links that interconnect routers and hosts together.


Figure 6-5. Cloud as collection of routers

A host is a computer on the Internet. Each host is capable of acting as a

provider of information, such as files, documents or images. A host can
also access information on another host if it has the required permissions
to do so.

A host computer that provides information for others to use is normally

called a server. Examples of servers are web servers, file servers, mail servers
and news servers.

A workstation is also a computer in the Internet. But unlike a host, it is

used to access information from the hosts that is connected to the Internet.

A router is a device that joins telecommunications links and groups of

computers together. It provides a mechanism for determining a route (or
path) between the two computers that want to exchange information.

UP Open University
Module 6 171

The telecommunication links connects two routers. It may be a directly

connected via leased or dial-up telephone lines, fiber optic cables, etc. Or
it may not be physically connected like the use of wireless communication

Activity 6-9
Aside from servers and workstations, what other hardware can
be connected to the Internet?

How to Access the Internet?

Each user can access the Internet through connection on an existing
network or via a modem (a device that allows the computer to use a
telephone line to a remote network or ISP) from a remote site such as a
private residence.

Internet Service Providers (ISPs) are companies that provide you with
access to the Internet. This can be via dial-up connection using a modem,
or using a higher speed connection like a leased line.

To use these smart Internet applications, both to offer information (through

a server) and to access information (from a client or with a browser), one
has to be connected to local, national or international data communication
networks. Typically, ISPs arrange the hook-up of institutional servers and
Local Area Networks (LANs) that need to be connected continuously to
the Internet, mostly via leased lines. They also provide dial-up connections
for individuals, usually via the public telephone network using a modem.

A major concern with respect to the connections within and to the Internet
is the connection speed or, as it is often called, the bandwidth. In
particular, efficient use of the Web requires lots of bandwidth. This is
because Web users are online, they are directly connected to the Internet.

UP Open University
172 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Activity 6-10
Describe the roles of ISPs in the Internet.

How is a Host Identified?

Each host computer in the Internet is identified in two ways. Firstly, each
computer on the Internet has a unique assigned name, such as which is referred to as its domain name. Secondly, each
computer on the Internet also has a unique numerical address, called a
TCP/IP address. This is a group of four numbers joined by dots. For
example, the computer known as could have a TCP/IP
address of

The allocation of unique domain names and TCP/IP addresses is controlled

by governing bodies in each country. But, the InterNIC is responsible for
the worldwide allocation of domain names and IP addresses.

Activity 6-11
Why is there a need to use two methods of identifying hosts in the
Internet? For what is the domain name and for what is the IP

UP Open University
Module 6 173

What are Domain Names?

Servers or host computers are arranged according to geographical location.
For instance, all countries in the world have a country suffix, except the
USA. Philippines suffix is ph, while Canadas is ca. Typically, the domain
name of a host computer looks like:

server name
organization name
type of organization
country name

For instance, the server defines it as a host called www,

belonging to an organization called uplb, which is an educational
institution (edu stands for academic) located in the Philippines (ph means

Similarly, the server defines it as a host called mail,

belonging to an organization called yahoo, which is a commercial
organization located in the United States.

Abbreviation Meaning
ac Academic
co Company
com Commercial
edu Educational
gov Government
govt Government
mil Military
net large ISP
org non-profit organization

Activity 6-12
Why is it important that a domain name of a computer is unique?

UP Open University
174 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

What are Email Addresses?

One way that users communicate with each other on the Internet is via
electronic mail. As in writing ordinary letters, all letters have a header or
address portion. For example, you write the name of the person and where
they live on the envelope. This information is used by the postal services
to ensure your letter is delivered to the correct destination. In the same
way, electronic mail (email) has a header or address portion, which is
used by routers and other devices on the Internet to determine the correct
destination. Electronic mail is created using a mail program. In the real
world you are identified by a name and a location. In the electronic world
of the Internet, a similar process is used. Each user has an assigned name
(called an account) given to them by the network administrator or ISP.
This identifies your name. The other portion is the domain name of the
server where your account is created. These two portions are linked
together using the @ (called at) sign. Here is an example:

This identifies the username as eaa on a mail server at

Activity 6-13
Is it possible for another person to have the same account name
say for example eaa in another mail server?

World Wide Web (WWW)

The World Wide Web (WWW) is a collection of host computers that deliver
documents, graphics, animation, video, sound files and other multi-media
information to users via the Internet. The WWW concept was developed
in 1989 by Tim Berners-Lee and Robert Cailliau at Conseil Europen pour
la Recherche Nucleaire (CERN), a European Center for High Energy
Physics. The concern of both scientists was how to retrieve research
documentation easier. They solve their problem by developing a program
that browses documents from different computers in the Internet. The
idea behind the World Wide Web is that computers in the Internet may be

UP Open University
Module 6 175

given the capability to provide information and once they participate in

the web, then they basically can be browsed by the browser program.
Hence, the Internet and the World Wide Web are not one and the same
because not all computers in the Internet provide information for browsing
in the web.

The common protocol that is used on the WWW is HTTP, which stands
for Hyper-text Transport Protocol. It is a protocol that adds on or runs on
top of TCP/IP, the common protocol used for communication between
hosts on the Internet. The HTTP simplified the writing of addresses and
automatically searched the Internet for the address indicated and
automatically called up the document for viewing. Each server computer
on the World Wide Web can provide files in any format, such as a graphics
file, text document, multimedia presentation or audio file.

The WWW allows users to link documents together using clickable links.
A browser (viewing application that displays web pages) is used to view
the content that server computers provide. This browser automatically
displays the documents correctly formatted along with the graphic images
or additional multimedia components that the author of the page wishes
to incorporate.

Activity 6-14
True or False.

The only protocol that runs on the WWW is the HTTP.

UP Open University
176 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Figure 6-6. A Web Browser

What is a Web Browser?

A web browser is a software application that interprets documents that
you request from a web server on the WWW and displays them for you to
view. The two common types of web browsers are Netscape Communicator
and Internet Explorer.

To access the World Wide Web, you must use a Web browser. A browser
is a software program that allows users to access and navigate the World
Wide Web. There are two types of browsers:

1. Graphical: Text, images, audio, and video are retrievable through a

graphical software program such as Netscape Navigator and Internet
Explorer. These browsers are available for both Windows-based and
Macintosh computers. Navigation is accomplished by pointing and
clicking with a mouse on highlighted words and graphics.

You can install a graphical browser such as Netscape Navigator in your

Windows-based or Macintosh machine. Navigator is available for
downloading on the Netscape Web site:
Microsofts Internet Explorer is available from the Microsoft Web site: To use these programs to access the Web,
you need a connection to the Internet. This is accomplish through such

UP Open University
Module 6 177

means as an ethernet connection, a dialup connection known as a SLPP

or PPP, or a cable modem. For more information, see How to Connect to
the Internet.

2. Text: Lynx is a browser that provides access to the Web in text-only

mode. Navigation is accomplished by highlighting emphasized words
in the screen with the arrow up and down keys, and then pressing the
forward arrow (or Enter) key to follow the link.

Activity 6-15
Aside from Netscape Navigator, Internet Explorer and Lynx, name
other Internet browser softwares that are being used today.

Software programs may be configured to a Web browser in order to
enhance its capabilities. When the browser encounters a sound, image or
video file, it hands off the data to other programs, called plug-ins, to run
or display the file. Working in conjunction with plug-ins, browsers can
offer a seamless multimedia experience. Many plug-ins are available for

File formats requiring plug-ins are known as MIME types. MIME stands
for Multimedia Internet Mail Extension, and was originally developed to
help e-mail software handle a variety of binary (non-ASCII) file
attachments. The use of MIME has expanded to the Web. For example,
the basic MIME type handled by Web browsers is text/html associated
with the file extension .html.

A common plug-in utilized on the Web is the Adobe Acrobat Reader. The
Acrobat Reader allows you to view documents created in Adobes Portable
Document Format (PDF). These documents are the MIME type
application/pdf and are associated with the file extension .pdf. When the
Acrobat Reader has been configured to your browser, the program will
open and display the file requested when you click on a hyperlinked file
name with the suffix .pdf. The latest versions of the Acrobat Reader allow
for the viewing of documents within the browser window.

UP Open University
178 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Web browsers are often standardized with a small suite of plug-ins,

especially for playing multimedia content. Additional plug-ins may be
obtained at the browsers Web site, at special download sites on the Web,
or from the Web sites of the companies that created the programs. The
number of available plug-ins is increasing rapidly.

Once a plug-in is configured to your browser, it will automatically launch

when you choose to access a file type that it uses.

Activity 6-16
Which of the following file formats have existing plug-ins?

a. pdf (Adobe Acrobat PDF)

b. doc (Microsoft Word)
c. ppt (Microsoft PowerPoint)
d. xls (Microsoft Excel)
e. None of the above

Programming languages and functions

The use of existing and new programming languages have extended the
capabilities of the Web. What follows is a basic guide to a group of the
more common languages and functions in use on the Web today.

CGI (Common Gateway Interface) refers to a specification by which

programs can communicate with a Web server. A CGI program, or script,
is any program designed to accept and return data that conforms to the
CGI specification. The program can be written in any programming
language, including C, Perl, and Visual Basic Script. A common use for a
CGI script is to process an interactive form on a Web page. For example,
you might fill out a form ordering a book through Interlibrary Loan. The
script processes your information and sends it to a designated e-mail
address in the Interlibrary Loan department.

Another type of dynamically generated Web page is called Active Server

Pages (ASP). Developed by Microsoft, ASPs are HTML pages that include
scripting and create interactive Web server applications. The scripts run
on the server, rather than on the Web browser, to generate the HTML
pages sent to browsers. Visual Basic and JScript (a subset of JavaScript)
are often used for the scripting. ASPs end in the file extension .asp.

UP Open University
Module 6 179

Java/Java Applets: Java is probably the most famous of the programming

languages of the Web. Java is an object-oriented programming language
similar to C++. Developed by Sun Microsystems, the aim of Java is to
create programs that will be platform independent. The Java motto is,
Write once, run anywhere. A perfect Java program should work equally
well on a PC, Macintosh, Unix, and so on, without any additional
programming. This goal has yet to be realized. Java can be used to write
applications for both Web and non-Web use.

Web-based Java applications are usually in the form of Java applets. These
are small Java programs called from an HTML page that can be downloaded
from a Web server and run on a Java-compatible Web browser. A few
examples include live news feeds, moving images with sound, calculators,
charts and spreadsheets, and interactive visual displays. Java applets can
tend to load slowly, but programming improvements should lead to a
shortened loading time.

JavaScript/JScript: JavaScript is a programming language created by

Netscape Communications. Small programs written in this language are
embedded within an HTML page, or called externally from the page, to
enhance the pages the functionality. Examples of JavaScript include
moving tickers, drop-down menus, real-time calendars and clocks, and
mouse-over interactions. JScript is a similar language developed by
Microsoft and works with the companys Internet Explorer browser.

VRML: VRML (Virtual Reality Modeling Language) allows for the creation
of three-dimensional worlds. These may be linked from Web pages and
displayed with a VRML viewer. Netscape Communicator comes with the
Cosmo viewer for experiencing these three-dimensional worlds. One of
the most interesting aspects of VRML is the option to enter the world
and control your movements within the world.

XML: XML (eXtensible Markup Language) is a Web page creation language

that enables designers to create their own customized tags to provide
functionality not available with HTML. XML is a language of data
structure and exchange, and allows developers to separate form from
content. At present, this language is little used as Web browsers are only
beginning to support it. In May 1999, however, the W3 Consortium
announced that HTML 4.0 has been recast as an XML application called
XHTML. This move will have a significant impact on the future of both

UP Open University
180 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Activity 6-17

____ 1. Scripts that run on servers a. XML

rather than on web browser b. Java
____ 2. Platform independent d. Active Server Pages
object-oriented programming

____ 3. Allows the creation of three-

dimensional worlds

____ 4. Allows users to create their

Own tags

How Do Web Servers Work?

Pages or files are stored on Web Servers. Users access these pages using a
graphical browser like Netscape Navigator or Internet Explorer. Pages
can include graphics, sound, movies and other media rich content, as
well as references to other pages on the same site or other sites.

When a client requests a document or file from a WWW server, a

connection is made to that computer using the HTTP protocol. The WWW
server services the request, locates the information, and sends it back to
the client. The connection between the client and the WWW server is then
released. The client browser software then interprets the retrieved HTML
document and formats it on the client computer screen.

UP Open University
Module 6 181

2. Web server accesses

Web Server from the disk the file

1. Client from workstation

requests http document

3. Web server sends to client the

html document index.html


Figure 6-7. How web server works?

Activity 6-18
Trace the events that occur from the time you click a hyperlink in
a web page to the time the new web page is displayed on your

What is a Hyperlink?
A hyperlink is a clickable link to another document or resource. It is
normally shown in blue underline. When a user clicks on a hyperlink, the
client will retrieve the document associated with that link, by requesting
the document from the designated server upon which the document

UP Open University
182 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

What is a URL?
A Uniform Resource Locator (URL) is a means of specifying the pathname
for any resource on the Internet. It consists of three parts: a protocol part,
a host part and a document name. For instance, the following URL

specifies the protocol as http, the WWW server as and

the document institutes.html.

Every file on the Internet, no matter what its access protocol, has a unique
URL. Web software programs use the URL to retrieve the file from the
host computer and the directory in which it resides. This file is then
displayed on the monitor connected to the users local machine.

URLs are translated into numeric IP addresses using the Internet Domain
Name System (DNS). The numeric address is actually the real URL.
Since numeric strings are difficult for humans to use, alphanumeric
addresses are employed by end users. Once the translation is made, the
Web server can send the requested page to the users Web browser.

Activity 6-19
Aside from http, what other protocols can be used in the URL?

What is a Web Page?

A web page is a simple text document that contains information (text,
images, sound, video and links) to be displayed and instructions on how
to format that information on the screen. The format instructions are called
HTML (hypertext mark-up language) tags, and are simple instructions
that inform the web browser as to how the information should be displayed.

HTML tags are not displayed by the web browser. A web page can be
written using a simple text editor such as notepad. The page is then saved
and stored on a web server. When you access that page on a web server
by entering the URL of the page, it is downloaded by your web browser
and then all the HTML tags are interpreted and the information displayed

UP Open University
Module 6 183

An example web page is found in Its

source (in HTML format) is:

<TITLE>Eliezer A. Albacea</TITLE>
<BODY LINK=green VLINK=maroon ALINK=blue>
<IMG SRC=header.jpg>
<FONT FACE=Arial size=2">
<font color=redorange size=3>
<b>Eliezer A. Albacea, PhD</b><br>
<font color=blue size=2>
Professor of Computer Science<br>
<font color=blue size=2>
<a href=>Institute of Computer
<a href=>University of the Philippines Los
Member, Technical Panel on IT, CHED<br>
Chair, Technical Panel on IT, DOST

<FONT Face=Arial SIZE=2">
Hi! Im <b>EA Albacea</b>.<br>Welcome to my corner in
the web.
<a href=contact.html>Contact Address / Numbers</a><br>
<a href=onlineb.html>Computer Science Books: Want to get a
<a href=onlinec.html>Online Courses</a><br>
<a href=family.html>Family</a><br>
<a href=elicv.pdf>Curriculum Vitae</a><br>

UP Open University
184 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology



The above HTML source when interpreted by the browser will look like
the following:

Figure 6-8. Web page of EA Albacea

Activity 6-20
Search the Internet for web pages that have sound and video on
the page. View the source files and identify the part that defines
the sound and video.

UP Open University
Module 6 185

What is HTML?
HTML is short for HyperText Mark-Up Language. It is a series of tags
enclosed in < and > brackets. For instance, <HEAD> is an HTML tag that
defines a head section of an HTML document. Certain characters are
reserved, such as & < > which are interpreted as HTML codes.

HTML documents are plain-text (also known as ASCII) files that can be
created using any text editor (e.g., Emacs or vi on UNIX machines;
SimpleText on a Macintosh; Notepad on a Windows machine). You can
also use word-processing software if you remember to save your document
as text only with line breaks.

Each HTML page adheres to a basic structure. This looks like

<title>Title of Document</title>
Textual Information to be displayed

When viewed in the browser, the page given in the previously looks like
the one given below.

Activity 6-21
Enumerate as many as you can and give the meanings of tags
used in HTML.

UP Open University
186 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Figure 6-9. Sample HTML

Search Engines and Searching

Search engines are special sites in the web that are designed to help people
find information stored in other sites. A search engine is a server that
contains a database of documents that are stored on WWW servers
connected to the Internet. Users simply access the URL of the search
engine, provide it with keywords and the search engine will display all
URL in its database containing the keyword provided by the user.

A search engine maintains a database of URLs and contents of these URLs.

Spiders or Web Robots are programs normally run by search engines to
gather URLs and their contents. What happens is that the spider visits
one URL, examine this URL and checks for hyperlinks. These hyperlinks
will in turn be visited and the process continues. Since then, the size of the
Internet has increased dramatically and millions of people are using it.
The number of web robots crawling the web is greater than before. Spiders
can create a heavy load on a WWW site and virtually overload it by
progressively going through every document, requesting these documents
at a very rapid rate.

The following is a list of search engines currently available in the web:

AltaVista - very large database of Web sites and Usenet newsgroups

with advanced Boolean and field search options.
Ask Jeeves - submit questions in plain English and view suggested
relevant sites
Excite - large, current database with concept searching available to
focus results; includes its channel content with results for searches on
broad or popular terms

UP Open University
Module 6 187

FAST Search: All the Web, All the Time - returns results quickly from
an extremely large database; responsible for the Lycos MP3 engine
Google - ranks pages by the number of links from pages ranked high
by the service; offers the option to view sites quickly if they are in the
services cache. See also the Google Directory which integrates results
with Google-ranked sites in the Open Directory Project. Also try Google
Search: Unclesam, a searchable database of U.S. government Web sites
(.gov and .mil) ranked by linking popularity.
GovBot - extensive database of U.S. Government Web pages
HotBot - very large database with easy form-based Boolean, field, and
media search options; includes its channel content with the results for
searches on broad or popular terms; clusters results by presenting one
hit per site
Infoseek - accurate search engine of Web sites, Usenet newsgroups,
Reuters news, and companies with field search options; clusters results
by presenting one hit per site; offers recommended and/or reviewed
Web sites for certain topics. Also try GO Translator, the Infoseek
translation service.
Lycos - small database offering the bonus of proximity searching and
the option to control factors in the relevancy ranking of results;
emphasizes search results from the Open Directory
Northern Light - results are organized into concept or location folders;
Special Collection articles available for a small fee; Alerts service tracks
search topics for new documents. Also try usgovsearch to search U.S.
government Web sites (.gov and .mil).
Oingo - meaning-based engine that constructs meanings and
relationships from your search terms to return results, from which
you can choose your desired concept to refine your search; derives
results from the Open Directory and AltaVista
RealNames - search for companies, products, brands, and services on
the Internet; RealNames associated with URLs are registered with the
service for quick lookup of the associated Web site - service that limits results to the .edu, .gov and .mil
top-level domains; also offers to search well-known dictionaries,
encyclopedias, almanacs, etc.
Snap - primarily a directory; choose All Web Pages to supplement
search results from a large database of Web pages compiled by the
Inktomi search engine; if no directory results are found, Web pages
are automatically searched
Thunderstone Website Index - search thousands of sites (vs. Web pages)
from a continuously updated database; adds 25,000 sites per week
TopClick: The Internets Private Search Engine - service that pledges
to abstain from cookies, banner ads, or disclosure of personal data;
uses Google search technology
Web Crawler - search two million pages from the Excite search engine

UP Open University
188 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Activity 6-22
There is a classification of search engines called a metasearch engine.
What is a metasearch engine?

Figure 6-10. Google

UP Open University
Module 6 189

Figure 6-11. Altavista

Electronic Commerce
The term electronic commerce or e-commerce is used to describe carrying
out buying and selling of products and services over the Internet, utilizing
technologies such as the Web, electronic data interchange, email, electronic
fund transfers, and smart cards.

At its best, e-commerce incorporates automated, real-time, seller-to-buyer

transactions. E-commerce thus means advertising, selling and supporting
goods and services using a web shop 24 hours a day for customers
worldwide. The web shop should be a business that works while you are
occupied elsewhere (sleeping, for example) and which is not geographically

From a customers perspective, the purpose of an electronic-commerce

system is to enable that customer to locate and purchase a desired good or
service over the Internet when the customer is interested in making the
purchase. Its function is no more or less than providing a virtual store.

From a merchants perspective, the key function of an electronic-commerce

system is to generate higher revenues than the merchant would achieve
without the system. All of the same processes that the merchant must
have in place to support an in-store or catalog purchase must also be in
place for an electronic purchase: product information, inventory systems,
customer service, transaction capabilities (including credit authorization,
tax computation, financial settlement, and shipping), and delivery

UP Open University
190 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

There two models of e-commerce, namely: B2C and B2B. B2C is short for
Business-to-Consumer model of e-commerce. These are businesses that
sell products or provide services to end-user consumers. While B2B is short
for Business-to-Business model of e-commerce. These are businesses that
sell products or provide services to other businesses.

Examples of e-commerce are:

1. buying a book from and paying for it by providing credit

card information online.
2. downloading a piece of software like Webshots desktops and paying
for it online.
3. checking the weather, news and movie reviews and paying for them
by your attention to online advertisements.
4. checking eBay auction web site, to find a car part.
5. paying $20 a month to AOL so you can maintain your US Internet

To illustrate how e-commerce is done, consider the e-commerce site of

Pizza Hut below.

Figure 6-12. The main e-commerce page of Pizza Hut

UP Open University
Module 6 191

In an e-commerce, a customer can make an order online. This is shown by

the following page.

Figure 6-13. Place an order by selecting from a menu

Then you provide your personal information so that the pizza you ordered
can be delivered to you.

UP Open University
192 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Figure 6-14. Provide personal information so that the pizza can be delivered.

Activity 6-23
Search the Internet for e-commerce applications. What are the
common characteristics of these applications?

UP Open University
Module 7
Computer Ethics

E thics deals with placing a value on acts

according to whether they are good or bad.
Good or bad may also be right or wrong. Ethics
are the standards, values, morals, principles, etc., At the end of this module,
which are used to base ones decisions or actions you should be able to:
on; often there is no clear good or bad actions.
Every society has its rules about whether certain 1. Discuss the different
acts are ethical or not. These rules have been issues related to com-
established as a result of consensus in society and puter ethics; and
are often written into laws. Hence, it is normal to 2. Differentiate what is an
consider an act ethical in one society and unethical ethical act and what is
in another. not.

Ethics is closely related to morals. While ethics is

the theory of right or wrong actions, morals
indicate their practice within guidelines. The meaning of moral is the active
practice of right values. Thus, the active practice of wrong values is
immoral. Immoral refers to actions that violate ethical standards.

When computers first began to be used, obviously there is no ethical

standard formulated. However, as their use became widespread and
starting to affect the lives of most in society, computer ethics became an
issue. Computer ethics, therefore, deals on what is considered good and
bad acts in the use of computers. Today, most of the rules on their ethical
use have already been formulated as laws. Computer crime and computer
fraud, for example, are common terms nowadays and there are laws
against them. For example, in the Philippines we have the E-Commerce
Law that defines penalties for computer crimes like hacking and computer
194 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

In this chapter, we look at the different issues related to computer ethics.

In particular we look at computer abuse issues, privacy issues, social justice
issues, free speech issues, and intellectual property rights issues.

Activity 7-1
It is normal to consider an act ethical in one society and unethical
in another. Why is this so?

Computer Abuse Issues

There are so many reported cases of computer abuses. We only cover
those classified under denial of service attack, hacking, flaming, spamming,
worms and viruses and Internet hoaxes.

Denial of service
A denial-of-service attack is characterized by an explicit attempt by
attackers to prevent legitimate users of a service from using that service.
Use of a computer, access to an account and access to search engines are
examples of services. Examples denial-of-service attacks are the following:

1. attempts to flood a network, thereby preventing legitimate network

traffic from arriving to their intended destination;

2. attempts to disrupt connections between machines in a network,

thereby preventing access to a service found in one of the machines in
the network;

3. attempts to prevent a particular individual from accessing a service,

e.g., stealing the password of another person and then changing the
password of his account so that he will be prevented from using his
own account;

4. attempts to disrupt a service to a specific system, e.g., changing the

content of a web page so that the original web page will not be
accessible anymore.

UP Open University
Module 7 195

Denial-of-service attacks come in a variety of forms and aim at a variety

of services. There are three basic types of attack:

1. consumption of scarce, limited, or non-renewable resources

2. destruction or alteration of configuration information
3. physical destruction or alteration of network components

One example of an attack is the consumption of scarce resources like

network connectivity. The goal is to prevent hosts or networks from
communicating on the network. In this type of attack, the attacker begins
the process of establishing a connection to the victim machine, but does it
in such a way as to prevent the ultimate completion of the connection. In
the meantime, the victim machine has reserved one of a limited number
of data structures required to complete the impending connection. The
result is that legitimate connections are denied while the victim machine
is waiting to complete bogus half-open connections.

Another is bandwidth consumption. An intruder may also be able to

consume all the available bandwidth on your network by generating a
large number of packets directed to your network. Further, the intruder
need not be operating from a single machine; he may be able to coordinate
or co-opt several machines on different networks to achieve the same effect.

Finally, an intruder may consume other resources in the system. Intruders

may be able to consume other resources that your systems need in order
to operate. For example, in many systems, a limited number of data
structures are available to hold process information. An intruder may be
able to consume these data structures by writing a simple program or
script that does nothing but repeatedly create copies of itself. Many modern
operating systems have quota facilities to protect against this problem,
but not all do. Further, even if the process table is not filled, the CPU may
be consumed by a large number of processes and the associated time spent
switching between processes. Or, an intruder may also attempt to consume
disk space in other ways, including

1. generating excessive numbers of mail messages.

2. intentionally generating errors that must be logged
3. placing files in anonymous ftp areas or network shares

Next, we look at the case of destruction or alteration of configuration

information. An improperly configured computer may not perform well
or may not operate at all. An intruder may be able to alter or destroy
configuration information that prevents you from using your computer
or network. For example, if an intruder can change the routing information
in your routers, your network may be disabled. If an intruder is able to

UP Open University
196 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

modify the registry on a Windows NT machine, certain functions may be


Finally, we consider attacks aimed on physical destruction or alteration

of network components. The primary concern with this type of attack is
physical security. You should guard against unauthorized access to
computers, routers, network wiring closets, network backbone segments,
power and cooling stations, and any other critical components of your
network. Physical security is a prime component in guarding against
many types of attacks in addition to denial of service.

Activity 7-2
Which of the following are denial-of-service attacks?

a. Sending thousands of requests to search engines.

b. Hacking the UPLB web page and placing some extra messages
in it.
c. Stealing the computer servers of UPLB.
d. Sending threatening email to somebody.

Hacking involves unauthorized access to a computer, its files and
programs. The keyword in the definition is unauthorized access. Some
hackers do unauthorized access by stealing passwords from legitimate
users and getting access to the account of a legitimate user. In some cases,
a hacker may get to access files via openings or bugs in the operating
systems whereby a hacker is allowed to access files even though they do
not own them.
There are many reasons why hackers hacked computers. Some of these
reasons are given below.

1. The first reason is theft of service, if a system offers some type of service
and a hacker has a use for it, they will hack the system. For example,
hacking into a system to use the CPU for free or hacking a system to
use it for sending emails for free.

2. The second reason a hacker may hack into a system is to take valuable
files, e.g., credit-card numbers and list of customers. The information
may be sold by a hacker to rival companies.

UP Open University
Module 7 197

3. Another reason for hacking is vengeance and hatred. For example, a

hacker may get into the web page of university that kicked him out
and deface the said web page.

4. The fourth reason hackers break into systems is for the thrill and
excitement of being somewhere you are not authorized to be.

5. Finally, hackers do what they do is just for knowledge and experiment.

Hackers learn great deal every time they break into a new type of

These are just some of the reasons why hackers hacked computers. The
list is, by no means, not exhaustive.

Activity 7-3
Discuss whether the following is a case of hacking or not. Argue
for the position you take.

A person accidentally found an account name together with the

password. He log in using the account and then left a message
inside the account giving advise to the owner to take good care of
his account name and password.

UP Open University
198 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Flaming is the sending of abusive email or messages to other people or
newsgroups. You flame people when you disrespect their opinion and
become abusive, attacking them personally, calling them names or
questioning their parentage. Flaming is considered bad online conduct
and is not tolerated well in chat rooms or newsgroups. Individuals can
quickly be turned on by other people in the chat room or newsgroup. It is
best to practice good online conduct and avoid getting into personal
confrontations with other people.

To illustrate flaming, consider the following email message to a group of

users or it could be posted in newsgroups.

Subject: Idiot users

To those idiots from who insist to post irrelevant topics

in this newsgroup, better form your own newsgroup so that you can
write whatever you want.

Once the above message is posted in a newsgroup or emailed to a group

of users, somebody reading it might respond as below. Once somebody
responded to a message like the one above, a full-blown flame war will be

Subject: Re: Idiot users

you pompous turd. what happened to free exchange of information

in cyberspace. i am tired of your smarter than thou quips about users. i happen to be an educated professional and i
am in here to stay. in fact, folks like you will be left in the egghead
backwaters of the pure thinkers while the great unwashed take over
the net. get over it or die of an embolism. or maybe get a girlfriend or
a life.

UP Open University
Module 7 199

Activity 7-4
What is a flame war?

Spam, or sometimes called unsolicited commercial email, is the Internet
version of junk mail. It is an attempt to deliver a message, over the Internet,
to someone who would not otherwise choose to receive it. Almost all spam
is commercial advertising. Potential target lists are created by scanning
Usenet postings, stealing Internet mailing lists, or searching the web for
addresses. Such information is gathered with automated searches to
retrieve e-mail addresses for spamming. The low cost of e-mail spamming
engines offered for sale with millions of email addresses, coupled with the
fact that the sender does not pay extra to send email, has resulted in the
current explosive growth of junk email. Currently, unless the spammer
offers to sell illegal items, there is no legal remedy to use to stop the e-mail

Spamming is not acceptable conduct since you may be sending emails to

people who do not want to receive them. Many ISPs now have policies
on spamming, which will involve the disabling of the offenders account.
In some countries, this practice is illegal.

To illustrate spamming, consider the following spam which was once

circulated in the Internet.

TO: Eliezer A. Albacea (
SUBJECT: Used tractors for sale!


Our company is disposing several used tractors to selected clients. Each

tractor costs P500,000 only. If you buy three tractors, you get one free.
It is very cheap so hurry and order one now.

UP Open University
200 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

ABC Company
777 Rizal Street
Calamba City

Activity 7-5
There are spam filters available now for use by email servers.
Outline a method used by these spam filters in order to detect a

Worm and virus

A virus reproduces, usually without your permission or knowledge. In
general terms they have an infection phase where they reproduce widely
and an attack phase where they do whatever damage they are programmed
to do (if any). A virus is a program that reproduces its own code by
attaching itself to other executable files in such a way that the virus code
is executed when the infected executable file is executed.

A worm is a self-replicating program designed to spread across a network

without requiring any outside actions to take place. The main difference
between a worm and a virus is that a virus relies on human actions, such
as sending e-mail or sharing files, to copy itself from one computer to
another, whereas a worm is able to do so independently, allowing it to
spread much faster.

Spreading virus or worms is not considered ethical. Of course, it is bad to

be spreading viruses especially if these viruses tend to have destructive
effects on affected individuals.

An example of an actual virus attack happened in November 2, 1988.

Robert Morris, Jr., a graduate student in Computer Science at Cornell,
wrote an experimental, self-replicating, self-propagating program called
a worm and injected it into the Internet. He chose to release it from MIT,
to disguise the fact that the worm came from Cornell. Morris soon
discovered that the program was replicating and reinfecting machines at
a much faster rate than he had anticipatedthere was a bug. Ultimately,
many machines at locations around the country either crashed or became

UP Open University
Module 7 201

When Morris realized what was happening, he contacted a friend at

Harvard to discuss a solution. Eventually, they sent an anonymous
message from Harvard over the network, instructing programmers how
to kill the worm and prevent re-infection. However, because the network
route was clogged, this message did not get through until it was too late.
Computers were affected at many sites, including universities, military
sites, and medical research facilities. The estimated cost of dealing with
the worm at each installation ranged from $200 to more than $53,000.

Although the Robert Morris, Jr. case is actually considered a computer

crime, it is included in this topic because one of the results of what he did
is actually also a computer abuse issue.

Activity 7-6
What is the difference of a worm from a virus?

Internet hoaxes
Interspersed among the junk mail and spam that fills our Internet e-mail
boxes are dire warnings about devastating new viruses, Trojans that eat
the heart out of your system, and malicious software that will destroy
everything you have in your hard disk. Added to that are messages about
free money, children in trouble, and other items designed to grab you and
get you to forward the message to everyone you know. Most all of these
messages are hoaxes or chain letters. While hoaxes do not automatically
infect systems like a virus or Trojan, they are still time consuming and
costly to remove from all the systems where they exist.

UP Open University
202 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Below is an example of an Internet hoax, actually the right word is a


From: International Lotto

To: Eliezer A. Albacea
Subject: Congratulations you won $1 M


Congratulations your email address was picked by our machine as

one of the winners of our lotto draw. Your winning amount is actually
the highest possible winning amount of $1 M. This lotto draw is
sponsored by the International Lotto, Inc.

To claim your prize, you have to contact Mr. Ray Brown using the
email address and please provide him the
following information:

Contact Numbers (Phone and Fax)
Email Address
Bank Name where you have an account
Bank Account Number
Credit Card Name where you have an account
Credit Card Number

Again, congratulations and hope to hear from you regarding the

collection of your prize.

Thank you.

International Lotto, Inc.

Another example, this time a chain letter example.

UP Open University
Module 7 203

McDonalds vs. Taco Bell

February 2000

Send this to 6 people and you will

see the taco bell dog run across
your screen . If you send this to 8
people Ronald McDonald comes out and
attacks the taco bell dog.

It is really funny and it works!!

You have to try it!!

Activity 7-7
Internet hoaxes are also sometimes called spams. Why?

Activity 7-8

____ 1. Explicit attempt by attackers a. spam

to prevent legitimate users b. virus
of a service from using the c. denial of service
service d. hacking
____ 2. Unauthorized access to a e. flame
____ 3. Sending of abusive email
to other people
____ 4. Unsolicited commercial email
____ 5. Program that reproduces
itself with you knowledge

UP Open University
204 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Privacy Issues
There are many reasons why there is a need to hide your real identity
when you use the Internet. You might want to protect yourself against an
oppressive government, or trying to simply hide yourself from advertisers
in the net.

Although everyone takes privacy in normal life for granted, trying to get
the same level of privacy on the Internet (or even on your own computer)
is a little less accepted, and sometimes a bit more complicated. While the
general attitude is hard to change, many ways exist to enhance your
privacy online. One example of enhancing privacy online is the use of
encryption in every transaction you make in the Internet.

Several examples where privacy is an issue are:

1. Database privacy - the information you supplied to databases should

only be used for their intended purpose. They should not be distributed
openly thus compromising your privacy. For example, it is unethical
of banks to sell clients account information to other banks?

2. Email privacy - what you write in your emails should only be seen by
you and the intended recipients and nobody else. This should be the
ideal situation. It is therefore unethical for systems administrators who
have access to your accounts to read your mail sent folders and

3. Privacy on the web - the web sites you visited should only be known
to you and nobody else. Because of access logs, the web sites you visited
may be known especially to system administrators who have access to
these logs.

Activity 7-9
Privacy is an issue in the following, except ____.

a. email privacy
b. database privacy
c. privacy on the web
d. personal privacy
e. none of the above

UP Open University
Module 7 205

One current issue on privacy is the establishment of a national identification

system. National ID cards have long been advocated as a means to enhance
national security, unmask potential terrorists, and guard against illegal
immigrants. They are in use in many countries around the world including
most European countries, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand.
One basic issue against its institution in every country is the privacy issue
since the card might contain basic personal information of individuals
that will also be maintained in some central computer of the government.
Countries opposing its institution are arguing that it is open to abuse by
governments. Here we see that it is ethical in some countries and not in
other countries. But with latest terrorist attack on September 11, 2001 in
the US, most governments are again opening the debate on the possibility
of introducing the national identification system.

Activity 7-10
When you post a message in a public bulletin board with your
email address included in the message, they say you are giving up
your privacy. Argue for and against this?

Social Justice Issues

The social justice issue deals mainly on equity of access. Examples of equity
of access are gender equity, class equity and access for the disabled. Is
there a difference in male/female access to the technology, are different
social classes offered the same access to technology, or are the disabled
have equal access to the technology compared to able citizens. If there is a
difference what is the cause of this. The issue is that everyone should have
equal opportunity in accessing the technology.

Another social justice issue is what happens in the workplace. Some issues
under this are: electronic monitoring, repetitive strain injuries and
electromagnetic radiation. Electronic monitoring is the system employed
in the office to monitor your activities while in the office. For example, in
some software development companies, the user account of their
programmers are being logged to trace what they have done while in the

UP Open University
206 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

office. The question is, is this ethical? In some countries this is ethical and
legal while in others they are considered unethical and illegal. Are repetitive
injuries an issue? Repetitive strain injuries are almost synonymous to
back injuries. This is the injury you get if you continuously sit in front of
your computer during office hours. The issue is, are you entitled to
compensation for this? Finally, electromagnetic radiation is an old issue.
There is a belief that radiation emitted by your computer monitor is harmful
to your health. But this has not been proven medically yet. The issue again
is, are you entitled to compensation for this?

Activity 7-11

The rich will always have an advantage over the poor when it
comes to access to technology. Since there will always be rich and
poor people, this inequity is permanent. Can you identify some
more examples of permanent inequity?

Free Speech Issues

Free speech issues deals with freedom of speech issues. Are things you
said, whatever they are, can be electronically disseminated. Issues under
this are: pornography, hate speech and Internet filters.

The issue is, is it alright to post pornographic materials in the web.

Advocates of pornography in the Internet argues that it is their freedom
of speech and expression, but on the other hand pornography threatens
families everywhere, especially children. In some countries this is illegal
while in others they simply do not care.

The US has done a lot in this area of freedom of speech in the Internet.
The most important development in the United States in regards to
censorship and the Internet has been the Communications Decency Act
(CDA). The CDA was voted overwhelmingly into law in 1996, and made
it a criminal offense to send indecent material by the Internet into others
computers. The law was attached to the Telecommunications Reform
Act of 1996 and passed by congress on February 1st of the same year. On
the same day the bill was signed into law the American Civil Liberties

UP Open University
Module 7 207

Union filed suit in Philadelphia on the ground that the statute banned
speech protected by the First Amendment and subjected the Internet to
restrictions that were out of line with regulations faced by other mediums.
After an injunction suspending the enactment of the law was passed in
the US District Court, the case of Reno v. ACLU proceeded to the US
Supreme Court. On June 26, 1997, the Court voted unanimously that the
act was a violation of the First Amendment. This is the reason why you
can find a lot of indecent US-based materials in the Internet.

Is it okay to write a hate speech on Islamic Fundamentalist and disseminate

the same in the Internet. Or, it is okay to write hate speech on a certain
person and then disseminate this on the Internet. Another is the setting
up of web sites for hate materials or for racist propaganda. Again, this
issue must be settled on whether this activity is ethical or not. Some
countries in Europe are in fact thinking of outlawing hate speech online,
although in Great Britain it is already illegal to publish material likely to
incite racial hatred. The British law, however, is silent when the servers
where the materials are published are found outside of Great Britain.

Finally, some networks employ the use of Internet filters to block access to
sites considered pornographic, for example. Some people consider this as
censorship. Is this an ethical behavior on the side of organizations blocking
access to sites considered by them as harmful.

Again, let look at the US case in this issue. The US passed in December
2000 the Childrens Internet Protection Act (CIPA) that requires all schools
and libraries receiving e-rate discounts or other federal assistance for
Internet access to install filters on all computers used by adults as well as
minors. The Clinton Administration encouraged filtering as a response to
the Supreme Courts 1997 decision striking down the Communications
Decency Act (CDA), which, is an attempt to block minors from Internet
pornography, criminalized virtually all indecent or patently offensive
communications online.

Activity 7-12
In the Philippines, what law are you violating when you put up
servers with pornographic content?

UP Open University
208 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Intellectual Property Rights

Most countries have laws to foster innovation by regulating the copying
of inventions, identifying symbols, and creative expressions. These laws
encompass four separate and distinct types of intangible property
namely, patents, trademarks, copyrights, and trade secrets, which
collectively are referred to as intellectual property.

Intellectual property shares many of the characteristics associated with

real and personal property. For example, intellectual property is an asset,
and as such it can be bought, sold, licensed, exchanged, or gratuitously
given away like any other form of property. Further, the intellectual
property owner has the right to prevent the unauthorized use or sale of
the property. The most noticeable difference between intellectual property
and other forms of property, however, is that intellectual property is
intangible, that is, it cannot be defined or identified by its own physical
parameters. It must be expressed in some discernible way to be protectable

In IT, an algorithm can be patented (like the Rivest, Shamir and Adelman
Algorithm for Encryption and Digital Signatures), a program or an online
textbook is copyrightable, and domain names could be considered

There are many issues under intellectual property rights, but we will look
at only several. These are software piracy, plagiarism and software and
the copyright law of the US.

Software piracy
Software piracy is an act of using a software without paying the appropriate
license. Every time we do this, is the same as stealing from the software
developer. The ethical implication is of course quite obvious. Since stealing
is bad, piracy is also bad.

Software is one of the most valuable technologies of the Information Age,

running everything from PCs to the Internet. Unfortunately, because
software is so valuable, and because computers make it easy to create an
exact copy of a program in seconds, software piracy is widespread. From
individual computer users to professionals who deal wholesale in stolen
software, piracy exists in homes, schools, businesses and government.
Software pirates not only steal from the companies that make the software,
but with less money for research and development of new software, all
users are hurt. Thats why all software piracy - even one copy you make
for a friend - is illegal.

UP Open University
Module 7 209

There are several types of software piracy. Three of them are as follows:

1. End user piracy - Using multiple copies of a single software package

on several different systems or distributing copies of software to others.

2. Reseller piracy - Reseller piracy occurs when an unscrupulous reseller

distributes multiple copies of a single software package to different
customers; this includes preloading systems with software without
providing original manuals , CDs, or diskettes. Reseller piracy also
occurs when resellers knowingly sell counterfeit versions of software
to unsuspecting customers. Indications of reseller piracy are multiple
users with the same serial number, lack of original documentation or
an incomplete set, and non-matching documentation.

3. BBS/Internet piracy - BBS/ Internet piracy occurs when there is an

electronic transfer of copyrighted software. If system operators and/
or users upload or download copyrighted software and materials onto
or from bulletin boards or the Internet for others to copy and use
without the proper license.

Activity 7-13
Which of the following is piracy?

a. You borrowed from a friend a copy of the software that you

used for a limited time (one week) only.

b. You sold to a friend a software which you bought legally, but

you kept a copy of it.

c. You sold to a friend a software which you bought legally, but

you did not keep a copy of it.

d. You let your friend use the software which is installed in your
own computer.

UP Open University
210 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Another recent issue is plagiarism. Plagiarism is a difficult concept to
define. Plagiarism is considered a form of fraud and/or theft. Plagiarism
occurs anytime that a person copies any written work and claims it as
his/her own. It includes a range of actions from failure to use proper
citation to wholesale cheating. A student who plagiarizes may do so
unintentionally or with planned deliberation. With the advent of the
Internet, plagiarism has become very rampant. The most common type of
plagiarism is the cut-and-paste plagiarism. Students when preparing term
papers simply cut from the Internet text relevant to their topic and paste
this in their term papers. Of course, it is considered cheating and therefore
unethical. The worst type of plagiarism is when the student simply
downloads a term paper from the Internet and submit this as his/her
own. There are many sites in the Internet where term papers are
downloadable for free.

Activity 7-14
Which of the following is plagiarism?

a. You submit a report which basically is a report downloaded

from the Internet. However, you explicitly stated in the report
where it came from.

b. You made a report where one paragraph come comes from one
document, another paragraph from another document, and
another comes from another document and so on.

c. You downloaded a graphics picture from the Internet and use

it in your report.

UP Open University
Module 7 211

Software and copyright law of the US

For us to understand what is copyrightable in a software we look at several
cases in the US that deals with software and their copyright law.

The first case is the Whelan vs. Jaslow case. In 1985, Jaslow Dental
Laboratory sued Whelan Associates, Inc. on the grounds that Whelans
Dentcom program infringed Jaslows copyright on its Dentalab program
even though both were written using different programming languages.
The court rules in favor of Jaslow arguing that the structure (sequence
and organization) of a computer program is protectable by copyright.
The court found that the coding part is a comparatively small part of
programming and that Ms. Whelan spend a tremendous amount of time
studying Jaslow Labs Dentalab program. Hence, the conclusion of the
court tells us that copyright protection of programs may extend beyond
the code to their structure, sequence and organization.

The second case is the Computer Associates vs. Altai case. The court
decided that Altais program did not infringe one by Computer Associates.
This refers to the second program of Altai. The first version had been
written by an ex-programmer of Computer Associates, who unknown to
Altai copied 30% of the code from a similar program of Computer
Associates. Discovering this, Altai then wrote a second version, using
programmers who are not familiar with the Computer Associates program.
Just like the first case, Computer Associates argued that Altai copied the
structure of the program.

The court concluded that the decision in the first case (Whelan vs. Jaslow)
is fallacious and criticize the previous court as having a somewhat
outdated appreciation of computer science. Hence, this case reverses the
idea that program structure, sequence and organization is copyrightable.

The third case is Apple vs. Microsoft case. In 1989, Apple sued Microsoft
and HP, claiming that the Windows graphical user interface (Windows
2.03 and HPs New Wave) infringed Apples copyright on the look and
feel of Macintosh deskstop. Apple lost the case.

The basis of the court in making a decision was whether the two GUI
presentations were virtually identical. Apple argued substantial similarity.

Finally, a related case is the Lotus look and feel suit. At issue is whether
the menu structure, the arrangement of commands in the menu hierarchy
in Lotus 1-2-3 is copyrightable.

UP Open University
212 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Lotus sued Paperback Software and Mosaic Software, who had produced
spreadsheets that had the same interface as 1-2-3. There is no copying of
code, but Lotus claimed that copying the interface itself is copyright
infringement. Lotus won the case and Paperback and Mosaic went out of

Lotus then sued Borland over Quattro. Even though Quattros user
interface is different from Lotus 1-2-3, Quattro followed the Lotus menu
hierarchy and Lotus claimed this is copyright infringement. Lotus won at
the District court, but Borland appealed and won in the US First Circuit
court. This case was elevated to the US Supreme court, but the highest
court was split and thus no decision was made on this case.

Activity 7-15
Suppose I write an operating system from scratch but the look and
feel of my operating system is very much like Microsoft Vista. Is
this a copyright infringement case or not?

Computer Crimes
When a country has instituted laws against computer abuses, a computer
abuse becomes a computer crime. But not all abuses constitute a crime.
For example, consider a hacker who breaks into someones computer
system without permission. If the hacker steals confidential data from the
system this is considered a crime in some countries. While a hacker who
simply gets into the system explore the system to see how it works and
what files it contains, though breaching privacy may not be considered a
crime in some countries. But both acts are unethical. Below we show actual
examples of computer crimes. These cases happened in the US where
computer crime laws are well established. Most of these cases resulted to
a conviction of the crime committed.

Credit card fraud

A person in the US was sentenced to a term of 27 months in prison in
connection with an Internet fraud case to defraud and others
with credit card information unlawfully obtained from a credit union
employee. The person was also ordered to pay restitution in the amount

UP Open University
Module 7 213

of $116,869.30 and serve a three-year term of supervised release following

his incarceration.

On March 1, 2002, the person plead guilty to three felony counts, including
wire fraud; conspiracy to obtain unauthorized computer access to
customer account information from a financial institution; and credit card
fraud. He admitted to masterminding a scheme to defraud;
Southwest Airlines; the Hotel Reservations Network, Inc.; a credit union;
and the credit unions credit card holders by making fraudulent Internet
credit card charges for hotel and airline reservations, totaling more than
$116,000. He obtained the confidential customer account and credit card
information from a credit union employee, who was subsequently
terminated and convicted. He then used the credit card information to
make hotel and airline reservations on the Internet and telephone. Most
of the reservations were made with, Southwest Airlines,
and the Hotel Reservations Network, Inc.

After making the reservation with the credit card information, he typically
enlisted another person to check into the hotel room using the reservation
and credit card information he supplied, and to return the hotel room
keys to him, who then obtained full use of the hotel rooms.

Virus creation and unleashing it to the network

A man accused of unleashing the Melissa computer virus in 1999,
causing millions of dollars in damage and infecting untold numbers of
computers and computer networks, was sentenced to 20 months in federal
prison. The virus creator was ordered to serve three years of supervised
release after completion of his prison sentence and was fined $5,000. He
was further ordered that, upon release, he not be involved with computer
networks, the Internet or Internet bulletin boards unless authorized by
the Court.

At the plea hearings, the virus creator admitted that he created the Melissa
virus and disseminated it from his home computer. He said that he
constructed the virus to evade anti-virus software and to infect computers
using the Windows 95, Windows 98 and Windows NT operating systems
and the Microsoft Word 97 and Word 2000 word processing programs.

The Melissa virus appeared on thousands of email systems on March 26,

1999, disguised as an important message from a colleague or friend. The
virus was designed to send an infected email to the first 50 email addresses
on the users mailing lists. Such emails would only be sent if the computers
used Microsoft Outlook for email.

UP Open University
214 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Because each infected computer could infect 50 additional computers,

which in turn could infect another 50 computers, the virus proliferated
rapidly and exponentially, resulting in substantial interruption or
impairment of public communications or services. According to reports
from business and government following the spread of the virus, its rapid
distribution disrupted computer networks by overloading email servers,
resulting in the shutdown of networks and significant costs to repair or
cleanse computer systems.

The virus creator described in state and federal court how, using a stolen
America Online account and his own account with a local Internet service
provider, he posted an infected document on the Internet newsgroup
Alt.Sex. The posting contained a message enticing readers to download
and open the document with the hope of finding passwords to adult-
content websites.

Opening and downloading the message caused the Melissa virus to infect
victim computers. The virus altered Microsoft word processing programs
such that any document created using the programs would then be infected
with the Melissa virus. The virus also lowered macro security settings in
the word processing programs. The virus then proliferated via the Microsoft
Outlook program, causing computers to send electronic email to the first
50 addresses in the computer users address book.

A Boston man was charged with using his home computer to illegally
gain access to a number of computers, including those controlled by NASA
and an agency of the U.S. Department of Defense, where, among other
things, he intercepted login names and passwords, and intentionally
caused delays and damage in communications.

In April 1999, the hacker obtained unauthorized access to a corporate

internet account which he then used to illegally access a computer
controlled and operated by the U.S. Defense Logistics Agency. He then
concealed his actual computer address through a service known as telnet
proxy which created the appearance that his address was that of the
governments computer. Once hidden, he accessed, without
authorization, the web site of internet service provider, ZMOS, and
recklessly caused damage to the ZMOS computer located in the State of
Washington. As a result, ZMOS, which hosts corporate web pages and
provides internet service for corporate customers, suffered a significant
loss of business.

UP Open University
Module 7 215

Beginning in May 1999 and continuing until August, 1999, the hacker
obtained unauthorized access to the same corporate internet account this
time using it to access the NASA computer research project web server
located in Maryland. He seized control of the NASA computer, allowing
him to read, delete or modify any files on the system. He then installed a
sniffer program onto the system to intercept and save login names and
passwords of users that were transferred over the NASA system for his
own later use. The compromised NASA web server did not contain
classified or sensitive information and was not involved in any way with
satellite command or control.

The hacker also used the NASA computer as a platform to launch attacks
on other computer systems, such as an attack on the U.S. Department of
the Interiors web server where he defaced its web page with hacker graphics.

The information also alleges that the hacker accessed various computers
operated by Northeastern University from which he illegally copied a file
containing the names, dates of birth, addresses and social security numbers
of numerous men and women affiliated with the University, either as
students, faculty, administration or alumni. Investigators are not aware
of any use or dissemination of this information. Northeastern University
cooperated fully with investigators on this matter.

If convicted, the hacker faces a maximum penalty of 10 years incarceration

and a fine of $250,000.

Stock fraud
Two former Cisco Systems, Inc., accountants were each sentenced to 34
months in prison for exceeding their authorized access to the computer
systems of Cisco Systems in order to illegally issue almost $8 million in
Cisco stock to themselves.

In pleading guilty, both accountants admitted that between October 2000

and March 27, 2001, they participated together in a scheme to defraud
Cisco Systems in order to obtain Cisco stock that they were not authorized
to obtain. As part of the scheme, they exceeded their authorized access to
computer systems at Cisco in order to access a computer system is used by
the company to manage stock option disbursals, used that access to identify
control numbers to track authorized stock option disbursals, created forged
forms purporting to authorize disbursals of stock, faxed the forged requests
to the company responsible for controlling and issuing shares of Cisco
Systems stock, and directed that stock be placed in their personal brokerage
accounts. The two defendants admitted that the first time that they did
this, in December 2000, they caused 97,750 shares of Cisco stock to be

UP Open University
216 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

placed in two separate Merrill Lynch accounts, with 58,250 of the shares
deposited in an account set up by by one of them and 39,500 shares
deposited in an account set up by the other accountant. In February 2001,
they caused two additional transfers of stock, in amounts of 67,500 shares
and 65,300 shares, to be transferred to brokerage accounts in their names.
The total value of the Cisco stock that they took on these three occasions
(at the time that they transferred the stock) was approximately $7,868,637.

In a 1998 lawsuit brought by America Online against an unsolicited
commercial e-mail sender, the judge awarded AOL compensatory and
punitive damages, and permanently barred the commercial e-mail sender
from sending bulk unsolicited commercial e-mail to AOL members or
through AOL services.

In another lawsuit, Hotmail sued a company for allegedly providing false

e-mail header information in unsolicited commercial e-mail which made
it appear that the messages originated from Hotmail accounts. In that
lawsuit, a federal court in California found that Hotmail established a
likelihood of success of establishing false designation or origin, unfair
competition, dilution, violations of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act,
breach of contract, fraud, misrepresentation and trespass to chattel and
issued a preliminarily injunction enjoining the defendant company from
falsely designating Hotmail addresses as the point of origin of their
commercial e-mail messages.

Hate and vengeance case

A former employee in the Human Resources department at Marsh Inc.,
an insurance company located in Manhattan, was sentenced in Manhattan
federal court to 18 months in prison for illegally accessing and deleting
hundreds of computer records at Marsh.

On October 31, 2001, the hacker pled guilty to a one-count Indictment

charging him with accessing a protected computer without authorization
and deleting approximately 950 files relating to employee compensation.

According to a complaint, as well as statements made at hackers plea, a

female employee at Marsh had complained that the hacker was harassing
her because she rebuffed his romantic advances. He was later terminated
from Marsh and obtained employment at Viacom, Inc. In January 2001,
he used a password belonging to another employee at Marsh to obtain
unauthorized access to Marshs computer database and deleted

UP Open University
Module 7 217

approximately 800 files relating to the compensation of Managing Directors

at Marsh and approximately 150 files relating to compensation of other
Marsh employees. He also altered the female employees compensation
record to reflect a $40,000 increase in her salary and a $100,000 bonus.

In February and March 2001, senior managers at Marsh received an email

attached to which was a file containing information from the deleted salary
files. The email appeared to have been originally sent from an e-mail
account established at The user ID of that account contained
the female employees last name. The female employee denies having
established that account. A forensic image of hackers computer at Viacom
revealed that the e-mails to the senior managers at Marsh were sent from
that computer.

Activity 7-16
Which of the following is not a computer crime in the US?

a. hacking
b. spamming
c. virus creation and unleashing
d. sending of hate email to another person
e. none of the above

IT-Related Laws in the Philippines

The Intellectual Property Code of the Philippines (Republic Act Number

This law declared that computer programs are non-patentable as indicated

in Section 22 Part IV of the law:

UP Open University
218 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Sec. 22. Non-Patentable Inventions

The following shall be excluded from patent protection:

22.2. Schemes, rules and methods of performing mental acts,

playing games or doing business, and programs for computers;

Though non-patentable, computer programs, however, are copyrightable.

In the law, however, computer programs were included in the section on
literary and artistic works. In reality, of course, computer programs are
not literary works nor artistic works.


SEC. 172. Literary and Artistic Works

172.1 Literary and artistic works, hereinafter referred to as

works, are original intellectual creations in the literary and artistic
domain protected from the moment of their creation and shall include
in particular

(n) Computer programs;

172.2. Works are protected by the sole fact of their creation,

irrespective of their mode or form of expression, as well as of their
content, quality and purpose.

The law also clearly states what is legal in terms of reproducing computer

UP Open University
Module 7 219

SEC. 189. Reproduction of Computer Program

189.1. Notwithstanding the provisions of Section 177, the

reproduction in one (1) back-up copy or adaptation of a computer
program shall be permitted, without the authorization of the author
of, or other owner of copyright in, a computer program, by the lawful
owner of that computer program: Provided, That the copy or adaptation
is necessary for:

a. The use of the computer program in conjunction with a

computer for the purpose, and to the extent, for which the
computer program has been obtained; and
b. Archival purposes, and, for the replacement of the lawfully
owned copy of the computer program in the event that the
lawfully obtained copy of the computer program is lost,
destroyed or rendered unusable.

189.2. No copy or adaptation mentioned in this Section shall be

used for any purpose other than the ones determined in this Section,
and any such copy or adaptation shall be destroyed in the event that
continued possession of the copy of the computer program ceases
to be lawful.

Activity 7-17
True or False.

It is perfectly legal to have one backup copy of a software even

without the permission of the owner of the copyright.

Finally, included in the law are the penalties for infringement of the
Copyright Law.

UP Open University
220 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

217.1. Any person infringing any right secured by provisions of Part

IV (The Law on Copyright) of this Act or aiding or abetting such
infringement shall be guilty of a crime punishable by:

a. Imprisonment of one (1) year to three (3) years plus a fine

ranging from Fifty thousand pesos (P50,000) to One hundred
fifty thousand pesos (P150,000) for the first offense.
b. Imprisonment of three (3) years and one (1) day to six (6)
years plus a fine ranging from One hundred fifty thousand
pesos (P150,000) to Five hundred thousand pesos
(P500,000) for the second offense.
c. Imprisonment of six (6) years and one (1) day to nine (9)
years plus a fine ranging from Five hundred thousand pesos
(P500,000) to One million five hundred thousand pesos
(P1,500,000) for the third and subsequent offenses.
d. In all cases, subsidiary imprisonment in cases of insolvency.

217.2. In determining the number of years of imprisonment and

the amount of fine, the court shall consider the value of the infringing
materials that the defendant has produced or manufactured and the
damage that the copyright owner has suffered by reason of the

217.3. Any person who at the time when copyright subsists in a

work has in his possession an article which he knows, or ought to
know, to be an infringing copy of the work for the purpose of:

a. Selling, letting for hire, or by way of trade offering or exposing

for sale, or hire, the article;
b. Distributing the article for purpose of trade, or for any other
purpose to an extent that will prejudice the rights of the copyright
owner in the work; or
c. Trade exhibit of the article in public, shall be guilty of an offense
and shall be liable on conviction to imprisonment and fine as
above mentioned. (Sec. 29, P.D. No. 49a)

This law was tested in the case Microsoft, Corp. vs. Harold Chua. The
case is the first win of Microsoft, Corp. in local courts when it comes to
Intellectual Property Rights violation. A summary of this case is published
in Poblaw Newletter and is given at the next page.

UP Open University
Module 7 221

Volume III, Number 20, December 2002

Poblador Azada and Bucoy Poblaw Newsletter

Microsoft vs. Harold Chua

A MANILA businessman was found guilty of stealing software owned

by Microsoft, marking the first time that the giant American firm won
a case for intellectual property protection in local courts.

Judge Antonio Eugenio of Branch 24 of the Manila Regional Trial Court

found Harold Chua, proprietor of Triac Marketing, guilty of violating
provisions of the Intellectual Property Code.

Chua was sentenced to one year in prison and fined P50,000,

Microsoft said in a statement.
The case against Chua dated back to 1998 when National Bureau of
Investigation agents raided his office in Novaliches, Quezon City.

During the raid, the operatives seized two counterfeit copies of

Microsofts Windows 95 software. Chua questioned the raid, but the
Manila prosecutor denied his petition.

In 1999, the Department of Justice recommended the filing of criminal

charges against Chua.

This is definitely a victory for all those fighting against piracy and for
software companies in particular. Moreover, this is an indication that
the authorities in the Philippines are serious about software crime,
said Rebecca Ho, spokesperson for Microsoft Corp.

Christopher Lim, legal counsel for Microsoft Philippines, said there

are many cases similar to Chuas, but they often suffer delays or
result in out-of-court settlements.

Since our legal system places a high priority on the constitutional

right to due process, some copyright owners have faced delays of
up to seven years in the resolution of their cases, Lim said. In most
cases, infringers abuse their right by resorting to dilatory tactics in
the progress of the cases.

Microsoft said Chuas conviction would be a great boost to the

governments effort to show the international community that it is
serious in enforcing the IP Code.

UP Open University
222 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

The IP Code was enacted by Congress after it was found that

Presidential Decree 49, the only legal remedy then dealing with
intellectual property, did not have sufficient teeth for current copyright

People who are found guilty of violating the new IP Code can be
imprisoned from one to nine years and fined from P50,000 to P1.5

Since 1995, the Business Software Alliance, an anti-piracy trade

association, in cooperation with local authorities, has conducted raids
against local firms suspected of stealing foreign trademarks and
subsequently filed charges against them.

According to BSA, the piracy rate in the Philippines has increased to

63 percent in 2001 from 60 percent in 2000.

Activity 7-18
Computer programs are copyrightable but not patentable. What
is the difference of a patent from a copyright?

E-Commerce Law of the Philippines

(Republic Act Number 8792)
The objectives and sphere of application of the law is obvious from the
following sections:

UP Open University
Module 7 223

Sec. 3. Objective. - This Act aims to facilitate domestic and

international dealings, transactions, arrangements, agreements,
contracts and exchanges and storage of information through the
utilization of electronic, optical and similar medium, mode,
instrumentality and technology to recognize the authenticity and
reliability of electronic documents related to such activities and to
promote the universal use of electronic transaction in the government
and general public.

Sec. 4. Sphere of Application. This Act shall apply to any kind of data
message and electronic document used in the context of commercial
and non-commercial activities to include domestic and international
dealings, transactions, arrangements, agreements, contracts and
exchanges and storage of information.

The law recognizes electronic signature found in electronic documents as

equivalent to signature of a person on a written document.

Sec. 8. Legal Recognition of Electronic Signatures. An electronic

signature on the electronic document shall be equivalent to the
signature of a person on a written document if that signature is proved
by showing that a prescribed procedure, not alterable by the parties
interested in the electronic document, existed under which -

a) A method is used to identify the party sought to be bound and to

indicate said partys access to the electronic document necessary
for his consent or approval through the electronic signature;
b) Said method is reliable and appropriate for the purpose for which
the electronic document was generated or communicated, in the
light of all the circumstances, including any relevant agreement;
c) It is necessary for the party sought to be bound, in order to proceed
further with the transaction, to have executed or provided the
electronic signature; and
d) The other party is authorized and enabled to verify the electronic
signature and to make the decision to proceed with the transaction
authenticated by the same.

UP Open University
224 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

The law also defines the liability of information service provider.

SEC. 30. Extent of Liability of a Service Provider. Except as otherwise

provided in this Section, no person or party shall be subject to any
civil or criminal liability in respect of the electronic data message or
electronic document for which the person or party acting as a service
provider as defined in Section 5 merely provides access if such liability
is founded on -

a) The obligations and liabilities of the parties under the electronic

data message or electronic document;
b) The making, publication, dissemination or distribution of such
material or any statement made in such material, including
possible infringement of any right subsisting in or in relation to
such material: Provided, That
i. The service provider does not have actual knowledge, or is
not aware of the facts or circumstances from which it is
apparent, that the making, publication, dissemination or
distribution of such material is unlawful or infringes any rights
subsisting in or in relation to such material;
ii. The service provider does not knowingly receive a financial
benefit directly attributable to the unlawful or infringing activity;
iii. The service provider does not directly commit any infringement
or other unlawful act and does not induce or cause another
person or party to commit any infringement or other unlawful
act and/or does not benefit financially from the infringing activity
or unlawful act of another person or party: Provided, further,
That nothing in this Section shall affect -
a) Any obligation founded on contract;
b) The obligation of a service provider as such under a
licensing or other regulatory regime established under
written law; or
c) Any obligation imposed under any written law;
d) The civil liability of any party to the extent that such liability
forms the basis for injunctive relief issued by a court under
any law requiring that the service provider take or refrain
from actions necessary to remove, block or deny access
to any material, or to preserve evidence of a violation of

UP Open University
Module 7 225

Activity 7-19
True or False.

An electronic signature is equivalent to an ordinary signature under

the E-Commerce Law of the Philippines.

Finally, the law stipulates penalties for certain violations covered by this

SEC. 33. Penalties. - The following Acts shall be penalized by fine

and/or imprisonment, as follows:

a) Hacking or cracking which refers to unauthorized access into or

interference in a computer system/server or information and
communication system; or any access in order to corrupt, alter,
steal, or destroy using a computer or other similar information
and communication devices, without the knowledge and consent
of the owner of the computer or information and communications
system, including the introduction of computer viruses and the
like, resulting in the corruption, destruction, alteration, theft or
loss of electronic data messages or electronic document shall
be punished by a minimum fine of one hundred thousand pesos
(P100,000.00) and a maximum commensurate to the damage
incurred and a mandatory imprisonment of six (6) months to three
(3) years;

b) Piracy or the unauthorized copying, reproduction, dissemination,

distribution, importation, use, removal, alteration, substitution,
modification, storage, uploading, downloading, communication,
making available to the public, or broadcasting of protected
material, electronic signature or copyrighted works including
legally protected sound recordings or phonograms or information
material on protected works, through the use of
telecommunication networks, such as, but not limited to, the
internet, in a manner that infringes intellectual property rights shall
be punished by a minimum fine of one hundred thousand pesos
(P100,000.00) and a maximum commensurate to the damage
incurred and a mandatory imprisonment of six (6) months to three
(3) years; c) Violations of the Consumer Act or Republic Act No.
7394 and other relevant or pertinent laws through transactions

UP Open University
226 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

covered by or using electronic data messages or electronic

documents, shall be penalized with the same penalties as provided
in those laws; d) Other violations of the provisions of this Act,
shall be penalized with a maximum penalty of one million pesos
(P1,000,000.00) or six (6) years imprisonment.

Related to hacking, the E-Commerce Law of the Philippines will be tested

in court for the first time with the landmark case Thames International
Business School vs. Leilani Garcia. Below is the article from Metropolitan
Computer Times that summarizes the status of this case.

Landmark Hacking Case Goes on Trial

By Melvin G. Calimag, Assistant Editor
Posted 05 June 2002 14:28 +8:00

The first hacking case to be filed under Philippine laws went on trial
last May 29, 2002 starting off a groundbreaking legal process that is
being viewed as a test case for Internet-related crimes in the country.

Charged for allegedly violating a provision of RA 8792, also known as

the e-commerce act of 2000, was Leilani Garcia, a former employee
of the complainant, Thames International Business School.

Garcia was alleged to have illegally accessed the schools computer

system with a password that was provided to her by co-accused
Cesar Maalac, the former IT support chief of Thames.

A similar case has been filed by the National Bureau of Investigation

(NBI) against Maalac and is now undergoing preliminary investigation
by the prosecutors office. The preliminary investigation, also called
a pre-trial, is required before a formal case is filed in court. Garcia, a
27-year-old certified public accountant, was the schools system
supervisor from January 29, 2000 until her resignation in March 23,
2001. The intrusion allegedly happened December 17, 24, 25, and
31, 2000 and January 1, 2001.

Garcia, who posted a P6, 000 bail for her temporary liberty, did not
grant interviews to the media when she attended the first hearing of
the case in the sala of Judge Maria Cristina Romero of Branch 96 of
the Pasig Metropolitan Trial Court.

UP Open University
Module 7 227

The landmark case was filed in Pasig, a city south of Manila, since
Garcia supposedly used the telephone number of her residence in a
subdivision located in the city to hack into Thames.

The school, an international college affiliated with universities in the

United Kingdom, is owned and operated by Vivienne Tan, daughter
of beer and tobacco magnate Lucio Tan. It is located in a building in
San Juan, a municipality next to Pasig.

During the trial, Robert Lim, counsel for the accused, filed a motion
to dismiss the case. The presiding judge rejected the move saying
the case was only on its first day of trial.

Lim questioned the documents presented by the plaintiffs and

demanded that the contending party issue a list of evidences allegedly
used by Garcia to commit the unauthorized access.

The schools lawyer, Charlton Jules-Romero, argued that the

evidences have already been presented in the pre-trial stage. Im
afraid this will become a fishing expedition because we have submitted
all the documents.

In her counter-affidavit filed in court, Garcia said she did not commit
the crime unauthorized access since the password to the Thames
account was freely given to her by Maalac.

He also told me to that it was common practice for other employees

to sometimes access and use the account, as long as the school
was not using it, she claimed.

On this basis, she said the one of the elements of hacking -

unauthorized access -is not present. Garcia added the complaint
was unfounded and was only filed to harass and destroy her

She bewailed the fact that Thames failed to file an administrative

case against her although she was still working for the school when
the alleged crime happened. She said she was never subpoenaed
by the NBI regarding the investigation and only read her name in the

UP Open University
228 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

The second hearing has been set for June 19, wherein the prosecution
is expected to present its two principal witnesses. They are Martin
Salazar of Net Gen IT, the Internet service provider of Thames which
was purportedly able to record the phone number used by Garcia,
and Jaime Noel Santos, co-founder of Thames.

As a summary, the features of the E-Commerce Law of the Philippines or

Republic Act Number 8792 are as follows:

The Philippine government explicitly recognizes the vital role of

information and communications technology (ICT) in building the
nation. It is a policy of the government to create an information-friendly
environment that would ensure the availability, diversity and
affordability of ICT products and services.

The law gives legal recognition of electronic documents. This means

electronic documents are provided the same legal protection as paper-
based documents. For instance, the Philippine courts will be duty-
bound to accept electronic documents as evidence.

The law also provides legal recognition of Electronic Signatures.

Electronic signature on the electronic document is now recognized as
equivalent to the signature of a person on a written document.
However, certain conditions are given for electronic signature to be
recognized - that a prescribed procedure was followed under which
such procedure identifies the party sought to be bound and that he
had access necessary to obtain his consent and approval through the
electronic signature.

The formation and validity of Electronic Contracts is considered in

the law. The law states unambiguously that an offer, the acceptance
of an offer and such other elements required under existing laws for
the formation of contracts may be expressed in, demonstrated and
proved by means of electronic documents. The law further stipulates
that no contract shall be denied validity or enforceability on the sole
ground that it is in the form of an electronic document.

The law will move the Philippines closer to e-government, or, at least,
to the electronic delivery of government services. It mandates that
government as well as government-owned and controlled corporations
use electronic transactions in all its processes. The law also mandates
government to undertake these initiatives within two years or before
June 19, 2002.

UP Open University
Module 7 229

Privacy issues are addressed in the law. One section says that access
to an electronic file, signature or document shall be limited only to
those that are authorized to possess and use it. Electronic keys used
for identity and integrity may only be made available to another upon
consent of the individual in lawful possession of the key. Another
section obliges those who obtain access to an electronic key, signature
or document not to convey or share the same with another. These two
sections are important in that it recognizes that these files are property
of an individual and can be possessed only by another upon the consent
of its owner. It further recognizes the privacy and personal nature of
the key by obliging those who gets to possess it not to share it with

Security issues are addressed also in the law. While the law deals with
penalties, its net effect is to help create a more secure environment for
electronic transactions. This law specifically punishes hacking or
cracking which has been defined as either unauthorized access or
interference in a computer system or any other type of access-
authorized or not- with the intention to destroy, corrupt, alter, or steal
data. Included in this definition is the introduction of viruses. Penalty
is rather steep by contemporary Philippines standards: a minimum
fine of P100,000 and mandatory imprisonment of from six months to
three years.

Piracy or the unauthorized copying, reproduction, dissemination,

distribution, importation, as well as broadcast of protected works is
also punishable by penalties ranging from a minimum fine of P100,000
and mandatory imprisonment of from six months to three years.
The extent of liability of service providers is tackled in law. Under this
law no person or party shall be held liable for any data message to
which the party - acting as a service provider- merely provides access,
subject to certain requirements. Service providers who have no
knowledge that the materials passing through them are unlawful and
those who do not financially benefit directly from such unlawful
activity, or do not commit an unlawful act need not be penalized. This
refers to materials that pass through a provider that may either be
libelous, seditious, or is a pirated material, etc. The service provider is
not tasked with monitoring every material that passes through his
facilities as that may either be impossible or an undue invasion of the
privacy interests of others.
All existing laws such as the Consumer Act of the Philippines also
applies to e-commerce transactions.

UP Open University
230 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Activity 7-20
What computer crimes are covered by the E-Commerce Law of
the Philippines?


Trends in IT Research,

Information Technology Impacts,
Evolution of Computers,
History of Computers
computers/history/ and
Wikipedia Page, The free encyclopedia,
Intel Consumer Desktop PC Microprocessor History Timeline available in
Boyce, J.C., Digital Logic: Operation and Analysis, Prentice-Hall, 1982.
Hayes, J.P., Digital Logic Design, Addison-Wesley, 1993.
IBM PC Assembly Language Programming, Prentice-Hall, 1991.
Hamacher, V.C. and others, Computer organization, McGraw Hill, 1984.
Hayes, J.P., Computer Architecture and Organization, McGraw Hill, 1988.
Scanlon, L.J. 8086/8088/80286 Assembly Language, Brady, 1990
(Philippine Reprint).
Tanenbaum, A.S. Structured Computer Organization, Prentice-Hall, 1984.
Thorne, M., Computer Organization and Assembly Language
Programming, Benjamin/Cummings, 1991.

UP Open University
Module 7 231

Wakerly, J.F., Microcomputer Architecture and Programming, Wiley &

Sons, 1981.
Witten, I.H., Communicating with Microcomputers, Academic Press, 1980.
Turbo Assembler: Users Guide, Borland International, 1988.
Brinch Hansen, P. Operating Systems Principles, Prentice-Hall, 1973.
Calingaert, P. Operating System Elements, Prentice-Hall, 1982.
Comer, D, and Fossum, T., Operating System Design: The XINU
Approach, Prentice-Hall, 1988.
Deitel, H. M., An Introduction to Operating Systems, Addison-Wesley,
Alter, S. Information Systems: A Management Perspective. Benjamin/
Cummings, Menlo Park, CA, 1996.
Brightman, R.W., Luskin, B.J., and Tilton, T. Data Processing for Decision
Making: An Introduction to Third Generation Information
Systems,MacMillan, 1968.
Brooks, C.H.P., Information Systems Design. Prentice-Hall, 1982.
Capron, H.L. Computers: Tools for an Information Age. Benjamin/
Cummings, Redwood City, CA, 1990.
Cardus, D.C., Hammons, C., and Thrall, R.M, Multiple Objective Benefit-
Cost Models for Decision Makers, Academic Press, 1979.
Carter, G.M, Murray, M.P, Walker, R.G., and Walker, W.E. Building
Organizational Decision Support Systems, Academic Press, 1992.
Davis, G.B. Management Information Systems: Conceptual, Foundations,
Structure and Development. McGraw-Hill Book Co, 1985.
Edwards, P. Systems and Analysis and Design, McGraw-Hill, 1993.
Everest, G. Database Management. McGraw-Hill Book Co, 1985.
Finkelstein, C. Strategic Systems Development. Addison-Wesley, 1992.
Gane, C. Structured Systems, Analysis, Tools and Techniques. Prentice-
Hall, Inc.
Gerrity, T.P. Jr. The Design of Man-Machine Decision Systems, Sloan
Management Review 12 (2), 1997 (Winter), 59-75.
Gorry, G.A. and M.S. Scott Morton. A Framework for Management
Information Systems. Sloan Management Review, 1971, 55-70.
Keen, Peter G.W. and Michael Scott Morton. Decision Support Systems:
An Organizational Perspective. Reading, MA, Addison-Wesley, 1978
Little, J.D.C. Models and Managers: The Concept of a Decision Calculus.
Management Science 16 (8), 1970, B466-485.
Martin, James. Principles of Object-Oriented Analysis and Design. Simon
& Schuster Company, 1993.
McLeod, R., Jr. Management Information Systems, MacMillan, New York,
Pritsker, A.A.B, and Pegden C.C. Introduction to Simulation and SLAM,
Jonh Wiley, 1979.
Scott Morton, Michael S. Management decision systems; computer-based
support for decision-making. Graduate School of Business
Administration, Harvard University, 1971.

UP Open University
232 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Siegel, P. Strategic Planning of Management Information Systems, Mason

and Lipscomb Publishers, Inc., 1975.
Simon, H.A. Administrative Behavior, MacMillan, New York, 1975.
Spragne, R. And B. McNurlin. Information Systems in Practice. Prentice-
Hall, Inc., 1986
Sprague, R.H. and Carlson, E.D. Building Effective Decision Support
Systems, Grolier, Inc., 1983.
Weltman, G. Adaptive Computer-Aided Decision Systems, Academic
Press, 1979.
Barr, A and Feigenbaum, E.A. The Handbook of Artificial Intelligence,
Vol I, Heuristech Press, 1981.
Newquist, H.P. The Brain Makers, Sams Pub, 1994.
Kurzweil, R.The Age of Intelligent Machines, MIT Press, 1990.
Chabris, C.F. Artificial Intelligence & Turbo C, Multiscience Press, Inc.,
START Natrual language system,
Aaby, A.A. Introduction to Programming Languages. Available in http:/
Appleby, D. Programming Languages Paradigm and Practice. McGraw-
Hill, 1991.
Baron, N. Computer Languages. Anchor Press/Doubleday, 1986..
Fischer, A.E. and Grodzinsky, F.S. The Anatomy of Programming
Languages, Prentice-Hall, 1993.
Friedman, D.P., Wand, M., Haynes, C.T. Essentials of Programming
Languages, MIT Press, 1992.
Mayer, H.G. Programming Languages, MacMillan, 1988.
Meyer, B. Introduction to the Theory of Programming Languages, Prentice-
Hall, 1990.
Mitchell, J. Concepts in Programming Languages. Cambridge University
Press, 2002.
Pratt, T.W. Programming Languages: Design and Implementation.
Prentice-Hall, 1984.
Sebesta, R.W. Concepts of Programming Languages. Addison-Wesley,
Tucker, A.B. Programming Languages. McGraw-Hill, 1986.
Watt, D.A. Programming Language Concepts and Paradigms. Prentice-
Hall, 1990.
Wegner, P. (ed) Introduction to programming language paradigms. ACM
Computing Surveys 21, 253-258.
Black, U. Computer Networks: Protocol, Standards, and Interface, Prentice-
Hall, Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey, 1993.
Madron, T. Local Area Networks: New Technologies, Emerging Standards,
John Wiley, New York, 1994.
Ritchie, D.M., and K. Thompson, The UNIX time-sharing system,
Communications of the ACM 17 (1974), 365-375.

UP Open University
Module 7 233

Tanenbaum, A. S. Computer Networks, Prentice-Hall, Englewood Cliffs,

New Jersey, 1981.
Tanenbaum, A. S. Modern Operating Systems, Prentice-Hall, Englewood
Cliffs, New Jersey, 1992.
Networking Fundamentals,
Hunt, C. TCP/IP Network Administration, OReilly and Associates, Inc.,
Data Communication,
Levin, R.B. The Computer Virus Handbook, Osborne McGraw-Hill, 1990.
Virus Tutorial,
Anti-Virus Tutorial,
Poblaw Newletter,
E-Commerce Law of the Philippines,
commerce.htm and
Denial of Service,

UP Open University
234 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

4004 Microprocessor, 27
8008 Microprocessor, 27
80286 Microprocessor, 27
80386 Microprocessor, 27
80486 Microprocessor, 27
8080 Microprocessor, 27
8086-8088 Microprocessor, 27
abacus, 6, 7
Abacus, 6, 7
access control, 129, 130
Active Server Pages, 189
Adobe Acrobat Reader, 188
Advanced Micro Devices, 28
agent, 114, 115, 116, 171, 173
AI, 104, 106, 107, 108, 109, 111, 114, 117
AIBO, 105, 106
Al Gebr Wel Mukabala, 7, 8
Al Khwarismi, 7
Alexander Graham Bell, 148
algorithm, 119
ALU, 35, 36, 38, 39
AMD, 28
amplitude modulation, 163
Analytical Engine, 13, 14
Anti-Virus, 252
Arithmetic Logic Unit, 35
Artificial Intelligence, 2, 90, 104, 107, 250
artificial life, 2
ASCII, 174, 188, 196
assembler, 76
Atlas, 20
ATM, 1, 2, 24, 29, 82
audio conferencing, 102
Audion, 16
automatic job sequencing, 76
Automatic Teller Machine, 1
automation, 24, 101
B, 251
batch operating system, 77
batch system, 77
Bendix G-15A, 24
bit, 25, 26, 36, 39, 40, 41, 42, 50, 57, 65, 66, 67, 129, 132, 143, 148, 160,

UP Open University
Module 7 235

161, 218
bit-map graphics display, 57
bits per second, 143, 160, 161, 163
Blaise Pascal, 11
Bridges, 138
broadcast, 124, 131
Broadcast Radio Communication, 146
bulletin board system, 100, 176
bus, 35, 40, 43, 64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 125, 126, 127, 128, 129, 132, 133
bus topology, 126
byte, 25, 39, 40, 43, 50, 65
calculating clock, 10
card reader, 75, 76, 77
Cathode Ray Tubes, 57
CD-R, 48
CD-ROM, 46, 49
Celeron, 28
cell phone, 32, 33, 147
Census Calculators, 15
Central Processing Unit, 34, 71, 72, 73, 77, 79
character display, 56
Charles Babbage, 13
Chat, 178
Clifford Berry, 17
clock, 32, 68
Coaxial Cable, 142, 143
COBOL, 75, 76
Colossus, 18, 19
compiler, 75, 76
Computer vision, 113
computer conferencing, 102
Computer Crimes, 227
Computer Ethics, 206
computer network, 122
computer system, 34, 35, 39, 52, 71, 72, 78, 79, 170, 227, 231, 242, 243
computer technology, 1
computer vision, 2
Concentrators, 137
control keys, 53, 55
control unit, 19, 35, 37, 38
counter, 37, 134, 244
CPU, 31, 34, 35, 37, 39, 40, 41, 43, 69, 71, 73, 77, 78, 208, 210
CPU scheduler, 73
CRT, 20, 57, 58, 98
Cryptography, 252
CSMA/CD, 129, 130

UP Open University
236 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Cursor-Tracking Devices, 59
Cyrix, 28
Data Communication, 122, 148, 252
database, 32, 90, 91, 92, 93, 94, 96, 103, 119, 197, 198, 199, 233
Database privacy, 219
Deep Blue, 104
Denial of Service, 207, 252
desknote, 32
desktop computer, 31
desktop publishing, 32, 96, 97
device driver, 72, 73, 75
Difference Engine, 13, 14
disk, 71
disk controller, 44
Disk Operating System, 71
diskettes, 45, 224
display screen, 56
distributed operating system, 79
DIX, 129
domain name, 183, 184, 185
Dot matrix, 61
DRAM, 41
Dvorak layout, 53
dynamic RAM, 41
E-commerce, 2, 201
Edison effect, 16
Edward H. Shortliffe, 104
electronic mail, 2, 100, 169, 185
Electronic Recording Machine Accounting, 24
E-mail, 100, 170, 171, 174, 175
Email Addresses, 185
Email privacy, 219
Encryption, 223
Enigma, 18
ERMA, 24
Ethernet, 128, 129, 130, 131
Eudora, 171, 174
expert systems, 2, 104, 113, 114, 117
eXtensible Markup Language, 190
Faggin, 26
FAQ, 177
Fast Ethernet, 129, 131
FDDI, 134, 135

UP Open University
Module 7 237

fetch-decode-execute cycle, 34, 37

Fiber Distributed Data Interface, 128, 134
Fiber Optic Cables, 143
file, 73
File Servers, 135
File Transfer Protocol, 175
Flaming, 210
flip-flop, 41
floppy disk, 44, 136
frequency modulation, 163
function keys, 53, 55
fuzzy logic, 2, 113
FYI, 177
Gateway, 139, 189
Geographic Information Systems, 2
Gilbert Hyatt, 25
Gotfried von Leibniz, 12
Groupware, 103
Hacking, 209, 229, 242, 243
handheld game console, 32
hard disks, 45
hardware, 1, 71, 72, 75, 80, 81, 82, 102, 114, 122, 135, 168
Herman Hollerith, 15
Hoff, 26
host, 122, 124, 129, 131, 132, 133, 134, 170, 175, 176, 181, 183, 184, 185,
hosts, 122, 123, 125, 129, 130, 131, 133, 134
Howard Aiken, 19
HTML, 174, 179, 189, 190, 191, 193, 194, 195, 196, 197
Hubs, 137
hyperlink, 192
HyperText, 178, 179, 196
HyperText Transfer Protocol, 178
IBM, 15, 22, 24, 25, 27, 28, 29, 30, 71, 101, 104, 110, 248
IEEE, 129, 131
index register, 36
information technology, 1
Information Technology, 1, 3, 248
Infrared Communication, 147
Inkjet, 61
input device, 75
Input/Output System, 52
instruction register, 36, 71
integrated circuit, 16, 23, 24, 25, 41
Integrated Circuits, 24

UP Open University
238 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Intellectual Property Rights, 222, 236

Interface Message Processor, 122
Internet, 2, 28, 32, 79, 116, 123, 147, 167, 168, 169, 170, 173, 174, 175,
177, 178, 179, 180, 181, 182, 183, 185, 187, 188, 190, 191, 192, 197, 199,
201, 202, 207, 212, 213, 214, 215, 218, 221, 222, 223, 224, 225, 227, 228,
229, 243, 245, 252
IRC, 178
ISO, 129
J. Presper Eckert, 20
Jack Kilby, 24
Jacquard Loom, 12, 13, 15
Java Applets, 189
John Bardeen, 22, 23
John Napier, 9
John V. Atanasoff, 17
John W. Mauchly, 20
Joseph Marie Jacquard, 12
keyboard, 52, 53, 54, 55, 56, 71, 80, 101, 110
Konrad Zuse, 18
LAN, 123, 129
laptop, 31, 32
Laser printers, 62
LCD, 58
Lee de Forest, 16
Leibniz Wheel, 12
line printer, 75, 77
Linux, 80, 81
Liquid Crystal Displays, 57
local area network, 78
logic level, 41
MAC, 130
machine language, 75
Machine translation, 108
magnetic disk, 24, 44
magnetic drums, 49
magnetic tape, 75, 76, 77
magnetic tapes, 49, 77
mail delivery programs, 173
main memory, 43, 45
mainframe, 29, 30, 80
Management Information Systems, 249, 250
Mark I, 19
Mazor, 26
memory, 14, 17, 20, 25, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 50, 57, 64, 65,
66, 68, 69, 71, 72, 73, 75, 76, 77, 118, 119
memory cache, 43

UP Open University
Module 7 239

memory-address register, 36
memory-data register, 36
MESM, 20, 21
microcomputer, 29, 30, 31
microorders, 37
microprocessor, 16, 25, 27, 31, 72
Microprocessors, 25
Microsoft Outlook Express, 174
Microsoft Word, 96, 174, 228
Microwave Communication, 144
minicomputer, 29, 30
modulation, 16, 161, 163, 164, 165
Mohammed Ibn Musa Abu Djefar, 7, 8
monitor, 132
mouse, 59, 60, 110, 144, 187, 190
Multi User Dimension, 178
multiprocessor, 72
multiprogramming, 77, 78
Mycin, 104
Napiers Bones, 9
natural language processing, 2, 108, 109
Natural language processing, 108
Netscape Messenger, 174
network, 78, 122, 123, 124, 125, 127, 129, 130, 132, 134, 135
Network Cabling, 139
Network Interface Cards, 136
network operating system, 78
Network Topologies, 126
Networking Hardware, 135
Networking Protocols, 128
neural networks, 2, 114
nodes, 122, 124, 135
notebook, 31, 32
numeric keypad, 53, 54, 55
operating system, 55, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 78, 79, 80, 81, 135, 168
optical character reader, 64
optical mark reader, 64
Optical memories, 46
overflow, 35, 36
packet switcher, 122
Pascaline, 11
Pathfinder, 105
PDA, 32, 33
Pentium, 27, 28
Personal Computer, 71, 78
Personal Computers, 26, 78

UP Open University
240 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

Personal Digital Assistants, 32

phase modulations, 163
Plagiarism, 224
Plotters, 63
point-to-point, 124
preliminary investigation, 243
presentation software, 98
Printers, 60, 64
Privacy on the web, 219
process, 73, 130
processor, 27, 28, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 43, 56, 60, 64, 65, 66, 68, 77, 96,
97, 122
program, 3, 4, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 92, 96, 98, 99, 104
program counter, 36
programmable ROM, 42
programming language, 91, 189, 190, 251
PROM, 42
protocol, 125, 130, 133
prototype, 14, 17
QWERTY layout, 53, 54
RAID, 45
RAM, 41, 42, 135
Random Access Memory, 41
Read Only Memory, 71
read-only memory, 42, 43
redundant array of inexpensive disks, 45
register, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 43
register set, 35, 36
Remington Rand, 21
Remote Login, 175
Repeaters, 138
resource manager, 72
response time, 77
RFC, 177
ring topology, 127
Robert Noyce, 24
robota, 111
robotics, 2
Robotics, 111
ROM, 42, 43, 46, 47, 49, 71
router, 138, 182
Routers, 138
SA Lebedev, 20
SAGE, 22
Salamis tablet, 6
Satellite Communication, 145

UP Open University
Module 7 241

satellite network, 125

scheduler, 73
search engine, 116, 197, 198, 199
secondary memories, 49
sectors, 44
Semi-Automatic Ground Environment, 22
server, 31, 78, 82, 123, 126, 135, 136, 169, 171, 173, 175, 176, 181, 182,
184, 185, 186, 187, 189, 190, 191, 192, 193, 197, 230, 242
Shielded Twisted Pair, 141, 142
Sir John Ambrose Fleming, 16
slide rule, 10
Slide Rule, 10
smartphone, 32
software, 1, 27, 31, 71, 72, 75, 78, 82, 95, 96, 97, 98, 102, 103, 109, 114,
123, 136, 174, 175, 178, 187, 188, 191, 192, 196, 202, 215, 220, 223, 224,
225, 228, 237
Software Piracy, 223
soroban, 7
Spam, 212
Spamming, 212, 232
speech recognition, 2, 28, 108, 109, 110
Speech synthesis, 109
spreadsheet, 32, 99
SRAM, 41
SSEM, 20
star topology, 126, 127, 137
static RAM, 41
status bits, 36
suan-pan, 7
sub-notebook, 32
supercomputer, 30
task, 90, 95
TCP/IP, 168, 169, 183, 186, 252
telecommunication technology, 1
telephone, 16, 100, 101, 102, 123, 124, 140, 144, 147, 148, 150, 151, 153,
160, 161, 165, 182, 228, 244
Terrestrial Microwave, 145
Thomas Edison, 16
Tim Berners-Lee, 179
time slice, 78
time-sharing, 77
Token Bus, 133
Token ring, 131
Tom Watson, Jr., 24
topology, 124, 129, 131, 133
tracks, 44, 45, 48, 50, 199

UP Open University
242 MMS 101: Introduction to Information Technology

transistor, 15, 24, 25, 41, 75

Transistor, 22, 23
Trojans, 215
typing keys, 53, 55
Uniform Resource Locator, 192
UNIVAC, 21, 22
UNIX, 79, 80, 81, 171, 196, 251
Unshielded Twisted Pair, 139, 141
Usenet News, 176, 178
User agents, 173
UTP, 131
vacuum tubes, 15, 16, 17, 20, 74
video, 28, 33, 42, 52, 57, 80, 95, 102, 117, 179, 187, 188, 193
Video RAM, 42
virtual reality, 2, 178
Virtual Reality Modeling Language, 190
virus, 213, 214, 215, 228, 229, 252
Voice mails, 101
Walter Brattain, 22, 23
WAN, 123
wearable computer, 33
web browser, 172, 187, 193
web page, 193, 210, 230
Wegner, 251
wide area network, 78
WiFi, 147
Wilhelm Schickard, 10
William Norris, 20
William Oughtred, 10
William Shockley, 22
Windows, 27, 79, 81, 82, 96, 108, 171, 187, 196, 209, 226, 228, 237
Wireless Transmission Media, 144
word, 25, 31, 39, 40, 43, 65, 95, 96, 97, 98, 105, 108, 111, 196, 215, 228,
word processing, 95, 96, 229
workstation, 31, 126, 136, 181
Workstations, 136
World Wide Web, 2, 167, 178, 179, 185, 187
Worm, 213
WORM, 46
Z1, 18
Z3, 18

UP Open University