Key Points and Objectives
1. Information is an organizational resource that must be managed as carefully as other resources.
2. Information systems fall into one of the following eight categories:
A. Transaction processing systems (TPS) process large volumes of data, routine business transactions.
B. Office automation systems (OAS) manipulate information and share it throughout the organization. Software, such as spreadsheets, word processing, e-mail and so on are routinely used in OAS.
C. Knowledge work systems (KWS) help professionals to develop new knowledge, often in teams.
D. Management information systems (MIS) are computerized information systems that support a broader range of business functions than do data processing systems.
E. Decision support systems (DSS) are information systems that help support decision makers in making semi-structured decisions.
F. Expert systems capture the expertise of a human expert or experts for solving particular organizational problems.
G. Group decision support systems (GDSS) and computer supported collaborative work systems (CSCWS) allow group members to interact and help facilitate group problem solving.
H. Executive support systems (EES) help senior management to make strategic decisions.
3. New technologies, such as ecommerce, Enterprise Resource Planning, wireless devices and open source software, are being integrated into traditional systems.
4. Ecommerce uses the Web to perform business activities. The benefits of using the Web are:
A. Increasing awareness of the availability of the service, product, industry, person or group
B. 24-hour access for users
C. Improving the usefulness and usability of interface design
D. Creating a global system
5. Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) has the goal of integrating many different information systems within the corporation, using proprietary software.
6. Systems must be designed for wireless and handheld devices, including mobile commerce (mcommerce).
7. Open source software (OSS) provides both software and the program source code used to create the software. Many users and programmers may provide modifications to the programs. Open source software may be categorized into four types of communities:
A. Ad hoc
8. Open source communities differ from each other on six key dimensions:
A. General structure
E. User community
9. Systems analysis and design is a systematic approach to identifying problems, opportunities, and objectives; analyzing the information flows in organizations; and designing computerized information systems to solve a problem.
10. User involvement throughout the systems project is a critical success factor.
11. Systems analysts act as outside consultants to businesses, as supporting experts within a business and as change agents.
12. Analysts are problem solvers and require communication skills.
13. It is important for analysts to be aware of their ethical framework as they work to build relationships with users and customers.
14. The systems development life cycle is a systematic approach to solving business problems.
15. The Human-computer interaction (HCI) is a human-centered approach that places an emphasis on human needs before the needs of an organizational or a system.
16. The human-computer interaction should be included into every phase of the systems development life cycle.
17. The systems development life cycle is divided into seven phases:
A. Identifying problems, opportunities and objectives
B. Determining human information requirements
C. Analyzing system needs
D. Designing the recommended system
E. Developing and documenting software
F. Testing and maintaining the system
G. Implementing and evaluating the system
18. Rapid Application Development (RAD) is an object-oriented approach to systems development.
19. System maintenance is removing undetected errors and enhancing existing software.
20. Systems are enhanced for the following reasons:
A. Adding additional features to the system.
B. Business and governmental requirements change over time.
C. Technology, hardware, and software are rapidly changing.
21. CASE tools are automated, microcomputer-based software packages for systems analysis and design.
22. Four reasons for using CASE tools are:
A. To increase analyst productivity.
B. Facilitate communication among analysts and users.
C. Providing continuity between life cycle phases.
D. To assess the impact of maintenance.
23. CASE tools may be divided into several categories, namely:
A. Upper CASE (also called front-end CASE) tools are used to perform analysis and design.
B. Lower CASE (also called back-end CASE) tools are used to generate computer language source code from CASE design. The advantage in generating source code are:
a. The time to develop new systems decreases.
b. The time to maintain generated code is less than to maintain traditional systems.
c. Computer programs may be generated in more than one language.
d. CASE design may be purchased from third-party vendors and tailored to organizational needs.
e. Generated code is free from program coding errors.
24. Structured analysis and design provides a systematic approach to developing systems and is cyclical in nature.
25. Object-oriented (O-O) analysis and design is used to build object-oriented programs. This includes not only data, but the instructions about operations that manipulate the data. The Unified Modeling Language (UML), a standardized object-oriented modeling language. Object-oriented methodologies focus on small, quick iterations of development.
26. The agile approach takes good software development practices and pushes them to extreme lengths. It is based on:
C. Core practices
27. The four values of the agile approach are:
28. Alternate methodologies (to the systems development life cycle) are available for analyzing systems. These include:
C. Project champions
D. Soft Systems Methodology
Answers to Review Questions (page 23)
1. Compare treating information as a resource to treating humans as a resource.
Information fuels business and can be the critical factor in determining the success or failure of the business. Treating humans as a resource include physical or ergonomic factors, usability factors, aesthetic and enjoyable aspects, and behavioral aspects relating to the usefulness of the system. Treating humans as a resource means learning frustrations and feelings that humans have when working with a system.
2. List the difference between OAS and KWS.
An office automation system (OAS) is a set of familiar commercial software tools that allow data workers to manipulate data, rather than create it. General tools, such as word processing and spreadsheets, are used to manipulate the data. A knowledge work system (KWS) is used by professionals to create new knowledge.
3. Define what is meant by MIS.
Management information systems (MIS) includes transaction processing, decision analysis and produce output that is used in decision making.
4. How does MIS differ from DSS?
Both depend on a database as a source of data. However, DSS emphasizes the support of decision making in all phases and is more closely tailored to the person or group using them.
5. Define the term expert systems. How do expert systems differ from decision support systems?
An expert system captures and uses the knowledge of an expert for solving organizational problems. Expert systems select the best solutions to problems, whereas DSSs leave the ultimate judgment to the decision maker.
6. List the problems of group interaction that group decision support systems (GDSS) and computer-supported collaborative work systems (CSCWS) were designed to address.
The problems of group interaction that group decision support systems address are:
A. Lack of participation
B. Domination by group members
C. Group think decision making.
7. Which is the more general term, CSCWS or GDSS? Explain.
CSCW is a more general term, and may include software support called groupware for team collaboration.
8. Define the term mcommerce.
Mcommerce is mobile commerce, performing ecommerce using handheld wireless devices.
9. List the advantages of mounting applications on the Web.
The advantages of mounting applications on the World Wide Web are:
A. Increasing awareness of the availability of the service, product, industry, person or group.
B. The possibility of 24-hour access for users
C. Standardizing the design of the interface
D. Creating a global system without worry about time zones.
10. What is the overarching reason for designing ERP systems?
The overarching reason for designing ERP systems is the integration of many information systems existing on different managerial levels and within different functions.
11. Provide an example of an open source software project.
There are many open source software projects that are available. Students may be familiar with ones that are not mentioned. Mozilla Firefox, Apache, and Linux are mentioned in this chapter.
12. List the advantages of using systems analysis and design techniques in approaching computerized information systems for business.
System analysis and design techniques provide the analyst with a systematic procedure for analyzing data input, data flow, and information output; furthermore, the techniques can improve the functioning of business.
13. List three roles that the systems analyst is called upon to play. Provide a definition for each one.
The three roles of a system analyst are:
A. Consultant–hired from outside an organization to address information systems issues within that organization.
B. Supporting Expert–serves as a resource for those who are managing a systems project.
C. Change Agent–an analyst who serves as a catalyst for change, develops a plan for change, and works with others in facilitating that change.
14. What personal qualities are helpful to the systems analyst? List them.
Personal qualities helpful to systems analysts include:
A. Problem-solving abilities
B. Communication skills
C. Computer experience
D. Self-discipline and self-motivation
E. Project management capabilities
15. List and briefly define the seven phases of the systems development life cycle (SDLC).
The seven phases of the SDLC are:
A. Identifying problems, opportunities, and objectives–recognizing problems and opportunities confronting the business and determining business objectives.
B. Determining information requirements–understanding what information users need to perform their jobs.
C. Analyzing system needs–structured analysis of information needs and decision making.
D. Designing the recommended system–logical design of the information system.
E. Developing and documenting software–structured development of software and documentation.
F. Testing and maintaining the system–testing and revising the system.
G. Implementing and evaluating the system–training users and reviewing system.
16. What is rapid application development (RAD)?
Rapid application development (RAD) uses operational prototypes to construct a system.
17. List the four reasons for adopting CASE tools.
The four reasons for adopting CASE tools are:
A. Increasing analyst productivity.
B. Facilitating communication among analysts and users.
C. Providing continuity between life cycle phases.
D. Accurately assessing software maintenance changes.
18. Define what is meant by the agile approach?
The agile approach is based on values, principles and core practices. It values communication, simplicity, feedback and courage.
19. Define the terms object-oriented analysis and object-oriented design.
Object-oriented analysis and object-oriented design are techniques intended to facilitate the development of systems that must change rapidly in response to dynamic business environments.
20. What is UML?
UML is the Unified Modeling Language, a standardized object-oriented language used to break down a system into a use case model
||Decision makers are beginning to understand that (information) is not just a by‑product of conducting business, but a critical factor in determining the success or failure of a business. (p. 1)|
||(Transaction processing systems) are computerized information systems developed to process large amounts of data for routine business transactions such as payroll and inventory. (p. 2)|
||When groups of people need to work together to make decisions, a (group decision support system) may be used. (p. 4)|
||The (database) stores data and models that help the user interpret and use the data. (p. 3)|
||An (expert system), also called a knowledge‑based system, effectively captures and uses the knowledge of an expert for solving a particular problem experienced in an organization. (p. 4)|
||When analysts perform any activities in the systems development life cycle and are present in the business for an extended period of time, they are acting as (change agents). (p. 9)|
||The most prominent quality of an analyst is that of a (problem solver). (p. 9)|
||(Opportunities) are situations that the analyst believes can be improved through the use of information systems. (p. 11)|
||The (systems proposal) summarizes what has been found during the systems analysis phase, provides cost/benefit analyses of alternatives, and makes recommendations on what should be done. (p. 13)|
||The (program specifications packet) contains design information necessary for programmers to construct programs. (p. 13)|
||(Implementation) involves training users to use the system and planning for the smooth conversion of the old system to the new one. (p. 14)|
||One important justification for CASE tools is to increase analyst (productivity). (p. 16)|
||CASE tools are useful in (integrating) life‑cycle activities. (p. 17)|
||CASE tools help the analyst to increase productivity, (communicate) more effectively with users and integrate the system’s life cycle work. (p. 16)|
||(Lower CASE) tools generate computer code. (p. 18)|
||The (human computer interaction) is the layer of the computer that is between humans and the computer. (p. 10)|
||(Ecommerce) is mounting an application on the Web. (p. 5)|
||(Enterprise resource planning) is the integration of many information systems existing on different management levels and within different functions. (p. 5)|
||Wireless ecommerce is referred to as (mcommerce). (p. 6)|
||Software that is distributed free along with the program source code is called (open source software) (p. 6)|
||The (unified modeling language) is an industry standard for modeling object-oriented systems. (p. 20)|
||The (agile approach) is based on values, principles, and core practices. (p.20)|