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What Exactly Is an Information System? Essays

What exactly is an information system? How does it work? What are its management, organization, and technology components? a) Define an information system and describe the activities it performs. From the textbook defines an information system as a set of interrelated components that work together to collect, process, store, and disseminate information to support decision making, coordination, control, analysis, and visualization in an organization.

In addition to supporting decision making, information systems may also help managers and workers analyze problems, visualize complex subjects, and create new products.. From the internet information system is a combination of people, hardware, software, communication devices, network and data resources that processes (can be storing, retrieving, transforming information) data and information for a specific purpose. The operation theory is just similar to any other system, which needs inputs from user (key in instructions and commands, typing, scanning).

The inputted data then will be processed (calculating, reporting) using technology devices such as computers, and produce output (printing reports, displaying results) that will be sent to another user or other system via a network and a feedback method that controls the operation. The picture below shows the procedure of Information System when it works. From PC Magazine Encyclopedia information system is a business application in the computer. It is made up of the database, application programs and manual and machine procedures. It also encompasses the computer systems that do the processing.

Three activities in an information system can produce the information that organizations need to make decisions, control operations, analyze problems, and create new products to make decisions, control operations, analyze problems, and create new products or services. These activities are input, processing and output such as figure 1. 1. Input captures or collects raw data from within the organization or from it s external environment. For example, data about sales transactions can be recorded on source documents such as paper sales order forms. A source document is the original formal record of a transaction). Alternately, salespersons can capture sales data using computer keyboards or optical scanning devices; they are visually prompted to enter data correctly by video displays. This provides them with a more convenient and efficient user interface, that is, methods of end user input and output with a computer system. Methods such as optical scanning and displays of menus, prompts, and fill-in-the-blanks formats make it easier for end users to enter data correctly into an information system. Processing converts this raw input into a meaningful form.

For example, data received about a purchase can be (1) added to a running total of sales results, (2) compared to a standard to determine eligibility for a sales discount, (3) sorted in numerical order based on product identification numbers, (4) classified into product categories (such as food and nonfood items), (5) summarized to provide a sales manager with information about various product categories, and finally, (6) used to update sales records. Output transfers the processed information to the people who will use it or to the activities for which it will be used.

Environmental actors, such as customers, suppliers, competitors, stockholders and regulatory agencies, interact with the organization and its information systems. Common information products messages, reports, forms, and graphic images, which may be provided by video displays, audio responses, paper products, and multimedia. For example, a sales manager may view a video display to check on the performance of a salesperson, accept a computer-produced voice message by telephone, and receive a printout of monthly sales results.

Information systems also require feedback, which is output that is returned to appropriate members of the organization to help them evaluate or correct the input stage. b) List and describe the organizational, management and technology dimension of information system. Organization: The organization dimension of information systems involves issues such as the organization’s hierarchy, functional specialties, business processes, culture and political interest groups.

Management: The management dimension of information systems involves setting organizational strategies, allocating human and financial resources, creating new products and services and re-creating the organization if necessary. Technology: The technology dimension consists of computer hardware, software, data management technology, and networking/telecommunications technology. c) Distinguish data and information and between information system literacy and computer literacy.

Data are streams of raw facts representing events occurring in organizations or the physical environmental before they have been organized and arranged into a form that people can understand and use. Data is raw material for data processing. Data relates to fact, event and transactions. Data refers to unprocessed information. Data is the raw, undigested stuff of acquired numbers and letters. Examples of data could include weather measurements, survey responses and website metrics. Information is data that has been processed in such a way as to be meaningful to the person who receives it.

It is anything that is communicated. Information is data that have been shaped into a form that is meaningful and useful to human beings. Information comes from the processing of the data to derive something useful; so weather data can be processed into a synoptic chart for making a weather forecast, survey results can show the public’s response to a marketing campaign, and so on. For example, researchers who conduct market research survey might ask a member of the public to complete questionnaires about a product or a service.

These completed questionnaires are data; they are processed and analyze in order to prepare a report on the survey. This resulting report is information. Information system literacy is a broad-based understanding of information systems. It includes a behavioral as well as a technical approach to studying information systems. Information systems literacy is the knowledge and hands-on familiarity with hardware, software, peripherals, and network components common to most information systems.

For example, another conception defines it in terms of a set of competencies that an informed citizen of an information society ought to possess to participate intelligently and actively in that society. In contrast, computer literacy is the actual ability to operate a computer and to understand the language used in working with a specific system or systems. Computer literacy focuses primarily on knowledge of information technology. It is limited to understanding how computer hardware and software works. ) Explain how the Internet and the World Wide Web are related to the other technology components of Information system. The internet has created a new "universal" technology platform on which to build new products, services, strategies and business models. This platform has internal uses linking different systems and networks within the firm. For most business today using the internet technology is a business necessity and competitive advantage. The WWW can serve as the foundation for new kinds of information systems.

The Internet and World Wide Web have had a tremendous impact on the role information systems play in organizations. These two tools are responsible for the increased connectivity and collaboration within and outside the organization. The Internet, World Wide Web and other technologies have led to the redesign and reshaping of organizations. They have helped transform the organization’s structure, scope of operations, reporting and control mechanisms, work practices, work flows, and products and services.

Three activities in an information system can produce the information that organizations need to make decisions, control operations, analyze problems, and create new products to make decisions, control operations, analyze problems, and create new products or services. These activities are input, processing and output such as figure 1. 1. Input captures or collects raw data from within the organization or from it s external environment. For example, data about sales transactions can be recorded on source documents such as paper sales order forms. A source document is the original formal record of a transaction). Alternately, salespersons can capture sales data using computer keyboards or optical scanning devices; they are visually prompted to enter data correctly by video displays. This provides them with a more convenient and efficient user interface, that is, methods of end user input and output with a computer system. Methods such as optical scanning and displays of menus, prompts, and fill-in-the-blanks formats make it easier for end users to enter data correctly into an information system.

Processing converts this raw input into a meaningful form. For example, data received about a purchase can be (1) added to a running total of sales results, (2) compared to a standard to determine eligibility for a sales discount, (3) sorted in numerical order based on product identification numbers, (4) classified into product categories (such as food and nonfood items), (5) summarized to provide a sales manager with information about various product categories, and finally, (6) used to update sales records.

Output transfers the processed information to the people who will use it or to the activities for which it will be used. Environmental actors, such as customers, suppliers, competitors, stockholders and regulatory agencies, interact with the organization and its information systems. Common information products messages, reports, forms, and graphic images, which may be provided by video displays, audio responses, paper products, and multimedia.

For example, a sales manager may view a video display to check on the performance of a salesperson, accept a computer-produced voice message by telephone, and receive a printout of monthly sales results. Information systems also require feedback, which is output that is returned to appropriate members of the organization to help them evaluate or correct the input stage.

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