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The Value of Data and the Use of Databases

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Introduction

The Value of Data and the Use of Databases Data is valuable for a number of reasons: * It takes time to compile. * It takes time to input the data into the computer. * Its historical value * It can be analysed, accurate, and up-to-date. Data can be very valuable to an organisation providing it can be clearly analysed. An example of the value of data is the use of stock control systems. As the data about stock can be updated each time a stock item is sold, the stock situation is always up-to-date. This means that, as soon as the amount in stock falls below a reorder level, an order can be placed. Indeed, many systems trigger the reordering automatically as soon as the number in stock falls below its reorder level. This is often done by the system sending the order to the supplier using electronic data interchange (EDI). This automatic stock reordering has two cost effects. First it means that the organisation should rarely run out of stock which causes a loss of sales and, hence, loss of income. It also means that the organisation should not need to store large quantities of stock which leads to high inventory costs. If the organisation also keeps data showing the rates of sales of products, the system can recognise changes in these rates and so change its ordering patterns. Thus, data about products in stock and rates of sales is valuable as they improve the profitability of the organisation. In order for data to be of value they must be accurate and up-to-date. Often data are inaccurate due to them not being frequently updated. If the sales figures are only used once a week to update the stock database, the stock levels are soon out of date and the data have little value. These days banks offer services other than banking. ...read more.

Middle

voltage) drops as the distance increases. Repeaters can be used to connect two segments of a network. It repeats data from one segment to another, enhancing the signal, as shown below. Repeaters do not segment a network and do not partition a network into sub-networks. They simply extend a network. 2) Hub. These are used to connect many computers to one computer. For example, in a star network, all the cables from each individual computer go back and connect to a hub. The hub then connects to the server. Hubs can also boost signal strength if needs be. 3) Switch. A switch is a more 'intelligent' hub. It can set up communication paths between different clients and different servers, for example, at the same time. If a user has large files to transmit, or a large volume of data, then switches would be more appropriate than hubs. Newer technology replaces hubs with switches. This allows greater speed because each station is switched in and thus has full network speed. Switches 'learn' which connections are required and join the corresponding ends. If, at the same time, Station 1 wishes to communicate with Print Server , Station 2 with Web Server, Station 3 with File Server and Station 4 with Mail server, this is possible as the switch will set up four independent paths. This means that data can flow at maximum speed along each as the system will be treated as four independent circuits. 4) Bridge. A bridge connects two similar LANs together. Users think it is logically one LAN even though it is physically two. Bridges enable the users of one network to use the resources of the other. 5) Modem A modem provides a 'dial-up connection' for a computer. It is used typically to allow a computer (which is a digital device) to communicate with other computers using the public telephone system (which is largely an analogue system). ...read more.

Conclusion

This has reduced the need for paperwork, has meant that work cannot get lost; there is an audit trail of when work was handed in, marked and returned and the lecturer can retrieve, mark and return work from anywhere. Supermarkets' stock is now monitored and re-ordered automatically using computerised stock control systems. This has removed some of the tasks that used to be done by workers, for example, making a decision about when to reorder. The collection of sales information has also led to the growth of data mining and data warehousing. These industries have helped companies maximise their profits. Kitchen designers now design kitchens using sophisticated 3D design software. You take in your kitchen measurements, they tap them in to their software and you can then get a very good picture of what your final kitchen would look like from a variety of angles. This has decreased the likelihood of misunderstandings between sales staff and customer and has helped the customer to picture exactly what they will be getting. The use of automated speed traps to catch speeding motorists has helped reduce the number of police hours tackling this particular problem. Improved quality Computerised technology has not only bought about changes in the way people work but also in the quality of work produced. The flat-pack kitchen manufacturing process has improved over the years. Sophisticated computer technology has meant that self-assembly furniture is now manufactured very accurately. This means not only greater customer satisfaction but also less time and money spent. The increasing use of robots in the car manufacturing industry has meant that less time needs to be spent correcting human errors. Robots can produce work to a much higher standard than humans. They can work to finer tolerances and can produce higher quality work consistently. The quality of animation used for entertainment has improved considerably. If you compare the animation in Jurassic Park or Toy Story, for example, with that from films made a few decades ago there is a world of difference. Use of systems & Data James Leong Mook Seng 1 A2 ...read more.

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