Management information systems revision question and answer

CPA-Quantitative-Analysis-Section-4 BLOCK RELEASE

(a) Computer aided software engineering (CASE) is a tool for programmers, systems analysts, business analysts and systems developers used to help automate software development and at the same time improve software quality.
Required:
Under what circumstances would the use of CASE tools be considered a viable option the systems developers?
(b) What impact may end-user computing have on the organisation of information technology (IT) functions?

(c) Explain the meaning and the use(s) of the following types of storage:
(i) Writable/recoverable CDs. (ii)DVDs.
ANSWER
a) Circumstances:
1. Common systems development methodology being used e.g. Structured Systems Analysis and Design Methodology (SSADM), Rapid Application Development (RAD) CASE tools ensure that all standards related to a given methodology are adhered to thus guaranteeing software quality.
2. Group working
CASE tools organize and correlate group design components and provide rapid access to them via a design repository.
3. Complex graphic features required in the system
CASE tools provide facilities for generating complex screen designs and implementing the designs through code.
4. System composed of many program modules
CASE tools automate code generation thus reducing systems development time.
5. High degree of systems reliability a must
CASE tools provide facilities for rigorous testing thus guaranteeing high systems reliability.
6. Systems analysis and design is tedious and error prone
CASE tools automate the tedious and error prone portions of systems analysis and design thus reducing the time spent on systems analysis and design and hence the overall systems development time is reduced.

b) End user computing
This refers to an approach to systems development where some types of information systems can be developed end users with little or no formal assistance from technical specialists. Using 4th generation languages and PC software tools, end users can access data, create reports and develop entire information systems on their own, with little or no help from professional systems analysts or programmers.

Impact on the organization of IT functions:
End user computing has in most cases eliminated the role played systems analysts and programmers as shown in the diagram below.

Traditional systems (lifecycle) development

End user computing has reduced the systems analysts and programmers roles to advisory roles. The systems analyst and the programmers may participate in the creation of new systems only advising the end user on technical aspects e.g. report generation and complex query formation.

c) (i) Writable/recoverable CDs
CD (compact disk)
This refers to a storage media which utilizes laser technology to store massive quantities of data in a highly compact form.

Writable/recoverable CDs are a form of CDs which allow users to rewrite data on the CDs several times. They are useful when data to be stored on the disk is subject to occasional updates.

(ii) DVDs
This stands for digital video disks or digital versatile disks. This is a high capacity optical (i.e. utilizes laser technology) storage medium that can store full-length videos and large amounts of data. DVDs are used for storing movies, music, encyclopedias, books, etc

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