Learn and discuss Types of computer based information system. An information system is defined as the collection, processing, storage, transmission, display and dissemination of information within a whole setting to facilitate the acting upon of such information. In the computer world, it basically means the use of various components of information technology to execute certain tasks. There are five main types of computer based information system.
Hardware is one of the types of computer based information system. Hardware refers to the physical and mechanical parts of a computer. Before data (information without meaning) becomes information, it must pass through a series of four crucial functions: input, processing, output and storage. The input function ensures that data gains entry into the computer system. Devices that support this function include keyboards, joysticks and light pens. The processing function converts data into useful information. The central processing unit supports this function.
The output function entails displaying the processed information to the final user in a manner that he or she can understand. Devices that support the output function include printers and monitors. The storage function ensures that information is stored in a manner that ensures easy retrieval when needed. Devices that support this function include the random access memory (RAM), flash disks and compact disks.
Software is the second among the types of computer based information system. Software are step by step instructions written by computer programmers in the computing language (binary form) which tells the computer what and when to do. They are written using programming language. Software can be broadly classified into two: system software and application software. System software is designed to coordinate the various activities and functions of the hardware and programs throughout the computer system. System software includes operating systems, networking systems and utility programs. Application software on the other hand are a set of user based programs designed to meet the specific needs of the user. Application software include word processing, desktop publishing, internet browsing and data analyzing programs.
Databases are an aggregation of related data or information. They can be deemed to be part of application software but certain people prefer them being among the different types of computer based information system. The data is manipulated by database management systems which also stores the data. These programs are designed to handle huge amounts of data, to find their relation, to properly manage them and to present them to users in a manner they desire. Examples of database management software include Microsoft Access, Paradox and Lotus Approach.
Networks, as the name suggests allow different computer systems to be linked and share common resources. They are also among the types of computer based information system. The most common type of network is the Internet which allows computers around the world to be linked and share information. Examples of networks include Local Area Network (LAN) and Wide Area Network (WAN).
Procedures conclude the list of the types of computer based information system. Procedures are the list of instructions given to hardware, software, databases and networks to achieve a certain result. Procedures are important in ensuring that a sense of order throughout the system prevails.