Assignment on "Information Systems"
a) Analyse and explain the information problems facing the company.
As we can conclude from the description, the main business process of DEC Systems is the process of transportation of parcel from point 'A' to point 'B' in 24 or less hours. There are two "streams" corresponding to this business-process, namely the stream of parcels and the stream of information concerning them.
Failures in parcel delivery process are caused by the following reason: the transportation speed of the parcel between warehouses located within 50-kilometre radius is greater then the speed of information propagation concerning the parcel and there might appear such situations when at destination warehouse there is no data on the parcel delivered, which may cause, in turn, failure in delivery schedule. What is the reason of it? Such situations are caused by the "current computer system" of DEC Systems which is as the following:
The main network is a wide-area network (WAN), with each distribution warehouse being linked to a single central database via a dedicated land telephone line.
Each warehouse itself runs a local-area network (LAN) with a server maintaining up-to-date files for that location. The central database is updated from each warehouse every three hours on average. Update is hindered by the low transfer rate of the data transmission equipment. At the same time the central database is updated, the LAN at each warehouse receives the current copy of the database. There are 27 sites, and about six minutes' processing data transmission time is required per site for full update of the database. Input at each warehouse is by keyboard and VDU to the local database. Data is validated on input. Errors normally occur when packages are received from other warehouses, within a 50-kilometre radius, before the local database has...