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Information Systems A Managers Guide To Harnessing Technology Pdf Download
Information Systems: A Manager's Guide to Harnessing Technology PDF Download
Are you a manager who wants to learn how to use information systems to improve your organization's performance? Do you want to understand the concepts, components, and capabilities of information systems? Do you want to access a comprehensive and practical guide that covers all the essential topics of information systems? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then this article is for you.
In this article, we will introduce you to a book that will help you master information systems and harness technology for your business success. The book is called Information Systems: A Manager's Guide to Harnessing Technology, written by John Gallaugher, a professor of information systems at Boston College. This book is available in PDF format for free download from the link below.
But before we tell you more about the book, let's first define what information systems are and why they are important for managers.
What is information systems?
Information systems (IS) are the combination of people, processes, data, and technology that enable organizations to collect, store, process, analyze, and share information. Information systems can be used for various purposes, such as supporting operations, enhancing productivity, enabling innovation, creating value, and gaining competitive advantage.
Why do managers need to harness technology?
Managers need to harness technology because technology is changing the way businesses operate, compete, and interact with customers, suppliers, partners, and stakeholders. Technology can help managers improve their efficiency, effectiveness, quality, agility, flexibility, responsiveness, and profitability. Technology can also help managers create new products, services, markets, business models, and strategies. Technology can also help managers cope with the challenges and opportunities of globalization, digitalization, sustainability, and social responsibility.
What are the benefits of reading this book?
Reading this book will help you gain a solid foundation in information systems and learn how to apply them to your managerial problems and opportunities. This book will help you:
Understand the role and value of information systems in organizations
Learn the fundamentals of hardware, software, data, databases, networking, communication, security, and ethics
Explore the current trends and issues in information systems
Analyze real-world cases and examples of successful and unsuccessful use of information systems
Develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills in information systems
Evaluate and select appropriate information systems solutions for your business needs
This book is written in a clear, concise, and engaging style, with plenty of diagrams, tables, figures, and illustrations. It is also updated regularly to reflect the latest developments and innovations in information systems. It is suitable for managers of all levels and backgrounds, as well as students and instructors of information systems courses.
Now that you have an overview of what this book is about, let's dive into the details of each chapter.
Chapter 1: The Role of Information Systems in Organizations
How information systems support business processes
A business process is a set of activities that transform inputs into outputs to achieve a specific goal. For example, a business process can be ordering a product online, manufacturing a car, or delivering a service. Information systems can support business processes by automating, streamlining, integrating, coordinating, and monitoring them. Information systems can also help improve the quality, speed, accuracy, consistency, and reliability of business processes.
How information systems enable competitive advantage
A competitive advantage is a superior position or performance that an organization has over its rivals in the same industry or market. Information systems can enable competitive advantage by creating or enhancing the following sources of value:
Cost leadership: reducing the cost of production or delivery of products or services
Differentiation: offering unique or superior features or benefits that customers value
Focus: targeting a specific segment or niche of customers with specialized needs or preferences
Innovation: introducing new or improved products, services, processes, or business models
Growth: expanding the market share, customer base, geographic reach, or product portfolio
Alliance: collaborating with other organizations to leverage complementary resources or capabilities
Lock-in: creating switching costs or network effects that make customers loyal or dependent on the organization
Timing: being the first or the best to enter or dominate a market or industry
How information systems facilitate decision making
A decision is a choice among alternatives based on criteria and objectives. Decision making is the process of identifying, evaluating, and selecting the best alternative. Information systems can facilitate decision making by providing the following functions:
Data collection: gathering relevant and reliable data from internal and external sources
Data storage: organizing and storing data in databases or data warehouses
Data processing: transforming and manipulating data into meaningful information
Data analysis: applying statistical, mathematical, or artificial intelligence techniques to extract insights from data
Data visualization: presenting data in graphical or interactive forms to enhance understanding and communication
Data dissemination: distributing data or information to the right people at the right time and place
Data feedback: collecting and evaluating the outcomes and impacts of decisions
Chapter 2: Hardware and Software
The components and functions of hardware
Hardware is the physical equipment that makes up an information system. Hardware can be classified into four main components:
Input devices: devices that capture data from the environment or users, such as keyboards, mice, scanners, cameras, microphones, sensors, etc.
Output devices: devices that display or deliver data or information to the environment or users, such as monitors, printers, speakers, projectors, actuators, etc.
Processing devices: devices that perform calculations or operations on data, such as central processing units (CPUs), graphics processing units (GPUs), arithmetic logic units (ALUs), etc.
Storage devices: devices that store data or information for later use, such as hard disk drives (HDDs), solid state drives (SSDs), optical disks (CDs/DVDs/Blu-rays), flash drives (USBs), memory cards (SDs), etc.
The functions of hardware are to input, output, process, and store data or information.
The types and features of software
Software is the set of instructions or programs that control the hardware and enable it to perform specific tasks. Software can be classified into two main types:
System software: software that manages the basic operations and functions of the hardware and software components of an information system. Examples of system software are operating systems (OS), device drivers, firmware, utilities, etc.
Application software: software that performs specific tasks for users or organizations. Examples of application software are word processors (Word), spreadsheets (Excel), databases (Access), web browsers (Chrome), games (Minecraft), etc.
The trends and challenges of hardware and software
Hardware and software are constantly evolving and improving to meet the changing needs and demands of users and organizations. Some of the current trends and challenges of hardware and software are:
Moore's law: the observation that the number of transistors on a chip doubles every two years, leading to exponential growth in processing power and performance
Cloud computing: the delivery of computing resources and services over the internet, such as storage, servers, databases, software, etc.
Internet of things (IoT): the network of physical objects embedded with sensors, software, and connectivity that can collect and exchange data
Artificial intelligence (AI): the simulation of human intelligence and capabilities by machines, such as learning, reasoning, problem-solving, etc.
Big data: the large and complex datasets that are generated from various sources and require advanced tools and techniques for analysis
Cybersecurity: the protection of information systems and data from unauthorized access, use, modification, or destruction
Sustainability: the minimization of environmental impact and resource consumption of information systems and technology
Accessibility: the provision of equal access and opportunity to information systems and technology for people with disabilities or special needs
Chapter 3: Data and Databases
The concepts and characteristics of data
Data is the raw facts or figures that represent events or phenomena in the real world. Data can be classified into different types based on their format or meaning, such as:
Numeric: data that consists of numbers or quantities, such as age, height, weight, etc.
Text: data that consists of words or characters, such as name, address, email, etc.
Image: data that consists of pixels or colors, such as photos, logos, icons, etc.
Audio: data that consists of sounds or frequencies, such as music, speech, noise, etc.
Video: data that consists of sequences of images or frames, such as movies, clips, animations, etc.
Date/time: data that consists of dates or times, such as birthday, appointment, deadline, etc.
Boolean: data that consists of true or false values, such as yes/no, on/off, male/female, etc.
Data can also have different characteristics based on their quality or usefulness, such as:
Accuracy: the degree to which data reflects reality or truth
Completeness: the degree to which data covers all the relevant aspects or dimensions
Consistency: the degree to which data is free from contradictions or conflicts
Timeliness: the degree to which data is current or up-to-date
Relevance: the degree to which data is related or applicable to a specific purpose or context
Validity: the degree to which data conforms to a specific format or standard
Uniqueness: the degree to which data is free from duplicates or repetitions
The principles and practices of database management
maintains, and controls the database. A database can have different models or structures based on how the data is organized and related, such as:
Relational: a model that organizes data into tables with rows and columns, and uses primary keys and foreign keys to link the tables
Hierarchical: a model that organizes data into a tree-like structure with parent-child relationships
Network: a model that organizes data into a graph-like structure with multiple connections between nodes
Object-oriented: a model that organizes data into objects with attributes and methods
NoSQL: a model that organizes data into various formats, such as key-value pairs, documents, graphs, etc.
The principles and practices of database management include:
Data modeling: the process of designing and defining the structure and relationships of data in a database
Data definition: the process of creating and modifying the schema or metadata of a database
Data manipulation: the process of inserting, updating, deleting, and querying data in a database
Data administration: the process of managing and maintaining the security, performance, backup, recovery, and integrity of a database
The tools and techniques of data analysis
Data analysis is the process of transforming data into information or knowledge that can be used for decision making or action taking. Data analysis can involve various tools and techniques, such as:
Data mining: the process of discovering patterns, trends, or associations from large and complex datasets
Data warehousing: the process of integrating data from multiple sources and storing them in a centralized repository for analysis
Data visualization: the process of presenting data in graphical or interactive forms to enhance understanding and communication
Data analytics: the process of applying statistical, mathematical, or artificial intelligence techniques to extract insights from data
Data science: the process of applying scientific methods and principles to solve problems or generate value from data
Business intelligence: the process of using data to support business decisions and actions
Chapter 4: Networking and Communication
The basics and benefits of networking
A network is a system of interconnected devices that can communicate with each other. A network can have different types based on their size or scope, such as:
Personal area network (PAN): a network that connects devices within a short range, such as Bluetooth devices
Local area network (LAN): a network that connects devices within a small area, such as an office or a home
Metro area network (MAN): a network that connects devices within a large area, such as a city or a campus
Wide area network (WAN): a network that connects devices across long distances, such as the internet
The benefits of networking include:
Sharing resources: networks enable users to share hardware, software, data, or information among devices
Collaborating with others: networks enable users to communicate and cooperate with other users across locations and time zones
Accessing services: networks enable users to access various services provided by servers or cloud providers, such as email, web, social media, etc.
firewalls, antivirus, etc.
Improving performance: networks enable users to optimize the speed, reliability, and efficiency of their devices and data by using compression, caching, load balancing, etc.
The standards and protocols of communication
Communication is the process of exchanging data or information between devices in a network. Communication can have different modes based on the direction or timing of the exchange, such as:
Simplex: a mode that allows one-way communication, such as a radio broadcast
Half-duplex: a mode that allows two-way communication, but not at the same time, such as a walkie-talkie
Full-duplex: a mode that allows two-way communication at the same time, such as a telephone
Synchronous: a mode that requires both devices to be online and available at the same time, such as a video call
Asynchronous: a mode that does not require both devices to be online and available at the same time, such as an email
The standards and protocols of communication are the rules and conventions that govern how devices communicate with each other in a network. Some of the common standards and protocols are:
TCP/IP: a suite of protocols that defines how data is transmitted and routed over the internet
HTTP: a protocol that defines how web browsers and web servers communicate and exchange web pages
SMTP: a protocol that defines how email clients and email servers communicate and exchange emails
FTP: a protocol that defines how files are transferred between devices in a network
Wi-Fi: a standard that defines how wireless devices connect and communicate with each other in a LAN
Bluetooth: a standard that defines how wireless devices connect and communicate with each other in a PAN
The issues and opportunities of networking and communication
Networking and communication can pose various issues and opportunities for users and organizations. Some of the current issues and opportunities are:
Bandwidth: the amount of data that can be transmitted or received in a given time. Bandwidth can affect the speed and quality of communication. Users and organizations need to optimize their bandwidth usage and allocation to meet their needs and demands.
Latency: the delay or lag between sending and receiving data. Latency can affect the responsiveness and reliability of communication. Users and organizations need to minimize their latency by choosing the best route or channel for their communication.
Congestion: the situation where too many devices or data compete for limited network resources. Congestion can cause slowdowns, errors, or failures in communication. Users and organizations need to manage their congestion by using techniques such as prioritization, queuing, or throttling.
and protocols for their communication.
Privacy: the right or expectation of users to control their personal data or information. Privacy can be violated or compromised by unauthorized access, use, disclosure, or theft of data or information. Users and organizations need to protect their privacy by using encryption, authentication, authorization, or anonymization.
Security: the state or condition of being protected from harm or danger. Security can be threatened or breached by malicious attacks or accidents that damage or destroy data or information. Users and organizations need to ensure their security by using firewalls, antivirus, backup, recovery, or contingency plans.
Social media: the platforms or applications that enable users to create and share content or interact with other users online. Social media can create new opportunities or challenges for communication and collaboration. Users and organizations need to leverage social media for their personal or professional goals and benefits.
Mobile computing: the use of portable devices that can access and communicate with networks wirelessly. Mobile computing can increase the convenience and flexibility of communication and collaboration. Users and organizations need to adapt to mobile computing for their changing needs and preferences.
Chapter 5: Information Security and Ethics
The threats and risks of information security
Information security is the protection of information systems and data from unauthorized access, use, modification, or destruction. Information security can face various threats and risks from different sources and motives, such as:
Hackers: individuals or groups who break into information systems or networks for fun, fame, profit, or harm
Cybercriminals: individuals or groups who use information systems or networks to commit illegal or unethical acts, such as fraud, theft, extortion, etc.
Cyberterrorists: individuals or groups who use information systems or networks to cause fear, panic, violence, or disruption for political or ideological purposes
Cyberwarriors: individuals or groups who use information systems or networks to attack or defend the interests of a nation or state