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IT Infrastructure

The shared technology resources that provide the platform for the firm's specific information system applications.

Client/Server computing

Desktop or laptop computers called clients are networked to powerful server computers that provide the client computers with a variety of services and capabilities.

Multi-tiered client/server architectures

the work of the entire network is balanced over several different levels of servers, depending on the kind of service being requested.

Web server

will serve a web page to a client in response to a request for service. Responsible for locating and managing stored web pages.

Application server

handles all application operations between a user and an organization's back-end business systems.


leading operating system run by Microsoft

Cloud computing

model of computing that provides access to a shared pool of computing resources over a network. These "clouds" of computing resources can be accessed on an as-needed basis from any connected device and location.

Moore's Law

1. the power of microprocessors doubles every 18 months. 2. Computing power doubles every 18 months. 3. The price of computing falls by half every 18 months.


uses individual atoms and molecules to create computer chips and other devices that are thousands of times smaller than current technologies permit.

Law of Mass Digital Storage

The amount of digital information is doubling every year. The cost of storing digital info is falling at an exponential rate of 100% per year.

Metcalfe's Law and Network Economics

the value or power of a network grows exponentially as a function of the number of people who use it.

Technology standards

specifications that establish the compatibility of products and the ability to communicate in a network.

Blade servers

ultra thin computers consisting of a circuit board with processors, memory, and network connections that are stored in racks.


operating system used by 25% of corporate server users


inexpensive and robust open source relative of Unix

Operating system

manages the resources and activities of the computer

Chrome OS

lightweight OS for cloud computing using netbooks.


mobile OS developed by Android Inc.


use their fingers to manipulate objects on the screen.

Storage area networks (SANs)

connect multiple storage devices on a separate high-speed network dedicated to storage.

Web hosting service

maintains a large web server, or series of servers, and provides fee-paying subscribers with space to maintain their web sites

Legacy systems

generally older transaction processing systems created for mainframe computers that continue to be used to avoid the high cost of replacing or redesigning them.


small, low-cost lightweight subnotebooks, optimized for wireless communication and internet access, with core computing functions

Grid computing

involves connecting geographically remote computers into a single network to create a virtual supercomputer by combining the computational power of all computers on the grid.


the process of presenting a set of computing resources so that they can all be accessed in ways that are not restricted by physical configuration or geographic location.

Public cloud

maintained by an external service provider, accessed through the internet, and available to the general public.

Private cloud

proprietary network or a data center that ties together servers, storage, networks, data, and applications as a set of virtualized services that are shared by users inside a company.

Utility computing/ on demand computing

the amount of computing power actually used

Green computing/green IT

practices and technologies for designing, manufacturing, using, and disposing of computers, servers, and associated devices such as monitors, printers, storage devices, and networking and communications systems to minimize impact on the environment.

Autonomic computing

industry wide effort to develop systems that can configure themselves, optimize and tune themselves, heal themselves when broken, and protect themselves from outside intruders and self-destruction.

Multicore processor

an integrated circuit to which two or more processor cores have been attached for enhanced performance, reduced power consumption, and more efficient simultaneous processing of multiple tasks.

Open source software

software produced by a community of several hundred thousand programmers around the world.


operating system independent, processor independent, object oriented programming language that has become the leading interactive environment for the web.

Web browser

easy to use software tool with graphical user interface for displaying web pages and for accessing the web and other internet resources.


a web development technique for creating interactive web applications that allows the client and server to exchange small pieces of data behind the scene so that an entire web page doesn't have to be reloaded each time the user requests a change.


Extensible Markup Language. More powerful and flexible markup language than HTML (hypertext markup language) which is a page description language for specifying how text, video, graphics, and sound are placed on a web page document.


(hypertext markup language) a page description language for specifying how text, video, graphics, and sound are placed on a web page document.

Service oriented architecture

set of self-contained services that communicate with each other to create a working software application. The collection of the web services that are used to build a firm's software systems.

Software package

prewritten commercially available set of software programs that eliminates the need for a firm to write its own software programs for certain functions such as payroll processing or order handling.


enables a firm to contract custom software development or maintenance of existing legacy programs to outside firms, which often operate offshore in low-wage areas around the world.

Software as a Service

services for delivering and providing access to software remotely as a web based service

Service level agreement

formal contract between customers and their service provider that defines the specific responsibilities of the service provider and the level of service expected by the customer.


individual users and entire companies mix and match software components to create their own customized applications and to share information with others.


small pieces of software that run on the internet, on your computer, or on your cell phone and are generally delivered over the internet.


the ability of a computer, product, or system to expand to serve a large number of users without breaking down.

Total cost of ownership

hardware, software, installation, training, support, maintenance, infrastructure, downtime, space and energy.


high speed internet connection provided by telephone and TV cable companies. Used by more than 60% of US internet users.

Network interface card

each computer on the network has a network interface device. Usually built into the motherboard.

Network operating system

routes and manages communications on the network and coordinates network resources.


simple devices that connect network components, sending a packet of data to all other connected devices.


more intelligence than a hub and can filter and forward data to a specified destination on the network.


communications processor used to route packets of data through different networks, ensuring that the data sent gets to the correct address.

Packet switching

method of slicing digital messages into parcels called packets, sending the packets along different communication paths as they become available, and then reassembling the packets once they arrive at their destinations.


set of rules and procedures governing transmission of information between two points in a network.

Transmission Control Protocol/ Internet Protocol

TCP/IP corporate networks are increasingly using this as a single common worldwide standard. TCP handles the movement of sequences between computers. IP is responsible for the delivery of packets and includes the disassembling and reassembling of packets during transmission.


modulator-demodulator. Computers use digital signals and require a modem to convert the digital signals into analog signals that can be sent over telephone lines, cable lines, or wireless media that uses analog signals.

Local area connection (LAN)

to connect personal computers and other digital devices within a half mile radius.

Peer to peer network

treats all processors equally and is used primarily in small networks with 10 or fewer users.


the way components are connected together

Star topology

all devices on the network connect to a single hub.

Bus topology

one station transmits signals which travel in both directions along a single transmission segment. All of the signals are broadcast in both directions to the entire network. (most common)

Ring topology

connects network components in a closed loop. Messages pass from computer to computer in only one direction around the loop, and only one station at a time may transmit.

Wide area networks (WANs)

span broad geographical distances, entire regions, states, continents, or the entire globe.

Metropolitan area network (MAN)

spans a metropolitan area, usually a city and its major suburbs.

Twisted wire

strands of copper wire twisted in pairs and is an older type of transmission medium.

Coaxial cable

consists of thickly insulated copper wire that can transmit a larger volume of data than twisted wire.

Fiber optic cable

consists of bound strands of clear glass fiber, each the thickness of a human hair. Data are transformed into impulses of light, which are sent through the fiber optic cable by a laser device. It's lighter, faster, and more durable, but more expensive and harder to install.

Microwave systems

transmit high frequency radio signals through the atmosphere and are widely used for high volume, long distance, point to point communication.


the number of cycles per second that can be sent through a telecommunications medium is measured in hertz. One hertz is equal to one cycle of the medium.

Internet service provider

commercial organization with a permanent connection to the internet that sells temporary connections to retail subscribers.

Digital subscriber line

technologies operate over existing telephone lines to carry voice, data, and video.

Cable internet connections

provided by cable television vendors, use digital cable coaxial lines to deliver high speed internet access to homes and businesses.

T1 Lines

international telephone standard for digital communication. Offer guaranteed delivery at 1.54 Mbps

Internet Protocol (IP) address

every computer is assigned an IP address

Domain name system (DNS)

converts domain names to IP addresses.

Domain name

the English-like name that corresponds to the IP address.

Internet 2

consortia representing 200 universities, private businesses, and government agencies in the US that are working on a new, robust, high bandwidth version of the internet.


service that allows you to log into one computer system and do work on another.

File Transfer Protocol

transferring files from computer to computer.

Email, chat, IM


Voice over IP

voice information in digital form using packet switching, avoiding the tolls charged by local and long distance telephone networks.

Unified communications

integrates disparate channels for voice communications, data communications, instant messaging, email, and electronic conferencing into a single experience where users can seamlessly switch back and forth between different communication modes.

Virtual private network (VPN)

a secure, encrypted private network that has been configured within a public network to take advantage of the economies of scale and management facilities of large networks, such as the internet.

Web site

collection of web pages linked to a home page.

Hypertext transfer protocol (HTTP)

the communications standard used to transfer pages on the web.

Uniform resource locator (URL)

the web address which consists of the protocol used to display web pages (http://), the domain name, directory path, and document name.

Search engine

attempt to solve the problem of finding useful information on the web nearly instantly.

Search engine marketing

pay to get listed in top search results

Search engine optimization

process of improving the quality and volume of web traffic to a web site by employing a series of techniques that help a website achieve a higher ranking with major search engines.

Intelligent agent shopping bots

use intelligent agent software for searching the internet for shopping information.

Web 2.0

generation, interactive internet based services that enable people to collaborate, share information, and create new services and content online.


personal website with chronological entries


totality of blog related websites


Rich Site Summary. Syndicates web site content so that it can be used in another setting.


collaborative websites where visitors can add, delete, or modify content on the site.

Social networking

enables users to build communities of friends and professional colleagues.

Web 3.0

promise of a future web where all digital information, can be woven into a single meaningful experience.

Semantic web

"meaning" same as 3.0

4G Networks

next evolution in wireless communication. Entirely packet switched with premium quality and high security.


802.15 wireless networking standard

Personal area networks (PANs)

is a computer network used for communication among computer devices, including telephones and personal digital assistants, in proximity to an individual's body.


802.11 set of standards for wireless LANs and wireless internet access.


typically consist of one or more access points providing wireless internet access in a public place.


Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access. IEEE standard 802.16. Wireless access range up to 31 miles.

ggg) Radio Frequency Identification (RFID)

provide powerful technology for tracking the movement of goods throughout the supply chain.

Wireless sensor networks (WSNs)

networks of interconnected wireless devices that are embedded into the physical environment to provide measurements of many points over large spaces.

Online analytical processing (OLAP)

supports multidimensional data analysis, enabling users to view the same data in different ways using multiple dimensions.

Data mining

provides insights into corporate data that cannot be obtained with OLAP by finding hidden patterns and relationships in large databases and inferring rules from them to predict future behavior.

Predictive analytics

data mining technologies, historical data, and assumptions about future conditions to predict outcomes of events

Text mining

able to extract key elements from large unstructured data sets, discover patterns and relationships, and summarize the information.

Web mining

the discovery and analysis of useful patterns and info from the web

Unstructured decisions

decision maker must provide judgment, evaluation, and insight to solve the problem.

Structured decisions

are repetitive and routine and involve a definite procedure for handling them so that they don't have to be treated each time as if they were new.

Semi-structured decisions

only part of the problem has a clear-cut answer provided by an accepted procedure.


Step 1. in decision making process. Consists of discovering, identifying, and understanding the problems occurring in the organization


Step 2. in decision making process. involves identifying and exploring various solutions to the problem


Step 3 in the decision making process. consists of choosing among solution alternatives


Step 4 in the decision making process. involves making the chosen alternative work and continuing to monitor how well the solution is working.

Classical model of management

five functions: planning, organizing, coordinating, deciding, and controlling.

Behavioral models

state that the actual behavior of managers appears to be less systematic, more informal, less reflective, more reactive, and less well organized than the classical model would have us believe.

Managerial roles

expectations of the activities that managers should perform in an organization. 3 categories: interpersonal, informational, and decisional.

Data visualization

tools to help users see patterns and relationships in large amounts of data that would be difficult to discern if the data were presented as traditional lists of texts.

Geographic information systems

help decision makers visualize problems requiring knowledge about the geographic distribution of people or other resources.

Balance scorecard method

framework for operationalizing a firm's strategic plan by focusing on measurable outcomes on four dimensions of firm performance: financial, business process, customer, and learning and growth.

Key performance indicators

the measures purposed by senior management for understanding how well the firm is performing along any given dimension.

Business performance management (BPM)

attempts to systematically translate a firm's strategies into operational targets.

Drill down

for more detailed views of data

Group decision support systems (GDSS)

an interactive, computer based system for facilitating the solution of unstructured problems by a set of decision makers working together as a group in the same location or in different locations.

Enterprise software

built around thousands of predefined business processes that reflect best practices. Companies implementing this software must first select the functions of the system they wish to use and then map their business processes to the predefined business processes in the software.

Supply chain

a network of organizations and business processes for procuring raw materials, transforming these materials into intermediate and finished products, and distributing the finished products to consumers.

Just in time strategy

components arrive exactly at the moment they are needed and finished goods are shipped as they leave the assembly line.

Bullwhip effect

information about the demand for a product gets distorted as it passes from one entity to the next across the supply chain.

Supply chain planning systems

enable the firm to model its existing supply chain, generate demand forecasts for products, and develop optimal sourcing and manufacturing plans.

Demand planning

how much product a business needs to make to satisfy all of its customers' demands.

Supply chain execution systems

manage the flow of products through distribution centers and warehouses to ensure that products are delivered to the right locations in the most efficient manner.

Push based model

production master schedules are based on forecasts or best guesses of demand for products, and products are "pushed" to customers.

Pull based model

driven model, build to order, actual customers orders or purchases trigger events in the supply chain.

Touch point

a method of interaction with a customer (also known as contact point)

Partner relationship management (PRM)

uses data, tools, and systems to enhance collaboration between a company and its selling partners.

Employee relationship management

deals with employee issues that are closely related to CRM, such as setting objectives, employee performance measurement, performance based compensation, and employee training.

Cross selling

the marketing of complimentary products to customers.

Operational CRM

includes customer-facing applications such as tools for sales force automation, call center and customer service support, and marketing automation.

Analytical CRM

includes applications that analyze customer data generated by operational CRM applications to provide information for improving business performance.

Churn rate

measures the number of customers who stop using or purchasing products or services from a company.


refers to the policies, procedures, and technical measures used to prevent unauthorized access, alteration, theft, or physical damage to information systems


methods, policies, and organizational procedures that ensure the safety of the organization's assets; the accuracy and reliability of its records; and operational adherence to management standards.

Computer virus

rogue software program that attaches itself to other software programs or data files in order to be executed, usually without user knowledge or permission.


computer programs that copy themselves from one computer to other computers over a network.

Trojan horse

software program that appears to be benign but then does something other than expected. Not a virus itself, but it lets other viruses and malicious code into the system.

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