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Yvonne V. Richardson

REPORT: Information Technologies Leading Edge

Information Technologies Departments take advantage of the best technology they can invest in and maintain.  Common methods of adding computing to a business infrastructure include some combination of installations, conversions, and upgrades.


Installation: The very first time, the IT department acquires computers and attaches them to the network. Small businesses may invest in a single computer/monitor/printer system, with the software appropriate to their needs. Larger business like libraries, classrooms, hospitals, and other places can still experience this, a room at a time, until the entire business has its computing requirements met. In some instances, installation includes planning, architecture, pricing, or requirements gathering.


Conversion: Existing information systems and applications must be ported to new platforms. Development and deployment implies that software for the new systems must be created, tested, and put into production environments or possibly made available to external customers, depending on the type of business.  Existing information must also be extracted from the old systems and loaded into the new systems.


Upgrade: Hardware and software upgrades occur regularly.  Computer upgrades include faster processors or larger disk drives.  Software is improved by adding new features.  Information Technologies departments may add their own features, in the same way that software companies create new word processors, spreadsheets, browsers, or security software.


The week's assignment will be to report on a business that has upgraded its Information Technology infrastructure in at least one of these three phases.  Your report must be two pages, double-spaced, and include a page of references. You will author your report according to MLA format. Your report should include the name of the business, where it is located, the size of the company, and the industry of the corporation.

Link to Example

Your report could describe one these IT enhancement phases in more detail. Please use the Internet and the Library for your research to find information that is public-facing, and therefore not proprietary.  Some of your research may take you to the Business Journal stacks, or from Information computing magazines. Information Week may be more useful than Wired.

Hardware and Networking students might choose to include the types of servers, routers, and computers that were installed.  Web Applications students might want to report on the conversion tools that were created and the web apps that were developed.


Useful Websites

http://www.uwb.edu/library or http://libguides.uwb.edu/bit

MLA Formatting and Style Guide: