AQA ICT Info 2 section 11- People and ICT systems

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  • People and ICT systems
    • Characteristics of users
      • Environment
        • The design of an ICT system will depend on the environment the system will be used in
          • For example, a person who will work in a quiet place like a library or a quiet office, the user will most likely want the audio playing through headphones rather than speakers
      • Physical Characteristics
        • An ICT system might have to be designed specifically for someone who has disabilities
          • For example, someone who has a disability in their hand/arm won't be able to use a mouse very well. An alternative to this could be using a foot mouse or speech recognition
      • Experience
        • Different users may have different technical abilities when using an ICT system.
          • For example, the older generation may not be as experienced as the younger generation.
      • Age
        • Older users may react slower than younger users, so the ability tho adjust the speed of the cursor and the rate at which they need to double-click an icon can help them massively
    • Interfaces
      • GUI- WIMP
        • Windows
          • A rectangular area on the screen where the commonly used applications run
        • Icons
          • A picture or symbol used to represent a software applicaiton or hardware device
        • Pointers
          • A symbol such as an arrow which moves around the screen as you move your mouse.
        • Menus
          • A list of options from which the user can choose what the require.
        • Benefits and drawbacks of GUI's
          • Benefit- Tend to be user-friendly, making software more intuitive for inexperienced users
          • Drawback-Require a lot of system resources like disk space and memory
      • Command Line interface
        • Most usually used by experts who know a llot of code lines
        • A CLI relies on the user to input commands for the computer to execute.
        • Command Line interfaces don't need much storage space, and can even be quicker than GUIs for expert users
        • Benefits and drawbacks of CLI's
          • Benefit- No graphics= less demanding for system resources
          • Drawback- Need a vast amount of knowledge.
      • Menu Driven Interfaces
        • Menus are mostly used by entering numbers where prompted
          • For example, Press 1 for stock levels. Press 2 for for sales.
        • Most commonly used in public information in shopping centres or train stations.
          • Train station example. Input 1 for next train arrival time. Input 2 for next train departure time
        • Benefits and drawbacks of MDI's
          • Benefit- Can be used effectively with touch screen technology.
          • Drawback- Can be slow as each user has to follow  set routes.
    • Interface design for effective communication
      • Most important factor is making the interface fit the user and not the other way round
        • The designer needs to take these facotrs into consideration
          • Characteristics of users
            • Environment
              • The design of an ICT system will depend on the environment the system will be used in
                • For example, a person who will work in a quiet place like a library or a quiet office, the user will most likely want the audio playing through headphones rather than speakers
            • Physical Characteristics
              • An ICT system might have to be designed specifically for someone who has disabilities
                • For example, someone who has a disability in their hand/arm won't be able to use a mouse very well. An alternative to this could be using a foot mouse or speech recognition
            • Experience
              • Different users may have different technical abilities when using an ICT system.
                • For example, the older generation may not be as experienced as the younger generation.
            • Age
              • Older users may react slower than younger users, so the ability tho adjust the speed of the cursor and the rate at which they need to double-click an icon can help them massively
    • Essential skills for an ICT professional
      • Good Written Communication Skills
        • Must have good written skills to write technical douments and end user guides. The ICT professional must take into account that the documents will be read by people with varying levels of ICT knowladge
      • Good Oral Communication Skills
        • So they can communicate effectively with users and colleagues. This is also important where the professional would have to ask appropriate questions to ensure the correct system is implemented
      • Problem-solving skills
        • Ability to solve and analyse ICT problems. Computers rely on logic to process data, so the professional must possess the skill to interact effectively.
      • Patience
        • All ICT professionals need to haev patience and be approachable to prevent users becoming flustered or anxious. They need to be able to stick to a problem and solve it.
      • Willingness to work flexible hours
        • Being able to see a task through until it is completed. The professional can't just walk away when their shft is over.
      • Teamwork
        • Few ICT projects can be completed by one person and so teamwork skills are vital
    • Characteristics of an effective ICT team
      • Having an experienced leader
      • Professionals in certain areas
      • Good communication
      • Monitoring task performance

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