ICT unit 1

Uses of digital devices

Personal - playing games, watching TV, internet banking, home systems

Social - Instant messaging, Social networking, VOIP calls

Retail - Online shopping, recording sales, data modelling, stock checking

organisational use - 

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Uses of digital devices

Personal - playing games, watching TV, internet banking, home systems

Social - Instant messaging, Social networking, VOIP calls

Retail - Online shopping, recording sales, data modelling, stock checking

organisational use - Producing and sharing documents, video conferencing, managing payments

Creative - editing photos, design, CAD, processing 3D graphics for games

Education and training - Online e-learning, distance learning, Interactive whiteboards

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Input devices and example uses

Keyboard - Writing a report, inputting information

Mouse - navigating a user interface

Scanner - Inputting photos for editing

Microphone - talking on VOIP software, voice recording

webcam - video conferencing 

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Output devices and example uses

Monitor - Viewing and watching movies and user interface

Projector - Same as a monitor

Printer - printing hard copies

Plotter - Drawing vector graphics

Speakers + Headphones - Listening to music 

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Accessibility devices

Lots of devices are designed with accessibility in mind, here are some examples

Trackball - easier than a mouse for people with struggles with gripping

Touch screen or large keyboard - for people who struggle with keyboards

Eye motion sensors - for people who struggle to move any fine motor

Braille embosser - for hard of seeing to type and print, like a typewriter but braille 

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Storage device - Hard disk drives

These are magnetic storage devices that are used as a primary storage unit but there are products where it's made external. 


Large storage capacity

Low cost per byte

very reliable


Slower than SSD at loading data

External HDD is not as portable 

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Storage devices - Solid state drives

Commonly used in laptops and tablets


Very fast 

Low power consumption

extremely reliable due to no moving parts


Higher cost than HDD

Lower storage capacity

have a finite number of writes

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Storage devices - SD Cards

Commonly used in cameras and some smartphones


Very portable

easy to transfer between devices


Very small capacity 

Varies enhancements have created compatibility problems

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Storage device - Hard disk drives

This is a small flash memory device that connects through a USB port



Compatible with most computer systems through USB ports


Sotrage capacity

Only have a finite number of writes

Because they are small, can be lost easily

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Storage device - Optical disk

e.g. DVD, Blu-ray, CD's 


Small and portable

A lot of devices can accommodate and back up storage available if needed


Archival stability of writable media can be questionable

Fragile and easy to scratch and damage

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Real time operating systems

In these systems, inputs are processed and responded to instantly

Why would you choose real time?

- It provides a fast response

Examples include

- Traffic lights

- Air traffic control systems

- ABS in the car

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Single-user single task OS

Only one user can use this at a time and only one program can be run at a time

Why use it?

- It requires fewer resources

- best used for devices with limited processing


- Tamicochie 

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Factors affecting performance


- Limited CPU speed

- Number of cores

- Limited RAM capacity

- Slow hard-disk 


- Viruses

- Worms

- Spyware

Virtual memory factors

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The role of the operating system


device drivers for the network interface card


User authentication, antivirus, backup facilities

Memory management 

which process to allocate memory, when to un-allocate


Runing more then one program by allocating resources effectively

Device drivers

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Command line interface

the user uses the OS by typing commands


experienced users find it quicker to complete tasks

requires far less memory


Requires knowledge of specific commands

learning so many commands can be intimidating for new users

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Graphical User Interface (GUI)

Users use a pointer to control the OS


Easy for beginners to use

it doesn't require users to learn commands


requires a lot more processor power and memory 

experienced users may become frustrated 

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Menu based interface

The users interact with a menu, just like Microsoft Bob


Limited options to make, easy to use

can figure out how to perform a task with no instruction


performing tasks can be slow and frustrating 

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Utility software - Disk utilities

They are designed to maintain the performance of a computers disk drive

File compressors - backing up large files and sharing them online can be difficult so this reduces their size to be decompressed later

Back up - Helps to automate the backup process

Disk defragmenter - this utility recognises data for quicker access

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utility software - Network utilities

They are made to maintain good network traffic

Firewalls - firewalls act as a wall to stop malware. this is done by monitoring and blocking suspicious traffic

Antivirus - This detects and removes viruses 

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File types - Images


Uses lossless compressions. saves high-quality images in small file size. also allows transparencey


small file size and low quality due to only 255 colours. can display basic transparency and animation


compression is lossy. cant be decompressed

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File types - Application software file types


commonly used for word processing 


represents data independently or the originating software and/or hardware


commonly used for Worksheets

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Implications of file types


Some file types only work with certain software

- may need to buy new software 

- can't share the file as freely


Different file types display various types of quality

- choice can depend on the intended use

File size

Some can be really large

- may have implications for storing, transmitting or displaying software

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Uses of application software

Productivity software

like Word, publisher and excel. 

Used in offices to support business tasks and improve efficiency 

Grpahics software

used to edit and create original artwork

Communications software

include messaging, email and VOIP

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Proprietary software

This code is owned by a company


support is provided by the software creators

more features than open source


may be slow to provide updates

it can be costly 

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Open source software

the source code is available to read and modify


free to use

the community provides support and fixes


responce for support may not be fast cause relies on the goodwill

may be indirect costs

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Choosing software

Ease of use




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Implications of emerging technologies

emerging tech needs data, advanced data-hungry tech are putting a strain on the existing infrastructure

there are new ways to analyse data meaning the advent of big data tech and new ways of analysing it

more powerful security through more advanced biometric data

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Choosing an IT system

Factors that consider

- User experience and needs

- Specifications, compatibility and connectivity

- Costs

- Efficiency and productivity

- Implementation

- Security

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Wired systems


Telephone communications and ethernet network.

Versatile and widely available 

cheap compared to other options

Only useful for shorter distances

more susceptible then fibre


Commonly used in TV communications

can work over long distances


limited bandwidth

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Image result for LAN and WAN

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Factors affecting network choice

  • User experience
  • User needs
  • Specifications
  • connectivity
  • cost
  • efficiency
  • compatibility
  • implementation
  • productivity
  • security
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this is used together as the basic language of the internet

data sent over the internet is broken into packets

TCP is used to create packets and resemble them at the end

IP is used to route packets to the intended computer using its IP address 

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Protocols - Email + voice and video calls


this is used to transfer emails between mail servers


is used to retrieve emails from the mail server

it allows messages to our client software 


first successful VOIP protocol. 

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Data transmission issues - Security considerations

Security considerations 

User authentication - Usernames and passwords authenticate users who have permission to use a network and prevent unauthorised access by hackers. 

Firewalls - These monitor traffic and prevent unauthorised access and dangerous data packets being passed into the system and causing harm

Encryption - info can be intercepted while being transmitted. using encryption ensures intercepted data cant be read. 

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Data transmittion issues - Bandwidth

This is the rate of data transfer over a network.

latency is the time delay for a data packet to transfer to its destination

bandwidth plays a role in how long files take to download a file 

online gaming can be affected by high lag

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Features of online services

Uses of cloud storage

Personal use

- Storing file, photos, videos and all things like that

Professional use

- Storing offsite backups to allow for recovery

- Accessing business documents while working off-site

Cloud computing 

Personal Use

- Accessing graphics editing software, email and home office software

Personal Use

-Accessung office applications and email without installing anything 

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Using online systems


If security is a priority then choose and organisations that implement high-security protocols


There are free software like google drive products through they can come with hidden costs

Ease of use

Check the amount of tech support available to users


Sometimes has fewer features than a locally installed version 


may be limited in options if the internet is slow or a limited data allowance

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Remote working

Online systems allow people working from home to access a network of the organisation they work for. 


allows a secure connection to be made to the organisation network over the internet

Remote desktop tech

This can also be used to fix problems on a company computer 

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Types of Online community

Social media



Chatroom/ Instant messaging



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Implications of online communities on individuals


The danger of accounts being hacked

info can be used for fraud 

Meeting needs

Allows users to communicate with others


personal info can be accessed by others


Usually free

User experience

Ease of use, accessibility, Performance and availability 

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Threats to data, information and system


This is software designed to cause harm to an IT system 


Exploits a weakness in an IT system to gain unauthorised access


A phishing email pretends to be from a reputable company to get information or money 

Accidental damage

A lot of damage can happen through human error

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The impact of threats on individuals and organisat


Identity fraud - The stolen bank information can be used for identity fraud 


Loss of reputation - a business affected by any of the issues will lose the confidence of customers, who will turn to other businesses that haven't been affected

Loss of income - During the downtime caused by many of these threats, a business will not be able to carry out its normal business practices

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Techniques for protecting data

- File permissions and access levels. Ensuring access is restricted to those who need it

- Backup and recovery procedures ensure that data can be recovered following any loss of data

- Passwords limit access by ensuring users keeps a secure password to access system 

- Physical access control prevents unauthorised access using locks, biometrics, etc. 

- digital certificates allow secure data transfer using public key encryption

- Protocols define data transfer processes to ensure secure transfer

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Protecting data: legislation and codes of practice

Data Protection Act of 1998

- Protects the privacy of individuals personal data held by others

Impacts on organisations

- Increased costs 

- Limited information can be collected now

- Fines of up to £500000

Impacts on individuals 

Personal data collected by others

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Moral and ethical issues

The environment 

Ever growing demand for electronic devices means increased manufacturing and increased energy needed to run the devices.

These have negative by-products such as greenhouse gases which affect climate change

Unequal access

Not everyone has access to IT systems and the internet  

Online Behaviour

The internet is seen as an anonymous place to communicate 

Some people feel censorship is a violation to the right of free speech

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Moral and ethical issues

Health and safety

Risk of repetitive strain injury

Employers have a moral responsibility to carry out risk assessments and provide a comfortable working environment


Media has become easier to illegally download

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Copyright, designs and patents act 1988

This protects peoples original pieces of work

Consumer rights act

Consumers have the right to repair and to refund for faulty applications

Police and Justice Act 2006 (Computer Misuse)

Covers DoS attacks

Computer Misuse act 1990

Data protection act 1998

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Why legislate and what are the benefits

Why legislate

- Legislation ensures compliance 

- It encourages and builds trust in systems 

Who benefits

Individuals - They can trust the systems they use

Society - The use of powers is transparent and clear

Organisations - Their reputation is ensured

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