ICT-INFO 1- Topic 7- Selection and use of appropriate software

topic 7 

  • Created by: Kathryn
  • Created on: 30-10-11 17:17

Topic 7

Selection and use of appropriate software

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Applications Software

  • Allows the computer to be applied to a particular problem
  • Order Processing
  • Payroll
  • Stock Control
  • Games
  • Creating Websites
  • Image editing
  • Word Processing
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System Software

  • Manages and controls the hardware
  • Allows applications software to do a useful job
  • Set of programmes
  • Instructs the hardware what to do 
  • Consists of operating system, GUI Graphical user interface, file management and utilities

Systems Software Brands:

  • Windows
  • Macintosh OS-X
  • UNIX
  • Linux
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The Operating System

  • Allows the applications software to interact with the hardware
  • Allows the hardware to behave in a particular way so that the applications software can use it 
  • Diagnostic Checks
  • Controls the input from input devices 
  • Controls the outputs by sending information to the screen or output device 
  • Memory Management 
  • Controls the flow of data to and from the main processor 
  • Works out where to store data on the hard disk drive
  • Deals with security issues
  • Handles the interrupts which occur when applications software contains bugs or there is a hardware fault
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Windows System Software

  • Windows XP
  • Windows Vista
  • Most popular
  • Windows NT
  • Windows 2000
  • Developed to work on different types of manufactures
  • Developed to work on different types of computers
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UNIX System Software

  • Evolved from early years of computing
  • Used by different types of computers
  • Uses a graphical user interface
  • Can be used to run hundreds of terminals
  • Multi-Tasking operating system
  • Written in the programming language C
  • Uses a command line interface
  • Tends to be used more by computer professionals
  • Can be difficult for first time users
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Linux System Software

  • Becoming more popular with home and small businesses
  • Free
  • Gained Popularity
  • High Stability
  • High Security
  • Many users prefered it
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Macintosh System Software

  • Becoming more popular with home and small businesses
  • Developed by apple
  • Popular
  • Graphical User Interface
  • Used with mac computers
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Command line/driven interface

  • Type in commands
  • Commands have to be precise & correctly worded
  • Quick
  • Very difficult for beginners
  • Have to remember instructions
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Graphical User Interface

  • Very Popular
  • Easy to use
  • Point & click 
  • Microsoft windows & Macintosh OS use them
  • Screen is divided into areas called windows 
  • Icons
  • Menus (pop up or pull down) no clutter
  • Pointers
  • Desktop
  • Drag & drop
  • Taskbars 
  • Mobile phones, sat navs etc use them
  • No language needed
  • Easier to use 
  • Takes up a lot of memory 
  • Increased processing
  • Faster & more powerful processors are needed
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Menu-Driven Interface

  • List of options
  • Type letter or number of selection
  • Simple
  • Easy to use
  • Only suitable when few items to select
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Form-driven interface

  • Collect information
  • Step by step manner
  • Type into a form
  • Validation checks check all info entered is valid and that all important fields are completed
  • Important fields often have a red asterisks
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Natural Language Interface

  • Interact using natural or spoken language
  • Easy to learn how to use
  • Uses familiar words
  • Ambiguous
  • Doesn't allow speech recognition
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  • Program that performs a specific task
  • Simple
  • File Converters
  • Virus Scanners
  • Security & accounting
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File management software

  • File/folder organisation
  • Backup copy creation 
  • File compression 
  • Defragmentation
  • File Recovery 
  • Uninstallers
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Peripheral Drivers

  • Printer, scanner, digital camera, webcam etc
  • The software to make the above devices work
  • Many come with the operating system

What does peripheral driver software do?

  • Provide communication between the operating system/applications software & the peripheral device 
  • Convert instructions from the software into a form the peripheral device can understand
  • Enables the peripheral device to work with other applications and operating systems software. 
  • Produces error messages
  • Tell the computer what the device is and capable of doing
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Where do you get peripheral driver software?

  • Plug & play (automatic when detected)
  • Part of operating system
  • Reinstall from disks
  • Install from backups of hard drive
  • Download from manufactures website
  • Driver sites on internet
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Printer drivers

  • Different printers communicate with the operating system & application software slightly differently
  • Instructions need to be converted 
  • Plug and play
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Package Software

  • Bundle of necessary files for a program to run
  • Documentation to get the user started
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Integrated Software

  • Includes 2 or more application packages
  • Microsoft office is an example
  • Cheaper than buying separate packages
  • Easier to transfer data from one of the modules to another
  • Consistency of the user interface between the modules making it easier to learn 
  • Easy to install
  • Package may be weak in some of the separate applications
  • Some of the applications included you may never use
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Specific Software

  • Performs one particular task
  • Pay roll, stock control, etc
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Generic Software

  • Apropiate for a wide range of tasks
  • Can be used in lots of areas of work
  • Apropiate for home users,businesses & organisations
  • Word processing, data bases, presentations, browser and desktop publishing are example
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Bespoke Software

  • Tailor made software
  • Business or organisation
  • Very Expensive
  • Only used when no other suitable software package
  • The company does not have to change the way they work to fit around software
  • Specify it
  • May contain errors
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Mr A Gibson


Every ICT student should have this on their mobile device (or printed out!) for quick reference to types of software. This also covers some really good examples so you can see how brands differ as well as types.

Nigel Thornberry



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