Data Inputs, Outputs, Speed, and Storage
Data is found in many formats. Data accuracy, convenience and quality of output, storage,
and speed of access are many of the characteristics to be considered. Many choices are available to input data, receive output of data, store data, and access speed. This paper will evaluate the varying options for input data accuracy, convenience and quality of output, different types of storage, and various components affecting computer speed.
Accuracy of Data Input
Accuracy of data input is important for various reasons. Different situations require various methods of data input. The following situations illustrate the various methods of accurate data input. Questionnaires will require optical data readers. Optical data readers are designed to read forms with squares or ovals that must be filled in. The filled in answers correlate to an answer. Questionnaires designed in this fashion are similar to SAT and GMAT tests currently in wide use.
Telephone surveys can easily and accurately be inputted by using voice recognition. Voice recognition can be designed to ask simple questions requiring yes or no answers. Programs such as this exist with Federal Express automated package pick up service. If an error occurs the system will end the session and switch one to a live representative. The same process could occur with a phone survey. If the program picks up something other than the preset available responses to the questions, the process will end and the results deleted.
Bank check data is accurately inputted by the image replacement document process. The image replacement document process was established under the check clearing portion of the 21st Century act or Check 21. During the image replacement document process, banks can electronically photocopy or scan checks instead of mailing them to other financial institutions for remittance or receipt of payment. Eliminating the paperwork of mailing checks and returning cancelled checks saves time and money in transferring funds in the financial world. Even if a bank does not accept this type of payment another financial institution that does accept payment electronically can accept the payment then transfer the funds to the non-subscribing or participating bank. Even in this particular circumstance time and money is saved by using the image replacement document process.
The data on retail tags can accurately be inputted by using bar-code scanners. Bar code scanners have been widely used by grocery stores for several years. Each product is assigned a special bar code number and entered into the system. Every time the bar code on the label or sticker is scanned the product is removed from inventory. The bar coding can also expedite order receipt and returns from customers. Bar coding eases the process of inventory management and reordering points.
Long documents will need to use terminals to get accurate input of data. According to Stair and Reynolds (2006), “Terminals are inexpensive and easy to use input devices that perform data input. A terminal is connected to a complete computer system, including a processor, memory, and, secondary storage” (p. 57, ¶4). Continuing Stair and Reynolds (2006) state “General commands, text, and other data re-entered via a keyboard or mouse, converted into machine-readable form, and transferred to the processing portion of the computer system” (p.57, ¶4).
Convenience and Quality of Output
Convenience and quality of output are important. Various situations require differing methods of output. Hand held computers are best suited using organic light emitting diodes (OLEDS) which directly emit light. Since light emitting diodes emit light directly backlighting is unnecessary. As a result, devices can be thinner than back lit devices. In addition, OLEDS offer the additional benefit of not breaking when dropped.
Color photographs are best viewed as an output through a liquid crystal display monitor with a flat panel. Liquid crystals offer greater pixel ratings in a smaller area which produces a better overall image than older cathode ray tube monitors which are bulky and do not offer the same pixel rating.
For the most convenient and best quality of output, resumes’, memorandums, statistical reports, and company annual reports can be outputted through the use of a printer. However, each situation requires a different style or type of printer. Depending on the type of document and length of document either an ink jet or laser style printer could be used. Another consideration is the speed and amount of documents to be printed. The more documents printed and greater speed that some companies require will need to use a laser type printer which can be more expensive than an inkjet printer.
Storage Devices and Usage
Different types of storage devices are available for differing needs and varying situations. A hard disk found in desk top computers, laptops, and servers allow direct access to stored data. Having direct access to stored data reduces access times. Examples of direct disk stored data would be favorite recipes, addresses, or a resume’.
Floppy storage disks range from 3 ½ to 5 ½ inch that have approximately 1.44 megabyte (mb) storage capacity. Floppy disks were one of the first portable forms of data storage. Small reports, spreadsheets, or even pictures needed by a traveling salesman or factory representative can use this form of data storage.