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Notes > Computer Systems > Systems Analysis and Design

Developing a business information system involves much more than just programming.

Systems developers must:

  • Conduct a feasibility study
  • Analyze current system (if any)
  • Establish requirements for new system
  • Design an overall solution (the structure of the system) based on user requirements
  • Design the data storage structure
  • Plan the Human-computer Interface (HCI)

See System Modelling for more details on modelling a system during system analysis and design.

During and after the implementation of a system, the systems developer must:

  • Integrate the system into the business / current system
  • Test the system
  • Provide training
  • Provide user support (documentation)
  • Use and evaluate the system
  • Maintain system

Design involves specifying how programs or scripts execute, controlling exactly what the computer does. It is not just a case of using a software package, setting it up, and entering data. It is worthwhile to note that web design using plain html is not programming as no data processing is involved. Complex web-based systems that do involve programming can be developed though.

Absraction is an important technique used to divide the development of the system into smaller manageable sections. DFDs are an important tool used in systems analysis and design that aid in the abstraction process.

Rapid Application Development (RAD) involves the quick development of a system with user involvement playing a large part. Typically, 3/4 of the system will be completed within 3 months.

Building prototype systems enables issues to be resolved as the developers can see how a real system deals with problems. Whereas prototype design involves discarding each prototype then building a new one, evolutionary design involves the constant development of the system design, with it being evaluated and revised continually.

Try a Computer Systems Quiz in the Computing Students Computing Quizzes Section to test your knowledge.

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