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ITM 100 (123)
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Chapter 5


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Information Technology Management
ITM 100
Deb Fels

Chapter 5- IT Infrastructure and Emerging Technologies 5.1- IT Infrastructure:  The shared technology resources that provide the platform for the firm’s specific information system applications.  Includes technology components such as hardware and software, as well as services such as consulting, oversight, and training Evolution of I T Infrastructure:  General-purpose mainframe and minicomputer era: - From 1959 to now - Started with main frame computers which are the largest category of computers used for business processing -  Personal computer era: - 1981- present - Xerox Alto, MITS Altair 8800, and Apple  Client/server era - Laptops and desktop computers called clients are networked to powerful server computers. - 1983-present  Enterprise computing era: - 1992- present  Cloud Computing and Mobile Computing era - 2000-Present - Stroing stuff online rather than buying the actual software Technology Drivers of Infrastructure Evolution:  Moore’s Law and micro-processing power: - The observation that: Computing power doubles every 18 months and The price of computing falls by half every 18 months  The Law of Mass Digital Storage: - The amount of digital information is roughly doubling every year - The cost of storage is falling at an exponential rate of 100 percent per year  Metcalfe’s Law: - The value of a network grows exponentially as a function of the number of network members  Declining communications costs and the Internet  Standards and network effects 5.2- Infrastructure Components: Computer Hardware Platforms:  Client machines (desktops, laptops, and PDAs)  Server machines (provides access to network-based applications and data)  Mainframe systems used as giant servers for enterprise networks and corporate Web sites Operating System Platforms:  Operating systems refer to software that manages the resources and activities of a computer.  Microsoft Windows dominates the market of client machine software  Unix and Linux are widely used as server operating system software Enterprise Software Applications:  The largest suppliers of enterprise software are - SAP - Oracle - PeopleSoft (acquired by Oracle) Data Management and Storage:  Database software: IBM (DB2), Oracle, Microsoft (SQL Server), Sybase (Adaptive Server Enterprise), MySQL  Physical data storage: EMC Corp (large-scale systems), Seagate, Maxtor, Western Digital  Storage area networks (SANs): connect multiple storage devices on dedicated network Networking/ Telecommunications Platforms:  Leading network hardware providers are Cisco, Lucent, and Juniper  Software leaders are Microsoft, Novell, Linux, and Unix  Service vendors include Bell Canada, Primus, and regional carriers  Growth of wireless and Voice over IP (VoIP) Internet Platforms:  Hardware, software, management services to support company Web sites, (including Web hosting services) intranets, extranets  Internet hardware server market: Dell, HP/Compaq, IBM  Web development tools/suites: Microsoft (FrontPage, .NET) IBM (WebSphere) Sun (Java), independent software developers: Macromedia/Adobe, RealMedia Consulting and System integration Services:  Even large firms do not always have resources for a full range of support for new, complex infrastructure  Software integration: ensuring new infrastructure works with legacy systems  Legacy systems: older transaction processing systems created for mainframes that would be too costly to replace or redesign  Accenture, IBM Global Services, EDS, Infosys, Wipro 5.3- Contemporary Hardware Platform Trends:  The emerging mobile digital platform: - Cell phones, smartphones (BlackBerry, iPhone) have assumed data transmission, Web surfing, e-mail and IM duties - Netbooks: small, low-cost lightweight notebooks optimized for wireless communication and core computing tasks  Grid computing: - Involves connecting geographically remote computers into a single network capable of working in parallel on business problems that require short-term access to large computational capacity - Rather than purchase huge mainframes or super computers, firms can chain together thousands of smaller desktop clients into a single computing grid - For example, the World Community Grid is a
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