Software Report

For a computer to work and perform all the tasks we want it to, there are two important sections, the hardware (see my hardware report) and the software, in this report I am going to talk about software. Software is the name given to all of the programmes the individual can run on the computer hardware.

There are two types of software, the Operating System (OS), for example,Microsoft Windows or Linux Ubuntu. The other type of software is the Application Software, for example, Cyberlink Power DVD and Microsoft Office. Hardware is used personally by the individual, they actually touch it, whereas with software it is used through the hardware, for instance I am typing now using the keyboard (hardware) and I am getting what I have inputted on Microsoft Word.To design Type a Flight’s new system, I needed to use an OS, available to me was Microsoft Windows XP SP2. This operating system controls all the hardware and software I have used throughout creating the new system.

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The OS also manages my files, controls the hard drive, runs the DVD�R/RW/ROM I have available and any other hardware I plug in via Universal Serial Bus (USB) e.g. the mouse.The Microsoft Windows XP desktop is a Graphical User Interface (GUI) which means it uses graphics and icons that are used for telling the OS what to do and make it perform tasks. The desktop can be used to display regularly used programme icons which means the programme can be launched quickly and easily, and it means that files and folders can be arranged visually.To create the new system for Type a Flight I have been using the Microsoft Office 2007 suite which includes everything I need.

It includes many features, however, I will not be using them all, below is a brief description of what each of the programmes I’ll be using does:* Office Word – a word processing programme* Office Excel – a spreadsheet that also has abilities like a database* Office Access – a relational database* Office Publisher – a desktop publishing packageThis package all links in together because it is possible to make links between the programmes to perform specific tasks for example, mail merge from Office Access or Excel into Office Word.I also used a graphics design programme a few times during the system set up. I used Corel Paint Shop Pro X2 which has many features. It gives me the opportunity to save any image created into masses of file formats so that the graphic is compatible with many other applications.On the next few pages is a more in depth report on the software I used throughout the set up of the system.

Brand Name of Software: Microsoft Office 2007Name of software: Word ProcessingDescription: A word processor is a software application used for the production, composition, formatting and printing of any sort of printable material for example, a letter. The package includes the ability to spell check, grammar check, format fonts, insert pictures and mail merge.How was Microsoft Word used?: Word was used at many stages throughout the construction of the system, it was used to create all the documentation for the user and design the invoice and e-ticket.Benefits: Word processing packages are great because corrections to work can easily be made, the user can save work and come back to it at a later time, the work can be edited as many times as the user wishes – different versions can be saved so it is possible to go back to an earlier version of the same document, the user can change fonts and add boards etc, the user can use spell check and grammar check to make sure there work is of good standard, the user can make templates for something that is used often but with different information on it (for example a letter head) and data can be imported from databases or spreadsheets to perform mail merge.Drawbacks: The user needs to have access to a computer with the same sort of word processing package installed, it takes the user time to learn how to use the programme effectively, users can become reliant on word processing software and their handwriting skills will start to deteriorate and finally users can become reliant on spell check and not read through their work thoroughly.Brand Name of Software: Microsoft Office 2007Name of software: SpreadsheetDescription: A spreadsheet is a software application that is made up of rectangular grids that contain information consisting of both numbers and letters; it is used to display information, for example financial.

Furthermore a spreadsheet can use formulas to calculate certain values from other values in the table.How was Microsoft Excel used?: Excel was used for processing the booking information of the customers, it calculated how much deposit the customer had to pay and how much they had left to pay etc, it was then used as the source for mail merge when printing the invoice and e-ticket.Benefits: Spreadsheets are fantastic because it is possible to change the data in the spreadsheet instantly and if formulas are in place values are recalculated elsewhere on the table, the user can carry out ‘what if’ investigations and information can be displayed in many different ways for example in a graph.Drawbacks: The user needs to have access to a computer with this software installed, the user needs to understand how the different formulas are used, using the formulas may mean that users mathematical skills deteriorate because they become lazy and they have lots of information sorted just in one file, if this went missing it would be tragic.Brand Name of Software: Microsoft Office 2007Name of software: DatabaseDescription: A database is a software application that stores information to do with many things; it stores data is a structured way and can easily perform queries and produce reports.How was Microsoft Access used?: Access was used to design the database where personal information on the customers would be stored.

Using validation rules it means the user is made aware of any mistakes they may have made and because of this human error is reduced. Once data was inputted into the database I could be imported into the spreadsheet.Benefits: Computerized databases have many benefits: the amount of redundant data is reduced, increased consistency, data security, reduced data entry, storage and retrieval costs and easier to see what is stored about who with the use of queries.Drawbacks: Database systems are complex, time consuming and difficult to design, substantial hardware and software set up costs, damage to database would inflict problems for all other programmes linked with that database, cost for inputting the data when converting from paper-based to computerized system and initial training is needed for programmers and users.Brand Name of Software: Microsoft Office 2007Name of software: Desktop PublisherDescription: Desktop publishing software is application software and can be used to design publication documents on a computer. It has many page layouts and the user can format them to their own specific needs as well as format the fonts etc.

How was Microsoft Publisher used?: Publisher was used to design the special offers leaflet for Type a Flight.Benefits: Desktop publishing means that the user can create exactly what they want and this can save money because it saves the need for a professional, it allows the user to have complete control over the final product, it is easy to make changes and can be saved and revisited as many times as necessary until completion.Drawbacks: It requires a computer to use the application, its time consuming and can become stressful, the results don’t always look professional and the user needs to be trained initially on how to use the programme because it can take some time to learn the interface. Publisher only allows for simple modification of images and text. The programme does not use layers or compressed file types.Brand Name of Software: CorelName of software: Graphics DesignerDescription: This programme has many features that allow the user to crop, resize, rotate, stretch, flip and mirror the image.

As well as bucket fill and paint brush etc.How was Corel Paint Shop Pro X2 used?: Paint shop was used when I was designing the logo for the new Type a Flight computerized stationery.Benefits: The programme gives the user the option to use other hardware for designing their graphic for example a graphics tablet. The user also has the option of saving the graphic to many file formats, the user can save time by using the ‘undo’ option to erase mistakes.Drawbacks: It requires a computer to use the application, the user will need to understand the different concepts of the programme like cut, crop etc, so much can be done with the graphic that it may be hard for someone inexperienced with a computer to use.