Sad-Computer Industry

A major element in building system is selecting compatible hardware and software. The systems analyst has to determine what software package is best for the candidate system and, where software is not an issue, the kind of hardware and peripherals needed for the final conversion. To do this job well, the analyst must be familiar with the computer industry in general i.e. what various computers can and cannot do, whether to purchase or lease system, the vendors and their cutlets and the selection procedure .

The computer industry

1.Hardware suppliers

This group includes mainframe manufacturers, peripheral vendors, supplies vendors, computer leasing firms and used systems delears. IBM is the major supplier of mainframe computers.

Peripheral manufacturers supply tape drives, disk and diskette drives, printers and other components. Vendors of supplies provide consumable supplies such as diskettes and printer forms and non consumable supplies such as disk packs, tape reels, tape library shelves, and fireproof vaults. Hundreds of independent vendors are in this field. Used computer dealers purchase secondhand equipment from computer users, rebuild them, and sell them at attractive prices.

2.Software suppliers

In today’s market, 17,000 firms offer more than 5,000 systems and applications. In the microcomputer area, over 30,000 software packages are available. Computer users can acquire programs from either the vendor the software house for virtually every application imaginable. Prices vary from a basic payroll program stored on cassette for $10 to mainframe-based inventory control for $35,000.Prices and levels of complexity of software depend on the computer and the state of the competition.

3.Service suppliers

Outside computer services are commonly used by small firms or first –time users. Also called servicers, they include the following

1) Computer manufacturers supply services such as system design, programming, education and training and hardware maintenance.

2) Service bureaus run “bread and butter” applications for small firms, Larger firms contract for specialized applications or for running job during peak volume periods. The primary services are programming, file and system conversion, system design and user training.

3) Facilities management (FM) furnishes specialists to manage a user installed computer on the user’s premises. In some cases, service is limited to developing application programs. The user runs the system but calls on the service organization for developmental work and maintenance.
 The FM concept has several benefits. The user pays only for the service rendered. Turn over problems for the user are eliminated when the service manages the center. The main drawbacks are loss of control over the operation. And the high fees charged for the service.
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