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Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 1 BUSS 909 Supplementary Lecture 00: Information Theory & Systems Theory Office Automation & Intranets.

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Presentation on theme: "Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 1 BUSS 909 Supplementary Lecture 00: Information Theory & Systems Theory Office Automation & Intranets."— Presentation transcript:

1 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 1 BUSS 909 Supplementary Lecture 00: Information Theory & Systems Theory Office Automation & Intranets

2 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 2 Agenda n Discuss two basic ideas in IS Theory: –General Systems Model –Data and Information n At the end of the lecture you should understand that the basic IS theory is flawed

3 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 3 Information Systems Theory: a very brief introduction

4 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 4 Information Systems Theory n Information Systems Discipline = Concepts of ‘Systems’ + ‘Information’ n both ‘systems’ and ‘information’ have considerable theoretical, methodological and substantive problems, ie/ are problematic

5 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 5 General Systems Model Applied to Organisations

6 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 6 General Systems Model Development n Contrary to what you may believe (or may have been taught) the IS Discipline did not develop the concept of the system n in fact the ‘General Systems Model’ was in wide circulation well before computers were invented

7 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 7 General Systems Model Development n understanding how we got and how we use ‘general systems’ tells us a great deal about disciplines in general (and IS in particular) n the General Systems Model dates from the late 1920s- 1930s

8 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 8 General Systems Model Development n the work originates in Biology n useful concepts emerge in population dynamics (Lotka c.1907 and later) n developed as a general model for biology (von Bertalanffy c.1930s; 1968)

9 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 9 Basic System Elements

10 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 10 System Boundary

11 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 11 System

12 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 12 Environment

13 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 13

14 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 14 External Entities

15 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 15 External Entity 1

16 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 16 External Entity 2

17 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 17 External Entity 3

18 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 18 Data Flow 1

19 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 19 Data Flow 2

20 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 20 Data Flow 3

21 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 21 Data Sources

22 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 22 Data Sink

23 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 23 Context Diagram

24 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 24 Basic System Elements Review of Concepts n System Boundary n System n Environment n External Entities n Data Sources and Data Sinks n Context Diagram

25 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 25 Levels of a System An Animation

26 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 26

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31 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 31 Processes or Subsystems

32 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 32 Processes or Subsystems

33 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 33 Processes or Subsystems

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48 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 48 Level 1 Diagram 0

49 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 49 Level 1 Diagram 0 Process 1.0

50 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 50 Level 1 Diagram 0 Process 2.0

51 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 51 Level 1 Diagram 0 Process 3.0

52 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 52 Level 1

53 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 53 Level 1

54 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 54 Level 1

55 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 55 Level 1

56 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 56 Level 1

57 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 57 Level 1

58 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 58 Level 2 Diagram 2.0

59 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 59 Level 2 Diagram 2.0 Process 2.1

60 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 60 Level 2 Diagram 2.0 Process 2.2

61 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 61 Level 2 Diagram 2.0 Process 2.3

62 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 62 Level 2 Diagram 2.0 Process 2.4

63 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 63 Level 2

64 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 64 Level 2

65 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 65 Level 2

66 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 66 Level 2

67 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 67 Level 2

68 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 68 Level 2

69 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 69 Level 3 Diagram 2.4

70 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 70 Level 3 Diagram 2.4 Process 2.4.1

71 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 71 Level 3 Diagram 2.4 Process 2.4.2

72 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 72 Level 3 Diagram 2.4 Process 2.4.3

73 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 73 Level 3 Diagram 2.4 Process 2.4.4

74 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 74 General Systems Model Propogation or Spread n entered sociology/political science in 1950s and 1960s n the view of systems theorists is that the general concept of a system can be applied to social systems ie. organisations

75 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 75 Closed Systems n some systems are closed –they are not influenced by their environment, eg. solar system –have entropy which describes how these systems use up energy and run down n not useful to IS

76 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 76 Open Systems n social systems are open systems –can import energy from the environment –can sustain themselves in response to changes in their environment –possess negentropy, and can achieve new states n they adapt

77 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 77 Organisations as Systems (1) n Organisations are open system (contrast with closed systems) n a physical system of the firm transforms input resources into output resources n input resources come from environment, output resources go to environment

78 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 78 Organisations as Systems (2) n physical resources: –material flow (from suppliers to customers) –personnel flow (from the labour market and back) –machine flow (from supplier to scrap yard) –money flow (from owners who provide investment capital and customers who buy goods)

79 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 79 Organisations as System (3) Transformation Process Output Resources Input Resources

80 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 80 Closed Loop Systems (1) n some open system can control operations, some cannot n when no feedback loop is provided for an open system then it is called an open-loop system n when feedback loop and control mechanism exists -closed loop system

81 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 81 Closed Loop Systems (2) n control is provided by a loop- called a feedback loop n feedback consists of signals are sent to provide a corrective action

82 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 82 Closed Loop System (3) Control Mechanism Transformation Process Output Resources Input Resources SignalFeedback

83 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 83 Physical System of an Organisation as a controlled system Management Transformation Process Output Resources Input Resources Signal

84 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 84 Information is Gathered from all Physical System Elements Management Transformation Process Output Resources Input Resources InformationData additional data-gathering activties at input and processing parts of the physical system

85 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 85 Information Processor transforms data into information for Management purposes Management Transformation Process Output Resources Input Resources Information Processor InformationData

86 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 86 Performance Standards added to Management & Information Processor Management Transformation Process Output Resources Input Resources Information Processor Standards InformationData

87 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 87 Changes to Physical System Decisons are added & some signals re/classified Management Transformation Process Output Resources Input Resources Information Processor Standards DecisionsInformationData

88 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 88 General Systems Model Management Transformation Process Output Resources Input Resources Information Processor Standards Decisions Environment PhysicalInformationData Boundary

89 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 89 Systems Approach to Decision Making

90 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 90 Problem-solving Elements manager standards info solution problem alternate solutions constraints desired current Elements of the conceptual system

91 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 91 Structured, Unstructured, Semistructured Problems (1) n Management problems are often considered to be either structured or unstructured in nature n Important criteria as these are used to identify different types of system: Operational Systems, MIS, and DSS

92 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 92 n Structured Problems –consist of elements and relationships between elements which are understood by the problem solver –problem expressed in mathematical form and therefore probably implementable Structured, Unstructured, Semistructured Problems (2)

93 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 93 n Unstructured Problem –contains no elements or relationships between elements which are understood by the problem solver –quantification of unstructured problems is difficult if not impossible Structured, Unstructured, Semistructured Problems (3)

94 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 94 n Semistructured Problem –contains some elements or relationships between elements that are understood by the problem solver –other elements or relationships between elements may not be understood at all Structured, Unstructured, Semistructured Problems (4)

95 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 95 n Is there such a thing as a structured problem? This already presupposes a particular type of solution! n computers can solve structured problems n most managers deal with semistructured problems Structured, Unstructured, Semistructured Problems (5)

96 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 96 Introduction to MIS (1) n computers first applied to business tasks –accounting functions –specific functional areas eg./ order entry n today computers used also to provide management information

97 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 97 Introduction to MIS (2) n as we will see the information needs of Management are different from the information needs of other system users n also, management has special responsibilities and obligations in organisations- require managed information

98 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 98 Introduction to MIS (3) n General Definition of MIS: A systems that provides the manager with information for decision making. n Either, the general information needs of managers or, all managers in a specific functional area

99 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 99 Members of Organisations Distinct Types n Strategic Planning Level –top level managers, long term view, organisational wide scope n Management Control Level –middle level managers, regional managers, product directors and division heads n Operational Control Level –where operations occur in the organisation, example foreman in factories n Operations –workers, clerks etc... Management Others

100 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 100 Members of Organisations Associated with ‘Hierarchy’ Strategic Planning Management Control Operational Operational Control

101 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 101 Categories of IS Associated with ‘Hierarchy’ Increasing Uncertainty Increasing Uncertainty Strategic Planning EIS, DSS, GDSS, ES Management Control MIS (MkIS, Operational TPS (EDP) Operational Control AIS, MIS

102 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 102 Major Categories of MIS n Major types of information systems for management –Management Information Systems (MIS) –Decision Support Systems (DSS) –Expert Systems (ES) –Office Automation Systems (OA) n Linked to Operational Systems

103 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 103 Social Systems considered harmful n in sociology... “Although hugely influential at the time... [attempts] to found a new general theory of... social systems [are] now adjudged a relative failure” (Jary & Jary 1991, 649) n there are therefore some obvious questions...

104 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 104 Isn’t ‘system’ OK for IS? n couldn’t it be suitable for IS but not suitable for sociology? –well this is possible –not likely –we find some theoretical problems with ‘systems’ as a way of modelling workplaces

105 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 105 Some technologies don’t fit n MIS do fit (EIS, DSS, GDSS, MIS MkIS, AIS etc) and therefore by definition Operational Systems that feed them data n but others do not because they span all levels of the hierarchy, –Office Automation –EDI (Electronic Data Interchange)

106 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 106 Why use ‘system’ n why does the information systems discipline still use it? –to answer this question we look at why sociology thinks ‘social systems’ are a failure n ‘conservative’ assumptions about the integration of social systems

107 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 107 Why use ‘system’ n levels of abstraction that are removed from the workplace n tautology n relative neglect of the independent influence of individual members agency n ignoring the effects of culture on development and use of IS

108 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 108 Why use ‘system’ n there are alternatives to ‘social system’ explanations of organisations –webs –language-basis n we will look at these in later Lectures (5-13)

109 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 109 Data & Information

110 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 110 Information Systems Typical Definition “ [An information system]...is a grouping of people, objects and procedures... [providing] information about the organization and its environment... which is useful to members and clients of that organization” “ [An information system]...is a grouping of people, objects and procedures... [providing] information about the organization and its environment... which is useful to members and clients of that organization” Paraphrase Avison and Fitzgerald (1988, 1) Paraphrase Avison and Fitzgerald (1988, 1)

111 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 111 Data & Information n data is easy to identify n data is created with purposes in mind n but information depends on who, what, where, how and when n for closed, biological systems the idea of information is great!

112 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 112 Data & Information n organisations are not axiomatic (rule determined) n the members can change the internal and external processes of the organisation n information becomes difficult to define/changes- just ask any systems developer

113 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 113 Data & Information n concept of information relies on Shannon & Weaver (c. 1940s) n defines information in terms which exclude meaning n in other words the second basis of our discipline (the concept of information) is theoretically inappropriate for use when developing systems

114 Clarke, R. J (2000) SL909-00: 114 Information Systems Definitional Problems n analysis, design and implementation practices focus on the people, objects and procedures n rarely focus on the use of systems- the purposes of systems in given organisational contexts


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