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Electronic Commerce Semester 1 Term 1 Lecture 7. Introduction to the Web The Internet supports a variety of important tools, such as file transfer, electronic.

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Presentation on theme: "Electronic Commerce Semester 1 Term 1 Lecture 7. Introduction to the Web The Internet supports a variety of important tools, such as file transfer, electronic."— Presentation transcript:

1 Electronic Commerce Semester 1 Term 1 Lecture 7

2 Introduction to the Web The Internet supports a variety of important tools, such as file transfer, electronic mail and news groups However, no single Internet application has grabbed the attention of the marketplace so dramatically as the World Wide Web

3 What is the Web? The Web is a global information-sharing architecture that integrates several online information and content servers in a fast, cost-effective and easy-to-use manner The Web is the software foundation on which many emerging e-commerce applications are based Visually, the Web is a point-and-click user interface on the Internet In terms of content, the Web can be thought of as a giant Internet library

4 Components of the Web Architecture To use the Web in addition to an Internet connection, a user needs a special piece of software called a Web browser (such as Netscape Navigator) The browser acts as a graphical interface between the user and the Internet - it sends the necessary commands to request data from other computers and then formats them for the user’s screen

5 Components of the Web’s Architecture The Web is based on a three-part architecture –HTML: Hypertext markup language, the format for Web pages, provides both formatting and hyperlinking –HTTP: Hypertext transfer protocol, the protocol for communications between Web servers and browsers –CGI: The common gateway interface, the interface for invoking programs from Web servers

6 Electronic Commerce Architecture Local or company- specific data WWW browser Browser extensions Information retrieval Data and transaction management Secure messaging Digital library of document/data servers Third-party information processing tools/services Electronic payment servers Client browser WWW server functions Third-Party Services

7 Using the Web in E-Commerce The client browser interacts with the Web server, which then intermediates the interaction with third-party services The Web server functions can be categorised into information retrieval, data and transaction management, and security The third-party services could be other Web servers that provide content, information processing tools, and electronic payment systems

8 Why is the Web Such a Hit? Reasons for the amazing success of the Web include: –Ease of navigation and use –Ease of publishing content –New distribution models –Enabling a network-centric computing paradigm –Enabling new intra-business applications

9 Ease of Navigation & Use The ease of use is a major driver of Web growth Using a simple graphical interface, the Web browser issues the commands, makes the connections, and transmits the data with point- and-click simplicity In the Web, sites are interconnected to each other through highlighted (hyperlinked) words By clicking on the highlighted word, a user can be transported into another Web site that contains a related document without even knowing where that other Web site is

10 Ease of Publishing Content Another major reason for the success of the Web is the ease of server setup, administration and publication of content The concept of Internet users becoming publishers was unthinkable prior to the Web, as the complex nature of servers made publishing content on networks extremely difficult The simplicity of HTML allows individual users to become publishers themselves and contribute to the expanding database of documents on the Web

11 New Distribution Models We are reaching a state where virtually any good or service that can be bought, either by businesses or consumers, can be purchased online Although that is the long-term implication, in the shorter run, companies are excited by the Web’s ability to deliver digital goods faster and cheaper than any traditional means and its ability to make certain transactions, such as banking, convenient

12 Enabling a Network-Centric Computing Paradigm The success of the Web has opened management’s eyes to the power of network computing, and network computing could determine the future of many large companies such as Microsoft The Web epitomises network computing With network-centric computing, concerns about power, speed, memory size, or applications software of PCs are lessened; it is what the computers connect to that matters

13 Enabling New Intra-Business Applications Over the last decade, business customers have asked the computer industry to provide them with the following: –An open environment that includes products and services from different vendors –The ability to network and integrate new technology with existing systems –The ability to manage computer resources and support users in a way that will reduce costs while implementing business strategies

14 Enabling New Intra-Business Applications (Continued) The computer industry has been slow in delivering on these requests With the advent of the Web, which enables these capabilities, business customers are flocking toward Web-based Intranets The goal is to utilise the “open” architecture to link users and resources throughout the organisation

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