AVSC 2180 Lesson 1 - Lesson 1 The History of Information...

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Lesson 1 The History of Information Management at the Airlines The aviation industry was a leading factor in the development of automated computer systems for the business environment. While reviewing the following history it is important to keep in mind the management characteristics that fostered the development of automated applications. Early managers embarked on a voyage into uncharted waters; no one knew exactly where the voyage might end or if it would be a success. Ultimately, aviation reservations systems resulted in a new way of processing and managing information in unimaginable volumes. The management principles that fostered early efforts to automate business processes are as relevant today as they were half a century ago. Following is a brief synopsis of the traits exhibited by the successful managers: A. Practical Vision: the ability to perceive a need and define that need in realistic terms, see the ultimate objective while the means remain undefined B. Adaptability: adjust to a changing environment, recognize that unknown factors exist and willingly accept that the means may not support the status quo C. Tempered Tenacity: perseverance in the face of adversity, tempered with reason and experience Managers of the 21st Century have the benefit of the experience of all those who have gone before. There is no substitute for personal experience; however, the experience of others will bridge the gulf between inexperience and personal experience when reviewed objectively. World War II is the portal for entrance into the information age. The Cold War with Russia provided the foundation for the development of automated computer systems that eventually spawned the computer age. The Semi-Automatic Ground Environment (SAGE) system, developed for the United States Air Force, automatically tracked and intercepted enemy aircraft. This program led to the development of online systems, interactive and real-time computing and the use of modems for data communication. IBM designed and manufactured the AN/FSQ-7 computer for SAGE eventually paving the way for IBM’s dominance in the computer industry. Photo: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia The AN/FSQ-7 used 55,000 vacuum tubes, required approximately 1⁄2 acre of floor space, weighed 275 tons and used three megawatts of power. It holds the dubious distinction of being the largest computer ever built. SAGE sites communicated with multiple radar stations in a digitized format, using Modems and ordinary telephone lines. In peacetime, the system was used for air traffic control. It influenced the design for the FAA’s future automated control systems. After World War II demand for air travel increased at a rate exceeding the available resources. This phenomenon created logistical problems for the Airlines. At the time passenger and flight, information management was limited to manual systems. Seat inventories were maintained on manual display boards and passenger information (passenger-name-record (PNR)) recorded in loose-leaf binders at
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This note was uploaded on 09/04/2011 for the course AVSC 2180 taught by Professor Brown during the Spring '11 term at Utah Valley University.

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AVSC 2180 Lesson 1 - Lesson 1 The History of Information...

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