Chapter 9 - :APrimerforManagers,chapter9fromthebook...

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Previous Chapter Next Chapter This is “Understanding Software: A Primer for Managers”, chapter 9 from the book Getting the Most Out of Information Systems (v. 1.4). For details on it (including licensing), click here . For more information on the source of this book, or why it is available for free, please see the project's home page . You can browse or download additional books there. To download a .zip file containing this book to use offline, simply click here . Has this book helped you? Consider passing it on: Help Creative Commons Creative Commons supports free culture from music to education. Their licenses helped make this book available to you. Help a Public School DonorsChoose.org helps people like you help teachers fund their classroom projects, from art supplies to books to calculators. Table of Contents Chapter 9 Understanding Software: A Primer for Managers 9.1 Introduction LEARNING OBJECTIVES 1. Recognize the importance of software and its implications for the firm and strategic decision making. 2. Understand that software is everywhere; not just in computers, but also cell phones, cars, cameras, and many other technologies. 3. Know what software is and be able to differentiate it from hardware. 4. List the major classifications of software and give examples of each.
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We know computing hardware is getting faster and cheaper, creating all sorts of exciting and disruptive opportunities for the savvy manager. But what’s really going on inside the box? It’s software that makes the magic of computing happen. Without software, your PC would be a heap of silicon wrapped in wires encased in plastic and metal. But it’s the instructions—the software code —that enable a computer to do something wonderful, driving the limitless possibilities of information technology. Software is everywhere. An inexpensive cell phone has about one million lines of code.R. Charette, “Why Software Fails,” IEEE Spectrum , September 2005. Ford automobiles actually have more lines of code than Twitter and Facebook combined.S. Lacy, “Is Atlassian the Next Big Enterprise Software IPO?” Pando Daily , February 22, 2012. In this chapter we’ll take a peek inside the chips to understand what software is. A lot of terms are associated with software: operating systems, applications, enterprise software, distributed systems, and more. We’ll define these terms up front, and put them in a managerial context. A follow-up chapter, Chapter 10 "Software in Flux: Partly Cloudy and Sometimes Free" , will focus on changes impacting the software business, including open source software, software as a service (SaaS), and cloud computing. These changes are creating an environment radically different from the software industry that existed in prior decades—confronting managers with a whole new set of opportunities and challenges.
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Chapter 9 - :APrimerforManagers,chapter9fromthebook...

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