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Test Your Knowledge

1. Describe two differences between primary and secondary storage
Primary storage is in charge of a storage structure when programs are running;
whereas secondary storage stores data when they are not actively used.
Secondary storage sources are typically cheaper ($/MB) than primary storage
2. Explain the difference between system and application software
System software are tools used by a computer to run the users programs and
manage hardware. Application software are used to perform work or complete
larger tasks, such as running programs.

The OS (Operating System)

3. Summarise the role of an operating system
An operating system is a software that controls a computers hardware and runs
the users application software.
4. Describe the roles of people, data, processes and digital systems
in creating an information system
People interact with systems according to their needs, such as
programmers, data entry operators, system managers, technicians and end
Data which is composed of raw, unprocessed facts and end users. Can be
used as input to be processed into meaningful information such as output
Processes manual and automated ways of achieving a result, such as a
manual data backup or an automated hard disk error scan
Digital system support programming and software use

Programming and scripting languages

5. Programming language may differ in syntax, but they are all basically
alike. What does this mean?
This means that programs have the same function, but have their own way of
performing the function. For example, can only be interpreted in a certain
manner, but having the same effect.
Software Development tools
6. How are source code and executable code related?

Executable code runs off of information processed from the source code.
Storage structures
7. Name and give examples of five data types
String Text Hello
Integers Whole numbers with no part 2340
Floating Numbers Numbers with fractional parts 2.42
Byte 0-255
Currency Numeric, storing monetary values only $0.00, limited decimals
Character A single character, $
8. Describe how lossy and lossless compression reduce file sizes
Lossy compression shrinks media by throwing away details
Lossless compression reduces media size as much as possible without losing
data. They work by summarising data.
The software development process
9. Why is the PSM analysis stage so important?
PSM is important to identify new material that may need to be produced, and the
method it will take to get to the desired outcome.

Show examples of three different software design tools

IPO Chart Input, Process, Output

Pseudocode If so and so, then
End if
Mock-Up - (Drawing)

What is an algorithm, and how does pseudocode relate to it?

An algorithm is a process or set of rules to be followed in calculations.

Pseudocode is a baseline for what forms the calculations in the specific code
Suggest two possible good names for a variable used to
hold an integer value describing mens average shoe size
Creating effective user interfaces
Describe affordance and tolerance and give examples of

Affordance refers to the concept that objects on the interface should

immediately suggest what they do and how to use them. E.g. The shadow
effect on a button indicates he clicked with a mouse
Tolerance is the capacity of the software and interfaces to compensate for a
users errors and cope with peoples natural differences in how they carry out
tasks. E.g. Allowing users to cancel or undo actions.

List five tips for creating an effective user interface

Make mock up diagrams to look at how the final product will look like
Commonly used features the quickest and easiest to find
Structure the design so that it makes sense to end users
Should cater for peoples with disabilities, e.g. colour blindness
Size considerations of elements
Fundamental Programming Concepts

List examples of syntax, logical and runtime errors

Syntax error:
Language expects a specific order
INPUT prompt; variablename
INPUT variablename; prompt
It matters in which order the language is typed
Logical error:
E.g. Total cost = Price + 10%, a price of $30 would yield a Total Cost of $30.10
instead of $33.00
Should be Price + (10% of the price)
Runtime error:
Runtime errors are caused by factors during the execution of a program, e.g. The
computer running out of memory

How do compiled and interpreted languages differ?

Compiled languages mean that source code is converted once by a compiler into
executable code, to be run many times under a particular OS
Interpreted language mean that the source code is compiled every time it is run,
instead of being compiled once

Justify the use of internal documentation

So that notes can be referred to within the code, and dont have to be on a
separate document. Notes, mistakes, errors and reasoning can all be in one


Arrays and loops were built for each other. Explain

Arrays can store many values in numbered slots. These stored values can be
read, and can be repeated until a clear condition is reached. Based on the
information in the array, if a clear condition cannot be reached, then the
sequence of instruction can be repeated.

When is desk checking used?

Disk checking is used when the logic of an algorithm needs to be checked

Why is it important to use test data that focuses on
boundary conditions?
So that all aspects can be tested, within the boundaries that the code will be
reached. (In any situation). Unnecessary boundary conditions wont have use to
the programmer.

When would you recommend the use of a random file?

For an employee record, so that all records are the same length, so the location
of any record in the file can be calculated precisely. Program can instantly load in