Q 1: Prioritising Activities In Workplace
Greg is employed as a sales assistant for an IT company that sells PC hardware. It is approaching the busy Father’s Day trading period and the store has seen an increase in the amount of stock that is arriving and the number of customers that are coming in to purchase gifts. The manager has given you a list of tasks that needs to be completed before the end of your shift. Put the tasks in order of most important to least important. Explain the rationale behind your sequencing of the tasks.
- Contact Mr Smith regarding his special-order HP Laptop that has arrived.
- Top up the cash register with change
- Conduct the UATs for the new software release
- Apply the new Microsoft patch update on the server
- Finalise the upgrade project plan for online services
- Unpack the stock that has arrived for the Father’s Day catalogue that is being released tomorrow.
- Call the customers that are overdue in picking up their lay-bys
- Create a Father’s Day window display
- Stop the monthly report financial queue, which runs after business hours
Q 2: Organisational Culture
Robert A. Cooke described organisational culture as the behaviours that members should believe in order to fit in and meet expectations within their organization. Furthermore, he classified organisational culture into three main types. Briefly describe each of these organisational culture types, with an example.
Q 3: Oral Reports And Presentations
You have been informed by email that your conference paper has been accepted – See the email below:
“Congratulations! We are pleased to inform you that your manuscript submission “The role of ICT in Educational Settings Leadership” has been approved, after addressing review comments, for publication at the International Business Information Management Association (IBIMA)”
This involves allocating a date, time, and place for the presentation of the paper. With the above scenario in consideration, giving presentations to audiences, large or small, can be a daunting and anxiety-ridden task. You’re going to be in front of a group of people, some you may know, some may be total strangers. You’re on stage, all eyes are on you, the audience has high expectations or they wouldn’t be there. Every word, every nuance, your appearance, the tone of your voice, not to mention the content of your presentation will be scrutinised in every way. You know what you want to say and you know the material but there’s that nagging feeling that you’ll say the wrong thing or you’ll have a spot on your suit or there will be some errant distraction.
a) What type of speech would be used for the above conference?
b) How can visual aids assist presenters to deliver speech effectively? Give two examples.
Q 4: Professional Research
a) Good research begins by presenting a hypothesis. Explain the meaning and purpose of a hypothesis. What process should be used to test the hypothesis?
b) List key differences between qualitative and quantitative research methods? Discuss in the context of research purpose, design, approach, tools, samples and analysis. Use a sample research question in your discussion of both approaches.
Q 5: Ict Certifications
a) You plan to become a certified Network Engineer. Which certification will help you to be recognised in the industry, over and above your current course?
b) Why are industry certifications important for professionals in the IT field?
Q 6: Case Study I - Ethics Case Study
One for the Road—Anyone?
“Florence Yozefu is a brilliant scientist who heads a robotics research laboratory at one of the top ten research universities. Florence has been developing wearable robotics gear that can take over the driving functions of a vehicle from a human operator when it is worn by the driver. In laboratory tests, the robot, nicknamed Catchmenot, has performed successfully whenever Florence and her assistants have worn the robot. However, no real-life experiment has ever been conducted outside the lab. Florence has been planning to try it out in her project plan but has not yet had a chance to do so. For New Year’s Eve, Florence has plans to visit her mother and sister, about 100 miles away. This was a good opportunity to show her mother and her sister what she has been working on in the last few months. So, she decides to take Catchmenot with her. She packs her car the evening before and on the morning of the trip, she passes by the lab to get her robot and put it in the car. She drives the 100 miles in a little under her usual time and arrives at her mother’s house earlier than usual”.
“In the evening, Florence bids her mother good-bye and passes by her sister’s apartment as promised. At her sister’s apartment, she finds a few of her teen friends and they get right into a party mode. Florence drinks and dances and forgets about the time. There are many stories to tell and to listen to. About 1:00 a.m., after the midnight champagne toast, she decides to leave and drive back to her apartment. She had promised to accompany her friends to a pre-planned engagement. Although she is very drunk, and against her friend’s advice and insistence that she should not drive, Florence puts on Catchmenot and in a few minutes she is off. Thirty minutes later, she is cruising at 70 mph and she is also sound asleep. She is awakened by a squirrel running all over her car at about 5:00 a.m. She is parked by the roadside in front of her apartment complex. She has made it home safely. She has no idea when and where she passed out and what happened along the way. She will never know. Although she is surprised, confused, and feels guilty, she is happy how well Catchmenot has worked. She decides to market it. How much should she charge for it, she wonders”.
[Source: Kizza J.M. History of Computing. In: Ethical and Social Issues in the Information Age, 2010, Texts in Computer Science. Springer, London]
Please answer the following questions:
- As AI applications increase like in the use of robotics, will the wider use of these “manlike” machines compromise our moral values system? Why or why not?
- Discus the future of computer ethics in the integrated environment of Artificial Intelligence (A I), Virtual Reality (VR), and cyberspace.
- If anything went wrong along the ride home, would Florence be responsible? Who should be? What are the consequences?
- Discuss the ethical implications of Artificial Intelligence.
Q 7: Case Study II
Intellectual Property Rights and Computer Technology
“Advances Gaining the skills to provide computer technology products, services, and software requires a considerable investment both in time and money. So, the individuals who do this work should reap financial rewards for their efforts. Such rewards create an atmosphere of creativity and competitiveness, which in turn creates jobs that drive the economy. This creativity must therefore be protected, for if it alters because of a lack of protection, then the economy of the country falters along with it”.
“Computer technology in particular was born out of this individual creativity and the adventurism of young entrepreneurs. In order to encourage these innovators, society must protect their efforts and resources. To do this, a specific set of rights, collectively known as intellectual property rights, has been recognized, and laws have been enacted by different countries and groups of countries to protect those rights”.
“Intellectual property rights form a wide scope of mechanisms that include copyrights, patents, trademarks, protection of trade secrets, and, increasingly, personal identity rights. Each of these instruments of protection is regulated by a body of laws and statutes we discuss throughout this chapter.
Unfortunately, some of these laws are not universal; they only apply in one country. And even within the United States, the same laws may not apply in all states. In particular, we look at intellectual property rights as they apply to computer products, services, and software”.
The manifestation of an idea into a computer program usually starts with the blueprint and flowchart, as we saw earlier. This then goes through the remaining stages of object code and executable code. One’s knowledge of the process anywhere during these stages forms a trade secret and should not be revealed for personal gain or to a competitor”.
“It is generally known to computer programmers and software developers, as it is known to all hardware engineers, that once the blueprint and flowchart of a computer program is known, it is easy to develop a program. It is, therefore, of the utmost importance that at the early software development stages, the blueprint and flowchart not be known outside design circles. Typically, the trade secret laws require an infringer, if caught, to stop, return the material under dispute to the rightful owner, and pay damages.
But there are difficult cases, such as when former employees leave their employers without written material but with years of acquired know-how of product development. Here the law is difficult to apply.
Some companies make the employees sign nondisclosure contracts for a specific number of years after leaving the company. This works to some extent, but it is very difficult to enforce except in high-profile and rich companies”.
“Discussing the intellectual property rights (IPR) one cannot fail to think about the modern wonder oftechnology, the computer software, and its relationship with IPR. The biggest problem concerning computer software and IPR is software piracy. Generally speaking, we can define software piracy as the act of copying, distributing, or using proprietary software belonging to somebody else who bought it.
This act is and has been illegal ever since software started being protected by law after software manufacturers started filing for patents and copyrights for their products and creations. However, this has not always been the case. In the early days computers, mainly mainframe, came with software preloaded. There were few computers and few users, nobody cared about the software the least understood let alone knowing how to use it and when to use it. With the miniaturization and widespreaduse of computers together with the high costs of production and purchase costs of software, this changed. A demand for software was created that lead to the piracy problems”.
“The issue of software piracy is a complex one. There are several other issues that complicate software piracy. Some people use illegal software without knowing that the copies they have are illegal. Others use it with the full knowledge that the copies they are using are illegal but they go ahead anyway. Others are confused by the software terminology that includes freeware, shareware, and commercial software. Yet others, especially those in educational institutions are confused by the IPR principle of fair use. They cannot tell how much is fair. There is also a large percentage of illegal software users who do it purposely to get even with software manufacturers who frequently upgrade software versions making older versions of the product obsolete”.
Please answer the following questions:
- Discuss the problems faced by software developers trying to apply for protection under trade secret statutes.
- Discuss the consequences of software piracy on software developers and the role of relevant enforcement organizations.
- Why is copyright law, in its present form, considered to be unenforceable?
- What changes would you suggest in current copyright laws to make them enforceable in cyberspace?
- There is a movement (that includes hackers) that is advocating for free software! Discuss the merits of this idea.
- Discuss the ethical and legal issues surrounding software ownership.