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What is IT Infrastructure and What Are Its Components?

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IT infrastructure is the shared technology resources that provide the platform for the firm’s specific information system specifications. IT infrastructure includes hardware, software, and services that are shared across the entire firm. Major IT infrastructure components include computer hardware platforms, operating system platforms, enterprise software platforms, networking and telecommunications platforms, database management software, Internet platforms, and consulting services and systems integrators. 2. What are the stages and technology drivers of IT infrastructure evolution? The five stages of IT infrastructure evolution are: (1) the mainframe era, (2) the personal computer era, (3) the client/server era, (4) the enterprise computing era, and (5) the cloud and mobile computing era. Moore’s Law deals with the exponential increase in processing power and decline in the cost of computer technology, stating that every 18 months the power of microprocessors doubles and the price of computing falls in half.

The Law of Mass Digital Storage deals with the exponential decrease in the cost of storing data, stating that the number of kilobytes of data that can be stored on magnetic media for $1 roughly doubles every 15 months. Metcalfe’s Law helps show that a network’s value to participants grows exponentially as the network takes on more members. Also driving exploding computer use is the rapid decline in costs of communication and growing agreement in the technology industry to use computing and communications standards. 3. What are the current trends in computer hardware platforms? Increasingly, computing is taking place on a mobile digital platform. Grid computing involves connecting geographically remote computers into a single network to create a computational grid that combines the computing power of all the computers in the network. Virtualization organizes computing resources so that their use is not restricted by physical configuration or geographic location.

In cloud computing, firms and individuals obtain computing power and software as services over a network, including the Internet, rather than purchasing and installing the hardware and software on their own computers. A multicore processor is a microprocessor to which two or more processing cores have been attached for enhanced performance. Green computing includes practices and technologies for producing, using, and disposing of information technology hardware to minimize negative impact on the environment. In autonomic computing, computer systems have capabilities for automatically configuring and repairing themselves. Power-saving processors dramatically reduce power consumption in mobile digital devices. 4. Define and describe open source software and Linux and explain their business benefits. Open source is produced and maintained by a global community of programmers and is often downloaded for free. Linux is a powerful, resilient open source operating system that can run on multiple hardware platforms and is used widely to run Web servers. Define Java and Ajax and explain why they are important.

Java is an operating –system – and hardware- independent programming language that is the leading interactive programming environment for the web. Ajax is another Web development technique for creating interactive Web applications that prevents all of this inconvenience. Define and describe Web services and the role played by XML

Ajax and JavaScript is another Web development technique for creating interactive Web applications that prevents all of this inconvenience Name and describe the three external sources for software.

Mashups , Java , Linux
Define and describe software mashups and apps.
Mashups combine two different software services to create new software applications and services. Apps are small pieces of software that run on the Internet, on a computer, or on a mobile phone and are generally delivered over the internet.

5. Name and describe the management challenges posed by IT infrastructure. Dealing with platform and infrastructure change, infrastructure management and governance are the challenges posed by IT infrastructure. Explain how using a competitive forces model and calculating the TCO of technology assets help firms make good infrastructure investments. TCO model can be used to analyze these direct and indirect costs to help firms determine the actual cost of specific technology implementations.

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