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Introducing Week 3

Viktor Dörfler introduces this week’s topics and activities.
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Welcome to week three of the course. This week is called information systems information communication technology design. However, I prefer to think about it as the slide rule. The term is coming from my student days. At that time, engineers always had a slide rule here in their upper pocket. And when they were meeting with business people in the organisations, they often took the slide-rule out. They were doing some magical calculations with it. And this was incredibly intimidating for the business people. It was not particularly useful to use the slide rule. We already had calculators at the time. However, as the business people did not understand what is happening with the slide rule, they were intimidated.
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Therefore, there was a professor at the business school who actually spent almost a semester teaching business people how to use the slide rule. I mean, you could do interesting calculations with it. For example, you could get a square root calculated with that device. But it was much faster using a pocket calculator. However, once the business people learned how to use the slide rule, they did not feel intimidated anymore, and they could interact with the engineers better. And that’s what I want to achieve with this course. So you will learn some technical terms while still remaining on the non-technological side. And you will be able to talk to those IT guys much easier who you don’t really understand these days.
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So when they show you a data flow diagram, an entity relationship diagram, or state transition diagram, you will know what they are talking about.
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Understanding Information and Technology Today

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