The ICT Lounge
 
Section 6.3:
The Capabilities and Limitations of ICT
 
ICT devices and systems have many capabilities (thinks they do well) and limitations (things they don't do so well).

This section looks at some of these capabilities and limitations.
Key Concepts of this section:
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Understand that ICT devices have both capabilities and limitations.
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Be able to discuss some of these capabilities and limitations.
Capabilities of ICT devices
Key Words:
Capabilities, Limitations
What things do ICT devices do well?
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ICT devices and systems are capable of performing lots of tasks very well. Some of these are listed below:
 
1.
Speed
Computers perform tasks very fast. Some cpu's can execute literally 'billions' of instructions per second.
Bank note counters perform repetitive tasks
Fingerprints can be matched quickly in a database
Programmed robots carry out jobs fast and accurately
2.
Accuracy
If programmed properly, computers are capable of performing the same tasks 100% accurately every time.

For example, a robot that is programmed to bolt a wheel to a car will get it exactly right each time.
3.
Multi-Tasking
Computers are able to perform many tasks at the same time.
4.
Repetitive
Tasks
Computers will carry out boring and repetitive tasks accurately. Humans tend to get bored and make mistakes.

For example, machines that count bank notes will do that job all day long without making a mistake.
5.
Networking
Computers can be joined together (either as a LAN or a WAN) and allows them to easily share resources such as printers and data.
6.
Huge amounts
of Data Storage
Computer databases can store enormous amounts of data.

All types of data be stored including text, numbers, images and video.
7.
Fast Searches
Computers can search for stored data extremely fast.

For example, the police can match fingerprints in a database in minutes rather than spending weeks searching through printed copies.
8. Security
Data can be secured with passwords or encryption.

What things do ICT devices not do well?

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Computers, and other devices, are not without their problems. Limitations of ICT devices are listed below:
 
1.
Battery Life
Portable device such as laptops, PDAs and mobile phones are limited by their battery life. These devices only remain charged for so long before they need to be plugged into the mains.
Laptop batterys have a limited charge
Some devices have small screens
and keyboards
2.
Weight
Some portable devices are heavy (especially laptops). This does not make them ideal for carrying around.
3.
Screen and Keyboard Size
Smaller devices such as mobile phones and PDAs have very small screens and keyboards which can cause problems for some people.
4.
Bandwidth
Bandwidth is the speed that data can be transported over the Internet.

Low bandwidth means that large files will take a long time to transfer.

Activity!

Click the above task and follow the instructions given on the sheet. Make sure that you complete all questions in full.