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Computer Software Is No Longer a Major Barrier to Wide Use of Wireless Information Systems

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To determine if computer software is or not a major barrier to the wide use of wireless information system, I will first define what is computer software and wireless information system.

Computer software falls into two primary categories: system or operational software and application software. System Software is the software that can directly interact with computer hardware. Examples include motherboard, CPU, keyboard, Mouse, printer--etc. System software is responsible for controlling, integrating, and managing the individual hardware components of a computer system. Application software is used to accomplish precise tasks other than just running the computer system. This can include voice, play or record music, view videos, play video games--etc. Other examples of application software include permitting access to the internet and printing documents.

"Wireless information system or technology is the ability to transmit data without the use of wires. The distances involved may be short (a few meters as in television remote control) or long (thousands or millions of kilometers for radio communications). The term is often shortened to "wireless". It encompasses various types of fixed, mobile, and portable two-way radios, cellular telephones, personal digital assistants (PDAs), and wireless networking. "Wireless networks utilize components similar to wired networks; however, wireless networks must convert information signals into a form suitable for transmission through the air medium." (Cisco Press 04)

Software is required in all computers and portable devices in order for a wireless network to work properly. Whether connecting to the internet or making phone calls on a cellular phone, software is involved. Within a computer system there is an array of software that enable it to work properly especial when attempting to access a wireless network. A computer device has an operating system, such as Windows Vista, LINUX, or MAC OS. The operating system runs system software needed to connect wireless network application. "In some cases, the operating system has built-in features that enhance wireless networks. For example, Windows XP has the ability to automatically identify and associate with wireless LANs." (Cisco Press 04) The system software contains drivers that acts as the bridge between the computer and the network router or switch. Application software called web browsers such as Safari, Firefox, Internet Explorer or Chorme, allowed a user to explore the internet. "Web surfing and e-mail generally perform well over wireless networks. All it takes is a browser and e-mail software on the client device." ( Ciso Press 04)

In mobile devices such as PDA's and mobile smart phones, a similar process takes place within the network. PDA's and smart phone also has system and application software that enables it to perform their functions. "Smart phones operating



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