Information technology

Information technology

Overview
Information technology is the acquisition, processing, storage and dissemination of vocal, pictorial, textual and numerical information by a microelectronics
Microelectronics
Microelectronics is a subfield of electronics. As the name suggests, microelectronics relates to the study and manufacture of very small electronic components. Usually, but not always, this means micrometre-scale or smaller,. These devices are made from semiconductors...

-based combination of computing
Computing
Computing is usually defined as the activity of using and improving computer hardware and software. It is the computer-specific part of information technology...

 and telecommunications. The term in its modern sense first appeared in a 1958 article published in the Harvard Business Review
Harvard Business Review
Harvard Business Review is a general management magazine published since 1922 by Harvard Business School Publishing, owned by the Harvard Business School. A monthly research-based magazine written for business practitioners, it claims a high ranking business readership among academics, executives,...

, in which authors Leavitt and Whisler commented that "the new technology does not yet have a single established name.
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Encyclopedia
Information technology is the acquisition, processing, storage and dissemination of vocal, pictorial, textual and numerical information by a microelectronics
Microelectronics
Microelectronics is a subfield of electronics. As the name suggests, microelectronics relates to the study and manufacture of very small electronic components. Usually, but not always, this means micrometre-scale or smaller,. These devices are made from semiconductors...

-based combination of computing
Computing
Computing is usually defined as the activity of using and improving computer hardware and software. It is the computer-specific part of information technology...

 and telecommunications. The term in its modern sense first appeared in a 1958 article published in the Harvard Business Review
Harvard Business Review
Harvard Business Review is a general management magazine published since 1922 by Harvard Business School Publishing, owned by the Harvard Business School. A monthly research-based magazine written for business practitioners, it claims a high ranking business readership among academics, executives,...

, in which authors Leavitt and Whisler commented that "the new technology does not yet have a single established name. We shall call it information technology (IT).". Some of the modern and emerging fields of Information technology are next generation web technologies, bioinformatics
Bioinformatics
Bioinformatics is the application of computer science and information technology to the field of biology and medicine. Bioinformatics deals with algorithms, databases and information systems, web technologies, artificial intelligence and soft computing, information and computation theory, software...

, cloud computing
Cloud computing
Cloud computing is the delivery of computing as a service rather than a product, whereby shared resources, software, and information are provided to computers and other devices as a utility over a network ....

, global information systems, large scale knowledgebases, etc.

General information



IT is the area of managing technology and spans wide variety of areas that include computer software
Computer software
Computer software, or just software, is a collection of computer programs and related data that provide the instructions for telling a computer what to do and how to do it....

, information systems
Information systems
Information Systems is an academic/professional discipline bridging the business field and the well-defined computer science field that is evolving toward a new scientific area of study...

, computer hardware
Computer hardware
Personal computer hardware are component devices which are typically installed into or peripheral to a computer case to create a personal computer upon which system software is installed including a firmware interface such as a BIOS and an operating system which supports application software that...

, programming language
Programming language
A programming language is an artificial language designed to communicate instructions to a machine, particularly a computer. Programming languages can be used to create programs that control the behavior of a machine and/or to express algorithms precisely....

s but are not limited to things such as processes,and data constructs. In short, anything that renders data, information or perceived knowledge in any visual format whatsoever, via any multimedia distribution mechanism, is considered part of the IT domain. IT provides businesses with four sets of core services to help execute the business strategy: business process automation, providing information, connecting with customers, and productivity tools.

IT professionals perform a variety of functions (IT Disciplines/Competencies) that ranges from installing applications
Application software
Application software, also known as an application or an "app", is computer software designed to help the user to perform specific tasks. Examples include enterprise software, accounting software, office suites, graphics software and media players. Many application programs deal principally with...

 to designing complex computer network
Computer network
A computer network, often simply referred to as a network, is a collection of hardware components and computers interconnected by communication channels that allow sharing of resources and information....

s and information database
Database
A database is an organized collection of data for one or more purposes, usually in digital form. The data are typically organized to model relevant aspects of reality , in a way that supports processes requiring this information...

s. A few of the duties that IT professionals perform may include data management
Data management
Data management comprises all the disciplines related to managing data as a valuable resource.- Overview :The official definition provided by DAMA International, the professional organization for those in the data management profession, is: "Data Resource Management is the development and execution...

, networking, engineering computer hardware
Computer hardware
Personal computer hardware are component devices which are typically installed into or peripheral to a computer case to create a personal computer upon which system software is installed including a firmware interface such as a BIOS and an operating system which supports application software that...

, database and software design, as well as management and administration of entire systems. Information technology is starting to spread further than the conventional personal computer
Personal computer
A personal computer is any general-purpose computer whose size, capabilities, and original sales price make it useful for individuals, and which is intended to be operated directly by an end-user with no intervening computer operator...

 and network technologies, and more into integrations of other technologies such as the use of cell phones, televisions, automobiles, and more, which is increasing the demand for such jobs.

In the recent past, the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology
Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology
ABET, Inc., formerly the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology, is a non-profit organization that accredits post-secondary education programs in applied science, computing, engineering, and technology...

 and the Association for Computing Machinery
Association for Computing Machinery
The Association for Computing Machinery is a learned society for computing. It was founded in 1947 as the world's first scientific and educational computing society. Its membership is more than 92,000 as of 2009...

 have collaborated to form accreditation and curriculum standards for degrees in Information Technology as a distinct field of study as compared to Computer Science
Computer science
Computer science or computing science is the study of the theoretical foundations of information and computation and of practical techniques for their implementation and application in computer systems...

 and Information Systems
Information systems
Information Systems is an academic/professional discipline bridging the business field and the well-defined computer science field that is evolving toward a new scientific area of study...

 today. SIGITE (Special Interest Group for IT Education) is the ACM working group for defining these standards. The Worldwide IT services revenue totaled $763 billion in 2009.

Technological capacity and growth


Hilbert and Lopez identify the exponential pace of technological change (a kind of Moore's law
Moore's Law
Moore's law describes a long-term trend in the history of computing hardware: the number of transistors that can be placed inexpensively on an integrated circuit doubles approximately every two years....

): machines’ application-specific capacity to compute information per capita has roughly doubled every 14 months between 1986-2007; the per capita capacity of the world’s general-purpose computers has doubled every 18 months during the same two decades; the global telecommunication capacity per capita doubled every 34 months; the world’s storage capacity per capita required roughly 40 months to double (every 3 years); and per capita broadcast information has doubled roughly every 12.3 years.

See also

  • Information and communications technology (ICT)
  • Information history
    Information history
    Information history may refer to to each of the categories listed below . It should be recognized that the understanding of, for example, libraries as information systems only goes back to about 1950...

  • Computer science
    Computer science
    Computer science or computing science is the study of the theoretical foundations of information and computation and of practical techniques for their implementation and application in computer systems...


Further reading


  • Adelman, C. (2000). A Parallel Post-secondary Universe: The Certification System in Information Technology. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of Education.
  • Allen, T., and M.S. Morton, eds. 1994. Information Technology and the Corporation of the 1990s. New York: Oxford University Press
    Oxford University Press
    Oxford University Press is the largest university press in the world. It is a department of the University of Oxford and is governed by a group of 15 academics appointed by the Vice-Chancellor known as the Delegates of the Press. They are headed by the Secretary to the Delegates, who serves as...

    .
  • Shelly, Gary, Cashman, Thomas, Vermaat, Misty, and Walker, Tim. (1999). Discovering Computers 2000: Concepts for a Connected World. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Course Technology.
  • Webster, Frank, and Robins, Kevin. (1986). Information Technology—A Luddite Analysis. Norwood, NJ: Ablex.


External links