Systems 002 Essay

8691 words - 35 pages

system analysis and designCourse NoteWHAT IS A SYSTEM?System An integrated set of interoperable elements, each with explicitly specified and bounded capabilities, working synergistically to perform value-added processing to enable a User to satisfy mission-oriented operational needs in a prescribed operating environment with a specified outcome and probability of success. To help you understand the rationale for this definition, let's examine each part in detail.System Definition RationaleThe definition above captures a number of key discussion points about systems. Let's examine the basis for each phrase in the definition.By "an integrated set," we mean that a system, by definition, is composed of hierarchical levels of physical elements, entities, or components.By "interoperable elements," we mean that elements within the system's structure must be compatible with each other in form, fit, and function, for example. System elements include equipment (e.g., hardware and system, system, facilities, operating constraints, support), maintenance, supplies, spares, training, resources, procedural data, external systems, and anything else that supports mission accomplishment.One is tempted to expand this phrase to state "interoperable and complementary." In general, system elements should have complementary missions and objectives with nonoverlapping capabilities. However, redundant systems may require duplication of capabilities across several system elements. Additionally, some systems, such as networks, have multiple instances of the same components.By each element having "explicitly specified and bounded capabilities," we mean that every element should work to accomplish some higher level goal or purposeful mission. System element contributions to the overall system performance must be explicitly specified. This requires that operational and functional performance capabilities for each system element be identified and explicitly bounded to a level of specificity that allows the element to be analyzed, designed, developed, tested, verified, and validated-either on a stand-alone basis or as part of the integrated system.By "working in synergistically," we mean that the purpose of integrating the set of elements is to leverage the capabilities of individual element capabilities to accomplish a higher level capability that cannot be achieved as stand-alone elements.By "value-added processing," we mean that factors such operational cost, utility, suitability, availability, and efficiency demand that each system operation and task add value to its inputs availability, and produce outputs that contribute to achievement of the overall system mission outcome and performance objectives.By "enable a user to predictably satisfy mission-oriented operational needs," we mean that every system has a purpose (i.e., a reason for existence) and a value to the user(s). Its value may be a return on investment (ROI) relative to satisfying operational needs or to satisfy...

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