First andforemost, a business spread across different Regions would run effectivelythrough a network topology. A network topologyis the arrangement of a network, including its nodes and connectinglines. There are two ways of defining network geometry: the physical topologyand the logical (or signal) topology. The physical topology of a network is theactual geometric layout of workstations. There are several common physicaltopologies, as described below and as shown in the illustration.
http://whatis.techtarget.com/definition/network-topology. The key tofast and efficient telecommunications is networks. Effy Oz states that in thecontext of data communications, a network is a combination of devices (at leasttwo computers) connected to each other through one of the communicationchannels called multiplexers.
For a business with multiple offices in different towns andprovinces (regions), it would be recommended to create a networkinginfrastructure such as a Wide Area Network (WAN). This network crossesorganizational boundries and reaches outside the immediate environment. WANscan be private or public. The internet is widely known as an example of apublic WAN, whilst private LAN may use dedicated lines. It is a known fact thatmany organizations cannot afford to maintain the private LAN.
Value-addednetworks (VANs) such as Tymnet and Sprintnet provide enhanced network servicessuch as protocol conversion and error detection and correction. This type ofnetwork fulfils the organizational needs for reliable data communications whilerelieving the organization of providing its own network management andenhancement. Wide area network protocols are significantly more complex thanLAN networks. Effy, Oz, ThirdEdition, Management Information Systems, Chapter 6, Telecommunications andNetworks.The technologies involved in communication tend to becomplex. You certainly don’t need to understand them for your ICT course.However, there are aspects of digital communications that you need to be awareof.
These relate primarily to the two types of network and the ways of connecting tothe internet. Let’s look at these two briefly:(i) Internal networks -Usually referred to as a local area network (LAN),this involves linking a number of hardware items (input and output devices pluscomputer processing) together within an office or building. The aim of a LAN isto be able to share hardware facilities such as printers or scanners,software applications and data. This type of network is invaluable in theoffice environment where colleagues need to have access to common data orprogrammes. Organisations even take it further by saving more money byinvesting in one central printing machine which can like a number of computersand laptops as opposed to (ii) External networks – Often you need to communicate with someone outside your internal network,in this case you will need to be part of a wide area network (WAN).
Theinternet is the ultimate WAN – it is a vast network of networks.ICT is categorizedin four components necessary for business. These four components are asfollows: (i) Telecommunication infrastructure such as telephone lines, wireless and satellitelinks.(ii) Computer technology such as hardware and software.(iii) Content infrastructure, where information can be collected, stored and madeaccessible.
(iv) Human Intervention to store, retrieve and manipulate information.These joined together are recognized as components of aninformation system.In my organization, ICT is used in a form of telephones,cellular phones, Microsoft Outlook for sending and receiving emails, schedulingof meetings and setting up reminders for meetings. Systems such as SAP tomanage finances and human resources related matter, i.e. capturing data in realtime.
Usage of media platforms such as Twitter and facebook is used in my organizationto log customer queries and updates, and also to keep customers abreast aboutservices offered and also how to access those services. That said, I would recommend the Wide Area Networks as itwill enable various offices to access and share information without hinderingany service delivery. There will no delayed communication as information willbe shared instantly.