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All IT210 Discussion Questions and Capstone




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Week 1Discussion Question 1
Why do you think the requirements analysis process is so difficult? Describe two
things you can do to overcome these difficulties.
The requirement analysis process is so difficult because this is the beginning of the
process. Oftentimes, this step becomes a mess because the person may not understand the
requirements. Or better yet does not have a plan, just image if a company ask you to build
a product for, them and, it takes months to complete. The vendor is upset, the person
may be removed from the project mainly because lack of a plan and complete
understanding of the problem or project.
In short, to overcome these difficulties it is best to “analyze the problem” (Venit, 2004, p.
26). This means determining the inputs and outputs (Venit, 2004, p. 26). Next, decide on
the necessary steps or logic to solve the problems. For some people, pictures or
flowcharts assist in this step. For others, breaking the problems in individual pieces,
subareas, ordinary language or special charts of the program-to-be solve the problem
(Venit, 2004, p. 26). Ultimately the difficulties need to be overcome quickly.
In summary, the requirements analysis process is difficult when the person may not
understand the problem and lack a plan. To overcome these difficulties, I feel it is best to
analyze the problem completely (Venit, 2004, p. 26). Further determine the steps to solve
the problem this is better than wasting time.
Venit, S. (2004). Extended prelude to programming: Concepts and design (2
Boston: Scott/Jones.
Week 1Discussion Question 2
When building a house, a structured, modular approach is better than a
haphazard approach. Explain how a structured approach relates to developing
programs and why using an organized approach is important.
We are in a time of computers and online access to just about everything. Since there is a
demand to produce software quickly, there are instances where the software is built
haphazardly instead of structured. An approach that is effective for developing programs
is the module approach.
The module approach starts with the major routine then the subtasks or submodules for
the smaller task (Venit, 2004, p.31). The module approach is very effective because the
routines are available for use again. First, if there is problem it is easy to detect instead of
searching all over the place for the error. Second, it is easy to read and make
modifications (Venit, 2004, p.32). Third, just think about it this way, if the original

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programmer quit the job or project the coding style is not unique and does not have to be
rewritten. Finally, the modular approach is organized.
In conclusion, everything needs structure whether it is building a house, or developing a
program. Building anything haphazardly is a complete waste of time in the long run
especially when developing programs. Therefore, to build effective programs use a
structured, modular approach.
Venit, S. (2004). Extended prelude to programming: Concepts and design (2
Boston: Scott/Jones.
Week 3 Discussion Question 1
Review the definition of control structure on p. 45 in Extended Prelude to
Programming: Concepts and Design (2nd ed.). Then, think about the
pseudocode algorithm you would write for a simple task (making a peanut butter
sandwich, for example) as well as three simple control structures that could be
used to create this algorithm. What do you think is the most difficult part of
creating the algorithm? What can you do to make this process easier?
When writing a simple task such as “making a peanut butter sandwich”, I believe the
most difficult part of creating the algorithm is determining which algorithm to use. There
are three control structures they are sequential, loop and decision. The first step to make
the process easier to create the algorithm is to determine the problem. The inputs are 2
pieces of bread, knife and peanut butter. The output is the peanut butter sandwich.
At this point, I need to decide if the sequential structure of a series of consecutive
statements following a one-two-three order is appropriate for solving this task (Venit,
2004, p. 45). Or do I want to use the loop structure by a repetition of looping until the
answer is true or false (Venit, 2004, p. 45). Or lastly, should I use the decision structure
which will test a certain block of statements then skip to the other when one test or
branch is complete (Venit, 2004, p.45).
There is no need to make this process difficult. Although all three of the controls
structures can be used to solve the problem, I probably use the sequential structure. I
want to keep this very simple by not using branch point statements to make a simple
sandwich (Venit, 2004, p.45). This way the algorithm will execute the sequence of
statements then end the program.
In conclusion, deciding the appropriate control structures to make a “peanut butter
sandwich” should be quick and direct. The three control structures are sequential, loop
and decision either algorithm can be used to solve the problem.

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Venit, S. (2004). Extended prelude to programming: Concepts and design (2
ed.). Boston: Scott/Jones.
Week 3 Discussion Question 2
How do you use the three basic control structures - sequential, repetition, and
selection - in your everyday problem solving? Do you think there are any other
control structures that would make your problem-solving skills more efficient? If
so, describe them.
I solve problems or put out fires all day at work. There are some days that these same
problems repeat because it is hard to explain to the user. Nonetheless, at work we have a
same day payment system. I supervise two employees on that system. One of the basic
control structures is sequential to create new users on the system. The person has to input
some information while the program in the background generates the user-id and
password. The program uses a set of statements followed in a sequential order until the
user-id and password is generated. Once that is complete the program returns back to the
The storing of the user-id’s is done by a loop repetition structure. The testing checks if the
user-id is stored in the table. If there are no records found then the program inserts the
record in the store table. If the record exists, then the program returns an error.
The selection or decision structure is used for a large percentage of the programs that
interface with the users on this system. Every item that is inputted by the user is verified.
If the test is true the program skips to another section (Venit, 2004, p.45). Or the program
will perform another test or exit.
I do think that counter-controlled loops make some problem-solving more efficient. For
example, the counter-controlled loop is used to test a defined variable a fixed number of
times (Venit, 2004, p. 101). This could have been used instead of loop repetition. I think
the different control structures are efficient for problem-solving depending the situation
and the customers request.
In conclusion, the three basic control structures are used in my everyday problem solving
for computer problems, however, there are other control structures that are used as well
and are just as efficient.
Venit, S. (2004). Extended prelude to programming: Concepts and
design (2
ed). Boston: Scott/Jones.

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Very useful material for studying!