Tony’s Chips venue has been sold to a new company in which the new project management system that will remove the old site from an externally hosted solution to a new internal one was applied. Being at the helm of the management system, it was possible for me to oversee the transition process while the leadership of company was very concerned with redundancy for the site. By consideration, the leadership is insisting that in case the main site goes down, a back-up website should be accessible as a failover. Furthermore, they wish the site to be redesigned to enable consumers to order their products online as opposed to the contemporary manual system of ordering goods. This process calls for the deployment of the tasks defined in SLDLC (the System Development Life Cycle) (Langer, 2012). This means that the company should develop the information systems through a multi-tier step model spanning from feasibility to analysis, to systems design, and implementation. The process of system integration and testing would then follow, preceded by maintenance. Veering through these processes forms the essence of this paper.

Question 1a: Discuss what it will take to build Web architecture, move an existing Website with minimal downtime, and provide a disaster recovery solution to ensure the site is always available?

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By consideration, the company should move from the current system of ordering of goods based on the use of the manual system to a new system that is works on web architecture. The company has a role to design a change management practice that would move the management from an operational control to an MIS control. Building web architecture involves the development of a clear statement and goals. This stems from a clear understanding of the existing technological capabilities. For instance, since the current system is still operational, the company should recruit an analyst tasked with evaluation of skills bestowed within the IT staff for compliance with the new project.

This might then be followed by a responsive action aimed at the incorporation of training as a module of the human resource management that provides a platform for acquaintance of compliance. This step is essential since it also helps with the recommendations given for firing of totally non-compliant members. Consequently, the company should use the complaint staff to determine the best software program. For instance, if all the IT staff members are complaint with the applications of VERITAS software, then it would be installed for the feasibility of web architecture. The software program is most recommended for the back up and recovery through a mode of replicating to the host site. Moreover, the program is aimed to be used with the cluster servers as a clustering system for ensuring availability of the local servers (Wall, 2004).

On the other hand, the higher management has the duty to ensure that the IT staff is capable of describing and justifying operating system choices, including Linux, Apache, MYSQL, Windows, PHP, IIS and SQL. In this regard, the application of software programs are the basic definitions of compliance with management using Information Communication Technology. Ensuring that the existing website moves with minimal downtime involves structuring of web architecture in such a way that the elements of the web page are definite. For instance, the main navigation buttons should be located at the top, left or right navigation system. Moreover, the architect might design the main navigation buttons to have a drop down list, starting from the main buttons of navigation. This could ensure that the system has a random access of the enlisting, which is presumably the fastest mode of access to the listings as opposed to the sequential mode of access to the navigation buttons. This would reduce the time required for accessibility of the icons in the navigation box (Langer, 2012).

Question 1b: The Web architecture should describe and justify operating system choices (i.e., Linux, Apache, MYSQL, PHP, Windows, IIS, SQL, etc.).

The operating system choices like Linux and PHP are essential in the laying of the platform for a 3-tier architecture. This implies that both Linux Kernel and PHP are system software programs used for the complexity of operations, in which they both have multi-tier operational bases. Consequently, both of them portray complexity in that they have the fastest security execution capabilities. On the other hand, system software programs like MYSQL, SQL and windows have a direct file access capability.

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Such program choices are important for the company since it helps save the time of ordering system in that they aid in a random access to files as opposed to a sequential ordering. For instance, windows can be designed to give the full name of an entry on a list when the fast two or three characters are fed into the computer machine. This proves the fact that such software programs are user friendly, since they also have options for software assistance whenever a consumer is not in contention with what is on the entry list through the support from the “Help icon.” This is in line with reaching out to the “system analysis” module of the SLDLC (Bunin, 2011).

Question 2: Evaluate alternatives to the company self-hosting the site?

Self hosting of the web site is the first process of attainment of the feasibility model of the SLDLC since it helps in the determination of the complexity of the application development platforms. For instance, a simple platform for PHP would lead to a single web page host, while the converse is also true that a complex platform for PHP would lead to a multiple web page host. This implies that the company has options of designing a simple platform for self hosting, depending on the consumer frequency.

The web page should be designed in such a way that the most frequent consumers have a complex PHP platform, while the most infrequent consumers should be designated to the simple PHP platform. This would influence the accessibility of the new consumers since such platform allows a single web page, which contains the name of the consumer. Consequently, such platform would increase confidentiality and familiarity with the organization’s services. This is because the single web page contains the description of the company and it is only designated to the consumer, who is the end user, while the company is the host (Wall, 2004).

The higher management within the company should provide an interface for maintaining the web page through the use of programs like “Secure Sockets Layer” (SLL). This program is essential in the self-hosting of the web page as it allows the server to purchase the items via his or her email address. This means that the program would not only aid in E-commerce but also allow communication between the end user and the host of the web page. On the other hand, the use of the email address enhances confidentiality since such pages require access codes. The need for the access codes ensures that accessibility of the web page is restricted to the relevant authority.

Question 3&4: Build a Gantt chart using Microsoft Project or equivalent software, showing all tasks associated with implementing the Website. The chart should include a minimum of five (5) tasks, each with three (3) sub-tasks.

The SLDLC models define the tasks associated with the implementation of the website. The sequence of implementation of the tasks is illustrated in the Gantt chart below:

Question 5: Explain and justify the system architecture you have selected

The architecture is based on the SLDLC models in which the first two tasks involve preparation and planning. These tasks relate to the development of the project proposal, approval of the proposal and recruitment of the project team. In this regard, preparation involves formulation of a proposal for self hosting of the website. The role of the higher management in this task is to approve the funds for research into the possible software programs for self hosting of web architecture. On the other hand, planning would take up the roles of approving the proposal as a form of enacting the stipulations in the proposal. For instance, stipulating a simple PHP platform for a single-tier web and a complex PHP platform for a multi-tier web page. Consequently, recruitment of the project team is a role of the Human Resource Management, which is dependant upon the proficiency and compliance of the team. In this respect, the project team should involve professionals, while the training and firing forms the constant of this proportionality in that the partially compliant team might undergo training to increase the levels of proficiency; the fully non-compliant teams should be fired (Wall, 2004).

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The other task for the development of web architect involves the development, on the one hand, and testing, on the other. The roles of the development include specification of the detail requirements, development of the prototype and approval of the prototype. This is the stage in which development of the software choices like Linux Kernel fall. Approval of such prototypes involves the articulation of proficiency from the management team. The team should evaluate the viability of the prototype and recommend the best course of action over the interconnectedness between the computer interface programs. On the other hand, the development of the beta type involves evaluation of the alternatives of self hosting programs. The feasibility of the beta type depends on the frequency of the ordering system.

The process of development goes hand in hand with that of testing, although the latter may have a different set of tasks. This implies that the process of testing involves the test of the beta prototype and approval of the final version. The process of testing the beta prototype involves evaluation of the feasibility of the alternatives of the web page in relation to the designed software programs. Once the prototype has been tested for feasibility, approval of the final version would follow. The final version is approved depending on the cost in which the most feasible and cost effective prototypes would be recommended. Even though the cost is a factor of consideration, the company should not compromise the quality at the expense of the cost. This implies that the most feasible prototype should be considered amid the constraints of the cost (Wall, 2004).

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The last task on the agenda is implementation. This task comes about as a result of thorough evaluation of the feasibility of the project. It takes into account the process of overseeing through interconnectedness in the mirror of trans-users, which acts in response to the end user. The prototypes designed at the previous stages are enacted, depending on the number of end users. On the other hand, implementation would also involve the application roll-out of the final version. This is the critical stage of aligning the company to its culture, norms and visions. After evaluation of the viability of the project, implementation seeks to address the relationship between achievability verses the cost of implementation, which in turn gives the probability of aligning the company to the structured web site (Wall, 2004).

Question 6: Illustrate the system architecture using Visio or equivalent software

A multi-tier architecture is based on a complex PHP platform, in which the redundant architecture helps in the recovery of information and consequent failover. In this regard, the client has the jurisdiction of using the server array for auto-scaling. The architecture comprises a double system of lead balancers and applications, while the superfluous architecture helps to shield the site from structure downtime (Wall, 2004). This is illustrated in the figure below.

Question 7: Create a use case that documents the event of a customer ordering a bag of chips from the new Website.

In the event of a customer ordering a bag in the automated system, the description of the use case starts with the user’s name then goes to the scenario. The following use case is evidently suitable for the definition of the transaction process of the automated web:

Use case name: bag of chips

Scenario: The user has to enter the codes for the stipulated scale and weight of the bag of chips.

Triggering event: The client needs to select the codes against the probable categories of the menus offered. For instance, certain codes might reflect a bag of chips served together with other snacks.

Brief description: This use case describes the circumstances embodied in an event of a client ordering a bag of chips. The code representing the ordering system makes it possible for  the bag of chips to be served alongside with other stipulated snacks to get consumer’s approval.

Preconditions: The customer must be in possession of a valid Email account for communication purposes and to uphold the virtue of confidentiality of the transaction.

The customer must also be proficient in handling the web as non-compliant circumstances need a proactive response of training or some form of help.

Post conditions: Every order represents a viable transaction while a new order needs a new account. This reduces the chances of elimination and errors in the inventory.

The inventory should also be modified in such a way that it reflects the current status of the ordering system. Consequently, the frequency of ordering must be noted down for the purposes of self-hosting of the site.

The inventory should then give the total cost for ordering a bag of chips alongside with other snacks in the chips ware. There must also be a column for debits and credits in order to get the right calculations.

Flow of activities:

  1. The customer browses through the system to obtain the required codes for the number in terms of weights of the chips.
  2. The server accepts the requested order and then verifies within the stock for compliance with the ordered goods.
  3. The technical staff sends a message to the operator on the counter for notification of the details
  4. The bag of chips is packed alongside with other snacks and the transaction is saved for the reference purposes.
  5. The IT staff checks for the total amount payable through online banking systems and then sends the receipt to the client for advancement of the payment.

Question 8: The use case should include a graphical representation using Visio or equivalent software and a text description of the events

A hierarchical user case is based on online transactions in which a consumer places an order and then the web page acts as the platform for carrying out essential communication with the operational control. A user case diagram represented below shows the actual transaction process for implementation of the tasks as stipulated in the web page (Rosenberg & Stephens, 2005).

The transaction starts with the placement of an order on the part of the end user. This is then followed by an online booking of the items. In this case, the client books the bag of chips via an online modulated system. The client server browses the items for verification of the essential codes according to the system stipulations and then the client purchases the items.

Question 9: Discuss the support operations that the internally hosted Website will require after implementation.

The internally hosted website would require a number of support operations. This includes upgrading of the codes to reflect the most commonly ordered items in the menu. The other support operation would be to invent a system for customer care, in which all the clients are answered frequently asked questions. This involves designation of numeric access codes like phone numbers for specified hosted sites and the use of email addresses, appointing a group of expertise staff to provide answers to the questions (Langer, 2012).

The other major support operation would be frequent configuration of the prices of the items in the menu. This is possible under the situation of the rule of inflation following, in which prices might sour high or low. If the prices of market goods go up, the operator needs to change the figures to reflect this trend. On the other hand, if the prices of the goods in the market are low, the prices must be lowered. This is not only a sound system to ensure profitability, but also a mode of winning consumer confidence through cost leadership.

The next support operation should be constant update of the firewalls to ensure that there is minimal accessibility to unauthorized personnel. This results from the steps geared towards self-hosting of the web-page, in which there is maximum accessibility to the clients and a consequent minimal accessibility to system hackers. Updating of the security system helps in creation of consumer confidence since it is a form of upholding transaction privacy.

Question 10: Explain how you will evaluate the performance of the new site and the success of your project.

The success of this project depends on the appropriateness of the procedural outlay of the tasks. Moving through the project from the models of SLDLC, it becomes clear that the project is viable. Consequently, evaluation of performance of the new site would involve a test transaction, in which one of the IT staff members of the company acts as a client. The member should have new email account, using the email account. He will have an access to the site and carry out the tasks stipulated in the user case. This would then be followed by the due process of E-commerce, based on a PHP platform. For a sound system site, all the transactions should be easily validated. However, in case of any incongruence, the IT staff should revisit the processes of web site migration while trying out every step before moving to the next one. This would enable error correction whenever they are identified (Wall, 2004).

Evaluation of the success of the project involves the creation of a site for commentary from the end users. This implies that the end users should be responsive in ensuring viability. The site for commentary gives the percentage of compliance of the system, which can be rated according to consumer satisfaction. Moreover, the number of prospective clients could be used to determine the milestones achieved in creation of the system and completion of the web site migration project. This implies that for a complete and working web site the company should solicit the efforts of both the designers of the programs and the end users via computer interface programs (Bunin, 2011). 

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