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         According to Rick Cook, “Programming today is a race between software engineers striving to build bigger and better-idiot-proof programs, and the universe trying to build bigger and better idiots. So far, the universe is winning.”

Programming is indeed a breakthrough towards technological advancement. The marvelous works of computers, programs, applications and software have transformed the world. In this race of creating, developing, unfolding and transforming something extraordinary out of the ordinary, how can you actually win?

Well, for a programmer to win, he or she must overcome all the daily struggles of their job to achieve a certain set of goals. They need to embroil and submerge themselves into the nitty-gritty of everything. This includes the entire process of software development plus the agonizing struggles and challenges that may come along the way.

So, you better get ready and brace yourself! Here are some compelling reasons why the struggle is real for programmers.

1). Exhausting Relationship with Coding

                                                                                                   

A programmer must have a certain long-term relationship with coding. It is actually the backbone of any system so you need to to bear the agony of this process no matter how tiring it can be. You must be willing to code and code and code up to the point, wherein you can no longer open your eyes. Coding is never easy and it will consume a lot of your time. Sometimes it feels like its never-ending! It is truly wearisome not just physically but mentally.

2).  Enduring the Hassle of Debugging

 

                                                                        

  The process of debugging is actually the greatest struggle of a developer. This is much more difficult than coding because some bugs are not easy to find and fix. Thus, this is definitely a pain in the ass.

3). Updating and Refactoring Can Kill You Sometimes

    

                                                                                             

       As much as overthinking about the codes and functionalities may stress you out, sometimes updating and refactoring can kill and turn your work into a mess. Yes, imagine those moments wherein you’ve think of another way of doing something and you’ve changed and refactored and deployed it. But in the end, it doesn’t work? Thus, with full of regrets you just decided to start over again and delete everything. How awful and saddening, right?

4). Puzzling Moments of “Why and How” Codes Work

                                                                                               

 Who says that existential questions are not applicable to coding. Indeed, programmers are also faced with a lot of questions especially why a code is not working or how it functions? Maybe, how the problem started or where the error is coming from? You know, mind-boggling questions might actually sprout during the process of development and even testing. Thus, it is really a struggle for any programmer to have a clear grasp of designing and analyzing techniques.

5). Customizing Requires Additional Effort

                                                                                              

     Customizing requires a lot of effort from a programmer especially if you’ve already finished the system or the application itself. Thus, in the beginning of a project it is important to customize the system or program based on the needs of a client or establishment. Plan ahead for the features in need to be customized. Nonetheless, if will be a disaster.

6). Fixing Errors and Understanding Syntax Format

                 

                                                                                                         

     Fixing errors is also a struggle especially for the newbies. Thus, it is important that you are equipped with technical knowledge and skills. Familiarize yourself with basic programming languages and understand the format and syntax upon it. Remember syntax is very important and strict adherence to it must be observed!

7). Ensuring Compatibility of the Software

                                                                                                               

    Compatibility should always be a priority for a programmer or developer. From time to time, it is important to check if the software is compatible with a specific Internet browser or device. Imagine how tiring and time consuming it can be. Checking the security is also an additional factor to be considered.

These are just some of the daily struggles that a programmer of software developer might actually come across with. At the end of the day, nothing comes easy! Every day is a good fight and it is up to you if you’ll take the challenge.

For it is only through these daily struggles, where you can actually see what you are capable of as a programmer. Understanding your struggles might give you a hundred more reasons to love your job and strive harder. Keep on believing and never cease to grow. Now you can finally say that “The struggle is real!”.

 Image Sources:

Image 1 Link: http://giphy.com/search/programmer

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Image 7 Link: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/889302467

 

            

 

Published in Software Development

 

In one of our previous blogs before, we’ve talked about SDLC or also known as “Software Development Life Cycle”.

Just to refresh our minds, SDLC is a model framework that describes the stages of project development. Speaking of these stages, one of the most notorious, challenging and mind-boggling is the “Analysis” stage.

This stage is very crucial for it allows you to set up the pace in defining the functional and non functional requirements for system development. This also gives you the leeway to scrutinize not only the business needs but also the system/program to be developed.

Did you know that in SDLC, you can actually conduct analysis in two ways? Yes, just like a coin with two sides, analysis can be done through what we call as “Business Analysis” or “System Analysis”. But, the million-dollar question would be, how do they differ from one another?

The Process

Business Analysis is known as a process of understanding and identifying business needs and problems. It puts prior on examining the overall business structure, resources, strategies or even the issues comprising the organization. It involves documentation and gathering of information to thoroughly examine what solution would be best to address the needs.

This is normally performed by a business analyst who ensures that the IT solution which is system development coincides with the goals and requirements of the business.

On the other hand, System Analysis is known as a process of identifying the solution given the problem. More often than not, basic system needs are verified. Thus, this process requires the system analyst to probe and identify the system requirements needed, the system design to be implemented, the programming language to be used for the project and other technical specifications related to the system.

Nowadays, we also have what we call as Business System Analyst which can do both roles.

The Responsibilities of a Business Analyst

  • Assessment of business needs and problems
  • Understanding the structure of the organization, issues and its inadequacies
  • Management of business requirements in coordination with the management, stakeholders and end-users
  • Documentation and gathering of information about the business process
  • Preparation of the recommended IT solutions for the business needs.
  • Participation within the whole SDLC process to ensure that the system/solutions provided will be compatible to the needs and goals of the business.

The Responsibilities of a System Analyst

  • Coordination with the business analyst or the management for the system requirements
  • Administration in creating the system, testing and checking the performance of the system.
  • Identification of the system design and the techniques to be used to make the system efficient for the users.
  • Discussion and coordination with the management and end-users to ensure that the system can address their needs when the system is already developed.
  • Creation of flowcharts and model to be used by the developers
  • Configuration and monitoring of the system creation.

 The Skillls

There you go! The two processes may require different set of skills, knowledge and expertise. More often than not, business analysts should have a good background when it comes to business and marketing while systems analysts are required to have higher technical skills.

Conclusion

      As you can see both of the two processes are different but they are complimentary. Don’t worry doing both of these process is definitely worthwhile.

Think of the analysis stage as a stone, which can hit two major goals 1) address certain business needs; 2) create a system to solve the needs and achieve further corporate targets (either maximizing productivity or increasing profit via the system)

At the end of the day, no matter how different they are what is important is how both processes complement and support each other to achieve a common goal!

 

Image Source: http://www.freepik.com/free-photo/web-design-concept-with-drawings_902906.htm#term=business analysis&page=1&position=3

 

References:

Business Analyst Learning Official Website. (September 21,2016). Duties of a Business Analyst. Retrieved from: http://businessanalystlearnings.com/business-analyst-career/2015/11/7/what-is-the-difference-between-business-analysis-and-systems-analysis

Villanoavu Online Website. (September 21,2016). Duties of a System Analyst. Retrieved from http://www.villanovau.com/resources/business-analysis/business-analyst-vs-system-analyst/#.V-IwJih97IU

 

Published in Software Development

 

 

             Across all business strata, the concept of “database” has been a crucial aspect of Systems Development. Indeed, it is tantamount to say that, nowadays, almost all business establishments are investing to venture upon it, after all the database is the lifeblood of business operations aside from Sales and Marketing. Name all of those from the big corporations, institutions, government agencies down to the Small-Medium Enterprises (SME’s).

Apparently, this is no surprising because before you drive that line towards the concept of Above-the-Line (ABL) advertising or marketing, a company needs to establish itself first and manage its own knowledge bank.

One better way to do this, is to have an organized and established database. Take note, not just a database but a good and well-structured one!

Talking About the Database

The heart of a database is the data itself. It contains all the quantitative or qualitative information about a company, its customers, their people, its services, products, sales, etc. These pieces of information are collated inside the database; which is an integral part of systems development. It serves as the content and meat of any system or application. Hence, it is indispensable to know what type of data should you use in creating a database.

Unstructured data is a set of information that lacks categorization and arrangement. One simple example would be having too many email messages with a different subject and sender. Imagine how chaotic it may appear, right? But once you categorized it into folders, your life will be much easier. This is where structured data will come into play.

Structured data is a set of information that has a fixed format and arrangement. It has a high-degree of organization and flexibility rather than the previous one. It is arranged in a manner that can easily be accessed by anyone either by order, name, location, gender etc. It follows a data model which depends on the type of business data available and how they are stored, processed and accessed. Thus, it is important to define the values first to organize your data in a database. (Webopedia, 2016). 

Companies and SME’s with a growing number of clients and employees might have been facing a lot of issues due to unstructured and cluttered data. Imagine how much information they need to compile? Or how much information that they need to collate using voluminous and multiple sources of data just to create a report?  This is the very reason why having a database became the most sought after solution for data management problems.

Knowing the Importance of a well-structured database

According to Global Industry Development Network (GIDN), a well-structured database is paramount to the success of a business. Keeping all  information into a one secured place to be accessed anytime by any business. Here are some of the top reasons why there is a need for a well-structured database.

  • Accessibility and Availability of Data

A well-structured database can make information easily accessible anytime and anywhere. Any information in a database can also be searchable due to its categorization and fixed arrangement of values. You can now eliminate the hassle of manually going through a lot of papers or multiple sources before finding the right piece of information that you need.

 

  • Sharing of Data/ Multi-User Scheme

  A well-structured database is beneficial for the sharing of data. A database is designed for processing transactions, storing these transactions and sharing data with a lot of users. Yes, it follows a multi-user mode where anyone can access the information at the same time. If you are a developer, normally structured data is done by using Structured Query Language (SQL) a programming language used in data management systems. 

  • System Performance

   A well structured database allows systems or applications accessing such information to perform much better by just going through a structure piece of source, instead of an application or system to browse several sources just to get or acquire specific values.

  • Security and Authorized Access to Information

A well-structured database is better on how it sis being controlled and managed. . User-level access mode is used to verify a number of people who can use and access the database. Security measures are also included to limit the access to some information which should not be for everyone. By having a database, you can ensure that information is stored safely and efficiently. Database Administrators are the only people allowed to change or revise the database according to their needs as well as perform the necessary optimization of these structured databases for it to perform efficiently.

  • Easier and Simpler Storage & Backup

A well- structured database requires less effort for storage and backup. It helps in preventing data loss and storing important files for monitoring and growth tracking. With the available technology right now, you can even store your database by using Cloud.

  • Analysis and Verification of Data

 A well-structured database is also important and helpful in analyzing data. Since information is structured and categorized, analyzing data won’t be that difficult. You can easily get all the figures and details that you want and turn it into a report. The database can also verify if the data is valid, you can set up some values or verification codes to test the integrity of data.

  • Time, Effort and Cost Efficient

A well structured database minimizes the effort of browsing all the locations at your library to look for some details about the client. More importantly, this is cost efficient especially if you have a daily operation where the transactions need information from a database.

These are just some of the benefits why it is viable to have a well-structured database. On a pragmatic level, having a good database is also used to complement with certain marketing strategies and business approaches. Some companies can also use this to bridge the gap between the company and its clients or even an organization and its members. This is also a reason why having a good database is becoming not only a solution but more of a necessity and business philosophy.

 

 

References:

Global Industry Development Netowork. (September 14, 2016). Importance of Structured Databases. Retrieved from http://gidn.co/news/the-importance-of-structured-databases.html

Bright Planet Online Website (September 14, 2016. Structured & Unstructured Database. Retrieved from https://brightplanet.com/2012/06/structured-vs-unstructured-data/

Webopedia Online Website. (September 14, 2016) Structured Data Retrieved from http://www.webopedia.com/TERM/S/structured_data.html

Image Source: Freepik.com 

 

Published in Software Development

 

             In a globally competitive world, no doubt that personal and career development is a must. No wonder why the so called “millennials” are constantly seeking for a barrel of avenues wherein they can grow and unleash their potentials. In a report conducted by Gallup entitled as “How Millennials Work and Live” it has been noted that 87% of millennials rate career development  as an important factor in choosing a job.

Well, this is not surprising considering that technological advancement became an inherent aspect of modernization. The millennials want jobs that are innovative, success-driven and dynamic for growth. Here are some of the reasons, why most millennials may probably want or think of joining the Information Technology (IT) sector.

1. IT Jobs are dynamic and innovative

              Sounds cool right? Most of the generation today are millennials who are digital natives, which means they are accustomed to the use of technology. Most of the millenials today are forced to learn new things and it makes them flexible.  Web developers, programmers, android developers need to keep up with the latest trends in applications, programming language in oder to do certain tasks. Truly, millennials have to adapt with the current technologies. products and solutions that are available within a specific time. As a result, technology paved way for a lot of innovations coming from the new gadgets and applications that are being changed and invented everyday. Thus, it makes IT jobs more fascinating for the millennials.  IT jobs require fresh ideas, skills and innovative people like the millennials. 

2. IT Jobs are challenging

              Coding, developing, programming, reducing bugs and the like are not really easy. You have to be equipped with the knowledge and the skills in order to do such IT tasks. For millennial programmers, MySQL, JQuery, CSS, HTML can be as challenging as it is. They have to painstakingly work overnight just to code and learn other programming languages based on the system requirements of a company. The IT sector is very broad and this serves as challenge and opportunity for millennials to prove themselves. Well, millennials of today love to explore and learn new things. They wanted to challenge their abilities and think out of the box. But take note, millennials are also outgoing who love adventures so given such challenges, this can also lead them to explore other avenues wherein they can grow. This is also the reason why most of them especially the younger ones are into job hunting to the point that they change their jobs frequently. 

3. IT Jobs are interesting and fun

                More often than not, if you are an IT guy, there must be something in the technical world that interest you so much. If you are a programmer, you will not bear the agony of the coding process if you didn’t love and enjoy it in the first place.If you are a web developer, you will not study or take time to learn those certain platforms and applications if you didn’t like it even an ounce of it. Either it is by force or by choice, it still depends on how you view your job. Generally speaking, millennials want jobs that are innovative and fun. IT jobs are pretty fun and serious by nature. You have to take it seriously so that you can achieve fruitful results. This is the reason why most of the technical people think that IT jobs are interesting and fun. At the end of the day, if you love what you are doing you will not think of it as work.  

4. IT jobs are in demand

                  IT jobs are really promising for the millennials. It has been reported that by the year 2025, a larger part of the working sector will be composed of the millennials. It is also expected that a lot of industries and businesses will be improving their systems to adapt with the modern demands of the future. Thus, all the more they will need technological solutions and resources to address their needs. This will open up to a myriad of opportunities for IT people. Some businesses may result to IT staff augmentation or IT project outsourcing to achieve operational efficiency and lessen their cost. On the international level, there has been an increasing demand for IT people. All you have to do is search for that golden opportunity.

5. IT jobs are flexible and have a unique working culture

                   Millennials of today, love to work and play. This has been proven by a lot of IT companies who are making twist in their work culture. Local or international, some IT companies are making an effort to revolutionize the work place atmosphere. This is done to make their employees feel good so as they can work effectively. Even the offices are being designed in a unique manner so as it can be conducive not only for the customers but most importantly for the employees. They even offer free food, provide sleeping quarters, gaming room, gym in order to adjust with the lifestyle of the millennials.

      Isn’t it exciting? Well, these are just some of the captivating reasons why you might want to be part of the IT sector. No doubt, being an IT guy is as cool and as interesting as you may have probably think of! Salute to all the IT guys out there.

 

References:

Gallup Business Journal Online Website (2016, August 22). “How Miilennials Work and Live Report. Retrieved from“ http://www.gallup.com/businessjournal/191435/millennials-work-life.aspx

Image source: <a href="http://www.freepik.com/free-photos-vectors/business">Business vector designed by Freepik</a>

 

 

Published in Software Development

 

Most of us would think that software applications development is the actual programming of an application, and that the programming involves programmers that are slaving away on their keyboards doing codes and codes of stuff and compiling them to make an application. While this is true, few people or users are quite aware that prior to these programmers doing the codes, a systems analysis and design is very critical. Here are the following reasons:

A. A systems analysis process involves studying the actual business processes, understand where data is coming from, how it should be processed and what results are required.

B. This is to find the bottlenecks in data or in processing that results in performance degradation of an application software.

C. To sub-divide a more complex application system so that it can easily be managed.

One of the major objectives of systems analysis is to find answers for each business process so that efficiency of a software application can be achieved. What is being done? How is it being done? Who is doing it? Why are they doing it? When is it being done and how can it be improved? These are the questions that are often answered by systems analysts, and is more of a thinking process and involves creativity for the systems analyst. The goal is that it attempts to product a new efficient system that satisfies the current needs of the users and has vision for future growth within the organization. After an analysis process, then a systems design should be made.

Systems Design Process

Based on user requirements and the results of the analysis of the existing application or systems, a new system must be designed. This is the most crucial phase in the development of a system or an application because, any weak links in the design are carried over into the actual programming process and results may not be that beneficial to an organization if the software or application that was developed does not match perfectly with the needs of the organization. This is also where costs of implementing new features or functionalities and the benefits of these new functionalities are estimated. Likewise, the result of the systems design are passed on to the developers who develop the system. If the output of the systems design are incompatible with the needs of the organization, then the software or systems that are developed will be wasted, not to mention the resources that are incurred in the development of the system.

So in all cases, the developers or the programmers would not be just the core people in software development, everyone, from the business analysts, to the systems analysts, to the software testers, even the documentations analysts, not to mention the programmers themselves form part of the critical core in the process of systems development.

 

Published in Software Development

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