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Monday, 15 August 2016 11:09

What Is SDLC?

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Most of us who are in IT but are not involved in systems development oftentimes hear the term "SDLC" from our colleagues. But what is SDLC anyway? Is it another IT language that no one can ever comprehend?

SDLC is an abbreviation of Systems Development Life Cycle, which are phases involved in systems development. These are processes that are designed to meet or exceed customer satisfaction. By means of customer satisfaction, it simply means that the users, who are customers of the software developers are fully satisfied with the product or output of the software development. It simply means that the software is running as intended to simplify manual tasks, processes, create accurate and timely reports, process transactions properly and are completed within time and budget.

There are around six (6) phases in SDLC namely:

  • Systems planning
  • Systems analysis
  • Systems design
  • Implementation
  • Systems testing and integration
  • Systems Maintenance

The systems planning phase is the most critical part in creating a working applications system. This phase is where realizations in creating a new application is defined and how it addresses current and future needs, alternative solutions which can be cheaper or easier to maintain are studied, and where budget, timeframe and the manpower to create and maintain the proposed automated system are defined. If stones are left unturned in this phase, then its back to the drawing board.

The systems analysis phase is where user and business requirements, expectations for the proposed system and how will it perform and help the business are defined. Feasibility studies for the project are developed as well so that it should answer if the project is feasible economically, organizationally, operationally and technically. At this phase, it is very critical that project managers as well as business and systems analysts maintain close and strong communication levels with the users or clients as well as with the stakeholders so that everything on the vision of the project is detailedly met, otherwise, it will affect all future phases of the project which will make it to be delivered late and beyond budget.

The systems design phase comes after it is assumed that understanding the users, business or stakeholders needs are completely acquired, understood and met. This phase defines components and requirements of the system including database requirements, runtime requirements, security and access requirements, infrastructural and network requirements as well as coding requirements are defined. A general prototype can be done to determine how the system will look like and how it will function, and then a detailed and expanded system design is produced, and it will meet all functional and technical requirements, logically and physically.

The implementation and deployment phase comes after a complete understanding of system requirements and specifications, it’s the actual construction process after having a complete and illustrated design for the requested system. Actual codes are written and if the system contains new infrastructural components, this phase also include configuration and fine-tuning of the hardware, the networks and the necessary components to meet certain requirements and functions. After the coding and the necessary infrastructural configuration, the system can now be deployed and tested by in-house IT testers prior to involving testing by the users. Training may also be required in this phase for the users to be sure they know how to use the system and get familiar with it.

The systems test and integration phase brings different components and subsystems together to create the whole integrated system, and then introducing the new system to different inputs to obtain and analyze its outputs and behavior and the way it functions. Testing is becoming more and more important to ensure customer’s satisfaction, and it requires no knowledge in coding, hardware configuration or design. Testing can be performed by real users, or by a team of specialized personnel, it can also be systematic and automated to ensure that the actual outcomes are compared and equal to the predicted and desired outcomes. Prior to this phase, test conditions on how to test the new system as its own or integrated with other systems are prepared to realize the necessary and required outputs.

In the systems maintenance phase, periodic and regular maintenance for the system will be carried out to make sure that the system won’t become obsolete, by adding new functionalities or may include replacing the old hardware and continuously evaluating system’s performance. It also includes providing latest updates for certain components to make sure it meets the right standards and the latest technologies to face current security threats as well as new components to meet changing business or user needs.

The Systems Development Life Cycle is a highly iterative process and is very specific for every software development project. Again, it is very important that excellent communication between both the developers and the users or customers be maintained and prototypes are very important and helpful in meeting expectations. In building a system, it is important that these phases are properly aligned so that customer or user satisfaction is guaranteed.

There are many models of the SDLC that came up from the idea of saving effort, money and time, no to mention in minimizing the risks in not meeting customer satisfaction at the end of the project. Some of these models are the Agile Model, The Iterative Model and the V-Model, which somehow quickens or speeds up the phase of the development, but are patterened basically on the original SDLC phases as discussed here.

 

 

More than anything else in this world, health is becoming a priority. Admit it or not, certain health issues are prevalent not only for adults but also for the younger ones. The slap of reality is that, even kids are susceptible to health problems. It can be malnutrition, obesity or other specific health concerns.

Given such, there is a need for mothers to be mindful of what their children eat. This calls for a more healthy approach in terms of food selection and food preparation. Mothers should ensure that their kids eat the right kinds of food with the right amount of nutrients that they need.

Speaking of nutrients, did you know that some foods can actually help in increasing your child’s intelligence? Research has shown that certain foods with nutrients can strengthen and sharpen your child’s memory. Well then, aside from the puzzles and toys that you use to improve your child’s cognitive abilities, we now have the so called “Brainy Foods”. These foods contain nutrients that are essential for the processing and functioning of the brain.

But how do we build a healthy brain? What foods are considered to be as “brainy” or helpful in brain development?

According to Food for the Brain Organization and as also cited in their website, there are Four Golden Rules on how to fuel your child’s brain through eating.


 

  • Balance Blood sugar- Sugar is the main super fuel of your child’s brain. High in sugar foods like rice, bread, pasta and oats etc. can sustain energy. It can make your child active and if consumed too much can make your child tired and hard to concentrate. Thus, there should be a balance in terms of its consumption.
  • Ensure Essential Fats- Make sure that your child can eat foods that can give them essential fats like tuna, salmon or sardines. You can also give them nuts and seeds for these can help in in boosting your child’s IQ.
  • Serve foods with Vitamins and Minerals- Foods rich in this category have the capacity to rebuild and support the optimal performance of the brain. Indeed, fruits and vegetables are really vital for the brain.
  • Avoid foods with Anti-Nutrients and Food Allergens- Avoid foods that can fall under this category for it combats essential brain nutrients. Thus, it can result to allergy or intolerance to some foods. As much as possible, stay away from refined foods and foods with chemical additives.

 

At the end of the day, these are just suggestions. On your own, you can research about multiple ways on how to improve your child’s “intelligence quotient” or IQ. Luckily, these brainy foods are not only good for the brain but also for the body in general. Thus, at an early age, it is  important to teach your child to eat healthy foods. What are you waiting for? Start it right and let your child eat smart! Happy eating!

References:

How to Build a Healthy Brain from http://www.foodforthebrain.org/

Photo credits :

Cereals image lifted from: http://www.natureoptimized.com/blogs/news/15343629-back-to-school-but-hopefully-not-on-cold-cereal

Fruits image lifted from: http://quotesgram.com/funny-quotes-about-fruit/

Salmon image lifted from: http://www.clipartlord.com/page/230/

Rice image: http://www.clker.com/clipart-29011.html

Grains image: http://www.pd4pic.com/grain-flat-icon-cartoon-crop-free-ear-plant.html

Nuts image: http://4vector.com/free-vector/some-nuts-vector-1641

Yogurt image: http://roaringsoftly.com/post/28033992143/frozen-yogurt-love

Vegetables image : http://www.clipartpanda.com/categories/vegetables-pictures-for-kids

Egg image: http://www.clipshrine.com/Fried-egg-2226-medium.html or

                    http://www.nicobo.net/articles/how-cook-egg-gimp

Kids; image: http://cliparts.co/kids-science-pictures

Light bulb image: http://www.pngall.com/light-bulb-png

 

 

 

Do you have what it takes to be a developer? Welcome to the world of programming language where innumerable codes exist. Truly, being a developer is a rewarding job but I can also tell you frankly and straight in the eye that, it is not a “petiks” job.

"Petiks"

In the Filipino culture, the word “petiks” is a word used to denote an act of resting or just merely doing nothing with no pressure at all. Nowadays, people are fascinated with the idea that developers and programmers have a relaxing and high paying job. In one way or another, it can be true, but you really have to work hard for it.

If you aspire to climb that ladder of success, you can’t manage to turn that “petiks” mode on. You have to be focused, patient and determined into making that system right. You are also compelled to meet the deadline even if you have to sacrifice your own personal time and work over time. Moreover, developers are not complacent because they need to cope up with the ongoing trend just like upgrading your phone to a new operating system. Application developers need to learn the latest updates and changes as well in order to adjust with various technologies.

Learning how to program is like teaching a person how to speak a language. Imagine a child learning the alphabets and numbers. For a developer that is equivalent to teaching a person on how to do simple tags and using it to create a simple website/application/systems. Then, just like how a child use the alphabets into words and sentences, developers can now use the learned tags and syntax to start the developing process.

It seems to be simple, right? For a normal person, learning one’s language might be enough but for developers, it doesn’t even come close to be called as “pa-petiks”.  For a developer to survive and be slightly noticeable by a good company, you must be a “jack of all trades”.It means that you must have to learn as many skills and language as you can just like JAVA, PYTHON, RUBY, PHP, VB.NET, C,C++,C#, Object C and etc. Moreover, learning these things are not enough. You still have to put a lot of effort and dedication in this kind of work.

At the end of the day, developers must also have a good grasp on what, why, who, and how they will create a system. After all, no matter how hard their work is, it was all worth it! The feeling of getting a task done is truly rewarding and incomparable. Just like how smitten and giddy you are when you had that first Iphone 6s plus  with (128GB) storage on your birthday!

Developers don’t have a magic mouse that can make coding as easy as ABC. In this globally competitive world,they must be fully equipped with technical knowledge, skills and undying passion for their craft. Kudos to all the hardworking developers out there! Keep your mechanical keyboards down!

Being a developer, is never that easy and it will never be as “petiks” as you think.

Images lifted from www.freepik.com

 

Monday, 15 August 2016 10:44

Health Tech: Interactive Ibitz for Kids

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 Who says that pedometers are mutually exclusive for adults? Well, did you know that even kids today can have their own pedometer plus an amazing app?  Yes! Have you heard of the recent “Ibitz” craze by GeoPalz? It is an amazing pedometer that comes with an app. It aims to motivate kids to be more active. It has a pedometer and app which can be synced together via Bluetooth, IPad, and IPhone. Its corresponding app features an interactive game that encourages children to do physical movements and activities.

 Studies have shown that physical activity is essential for children. Along with a healthy diet, physical health should be strengthened by activities which can promote strong bone development and immunity. In this way, it can help in preventing chronic diseases and fighting obesity.

 

 Image lifted from ibitz.com

Through the app, a kid can choose a character which can explore the galaxy. The chosen virtual character will travel and explore the galaxy through a spaceship. Thus, the kid has to walk or take several steps or movements in order to earn points. Kids can walk, hop, leap, run, dance or play to earn those points. The kid’s actions will be monitored via the pedometer which is connected to the app.

It works via a “point-reward” system wherein the more active the child is, the more points he or she can earn. Adults and other family members can also have their own device and app wherein they can track the steps, distance, weight, BMI and other physical activities. They can also share it with other friends and set up a competition for motivation. The pedometer is water resistant and it is in the form of a durable clip which you can bring anytime and anywhere.

Image lifted from Amazon.com

This is definitely a fun way to motivate your kids to sweat it out! Instead of playing video games, watching TV or playing games on IPad or phone, why not spice it up with some healthy moves? Turn that digital excitement into a healthy exercise or activity! Once again, this has been one way of unfolding how we can use technology in managing health. Unleash that interactive and healthy experience for your kids. Why not try with this cool Ibitz pedometer and app? Kindly check the link down below.

 

References:

Ibitz GeoPalz LLC Online Website (2016, June 22 ). Ibitz Kids Pedometer (Images & Contents) . Retrieved from http://ibitz.com/kidsapp/)

Kid with Ibitz above image lifted from Amazon.com

If you want to buy one, kindly check it here : https://www.amazon.com/iBitz-V3-PWK-BLK-Parent-Kids-Activity-Tracker/dp/B00HLBSSWS

 

 

 

         As the world is advancing with such speed and force, it is undeniable that “health” is becoming a priority. More and more people are becoming concerned not only about how they look but most importantly how healthy are they on the inside. This leads us to the premise that “health is truly our wealth.”

Nowadays, having a healthy and fit body is a prerequisite to a much more productive and successful life. You have to be healthy in order to do a lot of things. No wonder why the society is continuously embracing the thought of making “health” not only a concern, but also a lifestyle. Have you ever wondered why several fun runs are being conducted almost every month? Why our municipal health centers are giving free vaccine shots to children? Maybe, why more and more people are switching to traditional organic food and medicine?

        In this modern time, being healthy is not just enough, you also have to be fit! This is the reason why the health sector is becoming a trend right now. Well, it is not so surprising to see a lot of work out selfie posts on Facebook especially the millennials. Admit it or not, going to the gym and other fitness activities like swimming, triathlon, yoga, boxing etc. is becoming a cool trend right now. In one way or another, this is a good way of promoting the importance of an active and healthy lifestyle.

Indeed,the rapid changes and advancement became a leeway to intertwine the use of technology in managing health.This is evident with the onset of the latest apps and gadgets which are specifically designed to target specific health concerns and manage it. Here are some examples which are on the limelight lately.

Brace yourselves with these fabulous health apps and gadgets!

1) Alpha 2 Robot

  

                                                                          

 

Alpha 2 is a robot that you’ve always dreamed of. If you want a personal assistant or a friend that you can rely on, this robot might be the one that you are looking for! It reminds you to do certain things like taking medications, exercises and other things through its security alarm. It is definitely a cool choice for it can instantly read emails, take photos and talk even to children. Check it out at (http://www.ubtrobot.com) Source: Image from Urobot.com

2) Go Pro Hero Session 4

       

 

If you are fond of taking photos or videos of yourself while doing your exercises, this gadget will be suitable for you. This small camera lets you shoot videos in HD and allows you to capture images with its (8MP) camera. Sky divers, cyclists and other sports enthusiasts can bring this camera and cover their life thrilling memories without too much hassle. Source: Image from bmwblog.com

3) Calorie Counter App

 

 

If you are that conscious when it comes to your eating habits, this might be the app for you! This app allows you to monitor the calories from the food that you eat. From the 6 million notable foods in their database you can now easily know how much calorie intake will you have. It can also scan the barcodes of your purchased products and sync it to your other fitness apps. It is free and available for Android and IOS. Source: Image from  Image from www.everydayhealth.com

4) Charity Miles App

                                                                                                                                     

Do you want to run, bike or walk for a cause? If so, Charity Miles is the one for you. Every time you use this app and completed a task, corporate sponsors will donate some money for charity. Thus, every mile that you will take will matter. Why not be healthy and purposive at the same time? It is free and available on Android and IOS. Source: Image from Charity miles application

 

 

5) Fitbit Blaze

                                                                                                                                                 

Fitbit Blaze is definitely a smart and stylish watch. It has a lot of amazing features to suit your active lifestyle. It is connected via GPS which can help you to monitor your heart rate, your steps and even when you are sleeping. You can even receive a call or a text through this watch. Moreover, it also popular due to its multi-sport function. Check out other amazing fitness gadgets from Fitbit. (Website and Source of image: https://www.fitbit.com/blaze)

6) KuaiWear Coaching Headphones

                                                                                                                                      

If you want to have an instant coach or trainer you might want to consider this gadget. It is not your ordinary headphones for it is wireless and it has biometric sensors that gives you real time feedback and instructions about your performance. It is like having your instant coach as you conduct your exercises. You can also sync it with an app via Bluetooth. Source: Image lifted from www.indiegogo.com

7) Gyenno Cup

                                                                                                                                      

If you love to work out make sure that you drink enough water to avoid dehydration. The Gyenno Cup is a water bottle that reminds you to drink water. It vibrates and displays the time, date and weather plus the water temperature. It is definitely a must for people who are in a “water therapy mode”. Source: Image from http://www.gyenno.com/cup-en

 

8)  COR- The Gold Standard Health Tracker

 

Is a one of a kind wellness product that helps people know certain key health indicators through the blood. It measures your blood chemistry and provides personalized health insights about what’s going on your body.

(Source image from https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/cor-the-gold-standard-health-tracker--2#/

References:

Online website: (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/2016/03/14/the-best-fitness-gadgets/garmin-edge-1000-cycle-computer0/)

Online website: (http://www.popsugar.com/tech/Best-Health-Fitness-Gadgets-2016-39736017#photo-39861562)

Do you miss the handheld digital pet of your childhood called “Tamagotchi”? If so, did you know that recently a water bottle with the same feature of having a “virtual pet” was released for kids? Indeed, not in the usual form of a toy “Tamagotchi” but in a kid friendly water bottle that motivates children to drink water. Thus, if you are having some problems in forcing your child to drink water, this might be perfect for you!

  Image lifted from Dietdoctor.com

 If you will notice, most of the kids today tend to drink more sodas and juices with artificial preservatives. Some studies show that these drinks are not healthy. First, it cannot help in the optimal performance of your child, unlike water which helps in daily body functioning. Second, it is not good for the body because these drinks contain sugar and too much of its consumption might lead to obesity. Lastly, it is not encouraged because these drinks, particularly, “sodas” can cause calcium depletion in the body. Sodas contain phosphoric acid that can lessen calcium absorption and might result to poor bone development.

 A study conducted by Harvard T.H Chan School of Public Health (2015), entitled as “Prevalence of Inadequate Hydration Among US Children and Disparities by Gender and Race/Ethnicity” supported the importance of water for children. In this survey, it has been found out that more than half of children and adolescents in the U.S are inadequately hydrated and prone to headaches and other ailments that reduce their cognitive function.

 

 Image lifted from Kickstarter.com

In line with this, Bowhead Technology Inc. started an initiative which will motivate kids to drink enough water at an early age. The company was able to incorporate the use of technology to create the “Gululu” concept. Given the premise of keeping kids healthy by drinking water, the company started their exploration and research last year, 2015 and designed the “Gululu” app and animation. It is only now, June 2016 that the mass production for the product has started.

 

 Image lifted from Kickstarter.com

The “Gululu” app is more than an interactive game for it helps children to reinforce a positive behavior towards drinking water. It works through a “reward-point” system wherein as the child drinks water, the chosen virtual pet will also grow and earn points. In the long run, the pet might face challenges which will enable to collect some treasures and explore the underwater world of “Gululu” universe. Exciting, right? Do you want to know how it works?

 

Image lifted from Kickstarter.com

 

 Image lifted from Kickstarter.com

Moreover, the app is programmed according to the height, weight and location of the child. This can also be monitored by their parents through their mobile phone or tablet. It is also safe for kids because all of the materials used are 100% BPA free and it adhered with certain FDA standards. More than motivational it is also educational because of the game side, wherein the children can develop some cognitive skills and unleash their powerful imagination. Furthermore, this is also interactive and social for the kids. They can play games through the app and be friends with other water bottle owners and their pets as well. You just need to do the “Shake, Shake be my friend move” and automatically, two water bottles can be connected and the two virtual pets may interact.

 Image lifted from Kickstarter.com

Parents can also monitor the use of the app due to its school mode feature. The parents can also stop or set the time for its use.

Nowadays, with the use of technology anything can be possible even monitoring our health with the use of technology! What are you waiting for?  If you want to join the craze with this trendy “Tamagotchi” water bottle, click their official website down below.

Drinking water can never be this fun!

References:

KickStarter PBC Online Website (2016, June 15 ). Gululu the Interactive Bottle that keeps kids hydrated. Retrieved from https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/gululu/gululu-the-interactive-bottle-that-keeps-kids-hydr

Bowhead Technology, Inc. Online Website (2016, June 15). My Gululu .Retrieved from http://www.mygululu.com/companionship/.

Eendfelt, Andreas (2016, April 8), Juice image lifted from the article at Dietdoctor online article. Let's Stop Pretending That Juice is Better than Soda. Retrieved image from  http://www.dietdoctor.com/lets-stop-pretending-juice-better-soda

 

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