Steps of preparation of a Computer Program
Because of computers, businesses can collect and store vast amounts of data. To turn data into useful information and to manage all of that information, successful businesses develop computer programs.
Following are the steps of preparation of a computer program:
1. Preliminary Analysis
First stage is the preliminary analysis. The main aim of preliminary analysis is to identify the problem. First, need for the new or the enhanced computer program is established. Once the preliminary analysis is done and the need for new or improved computer program is established, all possible alternate solutions are chalked out.
2. Determination of Program’s Requirements
Requirements Analysis is done in order to understand the problem for which the computer program is to solve. For example, the problem could be automating an existing manual process, or developing a completely new automated computer program, or a combination of the two. The emphasis in Requirements Analysis is on identifying what is needed from the computer program and not how the computer program will achieve its goals.
3. Design of Computer Program
A design methodology is a systematic approach to creating a design by application of set of techniques and guidelines. The purpose of the design phase is to plan a solution of the problem specified by the Requirement Analysis. This phase is the first step in moving from problem domain to the solution domain. Typically, at least two design reviews are held, one for the system design, and one for the detailed design.
a. System design which is sometimes also called top-level design, aims to identify the modules that should be in the system, the specifications of these modules, and how they interact with each other to produce the desired results.
b. During Detailed design the internal logic of each of the modules specified in system design is decided. During this phase further details of the data structures and algorithmic design of each of the modules is specified.
In other words, in system design the attention is on what components are needed, while in detailed design how the components can be implemented in software is the issue.
4. Development (Coding) of Computer Program
Once the design is complete, most of the major decisions about the system have been made. The goal of the coding phase is to translate the design of the system into code in a given programming language. For a given design, the aim of this phase is to implement the design in the best possible manner. Hence, during coding the focus should be on developing programs that are easy to write.
5. Program Testing
Its basic function is to detect errors in the program. During requirement analysis and design, the output is a document that is usually textual and non-executable. After the coding phase, computer programs are available that can be executed for testing phases. This implies that testing not only has to uncover errors introduced during coding. but also errors introduced during the previous phases. Thus, the goal of testing is to uncover requirement design or coding errors in the programs.
6. Program Maintenance
Maintenance includes all the activity after the installation of computer program that is performed to keep the system operational.