Lan Based Grading System Essay

Information technology is currently taking a big role in the development of the society and giving enormous advantages in easing the delivery of information around the world, as well as the central role of information in the new global economy, means that information technology will shape the dynamics of the new millennium. It also affects the contemporary changes occurring around the world such as in the midst of a third major revolution in human civilization. First there was the Agricultural Revolution, then the Industrial Revolution, and now we are in the Information Revolution.

Information technology and a worldwide system of information have been established for over a hundred years. Industry is not slowing down in growth rather it is accelerating because of the presence of new technology. Society is, in fact, transforming in a fundamental way, but the Information Revolution is only part of involving multiple and interdependent causes, including human values, ways of life, culture, science, politics, and economy. Economy, society, education, religion, psychology, science, and technology are all changing, since they are all reciprocally interconnected.

Globalization of world economies has greatly enhanced the values of information to business organizations and has offered new business opportunities. Today, IT provides the communication and analytical power that organizations need for conducting trade and managing business at global level with much ease. To coordinate their worldwide network of suppliers, distributors and consumers, organizations have developed global information systems that can track orders, deliveries, and payments round the clock. This has been possible because of the development of IT in its present form. In the broadest sense, information technology refers to both the hardware and software that are used to store, retrieve, and manipulate information. At the lowest level you have the servers each with an operating system. Installed on these servers are things like database and web serving software. The servers are connected to each other and to users via a network infrastructure. And the users accessing these servers have their own hardware, operating systems, and software tools.

The impact of information technology on societal development is that technological developments which have occurred in information technology have influenced a “broad grouping of people” in their “common traditions, institutions and/or collective activities”. This broad grouping of people primarily occurs in the industrialized world of where “information technology” is commonly available. Philippines have proved resilient in containing both domestic and external shocks with proper monetary policies and fiscal management. Reforms that brought about liberalization, deregulation, and privatization have significantly restructured industries towards greater efficiency. The present administration has built a solid foundation from which the Philippines can be propelled into the 21st century as a competitive and vibrant economy. The challenge to all Filipinos is to nurture and build on these gains and to ensure that their distribution will be as broad-based as possible.

These positive developments in the economy have contributed to the overall bullishness in the Philippine I.T. industry today. Indeed, there is a lot of gold to be mined in the Philippine I.T. landscape. The country can build its capability in the design and manufacture of large-scale integrated circuits and microprocessors and of microprocessor based process monitoring and control. Software design, along with information and data services, has become areas where the country has established certain advantages. Developments in telecommunications technology offer new opportunities for the country’s professionals (e.g. medical practitioners, engineers, etc.) to engage in distance professional services—where the presence of the professional is not required to provide such services. Knowledge-based industries are an area where the country can develop a competitive edge.

The principal strengths of the Philippine I.T. industry include a well-educated, price-competitive labor force, English proficiency, growing track record of successful I.T. work, fast-growing telecom infrastructure, government interest in the industry, less regulation than some neighbors, good capabilities for dealing with foreign partners, and strong entrepreneurship. The developments that have occurred in information technology have had many influences on educational establishments. The distribution of information is not the only concern of educational establishments. For example, one of the aims of universities is to create information. This creation is often done by research. Information technologies have enabled researchers to access a wider source of information than previously available through such technologies as the Internet.

The original Arpanet was set up primarily to assist research. The Internet and other related technologies, such as electronic mail, enable collaborative projects to be undertaken between geographically distant groups. The student population in higher education is changing. The dynamic state of technological development has made perpetual (or lifelong) learning a necessity. For this reason, more and more adults are returning to school to learn new skills or expand the skills they already have. This, according to John Chambers of CISCO Systems, will make “education the next big killer application over the Internet” Media is useful in so far as it helps to enhance understanding of material, clarify concepts studied, and consolidate knowledge.

Designers of web-based courses must remember that fancy media–complex graphics and animation–are no substitute for solid, concise content. Information technologies must be used that engage the learner with the media, and this engagement must occur in terms of stated learning objectives. Media should be used that allow the learner to interact with or self-discover underlying principles, models, and causal relationships that exist in the subject area under study. Information technologies make it possible to tailor the content and delivery of instruction to the needs of individual students. The result is that individual differences in learning styles and preferences can be better accommodated. In the future, students will be able to choose the instructional format appropriate to their level of knowledge. They will have the option of taking F2F, mixed, or online courses based upon their level of knowledge in a given subject area.

The traditional 12-15 week semester will likely become a thing of the past as colleges adjust their schedules to better fit those of a changing student population. The technologies that will play a role in the classrooms of the future are many and varied. The Internet will not replace “traditional media,” i.e., television, radio, film, and print. Rather Internet technologies will enhance and expand information gathered through other media. Moreover, in the future we will likely see the integration of each of these media in new and more powerful applications. Information Technology plays a big role in education development of the Philippines. Nowadays the country is experiencing a great improvement such as computerization and automation of many schools and educational processes.

Enrolment system is one of the best improvements of the educational field in the country wherein many Filipino students are benefited in the way that during enrolment in big universities that accepts many students their time is lessen. At the same manner students were enrolled faster. Computers are one of the biggest impacts for the development of information technology in the country. Many schools now offers computer subjects for the literacy of Filipinos even in the lower level of education students are experiencing this big impact. In addition, the Internet technologies form the backbone of many connected and virtual classrooms. Tools that allow for extended threaded discussion will be used more extensively to promote a high level of student-student and student-teacher interactivity. Collaborative learning, promoting the principles of constructivist theory will likely predominate in the higher education classroom of the future.

Students will work together to construct knowledge. As the power of the Internet as informational resources becomes more widely available, students will use its vast information databases to acquire and expand knowledge. In the process, students will develop skills critical to lifelong learning–they will become knowledge gatherers, knowledge receivers, and knowledge transmitters. Because effective use of the Internet as a source of information requires strong critical literacy skills, instructors in all disciplines will need to incorporate activities that target these skills. In this way, students will learn how to determine the validity and reliability of information they find on the Internet.

Developing strong critical literacy skills will also help students evaluate information received through other media. On the other hand, Information technology has also affected the grading systems of education in the Philippines, which includes the transformation of manual grading procedures to an automated grading procedure. This is the reason behind the securities and fairness that are happening nowadays in giving of grades to students. In addition, in today’s world specifically in the field of education, technology plays a crucial role such as computing grades in an automated manner.

Constant problems encountered regarding manual grade computations is that it is always delayed because of too much work that is needed to be done specifically by the teachers involved. One good possible solution to this is to modify/upgrade the existing grading system of schools by making it automated. In this manner, the grades that will be computed will not just be secured it will also be more accurate than that grade which is computed manually.

School Background

The opening of the Mountain Province High School was a big help to a growing need for a Baguio based institution to accommodate the elementary graduates of the city and nearby highland and lowland provinces. Classes were held at teacher’s camp and native girls from the provinces were housed at the BUA dormitory, known today as the Pacdal Elementary school. Among the pioneer teachers were Jesse L. Gains, principal, Juan Balagot, Servillano Tumaneng, Pedro Balagot, Genoveva Llamas, Esperanza Ver, Donato Guerzon, Grace Miller, Petra Ramirez, and Pillar Tan. THE MPHS easily gained national popularity in both academics and athletics. For several years, it has the strongest baseball team in northern Luzon. The graduates were added to the institutional prestige for it had a high proficiency in both oral and written English. The MPHS was then served by the succession of the following principals: Mr. Richard Patterson, Mrs. Eldridge, and Mr. Paul Bramlett.

In 1937, the national government transferred the financial responsibility of maintaining the school to the city government that’s why the name was changed to Baguio City High School. Students of the normal course were transferred to Trinidad Agricultural High School which became the responsibility of the mountain province. The general secondary curriculum transferred classes to the government center. In the same year the school squatted at the present site of the Baguio government center until world war two broke out in 1941. Mayor Gil Mallare made every effort to the approval of the site as permanent house of BCHS. He secured P 180,000 loan from the Rehabilitation Financing Corporation to start the construction of the building on September 20, 1953. The Parent Teachers’ Association continued to ask for the permanent site of BCHS headed by the PTA president Rufino Bueno who served from 1948-1958.

The present site of the school was segregated from Burnham park reservation on June 27, 1953 under proclamation No. 401 that awarded BCHS 11,840 square meters of land. Construction began under the administration of mayor Benito Lopez and finished during the term of manor Alfonso Tabora with additional expenses of P40,000 to finish the right wing of the main building. Inauguration rites were held on October 24, 1954, the school foundation day. In 1972, the science section as special classes opened, but was discontinued after two years due to the implementation of the revised secondary curriculum. It was reopened in 1984 with the efforts of class 1958 alumni, the city council, the school administration. This was accomplished through strong support and continuous follow up efforts of then Councilor Bert Floresca as member of the committee on education and that time president of the Alumni Association. At present there are fourteen classes in the special class. In 1995, two buildings were constructed by the permanent home of the special classes.

The students in these classes are receiving P200.00 as monthly stipend from the city government. In 1960’s Annex high school for the first and second year students had to be opened to accommodate the increasing population. In 1968, annex high schools were opened at Baguio Central; school, Dona Aurora, Loakan, Bonifacio, and Rizal Elementary school and other annexes were also opened in the following years in Quirino Elementary school, at Irisan and later Sto. Tomas and Quezon Hill. The number of students kept on growing both in Baguio City high school main and its annexes that by 1980, Baguio Central School had to be separated as another city funded school carrying the new name Pines City High School. In 1981, four year levels in Loakan annex were created and followed by other annexes.

The Baguio City High School is now called Baguio City National High School with a student population of over 10,844 as of April 2001. it has 8 annexes, seven of which have complete year levels; and with 339 faculty members and support personnel, headed by Dr. Elma D. Donaal the school principal of Baguio City National High School. The year 1997 proved to be another success. BCNHS won in the search for the Most Outstanding Female Public Secondary Principal in the person of Dr, Elma Donaal who represented CAR in the national level this year sponsored by AVON in coordination with the DECS. Another feather was added to the school’s cap for an award being drug free and fraternity free school. Baguio City National High School at 83 years has not diminished in its speed growth. Lots of contests being joined by the students were all fruitful because the school is consistently a winner in both academics and athletics.

When the school was on its boom, 5 top general of the country, hundreds of presidents and heads of offices in all fields of endeavour had represented the school nationally and international during discussion in the different areas in the field of education both from its teachers and students. A school with highly performing, competitive, successful and work service oriented students/graduates and personnel who manifest sincere concern for others.

The BCNHS publics to be models of high performance, competitiveness, success, work and service orientation and sincere concern for others by establishing wholesome and healthy working relationship, transparency, and understanding; providing the needed structural, behavioural and technical supports to all students; guided by the schools corporate culture of excellence in personal integrity, family solidarity, civic responsibility and universal charity leading towards the development of knowledge, attitude, skills and habits of the child which will redound to its benefit and the community. Baguio City National High School shall instil in the teachers and students the LOVE FOR GOD, dedication for country, care and undying concern for FELLOWMEN and deep respect for culture and environment. It shall strive to produce graduates who are supportive to the development programs of the country particularly Baguio City which are geared towards education, eco-tourism and commerce and trade industries.

PROBLEMS OF THE STUDY

The researchers have encountered different problems regarding the automation of Grading System of Baguio City National High School. Thus, in connection to the aims of the researchers to automate the grading system of Baguio City National High School and to have an efficient solution to the problem the researchers identified stakeholders such as students, teachers and parents that can help and will be benefitted to the study. The following are the problems identified and encountered by the researchers. 1. Why the identified stakeholders do encountered difficulties every grading period? 2. How important is automated grading system in school community and for the different stakeholders, in relation what will be the big effect of this especially for the teachers and students?

3. What are the different advantages and disadvantages that stakeholders may get in automated grading system? 4. How can automated grading system resolve the present problems of the stakeholders particularly the students and teachers regarding the fairness and securities? 5. Is the school community ready and have sufficient facilities and funds for the automated grading system? 6. Why do some teachers and students prefer to manually compute grades? 7. How can accurate computation of grades and security affect the students in studying? 8. What are the different approaches that will arise during implementation?

OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY

The researchers have come up with the following objectives for their study in order to achieve their goal in improving through automating the existing grading system of Baguio City National High School. 1. To identify difficulties of the different stakeholders that they encountered every grading period? 2. To enumerate the different importance and effect of automated grading system in school community and for the different stakeholders. 3. To be able to know the different advantages and disadvantages that stakeholders may get in automated grading system.

4. To provide capable solution to the present problems of the stakeholders particularly the students and teachers regarding the fairness and securities of grades. 5. To know the competence of the school community in providing resources for the automated grading system. 6. To discuss the reasons of teachers and students in using the manual grading system. 7. To elaborate further the accuracy of computing grades and security of it by using the automated grading system. 8. To detailed out possible different approaches that will arise during implementation of the system.

Scope and Delimitation of the Study

This study is all about the Grading System of Baguio City National High School. Our study will tackle all the problems and solutions regarding the processes on how they grade their students. The emphasis of the study is consented more on the computation of the final grade from first grading to fourth grading. It covers all year level, first year up to fourth year. The researchers will thoroughly analyze the existing system and will able to identify the problems and inconveniences of teachers during computation. In the same manner researchers will provide sufficient solution to the problems encountered by the teachers. Meanwhile, researchers will be using a java programming language for the development. All coding and testing will be done in this. The grading system will include the automated computing of grades.

In addition they will include other features such as storing of personal information of students and teachers. Wherein, personal information and their grades will be stored in a centralized database to be able to secure it. Such example of the information system is that if a student requests a record of his grades it will be given immediately because the system will get it to the database. The researchers will be using two data gathering technique such as interview and research study. If necessary the researchers will also use the questionnaire to gather further efficient data. The data will be taken from different stakeholders specifically the teachers, who are computing grades; department heads, who are validating it and re-computing the grades and the students. Thus, researchers will also use books, dissertations and related thesis; in addition the researchers will be using the World Wide Web as another source of data.

Researchers on the other hand will study the existing system for the better result of the development of the system. In contrast, the researchers are only limited to the studying of the present grading system and providing solutions through the automation of the grading system. The researchers will not tackle in this study any other system that can make this study more broad. It only means that the researchers are only limited into automation of grades and centralizing personal information and grades of students through a database system. The researchers will be using a java programming language and database server. Meanwhile, other data gathering technique will not be used by the researchers. In this reason, researchers can gather more sufficient data. The mentioned stakeholders are the only persons that the researchers will be involving for their research.

Significance of the Study

The study deals on the Grading System of one of the schools here in the City of Baguio, which offers secondary level of education, the Baguio City National High Schools. A study is necessary in order to help the teachers lessen their time involve in the computation of grades. In addition, teachers will be benefited in the study because their work will become easy and faster in terms of giving grades and personal biases will be lessen. Through the success of the study, it would be great help on the part of the teacher will be helped intellectually since it would be mandatory for all the teachers to learn how to make use of it because they will be the one to operate it. Teacher would be literate and adopt the new trend regarding the computer environment. Meanwhile, the researchers would be able to know and understand why does the flow is slow. Thus, the study is very important for the department heads of school for they are the in charge in validating and final assessment of the computed grades.

For the students that will be benefited of the study, automation of grades is significant for they will not be worrying for the practice of favoritism made by the teachers. In such manner, accuracy, honesty and security will be a very big advantage. On the other hand, parents will become confident of their child’s performance in school because of the fairness in giving grades.

The study signifies the great help of automated grading system in school. First for the benefits that it will give and another is that time will be lessen. Definition of Terms ACCURACY in the fields of science, engineering, industry and statistics, accuracy is the degree of closeness of a measured or calculated quantity to its actual (true) value. ARBITARY is a term given to choices and actions which are considered to be done not by means of any underlying principle or logic, but by whim or some decidedly illogical formula. ASSESSMENT is Process of documenting, usually in measurable terms, knowledge, skills, attitudes and beliefs. This article covers educational assessment including the work of institutional researchers, but the term applies to other fields as well including health and finance.

ATTRIBUTES is an inherent characteristic; an accidental quality. An object closely associated with or belonging to a specific person, thing, or office AUTOMATION or industrial automation or numerical control is the use of control system such as computers to control industrial machinery and processes, reducing the need for human intervention. In the scope of industrialization, automation is a step beyond mechanization. Whereas mechanization provided human operators with machinery with physical requirements of work; automation greatly reduces the need for human sensory and mental requirements as well. Processes sand systems can also be automated. BUSINESS (also called firm or an enterprise) is a legally recognized organizational entity designed to provide goods and/or services to consumers or corporate entities such as governments, charities or other businesses.

Businesses are predominant in capitalist economies, most being privately owned and formed to earn profit to increase the wealth of owners. The owners and operators of a business have as one of their main objectives the receipt or generation of a financial return in exchange for work and acceptance of risk. Notable exceptions include cooperative businesses and state-owned enterprises. Socialistic systems involve either government, public, or worker ownership of most sizable businesses. CLASS is a class in education has a variety of related meanings. It can be the group of students which attends a specific course or lesson at a university, school or other educational institution. CODE in communications, a code is a rule for converting a piece of information (for example, a letter, word, phrase, or gesture) into another form or representation (one sign into another sign), not necessarily of the same type.

In communications and information processing, encoding is the process by which information from a source is converted into symbols to be communicated. Decoding is the reverse process, converting these code symbols back into information understandable by a receiver. COMPUTER is a machine that manipulates data according to a list of instructions. COMPUTERIZED SYSTEM includes hardware, software peripheral devices, personal devices and personal documentation. CONSISTENCY in logic, a theory is consistent is if does not contain a contradiction. The lack of contradiction can be defined in either semantic or syntactic terms. The semantic definition states that a theory is consistent if it has a model; this is the sense used in traditional Aristotelian logic, although in contemporary mathematical logic the term certifiable is used instead. The syntactic definition states that a theory is consistent if there is no formula P such that both P and its negation are provable from the axioms of the theory under its associated deductive system.

CONTEXT DIAGRAM a data flow diagram that illustrates an entire system as one generalized element. DATA is factual information used as a basis for reasoning, discussion or calculating. DATABASE is collection of interrelated data, organized according to a schema to serve one or more application. DATA DICTIONARY is a repository method and description of forms, styles, and contents of data’s that are to be processed and reported. DATA FLOW DIAGRAM is a figure that illustrates the flow of data within the system and operations performed on the data. DEVELOPMENT is a act of improving or enlarging or refining; a recent event that has some relevance for the present situation. DIAGRAM is a diagram is a 2D geometric symbolic representation of information according to some visualization technique. Sometimes, the technique uses a 3D visualization which is then projected onto the 2D surface. The word graph is sometimes used as a synonym for diagram.

ELECTRONIC MAIL often abbreviated to e-mail, email, or originally eMail, is a store-and-forward method of writing, sending, receiving and saving messages over electronic communication systems. The term “e-mail” (as a noun or verb) applies to the Internet e-mail system based on the Simple Mail Transfer Protocol, to network systems based on other protocols and to various mainframe, minicomputer, or intranet systems allowing users within one organization to send messages to each other in support of workgroup collaboration. Intranet systems may be based on proprietary protocols supported by a particular systems vendor, or on the same protocols used on public networks. E-mail is often used to deliver bulk unsolicited messages, or “spam”, but filter programs exist which can automatically block, quarantine or delete some or most of these, depending on the situation. FEATURE is a structure, form, or appearance especially of a person. A prominent part or characteristic. A featured article, story, or department in a newspaper or magazine.

FLEXIBILITY is the absolute range of movement in a joint or series of joints and muscles that is attainable in a momentary effort with the help of a partner or a piece of equipment. It is a term for the ability to easily bend an object or the ability to adapt to different circumstances. However, in various professional fields, more precise terms are used. FLOWCHART is a schematic representation of a process. They are commonly used in business, economic presentations to help the audience visualize the content better, or to find flaws in the process. GRADING SYSTEM is a set of criteria by which the quality of individual studies could be developed evaluated in terms of both internal validity and external validity. INFORMATION is a usable data being gathered for special purposes.

INTERNET is a worldwide web, publicly accessible series of interconnected computer networks that transmit data by packet switching using the standards Internet Protocol (IP). It is a “network of networks” that consists of million of smaller domestic, academic, business, and government networks, which together carry various information and services, such as electronic mail, online chat, file transfer, and the interlinked web pages and other resources of the World Wide Web(WWW). LOCAL AREA NETWORK is a computer network covering a small geographic area, like a home, office, or group of buildings e.g. a school. The defining characteristics of LAN’s, in contrast to a wide-area networks (WANS), include their much higher data-transfer rates, smaller geographic range, a lack of need for leased telecommunication lines.

METHOD refers to a body of techniques for investigating phenomena, acquiring new knowledge, or correcting and integrating previous knowledge. To be termed scientific, a method of inquiry must be based on gathering observable, empirical and measurable evidence subject to specific principles of reasoning. METHODOLOGY is a plan or system of action, inquiry, or analysis. MODEL is a pattern, plan, representation (especially in miniature), or description designed to show the main object or workings of an object, system, or concept. PROGRAMMER is someone who writes computer software. The term computer programmer can refer to a specialist in one area of computer programming or to a generalist who writes code for many kinds of software.

One who practices or professes a formal approach to programming may also be known as a programmer analyst. A programmer’s primary computer language (Java, Delphi, C++, etc.) is often prefixed to the above titles, and those who work in a web environment often prefix their titles with web. REPORT CARD is a measure of a student’s performance. In most places, the report card is issued by the school to the student or the student’s parents twice or four times yearly. A typical report card uses a grading scale to determine the quality of a student’s school work. Throughout North America, the grading scale consists of grades scored in classes taken by the student. RESEARCHis a human activity based on intellectual application in the investigation of matter.

The primary aim for applied research is discovering, interpreting, and the development of methods and systems for the advancement of human knowledge on a wide variety of scientific matters of our world and the universe. RESPONSE TIME in technology, response time is the time a system or functional unit takes to react to a given input. SYSTEM is a set of interacting or independent entitles, real or abstract, forming an integrated whole. The concept of an integrated whole can also be stated in terms of a system embodying a set of relationships which are differentiated from relationships of the set to other elements to other elements, and from relationship between an element of the sets not part of the relational regime.

SYSTEM ANALYST in system analysis is the interdisciplinary part of Science, dealing with analysis of sets of interacting or entities, the systems, often prior to their automation as computer systems, and the interactions within those systems. This field is closely related to operations research. It is also “an explicit formal inquiry carried out to help someone, referred to as the decision maker, identify a better course of action and make a better decision than he might otherwise have made TECHNIQUE is a broad concept that deals with a species’ usage and knowledge of tools and crafts, and how it affects a species’ ability to control and adapt to its environment.

Limitation of Using Gdp to Measure Standard of Living Essay

Although national income is a convenient way for measuring the standard of living between countries, it still has its limitations.

Firstly, as national income statistics are calculated from millions of different returns to the government, inevitably mistakes are made. For example, returns may be inaccurate or simply not completed. This makes the data incorrect, hence hindering people to analyze the living standard of a country accurately.

Secondly, National income does not record the output produced by “hidden economy”. Taxes such as VAT, income tax and National insurance contributions, and government regulations such as health and safety laws, impose a burden on workers and businesses.

Some are then tempted to evade taxes and work in the black economy. For instance, in the building industry, it is common for workers to be self-employed and to not declare their income to the tax authorities. As the size of the hidden economy is difficult to estimate and calculated, national income statistics often underestimate the true size of national income and the standard of living of a country.

Thirdly, national income does not record the subsistence economy. For many developing countries, such as China, people grow and eat on their own products. A large part of the production of the agricultural sector is not traded and therefore does not appear in national income statistics. Hence the value of nominal output in reality is much higher. Again, national income statistics underestimates the true size of national income and the standard of living of a country.

Apart from national income, health indicators can also measure the standard of living between countries. From table 6, it can be seen that the under-five mortality rate, per thousand of the population in Tanzania is 15 times greater than USA. It means that the childcare in Tanzania is poorer and lacked development, leading to a lower standard of living. Take life expectancy at birth as another example, people in New Zealand live 1 year longer than the one in UK on average. It means that people in New Zealand are both mentally and physically healthier and have a high standard of living in general. Therefore, by looking at the health indicators, it gives us a better basis for making a comparison.

Education has great influence over individuals’ standard of living. Although USA has a higher number of gross national income than New Zealand, it does not mean that people in USA have higher living standard than the one in New Zealand. Education indicators should also be taken into account. For example, percentage of school enrolment of secondary in New Zealand is 105.7, which is 28% more than USA. As people who are well educated are more likely to access a well-paid job in the future, when New Zealand has a higher number of people receiving educations, it means that the country’s overall standard of living is higher.

Finally, selected indicator also helps us to measure the standard of living between countries. Take the number of internet users as example; the number of internet users in Tanzania is 400 times less than USA. It means that people in Tanzania may not have a computer while most of the people in the world take for granted. Besides, the electric power consumption in Tanzania is 235 times less than USA. It reflects that people in Tanzania seldom consume electric power, which means they may be using some conventional methods to generate energy, such as burning firewood for cooking. These all bring inconvenience to their living and lower their standard of living.

In conclusion, the standard of living should be shown by national income statistics as well as other indicators as there are limitations of using only national income statistics to calculate the living standard between countries and those indicators will be useful when making a comparison between countries.

Inventory System: Executive Summary Essay

Abstract

There is increase in popularity and use of the Internet for research purposes by schools and students. Popular among the web-based information resource is the Wikipedia. Wikipedia is a free encyclopedia that uses wiki software for the creation and editing of contents on its site. The use of Wikipedia for research has increased over the years. It is the world’s acclaimed 6th most visited website (“Most Popular Websites on the Internet”, 2012) . This status is not without its own challenges.

The main one being that of credibility. An online encyclopedia that allows anyone to edit its entries to some, limits its validity. This paper attempts to look at some of the reasons its credibility is in question.

Wikipedia is a free online encyclopedia. It uses a collaborative software known as wiki to facilitate the creation, development, and editing of entries by contributors who do so without pay. It is available in 285 languages with about 100,000 regularly active contributors. Once connected to the web users can write and edit articles on the site.

Wikipedia has gained much popularity particularly because of its rich information and full accessibility of data. However, owing to its open-source management style that allows anybody to change contents, there has been a growing concern about Wikipedia’s credibility as a source of information for academic work.

Wikipedia was founded as an offshoot of Nupedia, a now-abandoned project to produce a free encyclopedia. Nupedia had an elaborate system of peer review and required highly qualified contributors but the writing of articles was slow. During 2000, Jimmy Wales, founder of Nupedia, and Larry Sanger whom Wales had employed to work on the project, discussed ways of supplementing Nupedia with a more open, complementary project. Multiple sources suggested that a wiki might allow members of the public to contribute material, and Nupedia’s first wiki went online on January 10, 2001.

There was considerable resistance by Nupedia’s editors and reviewers to the idea of associating Nupedia with a website in the wiki format, so Sanger coined the name Wikipedia, which is a portmanteau of wiki (a type of collaborative website, from the Hawaiian word wiki, meaning “quick”) and encyclopedia. Wikipedia was launched on its own domain, wikipedia.com, on January 15. In May 2001, a wave of non-English Wikipedia was launched. (Wikipedia, 2012).

Supporters of Wikipedia believe contents are verified for accuracy, and monitored for consistency and currency. Nevertheless, at the rate contents are created and edited – about three million in 2008 and presently 21 million – accuracy cannot match the speed! Voss (2011) stated “Edit history and user contributions are auxiliary clues (to the quality of the site) but very time-consuming to review” (p.10). Even the founder of Wikipedia have expressed concern over the existence of such inconsistency and inaccuracy of contents. ” Various experts (including founder Jimmy Wales and Jonathan Zittrain, Oxford University) have expressed concern over possible (intentional or unintentional) bias” (“Wikipedia”, 2012).

Others contend that because Wikipedia is a huge information resource, which allows open inspection and arguments in which changes are debated, it is a useful source for scholastic work (Smooth & Crovitz, 2011). Many others argue that the errors found on Wikipedia are not uncommon to errors found in other encyclopedias. For example, In December 2005, the scientific journal Nature published the results of a study comparing the accuracy of Wikipedia and the printed Encyclopedia Britannica. The researchers found that the number of “factual errors, omissions or misleading statements” in each references work was not so different – Wikipedia contained 162, and Britannica had 123. This was not generally accepted as the makers of Britannica have since called on Nature to retract the study, which it claims is completely without merit” (Woods & Thoeny, 2007, pp. 90-92).

A major issue with Wikipedia is that of source authenticity. Since people are free to create contents from sources at their disposal, some articles may contain unverified and inconsistent information. Sources are not properly cited. Most materials do not meet the criteria of a good source among which are currency of information, impartiality, and evaluating credentials of authors.. This explains why contents are continually edited. Ray and Graeff (2008), historical scholarship is also characterized by possessive individualism. Good professional practice requires that ideas and words are attributed to specific historians. A historic work without owners and with multiple authors like Wikipedia, is thus almost unimaginable in our professional culture.

Using Wikipedia saves time owing to its versatility and large information base, some have argued. This is because contributors are more interested in flooding the site with information than painstakingly digging deep to ensure quality of contents. Topics in Wikipedia are sometimes treated superficially with the aim of transferring a general and simple understanding across to users. When such an article is cited in a professional research work, it automatically renders the work incomplete, inaccurate, and misleading. Readers do not need to be scholars to read between the lines on Wikipedia. Content is not exactly expert knowledge, it is common knowledge. For example, an article on nuclear reactor will not be anything different from what most people know about nuclear reactors and what the authors think common people can understand (Keen, 2008).

One of the five pillars, which guide Wikipedia’s operations is that Wikipedia is free content that anyone can edit, use, modify or distribute. The idea of inviting readers to serve as authors or editors poses a problem. Not all users are thorough in providing accurate information, and they are others who deliberately mutilate particular articles or post misleading statements. Sometimes, information is posted or edited by people who have little or inadequate knowledge of the subject, and as the adage goes, little knowledge is dangerous. Wikipedia has no way in evaluating the credentials of content authors as it is free for all.

Even though these content are edited, one can never be sure how many errors have been corrected. According to Voss (2004), as more people read about an article, the more errors are emended some might say. However, one can hardly be sure how many qualified people have read an article and how many errors remain. Edit wars sometimes occur in Wikipedia. Edit wars occur when two contributors (or group of contributors) repeatedly edit each other’s work based on a particular bias. Using such a content makes the research work the ‘casualty’ of such ‘wars’. In early 2004, Wikipedia set up an Arbitration Committee to settle such disputes (Woods & Thoeny, 2007).

Conclusion

Wikipedia describes itself as, “the free encyclopedia that anyone can edit.” As discussed earlier, the site runs on “democratic” principles allowing anyone to contribute, create, edit, and distribute contents freely. Free and open access has outlined above, have serious consequences as it exposes texts to vandalism and inconsistency.

Wikipedia’s contents are edited based on individuals perceived opinion or knowledge, unlike other online resources like the Oxford English Dictionary for example, which was developed by a carefully selected team of experienced professionals. By compromising traditional concept of authorship, Wikipedia affects associated issues of authority, originality, and value. When a source’s authority and accuracy is in question then the credibility is not guaranteed. Frankly, a site like Wikipedia that allows anyone to add, change, or remove information cannot be credible.

References
Spatt, B. (2011). Writing from sources (8th ed.). Bedford St. Martin Publishing.
Ray, A. and Graeff, E. (2008). Reviewing the Author-Function in the Age of Wikipedia
Woods, D. and Thoeny, P. (2007). Wikis for Dummies. Hoboken, NJ, Wiley Publishing, Inc.
Smoot W.S. and Crovitz D. (2009). Wikipedia: Friend, Not Foe,” in English Journal 98.3
Keen, A. (2008). The Cult of the Amateur: How Today’s Internet is Killing Our Culture. Bantam Dell Publishing Group
Voss J. (2004). Measuring Wikipedia
http:/www.wikipedia.org
http:/www.mostpopularwebsites.net

Intoxication as a Defense Against Criminal Liability Essay

Intoxication with alcohol and drugs is commonly associated with crimes of violence. The relationship between intoxication and criminal culpability is complex especially if a mental condition legal defence is being considered. The apparent stimulating effect of alcohol is due solely to the fact that it deadens the higher control centres and progressively the other centres as well, thus weakening or removing the inhibitions that normally keep us within the bounds of civilised behaviour. The main highlight of this research paper will be to enunciate various legal defences available to an intoxicated offender under Indian law (Indian penal code) as well as other Common Law countries and to propose legal reforms to fill in loopholes associated with intoxication against criminal liability because a common man will not have much regard for the law if a drunken man batters him, and the man gets away with his conduct merely because he was too intoxicated to think clearly.

HYPOTHESIS:

The hypothesis of my research paper would be:
“the public is injured by the criminal act whatever the state of the criminal mind”

CHAPTER-I INTRODUCTION:

“…death is final. This finality makes it proper to regard death as the most serious harm that may be inflicted on another, and to regard a person who chooses to inflict that harm without justification or excuse as the most culpable of offenders.”1- Professor Ashworth Intoxication or Drunkeness2 is of exceptional theoretical importance for the criminal law not only because it involves the basic postulates of liability, but also because it constitutes an essential feature of numerous fact-situations whose impact on the rules has had curious and instructive effects3. On perhaps no other legal issues have courts so widely differed, or so often changed their views, as that of the legal responsibility of intoxicated offenders.4 Intoxication presents problems in theory of responsibility. A man who commits a crime under the influence of alcohol may have otherwise led a normal and responsible life. His acts committed under the influence of alcohol may not reflect his real character.

It could have been a mere aberration in his life. Convicting a person who commits a crime under the influence of alcohol like all other offenders may appear to be harsh but on the other hand, it is not uncommon for offenders to consume alcohol before committing an offence. Hence, it may not be in the interests of the general society to treat intoxication as a general defence. This is because, a man by consuming alcohol and becoming intoxicated voluntarily, impairs his own self control and good judgment5. Section 85 and 86 of the Indian penal code deal with intoxication as an extenuating factor. A combined reading of ss 85 and 86 reveals that the former lays down the law relating to involuntary intoxication6 or drunkenness as a defence to criminal charge, while the latter deals with criminal liability of a voluntary intoxicated7 person when he commits an offence under the influence of self-administered intoxicant.

Section 85 accords immunity from criminal liability to a person intoxicated involuntary. Section 86 provides for a limited exemption from criminal liability to a self-intoxicated person. The issue of how the law should treat self-induced intoxicated offenders has been with us for hundreds of years. At the heart of the controversy is a clash between the philosophy of criminal liability and certain principles of public policy: (1) It is a fundamental element of criminal responsibility that a person should only be held accountable for criminal conduct if that person acted voluntarily and intentionally. (2) There is, on the other hand, a general expectation amongst the community that the law will: (a) protect the community against criminal conduct committed by offenders who have freely chosen to become intoxicated; and (b) penalise self-induced intoxicated persons who commit criminal acts.8

The basic doctrine of intoxication defence has been laid down in British cases. India, being a common law country, derives most of its modern judicial framework from the British legal system.9 Intoxication as a defence to a criminal charge gradually developed as the law became more concerned with the mental element in crime. Today, while most common law jurisdictions recognise some form, albeit often limited, of intoxication defence, legislators and jurists throughout the common law world, nevertheless, have difficulty defining the appropriateness and the parameters of such a defence. In its formative period and into the twentieth century, the defence concentrated on drunkenness rather than on the effect of other drugs on the mental process. In 1969 in England9 it was held that the same principles apply to intoxication by drugs other than alcohol.

In that case the defendant killed his companion when he was under the influence of LSD, hallucinating that he was fighting snakes in the centre of the earth. He was convicted of constructive manslaughter because he had committed an unlawful act, and sentenced to six years’ imprisonment. Two later decisions, Bailey10 and Hardie11, suggest that drugs must be divided into two categories. Where it is common knowledge that a drug is liable to cause a person to become aggressive or do dangerous or unpredictable things, that drug is to be classed with alcohol. But where there is no such common knowledge, as in the case of a sedative drug, different rules apply.

Smith and Hogan point out that there are obvious difficulties about classifying drugs in this way and, if the distinction were to survive at all, it would not be surprising if it led to further case-law.12 Furthermore, there is no evidence that the distinction was ever made in this jurisdiction. Today, the defence is generally understood to encompass both alcohol and other drugs and . While the consumption of alcohol is to a great extent socially acceptable and its use or possession not legally prohibited (or at any rate, prohibited only in conjunction with certain activities as with being in control of a vehicle while intoxicated), this is not the case with other drugs.

Nevertheless, it is appropriate to consider intoxication by alcohol and other drugs as being equal for the purposes of the intoxication defence, as the relevant consideration is whether the accused had the requisite mental element for the offence charged or acted voluntarily. Where the use or possession of the substance concerned is proscribed by law, then that is a separate issue and should be dealt with in the usual way under the misuse of drugs legislation. Chapter 2 desrcibes in detail the concept of intoxication and historical development of intoxication defences and the extent to which intoxication may support a defence. In Chapter 3 a comparative analysis of intoxication defence is done with other common law countries Chapter 4 contains conclusion and suggested reforms.

Research Methodology: Primarily the research will be based on secondary data. This will consist of the quantitative and qualitative data. For quantitative data census and other organizational records will be used and for qualitative data the focused group discussions shall be referred to. Secondary data comprises of journals, web pages, Consultation papers, law commissions reports. Next step involves defining a settled law by analysing various judgments and An attempt has also been made to examine the judicial responses to preferential policies adopted by India and other common law countries.

Bottom line: Being drunk is often used as an excuse for what happened the night before. But if what happened is a crime, being drunk will not be a defense.

CHAPTER-II THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE DEFENCE IN THE COMMON LAW COUNTRIES/ Intoxication : Elements of defense

The law is primarily concerned with human affairs. I believe that the main object of our legal system is to preserve individual liberty. One important aspect of individual liberty is protection against physical violence. If there were to be no penal sanction for any injury unlawfully inflicted under the complete mastery of drink or drugs, voluntarily taken, the social consequence could be appalling. – Lord Simon in DPP v Majewski Historical Review

The Law Prior to the Nineteenth Century

In England prior to the early nineteenth century, early notions of retribution and punishment resulted in evidence of self-induced intoxication being regarded as no excuse for a criminal offence. A person who voluntarily consumed alcohol with the consequence that his or her will-power was destroyed was in no better position with regard to criminal acts than a sober person. Early courts expressed the view that the taking of alcohol was in itself a blameworthy act. One of the first statements of the law concerning intoxication can be found in the sixteenth century case of Reniger v. Feogossa: If a person that is drunk kills another, this shall be felony, and he shall be hanged for it, and yet he did it through ignorance, for when he was drunk he had no understanding nor memory; but inasmuch as that ignorance was occasioned by his own act and folly, and he might have avoided it, he shall not be privileged thereby.

The writings of prominent authorities of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries76 also indicate that the prevailing legal principle was that a person who committed a criminal offence was not to be excused on account of a condition brought about by his or her own fault. However some authorities went further and treated drunkenness as an aggravation of an offence. In 1603 in Beverley’s Case77 not only was drunkenness described as providing no excuse to a criminal offence, but it was given the status of an offence in itself with the consequence of aggravating the criminal offence committed. In the early part of the seventeenth century, the eminent English jurist Sir Edward Coke expressed a similar view78: As for a drunkard who is voluntarius daemon, he hath no privilege thereby, but what hurt or ill soever he doth, his drunkenness doth aggravate it. Other distinguished English legal writers, including Sir William Blackstone79 ,Joseph Chitty80 and William Russell,81 later expressed similar sentiments.

How this proposition operated in practice remains unclear.82 It is possible that ‘aggravation’ referred simply to a judicial discretion to take intoxication into account when sentencing a defendant. Alternatively, it may have been used by the prosecution to show that a ‘defendant was so bad as to really warrant conviction’.83 It should be noted that the suggestion that drunkenness constituted an aggravation of an offence, was omitted from a number of leading authorities during that period, including Sir Francis Bacon,85Sir Matthew Hale86 and William Hawkins.87Hawkins, for example, commented:88 He who is guilty of any crime whatever through his voluntary drunkenness, shall be punished for it as much as if he had been sober. The first modifications to the principle that drunkenness did not constitute an excuse to a criminal offence are to be found in the writings of Matthew Hale,90 who suggested that intoxication could constitute an excuse for a criminal offence if that intoxication rendered a defendant permanently insane, but not if it only led to a condition of temporary insanity.

The Nineteenth Century

During the early nineteenth century, the severity of the common law, which refused to recognise drunkenness as an excuse for any criminal conduct, gradually relaxed with the judiciary adopting a more sympathetic attitude to serious crimes where the penalties were harsh; often involving the death sentence or transportation. The first reported English case to suggest that drunkenness could in some circumstances be taken into consideration when considering a defendant’s culpability is the 1819 case of R. v. Grindley.91 In that case, Mr Justice Holroyd held that, while intoxication did not excuse the commission of a crime, when considering whether the act of murder was premeditated or committed in the heat of the moment, evidence of intoxication should be taken into account.92 The treatment by the courts of intoxication and culpability in the 1830’s was inconsistent. In cases involving self-defence and a defendant’s bona fide belief that he or she was about to be attacked, and cases involving the effect of sudden provocation on a defendant, it was held that drunkenness could be taken into consideration.

In 1830, in Marshall’s case,93 which involved a charge of stabbing, Mr Justice Park held that the jury might take into account the defendant’s drunkenness when considering whether the defendant acted under a bona fide apprehension that his person or property was about to be attacked.94 Five years later in Pearson’s case,95 a defendant was charged with murder for beating his wife to death with a rakeshank. Mr Justice Park noted that while drunkenness was no excuse for a criminal offence, it:96 may be taken into consideration to explain the probability of a party’s intention in the case of violence committed on sudden provocation. Similar views were expressed by Baron Parke two years later in R. v. Thomas97 where it was commented that the passion of an intoxicated person was more easily excitable than that of a sober person.98 In contrast to these cases, was the decision of Mr Justice Park in 1835 in R. v.Carroll,99 where he held that drunkenness could not be taken into consideration where premeditation was in issue.

In reaching this conclusion His Honour overruled the earlier decision of R. v. Grindley,100 which he criticised as being too wide in its application with the potential for risk to human safety if it were to be ‘considered as law’. Comments on the relationship between drunkenness and intent were first made in 1836 in R. v. Meakin.101 In that case, the defendant was accused of stabbing the deceased with a fork with intent to murder. Baron Alderson directed the jury that when examining intent, drunkenness may be taken into consideration when the instrument used is not a dangerous type of instrument:102 but where a dangerous instrument is used, which, if used, must produce grievous bodily harm, drunkenness can have no effect on the consideration of the malicious intent of the party.

On the facts before him, Baron Alderson directed the jury that the use of the fork by the defendant constituted the use of a dangerous weapon and that this indicated a malicious intent that could not be altered by evidence of drunkenness. The jury returned a guilty verdict. In 1838, further consideration was given to drunkenness and intention in R. v.Cruse,103 where the defendant was charged with assault with intent to commit murder. Mr Justice Patterson directed the jury that drunkenness was an important factor to be considered where intent was in issue and that although the defendant may have committed an act of great violence, the defendant may have been unable to form any intent due to drunkenness.104 Mr Justice Patterson’s remarks were carefully examined by Mr Justice Coleridge (as he then was) in R. v. Monkhouse,105 which involved a charge of wounding with intent to murder.

While agreeing with the substance of the earlier direction, His Honour questioned the propriety of the language used in the earlier case.106 His Honour directed the jury that while drunkenness did not constitute a defence to a criminal offence, the jury must consider whether the defendant was so intoxicated that he was unable to form the intent charged.107 If a defendant was rendered more irritable or excitable by his or her intoxicated condition, then that condition was not a relevant factor for the jury to take into account. However, Mr Justice Coleridge said that a defendant’s intoxicated condition should be considered by the jury if it:108 was such as to prevent his restraining himself from committing the act in question, or to take away from him the power of forming any specific intention. This direction remains important as the first to suggest that evidence of intoxication is relevant to thorough examination negative specific intent.

The 1880’s also witnessed developments in the law concerning the relationship between drunkenness and mental disease. In 1881, in R. v. Davis,115 a case which involved a charge of wounding with intent to murder, the evidence showed that the defendant was suffering from delirium tremens caused by alcohol. Mr Justice Stephen held that drunkenness amounting to temporary insanity could constitute a defence to crime. His Honour said:116 if a man by drunkenness brings on a state of disease which causes such a degree of madness, even for a time, which would have relieved him from responsibility if it had been caused in any other way, then he would not be criminally responsible.

This view stood in contrast to the earlier cases in the 1820’s of R. v. Burrows117 and R. v. Rennie,118 where Mr Justice Holroyd refused to recognise drunkenness as an excuse for a criminal offence unless that drunkenness constituted a continuing or permanent condition of insanity. The proposition enunciated in R. v. Davis119 was confirmed four years later by Mr Justice Day in R. v. Baines.120 In DPP v. Beard121 the Lord Chancellor, Lord Birkenhead, expressly approved this proposition,122 making clear that drunkenness causing only temporary insanity did constitute a defence to a criminal charge.

Twentieth Century Authorities

The first important common law statement in the twentieth century concerning drunkenness and criminal responsibility occurred in R. v. Meade.123 In that case, the defendant struck the victim with a broomstick and punched her with his fist causing the rupture of her intestine and her death. The defendant was found guilty of murder and appealed on the basis that the trial judge had led the jury to believe that a verdict of manslaughter required evidence that the defendant was insane or in a condition similar to insanity. The English Court of Appeal upheld the verdict declaring that a person is taken to intend the natural consequences of his or her act, but that such a presumption can be rebutted by evidence of drunkenness which shows that the defendant’s mind was so affected by drink ‘that he was incapable of knowing that what he was doing was dangerous, i.e. likely to inflict injury’.124 This was a much broader principle than that which had previously been laid down by Mr Justice Stephen in R. v. Doherty,125 in that its application was universal and not restricted to offences where intent was an essential element of the crime charged.

R. v. Meade126 remained the leading authority until 1920 when the House of Lords delivered its decision in D.P.P. v. Beard.127 In that case, the defendant raped a young girl of 13 and in placing his hand across her mouth to prevent her screaming suffocated her. Beard’s defence was that he was drunk at the time and he had not intended to kill the girl. The trial judge directed the jury that the defence of drunkenness could only be relied upon if it produced in the defendant a state of insanity. The Court of Appeal quashed Beard’s conviction and substituted a verdict of manslaughter. The House of Lords reinstated the murder conviction making important pronouncements concerning intoxication and criminal responsibility.128 The decision generated debate and uncertainty arising from two passages that proved difficult to reconcile.

Commentators have criticised the approach, some arguing that evidence of intoxication should be able to negative mens rea for any offence.129 In the first of the two controversial passages, the Lord Chancellor, Lord Birkenhead, said:130 where a specific intent is an essential element in the offence, evidence of a state of drunkenness rendering the accused incapable of forming such an intent should be taken into consideration in order to determine whether he had in fact formed the intent necessary to constitute the particular crime. One of the major controversies was whether evidence of self-induced intoxication could be raised by a defendant in relation to any offence to show that he or she did not have the appropriate guilty mind for the offence charged, or whether evidence of self-induced intoxication was only relevant to offences with a specific intent; that is, offences with an intention to achieve a particular result.

It is arguable that, in the first passage, Lord Birkenhead may not have meant to distinguish between offences of specific and basic intent, but he may simply have been referring to offences where intent is an important element of an offence. Controversy aside, the principle that was subsequently applied by most judges and practitioners in England was that which distinguished between offences of specific and basic intent, with the consequence that where a defendant was charged with an offence of specific intent, evidence of self-induced intoxication was able to be relied upon by a defendant to show that he or she did not have the necessary intent.

Accordingly, ‘specific’ and ‘basic’ intent have been given distinct technical meanings, with the result that evidence of self-induced intoxication is treated differently according to the nature of the offence charged. Another interesting point is that while Lord Birkenhead spoke of the effect of intoxication on the capacity of the defendant to form the relevant mental state, subsequent decisions altered the rule so that the crucial question was whether the prosecution could prove that the defendant formed the requisite mental element in fact.

Modern Authorities

The leading modern authority in English law is the decision by the House of Lords in DPP v. Majewski.133 The defendant was involved in a brawl at a public house in which he assaulted patrons and police. He was charged with assault occasioning actual bodily harm and assaulting a constable in the execution of his duty. He gave evidence that he had consumed a large quantity of alcohol and drugs and that at the time of the alleged offences he did not know what he was doing and had no intention of striking anyone. The trial judge directed the jury that self-induced intoxication was irrelevant and could afford him no defence. The defendant was convicted and the Court of Appeal dismissed his appeal. However, the Court of Appeal certified the following question as a point of law of public importance for the consideration of the House of Lords, namely:134 Whether a defendant may properly be convicted of assault notwithstanding that by reason of his self-induced intoxication, he did not intend to do the act alleged to constitute the assault.

The House of Lords was unanimous in concluding that even though the defendant was intoxicated he could be convicted of the assault. In reaching that conclusion their Lordships were prepared to sacrifice legal consistency and logic on grounds of public policy. Majewski’s case divides offences into those of specific and basic intent. The commonly accepted view of the principle laid down in the case is that in relation to crimes of basic intent, evidence of self-induced intoxication cannot be considered when determining whether a defendant formed the intention to commit the offence or whether a defendant acted voluntarily.135 In other words, a defendant may face conviction for an offence of basic intent even though the defendant had no intention to commit the offence or acted involuntarily.

Where the intoxication produced a state of insanity, evidence of self-induced intoxication may be considered to determine whether a defendant formed the mental element for offences of basic intent. The principles enunciated in Beard’s case136 were thus confirmed and the division of criminal offences into ‘basic’ and ‘specific’ intent became entrenched in English common law. The decision in Majewski’s case was based on principles of public policy, notably: (1) that the law should provide protection against unprovoked violent conduct of intoxicated offenders; and (2) that it is morally just to hold intoxicated offenders responsible for criminal conduct, given that they freely chose to become intoxicated. In relation to the need to protect the community, Lord Salmon, for example, said:137 The law is primarily concerned with human affairs.

I believe that the main object of our legal system is to preserve individual liberty. One important aspect of individual liberty is protection against physical violence. If there were to be no penal sanction for any injury unlawfully inflicted under the complete mastery of drink or drugs, voluntarily taken, the social consequence could be appalling. As to the justice involved in convicting an intoxicated offender, Lord Chancellor, Elwyn-Jones accurately summed-up the views of all their Lordships:138 If a man of his own volition takes a substance which causes him to cast off the restraints of reason and conscience, no wrong is done to him by holding him answerable criminally for any injury he may do while in that condition. His course of conduct in reducing himself by drugs and drink to that condition in my view supplies the evidence of mens rea, of guilty mind certainly sufficient for crimes of basic intent.

It is a reckless course of conduct and recklessness is enough to constitute the necessary mens rea in assault cases. The decision in Majewski’s case and its division of offences into those of specific and basic intent has been strongly criticised. The major difficulty arising from this decision (as with Beard’s case) is how to consistently differentiate between offences of specific and basic intent. This and other criticisms are discussed further below.139 A further restriction was placed on the use of evidence of intoxication in 1982 in the case of R. v. Caldwell.140 Caldwell’s case concerned the former employee of a hotel proprietor who became very intoxicated, broke a window and started a fire in a ground floor room. The fire was stopped before any substantial damage occurred.

The defendant said that while he intended to cause damage he did not consider that people’s lives might be in jeopardy. The House of Lords held that evidence of self-induced intoxication could not be considered where recklessness constitutes the fault element of an offence.141 Recklessness was defined as conduct which created a risk that would have been obvious to the ordinary prudent person, but the defendant either gave no thought to the possibility of the risk or, having recognised the risk, decided to take it anyway.142 The crucial point here is that as a consequence of Caldwell’s case, evidence of intoxication could no longer be considered where recklessness was at issue.

Investment and Retirement Planning Essay

Introduction

• Retirement is the point where a person is not in any kind of employment /business/occupation. • This usually happens upon reaching a determined age, when physical conditions do not allow the person to work any more. • Retirement could also be due to personal choice-either due to adequate pension or personal savings or due to a regular unearned income like interest, rents etc.

• The retirement age varies from country to country but it is generally between 55 and 70. • Certain jobs, which are of dangerous nature or of fatiguing nature, may have an earlier retirement age.

Support and Funds
• Retired persons support themselves either through superannuation, pensions, savings or through family (earning children), as in Indian families. • In some other countries the government provides the pension benefit to all its citizens.

Retirement Planning

• Retirement financial planning refers to a collection of systems, methods and processes which support a family unit’s (client’s) desire to achieve a state of financial independence. • It is a process of determining the financial goals at the point of retirement.

• It requires constant monitoring of the progress of the plan and then taking adequate remedial measures

Need For Retirement Planning

• Increasing Life Span • Low Returns In Conventional Modes Of Savings. • Unintended Contingencies. • Increasing Medical Cost. • Diminishing Trend Of Joint Family System • Inflationary Trends • Absence Of Social Security Benefits By The State • Pursuing Hobbies • Falling Interest Rates

Steps In Retirement Planning

• Decision retirement about the retirement age option. • Setting of financial goals • Saving of relevant amounts w.r.t. goals • Investing in appropriate modes • Calculation of net worth • Regular monitoring of financial plan and incorporate the necessary amendments in the plan.

Factors Affecting Retirement Planning

• Life style • Personal values • Nature of income- salaried, business or professional; stable job/non-stable job; private job/government job • Number of years left for taking retirement • Inflation rate • Present net worth of a person • Risk appetite of a person • Services of a certified financial planner • Conviction in the retirement planning effort • Seriousness & perseverance for retirement planning

Life Expectancy & Career Stability

LIFE EXPECTANCY

• Life expectancy is the major ruler of retirement planning. • As per the Indian context, still the importance of retirement planning is not clearly identified. • With the increasing life expectancy, high standards of living and high expectations for the upcoming future, pressure is building up for fund allocation, to meet up the needs of retirement. • Longevity of life expectancy has to be kept in mind while making out a retirement plan.

• Key factors to be evaluated while making out a retirement plan are present life style, income and capacity to save, family circumstances, level of inflation prevailing in the economy & the standard one would like to maintain at the time of post retirement

INDIA & RETIREMENT PLANNING

• 90% per cent of India’s total working population is not covered for postretirement life. • The main objective of retirement planning is to create a well funded and safe future for the client. • Financial needs of the client needs to be clubbed between his/her current income and post retirement expenditure.

• To maintain up current life style one has to plan to save almost 65 to 85% of current income.

Life Cycle

• Every phase of life cycle has a different level of income, expenditure and saving. • The first phase of life cycle is the childhood where an individual has no earnings but certain amount of money is spent on him/her (school fees, clothing, food etc). • Second stage comes where the individual may or may not start his real earnings or a stable career.

• In the third stage an individual enters a stable career and has good amount of earnings to save and start planning for his/her retirement • Fourth & fifth stage is time period to save maximum and allocate maximum funds for the retirement planning. • In the sixth stage comes the old age. At this stage the savings tend to reduce because of medical expenses, new expenses related to old age etc. • The last two stages of the life cycle is the retirement period where the saving are utilized to cover the real retirement years or retirement costs.

Career Stability

• Career stability is one of the most important factor which clearly needs to be evaluated to develop a retirement plan. • Fund allocation for retirement is done with the help of surplus earnings of an individual during his/her pre-retirement period. • Stable career and in return stable earnings provides a scope for having well planned and organized retirement plan

• Employers also have a important role in retirement planning as they contribute in pension plans other contribution plans etc. • Career stability helps to draw clear anticipation of future earnings can be which helps in retirement planning

Major Factors Affecting Career Stability

• Job Satisfaction: Job satisfaction covers the factors like the level of pay and benefits, the perceived fairness of the promotion system within a company, the quality of the working conditions, leadership and social relationships, and the job itself. • Alternative opportunities: If the market is opening up for new jobs and careers and individual can provide his works onto those opportunities the career stability can embark for changes.

• Employer-Employee Relationship: This issue covers the factors like loyalty of an individual towards the employer, future protection provided by the employer, motivation, leadership, timely appraisals. • Changing economic conditions: The economic conditions of a country like recession cycles, developing sectors, problems related to any particular sector private and public ownership etc also affects the career stability. • There are also various policies and economic strategies of government related to employment & foreign investments etc which have a direct affect on employment scenario.

PRE-RETIREMENT COUNSELLING

Introduction

• It is an planning. interactive part of retirement

• In pre-retirement counseling all the basics of the retirement plan are drafted as per the needs and expectations of the client and as per the client’s present and anticipated financial conditions. • Financial planner has to clearly evaluate the needs, attitude & lifestyle of the client to have a strong and trustworthy relationship with the client.

Steps For Retirement Plan

• Inauguration Of Retirement Plan: Inauguration of retirement plan would depend on life expectancy. If the client starts accumulating funds for his/her retirement early, with small savings & less burden he will be able to achieve the goal. • Desired Retirement Status: This would involve budgeting, income sources and proper asset management etc. Estimated expenditure and sources of income during the retirement years to the client have to be evaluated properly.

• Retirement Expenses & Sources Of Income: Clear identification of all the costs & incomes has to be made. Provisions for allocating 65 to 70% of current income for the retirement period should be drawn.

Insurance With Retirement Planning

• Insurance plans with a cash back or whole life insurance are suitable because they provide insurance as long as the premiums are paid and also accumulates savings, thus it has a cash value. • It also helps to pay off uncovered medical costs, funeral expenses & also acts as an income replacement for survivors.

• With increasing life expectancy, and other challenges a life insurance can provide a life-long, worry-free retirement and insurance protection. • Major expenses of the retirement years are the health care costs, health insurance can act as a helping hand in that case to meet up these costs.

26/30

Estate Planning With Retirement Planning

• Estate planning is the process of accumulating and disposing of an estate to maximize the returns of the estate owner. • Various tools of estate planning are used like Wills, Trusts, Gifts, Contributions & proper evaluation of Estate taxes.

• Estate planning should maintain out the costs of the property and should develop an estate plan to give proper and safe income generation. • Estate plan will cover all the legal formalities and all the documentation regarding future transactions.

Tax Planning With Retirement Planning

• Savings and investments are interconnected. • Proper management of savings and investment results to tax benefits and these become very important at the time of retirement. • Retirement planner must clearly evaluate the aspects of its liquidity, security, and the most important one the return and tax income over such investments.

• Proper tax planning can itself prove out to be a saving tool because with effective tax planning is basic foundation for effective retirement planning.

Johnson and Johnson Executive Summary Essay

The $10,000 investment made into Johnson and Johnson is a good investment to have in your portfolio. This is because of the stable nature of Johnson and Johnson and the growth trend of the company. Based on the JNJ 10-Ks for the last 5 years ended Jan. 1, 2012, the revenue trend is growing. Revenues have trended favorably from $61,095 in the year ended Jan. 2007 to $65,030 in the year ended Jan. 1, 2012. The company is also operating efficiently showing the more stable aspect of this investment by keeping costs of goods sold at an average percent of 29.

94% for the five years ended Jan. 1, 2012. The company is also well leveraged for growth. A good measure of this leverage is the Debt Ratio, which is a measure of the total liabilities of a company in proportion to the total assets.

The Debt Ratio will also expose the risks in the company’s debt-load by revealing the extent of assets that are financed with debt. The debt ratio for JNJ has trended from 2.

00 in the year ended Dec. 28, 2008 to 2.01 Jan. 1, 2012 with an increase in the fiscal years ended Jan 2, 2011 and Jan 3 2010 to 2.22 and 2.15, respectively. These ratios show that the company has two assets for every one dollar of a liability the company has thereby showing that the company is financially stable and able to pay the obligations it has. Johnson and Johnson is also able to generate earnings from it’s invested capital. Return on asset (ROA) is a ratio that describes what earnings are generated from invested capital and is often referred to as return on investment.

From the years ended Dec. 28, 2008 through Jan 2, 2011, the company has had a consistent ROA percentage of 15.25%, 12.95%, and 12.96%, respectively. The ROA percentage decreased to 8.51% in the year ended Jan. 1, 2012 because of continued additions of assets through acquisitions that will continue to generate growth in the future. Market perception is also a valuable indicator when determining sound investments. The price to earnings ratio is a valuation of a company’s current market share price compared to its per-share earnings. Generally, a higher P/E ratio suggests that an investor can expect higher earnings growth in the future. The price to earnings ratio has increased substantially to 18.53 in the fiscal year ended Jan. 1, 2012 from the 12.75 price to earnings ratio in the year ended Jan. 2, 2011, as shown in the table below.

Lastly, most financially secure and stable companies offer dividends to their stockholders. A dividend is a distribution of cash, stock, or property in a portion of a company’s earnings. The cash dividends per share have trended favorably for investors looking to have a return on their investment from $1.62 in the year ended Dec. 28, 2007 to $2.25 for the year ended Jan. 1, 2012. In summary, Johnson and Johnson is continually investing into new consumer, pharmaceutical, and medical device fields which has created a large, well diversified company that is able to stay one step ahead of its competitors thereby creating a strong stable investment option for investors.

The Konark Temple Essay

The Konark Temple or The Black Pagoda is one of the most beautiful ornaments in the crown adorning the rich heritage and history of Odisha. It is located in the district of Puri in Odisha.

The reason for choosing this particular site for this assignment was that every time I visited the place, I was left spell bound by the grandeur of this architectural marvel.

The temple was built in the thirteenth century by King Narsimhadeva of the Ganga dynasty. It was designed as a colossal solar chariot with twelve pairs of exquisitely-ornamented wheels dragged by seven rearing horses.

As per folklore the temple was constructed by Samba, the son of Lord Krishna. It is said that Samba was afflicted by leprosy, brought about by his father’s curse on him. After 12 years of penance, he was cured by Surya, the Sun God, in whose honor he built the magnificent Konark Sun Temple.

Rabindranath Tagore wrote of Konark: “Here the language of stone surpasses the language of man.

” The main sanctum has fallen off due to strains of time and of invasions. The present day temple site has only the remains of the main temple complex, however the gateway remains. Konark music and dance festival is an annual festival held in the temple premises, which attracts lots of tourists from across the world. The Konark Sun temple is a World heritage site.

Bibliography :
Cultural History Of Orissa by Bhagabana Sahu
Political Culture and History of Orissa by SK Panda
Facets of Orissa history and Archaeology by Baba Mishra

You may also be interested in the following: essay on odisha

Portrait of Dr Gachet Essay

A. Introduction

When the name Van Gogh comes up, one can imagine sunflowers, stars at night, rice fields, and lonely portraits. His works resemble writing. (Berger, 2001, p.87) His life rendered to writing. When one hears his name, one remembers a song, a play, a book.

 Van Gogh’s appeal is world-wide. Collectors, dealers, and museums place a high price on a painting. Artists, art critics, and even an ordinary person who knows a thing or two about Western art can appreciate his works as well as his life story.

  He was a post impressionist painter. (vangoghgallery.com)

One of the controversial paintings of Van Gogh is the Portrait of Dr. Gachet. The subject (Paul Ferdinand Gachet) was the painter’s physician and friend. He made the portrait six weeks before he committed suicide. (businessweek.com, 1998)

B. Description / Analysis

The subject in the painting occupied much of the space. It cuts a diagonal line in the middle of the canvass. The slant gives the mood of the subject.

Dr. Gachet is in a reclining position as if exhausted and sad. The subject’s outline – from his hat, to his shoulders, to his hand, was drawn with soft curved lines. The features of the face and the coat are also of curves. The curves give the work an over-all softness which contributes to the idea of sadness; as opposed to sharp lines which usually denote coldness. There were very few straight lines used. They can only be seen in the objects (two books) beside the subject.

There are also the famous small strokes using semi-curved lines used by Van Gogh to give texture. The strokes have little space between them. And, the background colors of these strokes are still very visible. These small strokes create a pattern-like detail ( it used the principle of repetition) to the visual objects that uses them such as subject’s clothes and his background.

 The main subject is oval. He is like a fruit reclining on a table. The dominant colors are blue and green. There are many shades using these colors. They are contrasting to the subject’s skin tone which is mostly a combination of yellow and cream. The face and the arms are fair with soft details using light brown and green. The contrast of the dark and the light colors brings attention to the face, and thus the mood of the subject; which as mentioned earlier looks exhausted and sad.

The subject was placed in the middle ground.  The foreground are the other visual objects such as books, table and the flowers in a vase. The foreground gives an idea to the setting; that the portrait was done during a casual encounter. The background is an outline of a landscape (in dark blue) and sky (in pale blue). The background colors are of the same shade which create harmony.

The Portrait of Dr.Gachet was painted in 1890. Its size is 67 x 56 cm. It used oil on canvas.(paletaworld.org) Van Gogh used this medium the most as shown in his most famous paintings. There are debates on whether Van Gogh’s art is impressionist, expressionist or post-impressionist. Partly, due to the small brush strokes he used to give detail to visual objects, some say he belongs to the impressionist painters. The small strokes are signs of the artist’s swift motion during painting. Since the outline of the visual objects are simple, one gets the idea that the artist must have paid attention to the affect reality such as the mood or feeling of the subject at that time. This presents a way of seeing; as opposed to hyperrealist artworks which concentrate on the mastery of details. (Berger, 2001, p. 8)

C. Interpretation

The over-all impact of the painting is sadness. It was an intimate portrait because the painter was drawing out feelings. This can be seen in the choice of colors, soft lines and -most obvious- the details of the subject’s face. By the title alone – Portrait of Dr. Gachet, one expects to see a serious man. Visual details show the same characteristic as the subject appears to be a serious man. Beside the subject were books. Reading suggests educational or professional background. The subject wore a dark coat and a defined moustache -which are the common symbols of being proper.

The usual portraits are arranged like a pictorial. The Portrait of Dr. Gachet deviates from this. It is not a display of attributes. The painting is affective. This means that it shows a relation between the subject and the painter. The subject was relaxed enough to recline and show his emotions. He looks exhausted or resigned from something, and he is conveying it. The table used as a foreground suggests the looker (the painter) might be on the other end. Facts concerning the subject’s relation to Van Gogh came as no surprise. He was said to be unable to help Van Gogh in his depression and is suffering from it as well. (Bertman, 2006)

The subject’s relation to the painter is relevant. He was his doctor. And he was with him days before the painter’s death.  The sad and tired look on the doctor’s face symbolizes surrender. The death of Van Gogh came days later. In the Portrait of Dr. Gachet, Van Gogh was painting vulnerability. He was keen to the moment being lived by himself and his subject.

D. Judgment

The Portrait of Dr. Gachet stirred controversy for the high price it was bought and the mystery of its vanishing. It was auction in 1990 with a bidding that started with $20 million and sealed with $ 82.5 million. A Japanese industrialist kept it in a secret store room. He gained notoriety when he exclaimed in jest that the piece would be cremated with him. After his death, the painting was said to have been sold, but it was no longer seen by the public. The Portrait of Dr. Gachet is controversial not only because it was the painting bought with the highest price for an auction. The very manner of passing it from one collector to another who did not have any interest in sharing it to the public, and not even to view it himself, (Kleiner, 2000)  show how art is a property of the privileged. Its vanishing act sparked further debates on the commodification of art. The common sentiment revolves around the seemingly waste of art because Van Gogh was important to the public. But, the privileged (collector) did not have the intention to give. It seemed their own love of art is a pretension. (Berger, 103)

E. Conclusion

The Portrait of Dr. Gachet is a portrait of many values. It is a portrait drawn to portray beyond social status. It also described social relations. It is an artwork about perception and emotions.

It is an intimate portrait of a man who was supposed to cure the painter. It is significant to all who appreciate Van Gogh. It is also valuable to all who regard art beyond one’s private collection.

Portuguese expansion and colonialism in the 16th century Essay

It can be argued that if Europeans did not discover America, but instead discovered the ocean, it had a great impact. The discovery of the ocean certainly led to the discovery of new lands. The 15th Century was certainly a great time for European exploration. The location of European countries played a huge part as far as trade and even the expansion of their territories was concerned. According to Mastanduno, Portugal was among the first countries in Europe to spearhead trade and colonialism in the 15th century.

Spain was also part of this trend.

Portugal possessed certain characteristics that helped in its colonization, expansion and even trade endeavors. First of all there was political stability which means the people could afford to concentrate their efforts on other things such as trade. (2008) In addition Portugal has a strategic geographical location and a maritime experience other countries would be envious of. (Prestage, 1933) For instance, Portugal is bordered to the South and the West by the Atlantic ocean.

(Encyclopedia of nations, 2007) This has important ramifications.

For one, it means that Portugal possesses a large coastline and therefore had accessibility to the ocean. This is the reason that the Portuguese became the first Europeans to be able to make their way to Asia via Africa. The Portuguese were keen on trade and specially spice trade. For this reason they set up trading posts along coastlines of the Atlantic Ocean, hence the term transatlantic trade. The Portuguese transversed all the way to the Americas, Asia and even Africa through the Atlantic ocean. In other instances, they set up fortresses and with time established colonies.

As a result the Portuguese were able to establish a monopoly on the eastern trade route. (Mastanduno, 2008) But the fact that Portuguese could easily access the sea and even travel to distance lands for trade was a reason for conflict with other European countries such as the Dutch and the English. These countries were not really happy that Portugal had established a monopoly over the trade routes and had also extensively expanded its empire. By this time, the Portuguese empire covered Africa, the America and even India.

For this reason a conflict ensued that resulted in the Dutch establishing their control over some areas hitherto occupied by the Portuguese such as the Cape of Good Hope in Africa and in the process drove out the Portuguese. (Acemoglu, Johnson & Robinson, 2002) The conflict was between the Dutch East India Company and the Portuguese empire. The sea played a huge part in this conflict. First of all it was the through the sea that the Portuguese were able to travel away from home, to dominate trade and even establish colonies abroad.

It was through their own ingenuity that they were able to make full use of the sea to their advantage. However, Portugal was still a small country and thus did not have enough troops to effectively protect its interests hence the conflict with the Dutch resulted in the loss of some of its interests (Mastanduno, 2008) Geographical location did contribute to Portugal becoming a trade powerhouse. This is because of the simple fact that she was strategically located and could access new areas easily. Having a harbor makes shipping trade and transportation far much easier.

However, resources also contributed immensely to trade as well as territorial expansion. For instance, the discovery of the Americas by the Portuguese (Christopher Columbus) also resulted in the discovery of new trading products that were not produced back home. These included sugar and tobacco. (Blackburn, 1998) Initially, Columbus had landed in America in the search of gold. He had been looking for a new route to China. This shows that the search for resources resulted in the discovery of new trading routes. From Africa they could obtain spices.

It was important that Portugal and Europe as a whole discover new areas from where they could access cheap products and even labor for their growing populations and industries back home. (Acemoglu, Johnson & Robinson, 2002) This way trade could have been expanded with the aim of exchanging these goods for those that they did not have. In addition, it provided an opportunity for these countries to extend their hegemonies, as did Portugal, by taking control of these distant lands and making them colonies. According to Blackburn, trade and business by capitalists was responsible for the growth of slave trade in the Atlantic.

The slave trade in turn resulted in the growth and success of plantations hence the introduction of plantation slavery. (1998) There was a ready market for the slaves in Europe and this contributed to further growth of the slave trade. The slaves were employed to grow rice, cotton, coffee, tobacco and sugar. They provided cheap reliable labor to their owners. (Berlin &Morgan, 1993) Sea and air currents of the Atlantic ocean played a considerable part in the development of trade. Wind and pressure patterns, ocean currents plus magnetic fields especially in the Atlantic Ocean were used by the Portuguese in navigation.

This way they were able to chart; which was an important element of their navigation. For instance, Columbus used the northeast trade winds to carry him westwards across the Atlantic. From there the westerly winds helped him dock back home in Spain (Case & Odell, 1963) The Portuguese had good knowledge of astronomy and of mathematics. They used this knowledge to navigate their ships to lands that could potentially become fortresses for trade. Astronomy means that they could easily make use of the stars for navigational purposes. For instance, the Portuguese used the Pole star and the compass to guide than to Canaries.

The captains and the pilots of the ships and boats were skillful astronomers using the Pole and the stars as route guides. The Portuguese man, Henry the navigator, used his knowledge on the observation of latitudes as a guide; sometimes calculated using the height of the sun at noon. (Prestage, 1933) In addition, they were well aware of the ocean and the ocean winds and currents that could also be used to take them to their destination. The Portuguese were well aware that the South winds would blow them towards the Americas. (Pike, 2005) This coupled with the fact that they were excellent boat and ship makers made all the difference.

The Portuguese had already established themselves in trade which required therefore that they build harbors on which their merchant boats and ship could dock as they brought home the spices and even the slaves from Africa. The Portuguese definitely discovered that the ocean had immense advantages and therefore exploited it to their advantage. Through the use of the sea they traveled to distant lands in search of resources and to trade. In addition, they were able to establish their influence on those lands converting them into colonies where they sourced for materials and cheap labor.

Interconnection Billing System of Grameenphone Ltd. Essay

1.0 Introduction

In early 2008, Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) announced that reorganization of the country’s telecom interconnection architecture as per International Long Distance Telecommunication Services (ILDTS) Policy – 2007 has to be completed by the mid of August, 2008 (BTRC, 2008a). This announcement by the telecom regulator obligated relevant telecom operators (e.g. mobile and fixed networks) to take necessary measures to complete the re-organization task within the deadline while ensuring there is no or minimum subscriber inconvenience and revenue leakage due to this reorganization.

Grameenphone Ltd., the largest cell phone operator of the country having a subscriber base of about 17 Million at that period (BTRC, 2008b), had to approach this regulatory directive with great importance as interconnection termination charge is the source of 2nd largest revenue stream for the company (Grameenphone Annual Reports, 2008 – 2011). It launched a cross-functional project to complete the interconnection restructure task smoothly.

This Project Team identified prevailing interconnection billing processes and systems of the organization as one of the key improvement areas.

It was felt that existing in-house developed tools lacked the flexibility to accommodate the change in network architecture. Management wanted replacement of manual billing related tasks through fully automated systems to ensure faster transactions and generation of customized reports. After through assessment of other alternatives within the allocated budget by experts from relevant cross-functional teams, Intec Interconnection Billing System (IIBS) was procured from one of the leading vendors of the world, Intec Systems Ltd. (CSGI, 2012).

This paper focuses on the evaluation of IIBS, a hi-tech information system and its contribution to Grameenphone Ltd., a technology-based organization. Major sources of information are my experiences as a member of this billing system implementation project team and later use it for about 03 years; and interviews and email exchange with core technical persons and other stakeholders of IIBS. In some areas, training materials provided by the billing system vendor and web entries have been consulted as well.

2.0 Overview of Intec Interconnection Billing System

2.1 Telecom Interconnect and Related Facts: Bangladesh Context

“The term Interconnect in the telecommunication world means a business model where different competing telephony providers coexist and interconnect to each other” (4gbilling Inc., 2012). As per Bangladesh Telecommunication Act-2001, any telecom operator must ensure ‘any-to-any’ connectivity so that its subscriber(s) can conveniently communicate with the subscriber(s) of other telecom operator(s) (BTRC, 2001c); as a result, telecom operators interconnect each other directly or through interconnection exchanges (it is the case in Bangladesh after reorganization of national interconnection architecture in 2008) and also establish connectivity with foreign operators through international gateways.

Figure 1: Block diagram of Interconnectivity (adapted from ILDTS Policy’07, BTRC 2008a)

After establishment of inter-connectivity, telecom operators pay each other interconnection access charges for the traffic (i.e. voice call, SMS, & MMS) generated by its subscriber(s) to the other at a rate mutually negotiated or enforced by the regulator. This interconnection payment and associated tasks, e.g. calculation of interconnect traffic volume originated and received, generation of invoices, and validation of other operators’ invoices are dictated by their mutual interconnection agreements and/or relevant directives from the telecom regulators (Interconnection Regulations, 2004).

2.2 Interconnect Billing Systems

With the worldwide trend of telecom de-regulation, interconnectivity gets crowded and telecom operators are in need of interconnection billing system offering detailed analysis of interconnection. The objective, of course, is to make “smart and well informed business decisions to enhance revenue streams” (4gbilling Inc., 2012).

The major tasks accomplished by using Interconnect Billing system are: -Inter-operator settlement for traffic exchanged with other operators,
-Resolution of interconnection billing disputes,
-Generation of various reports;
-Detection of various telecom frauds and assist in management of those.

2.3 Technological Features of Intec Interconnect Billing System (IIBS)

IIBS lies at the downstream of Mediation Server in the telecom network architecture. It works under client-server model. The servers are powered by HP-UX (Hewlett-Packard, 2011). It has dual server: one houses Database & other runs Application (Intec Training Material, 2008).

Figure 2: Network Diagram of IIBS (adapted from 4Gbilling Inc., 2012)

In the client side computers, there are different modules for invoice generation, reporting, and reconciliation of CDRs from other operator, etc. These clients are connected with the IBS application server using LAN (Local Area Network).

Client computers may run Microsoft Windows operating systems. The clients can access IIBS’s application through Graphical User Interface (GUI) or through web-based Oracle Discoverer (a customized tool) says Mr. Raiyan Karim, System Engineer, IBS of Grameenphone Ltd. (Karim, 2012).

A team within the Information Technology department are assigned the task to configure and operate IIBS while the users are spread all over the organization ranging from Finance to Regulatory Affairs functions.

2.4 Categorisation of IIBS as Information System

As an information system, Intec Interconnect Billing System (IIBS) can be categorised in several perspectives.

From hardware perspective (Bocij et al, 2008: Chapter 3), IIBS has the primary capture/ input technology in use is the LAN connectivity with an upstream application server, very powerful CPU as processor, 25 Terabyte online magnetic disk storage and output can be taken through either monitor display, e-document or printed papers.

From software perspective (Bocij et al, 2008: Chapter 4), IIBS is an application software, to be specific, application to process large databases containing CDRs.

From management-level perspectives (Laudon and Laudon, 2012), IIBS can be categorised mainly as a transaction processing system as it deals with instances of interconnection traffic exchanged (i.e. call/ SMS/ MMS made to & received from other operators). This system serves requirements of operational management and but, the outputs from this system has a wider circulation to different management levels even up to top executives mainly due to importance of associated business activity (interconnectivity) for telecommunication industry.

From organisational function (Laudon and laudon, 2006) perspectives, IIBS is an Information Technology business area specific information system. It handles digital customer call records for generation of interconnection billing details.

From the perspectives of reach (Boddy et al, 2005: 37-38), IIBS is identified as an intra-organisational IS. Though its core use lies within the IT department of Grameenphone, this system is very frequently accessed from other parts of the organizations e.g. Finance, Marketing, Regulatory Affairs, etc. Moreover, as IIBS contributes to achieve overall organisational goals e.g. reliable settlement of interconnection revenue, help in developing market offerings, it can easily be termed as an intra-organisational IS.

3.0 Supported Organisational Processes

The organizational processes supported by IIBS can be analysed by using two approaches: a) CIPSODAR model of information system (Heeks, 2011a) and b) usage and applications of computer based IS by organisational level (Bocij et al, 2008: P 45).

3.1 CIPSODAR on IIBS

IIBS captures processed CDR (Call Detail Records) from Mediation server (“a system used to convert data of certain datatypes to other datatypes, usually for billing purposes”, Wikipedia, 2012). These mediated CDRs are feed into IIBS as inputs.

Figure 3: IIBS on CIPSODAR model (adapted from Heeks, 2011a)

The captured CDRs have to contain at least 06 information fields which are in numeric form (Intec Systems, 2008): i.Unique CDR identification no. associated with each call made to & received from other operators, ii.phone no. of call originating subscriber,

iii.phone no. of call recipient subscriber,
iv.call start time,
v.call duration, &
vi.Intelligent network marking used to identify post-paid or pre-paid subscriber.

These mediated CDRs are further processed by IIBS, i.e. classifying based on various pre-set criteria e.g. pre-paid, post-paid, originating operator, terminating operator; sorting thereof based on each criteria, and finally compiling. IIBS has remarkable processing capacity as it handles about 70 Million CDRs in every 6 hours (Karim, 2012).

IIBS uses two types of storage: one is online which has huge storage capacity to store CDRS for consecutive 04 months and another is older CDRs which are moved to magnetic tapes for archiving.

Output from IIBS is billing details categorized based on interconnect operator, incoming call flow, outgoing call flow, or duration e.g. day-wise or month-wise. Recipients can generate invoice to be issued to other operators or customized reports using the client side invoicing or reporting modules of IIBS.

The outputs generated from IIBS data help the organization to decide on its interconnection business strategy e.g. integrate additional interconnect capacity with some operator or formulate business plan e.g. promote calls to other operators by lowering customer charge.

Actions include implementation of internal business strategy or contractual obligations of interconnection agreement. The results derived from such actions are inter-operator settlement and dispute resolution for interconnection traffic, gain competitive edge or retain stronghold over market. The outputs from IIBS billing details helps to detect and take action against telecom frauds, to meet regulatory compliance by generating reports for telecom regulator on regularly and ad-hoc basis. It is useful in revenue projection through trend analysis of interconnection traffic.

3.2 Organisational Levels and IIBS

As mentioned in earlier section, IIBS mainly functions as transaction processing system and hierarchically destined to serve the operational management. The operations managers ensure processing activities of IIBS. In this level, IIBS serves as a solution to generate reliable invoices, validation of other party invoices, resolution of inter-operator invoiced /data related disputes, and generation of various reports.

Figure 4: IIBS & different Organisation level (adapted from Bocij et al, 2008)

In upper level of the organisational hierarchy, IIBS generated reports serve as tactical tool. Based on interconnection traffic trends and invoices, they generate interconnection revenue forecast, interconnection capacity requirement etc.

IIBS reports are consulted by Top Management level also. Settlement of interconnection revenue is a key issue as it counts for the 2nd largest revenue stream of Grameenphone (Grameenphone: 2011). Interconnection traffic volume is a key indicator of customer attractiveness of competitors’ market offerings. Based on the trend of interconnect traffic, business directions are made to product development team.

4.0 Evaluation of Information System

Intec Interconnect Billing system (IIBS) may be evaluated from two perspectives: a) IS Cost / benefits model and b) DeLone/ McLean model.

4.1 Benefits and Costs of IIBS

Benefits

As IIBS is mainly a transaction processing system, its benefits can be better evaluated using Process Benefits Model (Heeks, 2011b). Based on user experiences and discussion with IIBS technical teams (2012), several benefits are being generated from IIBS, along both efficiency and effectiveness categorises. The below table summaries these benefits:

Sl.Process BenefitExamples Cited by Stakeholders (Discussion, 2012) 1CheaperIntroduction of IIBS has reduced no. of manpower required to do the task than it was required previously by one-third employees. 2MoreIn comparison to previous ad-hoc system, IIBS processes more CDRS while keeping the resources requirement about the same (except storage). 3QuickerIIBS processed about 70 Million CDRs in 6 hours whereas prior system could process only about 50 Million CDRs at the same time.

Invoice generation and processing of other party CDRs for the purpose of interconnect dispute resolution has become faster. 4BetterPreviously CDRs were processed through manual systems. That system lacked consistency in interconnect billing reporting due to its business logic. 5NewIIBS has introduced Graphical user Interface for the clients which help them to generate customized reports on interconnectivity round the clock. Previously, the reporting was made ad-hoc basis as per requirement from Project Team

Table 1: Benefits of Information Systems (Heeks, 2011b)
Costs of IIBS

Costs of an information system can be measured in 03 criteria: i) implementation costs: measured in financial terms; ii) operational costs : both financial and unexpected outcomes, and iii) loss of previous operational benefits (Heeks, 2011b).

Costs of IIBS in this view:
Sl.CostExamples Cited by Stakeholders (discussion, 2012)
1.Implementation CostsImplementation of IIBS has cost the organization about 1.2 Million USD as payment to vendor, Intec Systems (IIBS Business Case, 2008). 2.Operational Costs (inc. Problems)IIBS requires about slightly higher (1~3%) storage for processing of CDRs in comparison to previous system.

3.Previous operational benefits lostIn case of prior billing solutions, modification could be done by internal experts, now change request needs to be made with the vendor which is expensive after free service period.

Table 2: Costs of Information Systems (Heeks, 2011b)
4.2 DeLone & McLean Multi-Perspective Evaluation
DeLone & McLean (1992) have described one of the most popular models of evaluating success of information systems (Heeks, 2011b).
Figure 5: Multiple perspectives on IS success/failure– DeLone & McLean (1992)

DeLone & McLean model can be measured suggested by Boddy et al (2005).
4.2.1 System Quality
These are the required features and characteristics of the information system (Heeks, 2011b). In the case of IIBS, as per IT experts and users from other business functions (Discussion, 2012), it is reliable, includes enhanced features both in terms of system operation and output generation and the response time is also considerably faster

. 4.2.2 Information Quality

“Information quality concerns the characteristics of the information produced by the system” (Heeks, 2011b). In the case of IIBS, outputs generated are (invoices and various reports) are clear to interpret, quite high on completeness to serve intended purposes, and useful and accurate, except a few rare cases. Grameenphone RAFM (Revenue Assurance & Fraud Management) team validates output of IIBS to be highly satisfactory. 4.2.3 Use and user satisfaction

“Use and user satisfaction are concerned with the interaction between the information produced by the system and the recipients” (Heeks, 2011b)

IIBS, being an integral part of Grameenphone’s interconnection system, it is used in daily basis for the whole period required to process interconnect CDRs for the concerned day and to serve report requests from cross-functional teams. Information necessary to make a revenue projection or serve regulatory report requests on monthly or ad-hoc basis are served timely basis from the system.

Users are overall satisfied with IIBS but they would prefer if the system had flexibility of producing further customized reports. Except very few cases, the information required vs. delivered from IIBS had no significant deviation. The Graphical user interface, easy maintenance, easily scalable, and web-based access are few contributing factors to user satisfaction. Software satisfaction is quite high amongst regular users while occasional users found the interface a difficult to use.

4.2.4Individual impact
It “relates to the extent to which the information produced by the system influences or affects decisions” (Heeks, 2011b).

Reports generated from IIBS system are quite helpful to identify any problem in the area of interconnectivity and normally decisions made are correct. These decisions are quite effective also. Usually key points are placed to top management weekly basis. Productivity improvement in interconnected areas is remarkable. It allows observing trend of interconnection traffic generated and received ant to decide on optimal interconnection capacity, etc.

By these measures for other decision issues e.g. market attractiveness of other operators customer charge are not in that brighter side as there are many relevant factors therein.

4.2.5 Organisational impact

It “measures the effect of the information produced by the system on organisational performance” (Heeks, 2011b). Interconnection is a regulatory compliance issue and it also generates revenue of about 100 Mn. USD for Grameenphone (Grameenphone, 2011). Considering this importance of interconnectivity for Grameenphone, it may be concluded that the organizational impact of IIBS is significant. The investments made vs. benefits enjoyed from IBS (e.g. lower processing time, timely invoicing to ensure timely revenue settlement) are in quite positive side.

In overall evaluation, IIBS is a successful information system meeting the requirements of stakeholders and also exceeding the costs by benefits in great margin.

5.0 Factors for Success of IIBS

A large number of information systems fail to achieve the desired objectives, especially in the developing countries. In this context, success of Intec Interconnect Billing System (IIBS) in Grameenphone Ltd. is quite remarkable. We can analyse the causes behind the success using 1) IS Implementation Outcome Model (Laudon and Laudon, 2006) and 2) Design-Reality Gap analysis using ITPOSMO (Heeks, 2011c).

5.1 Information System Implementation Outcome Model

In the ninth edition of their book, summary model of information systems success and failure factors were presented by Laudon and Laudon (2006).

Figure 6: IS Implementation Outcome Model (Laudon and Laudon, 2006)

Applying the model on IIBS, we can come up with following: •User involvement and influence: In the requirement finalization stage during procurement of interconnection billing system in Grameenphone, actual users were member of the cross functional team and their views were taken with great importance. Later, these requirements were used as reference to select the vendor and customization negotiated with them. •Management support: Required management support was available during implementation of IIBS in Grameenphone.

The project team was highly empowered having Chief Information Officer as Project Sponsor and other senior managers in the Project Steering Committee. •Level of complexity/risk: Though IIBS is a high-tech information system, it is highly structured, and the project team had required technical capacities on-board. •Management of the implementation process: IIBS was endowed with required financial and human resources and proper training sessions was arranged also.

5.2 Design-Reality Gap Analysis of IIBS

Though IIBS is considered to be a successful information system, the system can be improved in some areas, observations by internal stakeholders (Discussions, 2012). These areas include re-shape the GUI to be more user friendly in perspectives of non-IT users. Reducing the storage requirement a bit can directly benefit in terms of saving expensive storage capacity. These can be attributed to the gap between information system design and reality i.e. actual implementation of the system (Heeks, 2011c). The Dimensions of design—reality gaps for IIBS can be analysed using ITPOSMO model (Heeks, 2011c:

Figure 7: Design—reality gap model to analyse IS Success/Failure (Heeks, 2011)

5.2.1 Information Dimension: Gap Rating 2.0

The system design assumed that the inputs to IIBS (processed CDRs from Mediation server) will always be in right format. But, very occasionally, there were CDRs from mediation in wrong format or missing one or more key fields. These unprocessed CDRs were stored in the error bucket and required special processing by System Engineers later on.

5.2.2 Technology Dimension: Gap Rating 3.0

The technological design contributed to gain buy-in of overall user satisfaction for IIBS. The processing of CDR files was quicker than previous system. It also contributed in reducing man-hour required to configure and operate the system. But, in the areas of storage requirement and design of
graphical user interface (GUI), there are gaps between expectation and reality.

5.2.3 Process Dimension: Gap Rating 3.0

The business processes were supportive to desired functioning of IIBS. The system produced invoices and customized reports as desired. Though, there are some requirements to be able to further customize the reporting modules. Sometimes, there are hiccups in generations of output also. 5.2.4 The objectives and values dimension:

Gap Rating 4.0

Decision to procure IIBS was made by a cross-functional team having relevant experiences and expertise. It was decided to further enrich the system by adding additional features to it so that it can handle settlement for mobile contents/ value added services with the respective content or value added service providers. But, even after 03 years of successful operation of IIBS, these additional features have not been included yet (Karim, 2012). It is assumed that potential personal interest may contribute to this non-inclusion of mobile content/ VAS related features to IIBS. Notably, currently these settlements are handled by an IT manager having a team of 05 employees whereas if the features included to IIBS, the whole processing would require no or utmost 01 employee from this team.

5.2.5 Staffing and skills: Gap Rating 2.0

The organization had competent staff experienced with configuration, operation, & maintenance of interconnect billing systems. Moreover, to get them acknowledged with the new system, required training was provided by the vendor.

5.2.6 Management systems and structures Gap Rating 2.0

Introduction of IIBS helped in reducing manpower required to run similar systems previously and following that management hierarchy in IT department was simplified.

5.2.7 Other resources: Gap Rating 2.0

In other dimensions, IIBS helped in saving processing time comparison to previous system. With increased efficiency, it contributed in monetary terms as well. 5.2.8 Overall: Total gap score is 18 for IIBS. There is an insignificant design-reality gap for the system with none being a possible cause of failure.

6.0 Conclusion

Grameenphone Ltd. implemented Intec Interconnect Billing System (IIBS) for about 4 years (since August, 2008 to till now). The major objectives of the system were to ensure accurate and quicker settlement for interconnection traffic with interconnected operators in a complicated network architecture and resolution of related disputes in timely fashion. It also aimed to generate required customized reports for users from different business functions of the organization and for managers of different organisational levels.

In consideration of stakeholder views towards IIBS and its analyses through various theoretical models, the system is an example of successful information systems. The major contributing factors behind the success are insignificant gap between design and reality. And creation of this favourable scenario is attributed to good practices of information system implementation e.g. empowered involvement of users, management commitment, and availability of key resources, etc.

7.0 References

4GBILLING INC., Interconnect Billing – Overview [Online]. Available: http://4gbilling.com/interconnect.html [Accessed 21 April, 2012] Bocij, Paul, Andrew Greasley and Simon Hickie (2008) Business Information Systems: Technology, Development and Management, 4th edn, Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River Boddy, D., Boonstra, A. & Kennedy, G. (2005) Managing Information Systems: An Organisational Perspective, 2nd edn, Pearson Education Limited, London BTRC, Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (2008) ILDTS Policy-2007 [Online].Available:http://www.btrc.gov.bd/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=153&Itemid=259 [Accessed 10 April, 2012] BTRC, Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (2008) Mobile Phone Subscribers in Bangladesh [Online]. Available: