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IEEE Computer Volume 14 Number 6 -- BOOK REVIEW Disclosure Number: IPCOM000131474D
Original Publication Date: 1981-Jun-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Nov-11
Document File: 3 page(s) / 18K

Publishing Venue

Software Patent Institute

Related People

True Seaborn: AUTHOR [+2]



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This record contains textual material that is copyright ©; 1981 by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Inc. All rights reserved. Contact the IEEE Computer Society (714-821-8380) for copies of the complete work that was the source of this textual material and for all use beyond that as a record from the SPI Database.


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Distributed Information Systems -- Harry Katzan, Jr. (Petrocelli, Princeton, N.J., 1979, 256 pp., $20.00).

The dust cover of this book heralds it as a "ground- breaking volume on a new technology. . . intended for students of business, management, data processing, computer science, and engineering."

Actually, it is a partially successful introduction to distributed processing, aimed primarily at readers with no background in information systems. Although

neither ground-breaking nor error-free, this volume could serve as an introduction to the technical and economic aspects of distributed information systems. Its emphasis is on business management.

Katzan's thesis is that "while the implementation of a distributed system may be correctly regarded as a technical problem, the organizational impact. . . may be substantial." Unfortunately, this valuable point is not argued convincingly, for two reasons: first, the author fails to distinguish between the abstract requirements of distributed systems and those of existing implementations, many of which evolved from older types of data organization; second (and the principal flaw of this book), Katzan devotes many pages to irrelevant or marginal issues while failing to present major topics.

The material is in three main parts of two or more chapters each. The first part introduces the reader to the rationale for distributed processing; the second and third parts discuss the

IEEE Computer Society, Jun 01, 1981 Page 1 IEEE Computer Volume 14 Number 6, Pages 134-137

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IEEE Computer Volume 14 Number 6 -- BOOK REVIEW

technical aspects and management implications. It is stated in chapter one that "one of the primary objectives of an information system is to match computer resources with organizational needs and with organizational structure." This statement...