Problem Solving and System Life Cycle

Topics: Problem solving, Problem shaping, Problem finding Pages: 6 (1568 words) Published: April 27, 2013
There are two phases involved in the design of any program:
Problem Solving Phase
Implementation Phase
1. In the problem-solving phase the following steps are carried out: Define the problem
Outline the solution
Develop the outline into an algorithm
Test the algorithm for correctness
Problem solving is a mental process and is part of the larger problem process that includes problem finding and problem shaping. (Problem finding means problem discovery. It is part of the larger problem process that includes problem shaping and problem solving. Problem finding requires intellectual vision and insight into what is missing. This involves the application of creativity. Equally, Problem shaping means revising a question so that the solution process can begin or continue) Considered the most complex of all intellectual functions, problem solving has been defined as higher-order cognitive process that requires the modulation and control of more routine or fundamental skills. Problem solving occurs when an organism or an artificial intelligence system needs to move from a given state to a desired goal state. There are many approaches to problem solving, depending on the nature of the problem and the people involved in the problem. The more traditional, rational approach is typically used and involves, e.g. clarifying description of the problem, analyzing causes, identifying alternatives, assessing each alternative, choosing one, implementing it, and evaluating whether the problem was solved or not. It is another; more state-of-the-art approach is appreciative inquiry. That approach asserts that "problems" are often the result of our own perspectives on a phenomena, e.g. if we look at it as a "problem," then it will become one and we'll probably get very stuck on the "problem." Appreciative inquiry includes identification of our best times about the situation in the past, wishing and thinking about what worked best then, visioning what we want in the future, and building from our strengths to work toward our vision.

Problem Solving in Everyday in Life
People make decisions everyday – give examples
– Should I watch TV or go out to cinema, what career, what course? What happens when bad decisions are made in business?
- Wrong decisions cost money; time and resources are wasted, important to know how to make a decision. 2. The implementation phase comprises the following steps:
Code the algorithm using a specific programming language
Run the program on the computer
Document and maintain the program
Steps involved in Problem Solving Identify/understand the problem – If you don’t know what the problem is you can’t solve it (understand what is involved in a problem) 2) Identify alternative ways to solve the problem

- Make the list complete – talk to other people to find solutions you not thought of – if alternatives are incomplete – you not in a position to make a proper decision – Is the alternative solution feasible e.g. go from London to Birmingham via Scotland. Select the best way to solve the problem from the list of alternative solutions Identify and evaluate pros and cons of each possible solution before selecting the best one. To do this select criteria for the evaluation – this will serve guidelines for evaluating each solution List instructions that enable you to solve the problem using selected solution Step by step instructions (make sure the person who use these can understand it – know the persons knowledge base (what they know limited) Evaluate the solution

Evaluate or test the solution means to check the result to see if its correct and to see if it satisfies the needs of the person with a problem (e.g. if you need a bed buying a cot may not be satisfactory) What makes a good decision?

Well identified problem
All alternatives considered
Information overloaded – appropriate alternatives
Can the person carry out...
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