Chapter 1 Internet Cafe Transaction Management System by German Montejo

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CHAPTER 1
INTRODUCTION

In today’s time, technology dominates the lives of almost every people. Technology can be seen anywhere, may it be at home, in school, in the mall, in the grocery store, etc. A computer is one of the most popular devices where technology is greatly applied. Since technology plays an important role in our society, computers are generally wanted and sometimes needed by everyone. People use computers for a variety of reasons, may it be for chatting, playing computer games, researching, video-conferencing, etc. The only thing is, not everyone can afford to buy a computer. Because computers are in demand and not everyone has a computer, business-minded people then thought of establishing businesses, dealing with computer usage. And so internet cafés were made which simplified the process of having to use a computer without actually buying one.

Managing and operating an internet café is not an easy task and sometimes it is a paradox as internet café owners, managers and administrators have to think of ways to solve the problem of not losing the business, especially nowadays since there are lots of competitions. The internet café owners think of schemes like lowering the hourly rate of usage, installing new and popular applications or games, and sometimes even lowering the costs of snacks so as to attract more customers. But there are times when the quality of services rendered are compromised like slower internet connectivity; poor performance of the computer; and lastly, bugs in the system causing computer lockdown and even shutdown. There are also times when the internet café administrators use their internet café transaction management system with difficulty thereby adding additional burden to the tasks they have to do in an internet cafe. Lastly, there are times when the system they are using malfunctions, resulting in many problems like: disconnections, lockdown, shut down, inappropriate time extensions due to the system not locking down the computer when the time is up, and the worst thing is, having to manually do the task of operating the internet café.

Internet Café Management System is a system used for managing transactions made in an Internet Café. These transactions include collecting and saving records of the customers’ usage of a computer unit in an internet cafe. This system makes internet café transactions convenient, efficient and overall hassle-free to the person managing or operating the internet café.

The Internet Café Management System simplifies the everyday tasks of internet café administrator by automating the tasks that he or she has to do. Instead of having to manually log the start time and the end time of a user, the internet café administrator can just sit back and click the necessary buttons so that the system itself would just do the task for him. Also, instead of telling the user that his usage time is almost over, the internet café administrator can also type the message and just press send so that the user will now be alerted as to his upcoming end-time. Another thing is, the internet café administrator can shut down the computer that has been idle for some time and is not being used so as to save energy, without actually going to the spot where the computer is placed and shutting it down manually. The Internet Café Management System will be developed in the Microsoft Visual Basic 6.0 environment where it will focus on codes with Microsoft Winsock control 6.0 for networking; API functions for basic OS functions like shutting down, restarting, locking up the computer; database related codes to add, update, delete and find records; etc.

BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY

Internet cafes in the Philippines started out in the late 1990s as LAN shops- a center in which computers are networked in order to play LAN games. Internet connection then was dial-up and relatively expensive, therefore, only few shops offer internet service. The bulk of their service back...
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