When data is processed there are multiple methods of processing data, there are several types that all have individual Advantages and Disadvantages.

Batch, Interactive and Transaction Processing

 

Batch Processing

Batch Processing is when data is processed in ‘batches’ (groups)

Advantages

  • Batches mean that the process does not require human interaction, this allows the system to be automated and means that it can be left running for multiple sessions at a time, that could potentially last a long time, This type of process can also allow for custom processing ‘jobs’. Which means that the data can be suited to fit the needs of the user, for example, a bank wants to process a large quantity of bank statements, with a temporary notice at the top, they would be able to customize the ‘job’ to be processed with the new notice.
  • They can take a long time to process and may require multiple hours to complete, they may also require multiple retrys and query’s, so being able to compute data in batches means that all the necessary data can be consolidated for the job.
  • Batch processing also means that the data can be run at low points when there is little load on the system.

Disadvantages

  • Using ‘big data’ can take a lot of computing power and can take a long time, and could still process GIGO. (garbage in, garbage out) Stopping batches may cause the system to corrupt the data involved and the system it is using may exhaust the resources of the machine, causing the process to fail.
  • Batch processing could include anomalies that may not have been accounted for, for example when someone had filled out their name on a form as ‘Mr Davies’ when the form only required ‘Davies’, the result could be that a letter that has been batch produced ‘Dear, Mr Mr Davies’.
  • The Batch process could mean that users receive incorrect information until their data has been processed.
  • Data must be accurate to prevent GIGO.

Examples : Mail merge, Bank Statements, Mass Emails, Game World ‘chunks’, Video Rendering.

Interactive Processing

Interactive processing is when a system performs processes as it is being used.

Advantages

  • When playing games, only the crucial information that requires being rendered or physics that need applying to objects need to be processed, allowing for a smoother gameplay. This may also be considered a disadvantage as it can break the immersion of the game when textures are rendered poorly or objects do not have their expected physics, such as objects that do not fall to the ground, or signs do not render their text fully and appear blurred.
  • Websites can check that reservations are not double booked as users place their orders, usernames can be checked for availability as they sign up, emails can be parsed for validity.
  • Websites such as dominoes can start to create an order, before the customer has even completed their order.
  • Video Viewers can set the quality of a video, or it can be done automatically, while the video is playing.

Disadvantages

  • Interactive processing cannot take place on very taxing processes that require a lot of computation.
  • Interactive processing may not be possible until the process is completed
  • Interactive processing may mean that data could become corrupted, such as pausing a rendering video or deleting data that is open by other processes in place.
  • Online Shopping could offer discounted prices are out of date as the offer has expired, but was already added to the customers basket.

Examples : Online Shopping, Video Rendering, Video Live Streams, Booking Seats.

Transaction Processing

 Transaction processing is mode one at a time.

Advantages

  • Transaction processing is fast and efficient, and the data can be updated quickly and securely, booking a seat on a flight and in a cinema ensures that your seat is not double booked.
  • Effective for high traffic websites and concerts where there is high demand for a product.
  • Transaction processing means that customers do not withdraw funds they don’t own.
  • Transaction processing often means that the system can prevent two events happening at the same time.

Disadvantages

  • Transaction Processing requires the transaction to be completed before it is accepted, therefore there can sometimes be considerable wait times before a transaction is complete.
  • Transaction processing means that the system must always be available during operating hours, therefore when a system goes down, there can sometimes be great repercussions.

Examples : Banking, Stock Control Systems, Booking Systems.

The use case for each type can vary, however most have set types that work best for the solution, so it is important to know which one is bet for a solution, or you could run into issues.

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