Local Area Network or LAN is a computer information system used to enter, store, retrieve, and evaluate data in a localized area. Examples of a localized area would be a college campus, a hospital, a large insurance company, a bank, or a production manufacturing facility. I will present a LAN in a production process.
The LAN is driven by a mainframe computer, connected to personal computer workstations throughout the process. Process parameters, characteristics, and test results are entered into spreadsheet software in the workstation computer. The data is stored on the mainframe computer that works like an additional hard drive. The data is then accessible and retrievable to the support team for evaluation and trace ability. .
The advantage of the LAN is timely data entry and easy, real-time, accessibility. In the past data was processed manually in awkward logbooks and stored in areas that were costly to keep up and not readily available.
An example of the production process LAN would be the manufacturing of widgets and the recording of the important data.
1) Chemicals are mixed and tested and the results are entered into the appropriate network files.
2) The chemicals are coated onto a substrate base and all key parameters and specifications are entered into the files.
3) Tests are performed and results are recorded in spreadsheet files.
4) Widgets are packaged and shipping information is entered.
All the data is stored on a SHARE drive in the mainframe. The engineers and support team can bring up all the data at their desktop computer when needed.