ECT 250: Survey of e-commerce technology

Assignment 2


Read Chapter 2 (pages 34 - 77).


Answer the following questions:

  1. [30 points] Which of the following business processes are well-suited to e-commerce?  Which are not?  You must justify your answer in each case with a detailed and specific explanation.  Your explanation must show careful reasoning and include discussion of any relevant issues.  An answer without an explanation will not receive credit.
  1. Sale/purchase of custom-made gold/silver rings
  2. Sale/purchase of canned or dried food products
  3. Obtaining/offering personal counseling services
  4. Learning/teaching resume writing skills
  5. Learning/teaching C++ programming
  1. [20 points] Using the downstream speeds given in Figure 2-22 on page 72, calculate how long it would take to download a 2 MB plain text file using each of the following connection methods:
    1. Dial up modem
    2. Cable modem
    3. ADSL

    Show your work for full credit.  Note that a MB is one million bytes and one byte is 8 bits.  Recall that Kbps stands for 1000 bits per second.  You may give your answer in seconds or in minutes.

  2. [10 points] Name two software packages currently available on the market that use a graphical user interface (GUI).  You may not give the names of any Web browsers (such as Netscape Navigator/Communicator or Internet Explorer) as your answer.
  3. [40 points] Write an essay on one person who did pioneering work on the Internet.  The essay must be a minimum of 200 words in length and should include a brief biography and describe their contribution.  You may not choose any of the people discussed in the lecture notes for the course (which rules out Vannevar Bush, Ted Nelson, Douglas Englebart, Tim Berners-Lee, Robert Calliau, Marc Andressen, Vinton Cerf, and Robert Kahn).  Essays will be graded both on content and on technical issues such as spelling and grammar.  You must give your source(s) for full credit.  I suggest you visit the Internet history page found at to begin this part of the assignment.

Submitting the assignment

To submit the assignment you may:

  1. Bring the assignment to class.
  2. Fax the assignment to me at (312) 362-6116.  Be sure to either use a cover sheet with my name on it or write ECT 250 and my name prominently on the top of the first page.  I will not be responsible for lost faxes if you do not do so.
  3. Drop off the assignment at 243 S. Wabash, room 401.  Make sure that they time-stamp your assignment.

E-mail submissions will not be accepted.