Unit 3: Software & Data

Unit 3: Software, Apps and Data

On completing this unit ask your teacher to print and present you with the White Belt Certificate

Digital devices are made of hard plastics and electronic parts. These parts are referred to as "hardware". Yet, the hardware by itself makes the device useless. What makes a device usable and effective is the "programming" that is done by humans to make it work. The programming is often called "software" To use a common analogy, think of a human brain. The outside (skull) that holds the inside is the hardware whilst the soft tissue that has the intelligence is the software. 

Over time the words used to refer to software has changed. Originally software consisted of "programs" that were written in a language that a computer could understand. Programs were written by humans. As programs became more detailed and designed to do specialist skills like typing words, (Word) calculating numbers, (Excel) and drawing (Paint) and so on. Software is created to be used for specific purposes (applications).
Overtime programs became known as "Applications". In more recent times "Apps" has become the shortened term. With the increased use of mobile devices (smartphones, tablets) online stores make it easy to download Apps for all kinds of uses.

There are three main types of software (programs - applications)

  1. (OS) Operating System - is the most important software. It controls all the operation and system of the digital device.
  2. Peripheral drivers - refers to software that makes something connected to the device, work. For example, for a printer to work, additional software to drive it, needs to be installed.
  3. Applications - are like digital tools that can do very complex things from typing through to movie making and designing buildings. Apps can also be used to play games for entertainment, and much more. With the popular use of mobile digital devices (smartphones and tablets) the term "Apps" refers to downloadable programs that connect back to a online ("cloud") service to keep the software and information up to date. Facebook and Google are great examples of this.
Popular Operating System Software for computers Popular Office Software Popular Mobile Apps
  1. Microsoft Windows
  2. Apple MacIntosh
  3. Linux
  1. Microsoft Office
  2. WPS Office
  3. Open office
  1. Google
  2. GMail
  3. YouTube

Making data. When you (humans) open and add your own information to software the new information is called "data'. Data can be images, sound, text and movies. Humans "input" their creativity and use software to create new data  (output) that is useful and meaningful. This is often called "data handling".

Watch the video about SOFTWARE Introduction (top video).
Watch the "Windows 10: Introduction video.
Watch the NinjaVideo that shows you how to handle data (text, images and symbols) to show the results of some easy surveys you can do.

Fun survey. Use Spreadsheet software like Microsoft Excel or Google Sheets, as shown in the Ninja Video. If you are using an iPad ask your teacher to suggest an App. You can use scissors, marker pens and paper if you do not have a computer.

Suggested surveys you can do within your class.

  • Popular pets your classmates have at home
  • Popular color of cars (survey 20 cars)
  • Popular take away foods
  • Favourite TV shows 
  • Birthday months
  • Your suggestion (approved by your teacher).

Once you have "handled" your survey data share it with members of your class.

Discuss which popular Applications are best for handling data.

SOFTWARE: Introduction (above)


WINDOWS 10: Introduction (above)

Unit 3 Software Data

Digital words are a part of our everyday life. After studying this topic and watching the videos above, play the Fill in the Blanks game below.  You need to carefully select the best words to complete the sentences.

Select the best words


  • Recognise and explore patterns in data and represent data as pictures, symbols and diagrams
  • Collect, explore and sort data, and use digital systems to present the data creatively 
  • Independently and with others create and organise ideas and information using information systems, and share these with known people in safe online environments
  • EXTENSION IDEAS (Content Description Documents)

    Current Digital Technologies: Curriculum mapping templates. Click here

    Digital Systems 


    Data and Information




    Digital Solutions