It is the act of managing the data in some fashion. Neverthless of the actions implied in it, processing strive to grant meaning to data. Therefore, the ultimate aim of processing is to transfigure data into information. Hence, we can say that data processing as a chain of actions which converts data into useful information.
Information: It can be defined as “data which have been transformed into a meaningful and useful form for some reason”. Although, basically, data is not productive unless it is subjected to a process by which it is manipulated and systematized, its contents analyzed and assessed. After that data becomes information.
Data Processing Activities: These activity are completed in five steps:
1. Collection:: Data initiate in the form of events transaction. This data is then recorded in few usable form. Data may be firstly noted on paper parent documents and then changed. In another words data collection is called as data capture.
2. Conversion: When the data is collected, it is changed from its parent documents to a form that is more suitable for processing. First we give identification code to all data.
3. Manipulation: When data is collected and transformed, it is ready for the handling function which changes the data into information. Handling includes theses actions: Summarizing, Comparing, Sorting, Calculating.
4. Managing the Output Results: Once data has been find and manipulated following activities may be find out :
a) Storing: To store is to take data for continued or later use. Storage is urgent for any systematized mode of processing and re-using data.
b) Retrieving: To retrieve says to recover or find again the stored data or information. Revival techniques use data storage devices. Thus data, whether in file cabinets or in computers can be recalled. Revival and comparison of past data gives meaning to current information.
5. Communication: It is the process of exchanging information. Unless the information is made available to the users who required it, it is useless. Thus, communication involves the transfer of data and information produced by the data processing system to the prospective users of such information or to another data processing system.