The Non Functional Requirements Information Technology Essay

Online auction business is the simplest way of allowing users to bid and purchase items online without the need of the user being there at the time of the sale. Therefore there are different account types for this system, some users might want to just login to the system and view items but not purchase and this type of users are the guest accounts only, other users of those who login to the system to sell items or buy/bid items.

As well as different account types in an auction system, there are different auction bidding types available, some items will start the bid from a small amount of money without any reserve price or sellers lowest target price that is not visible to the bidders, and some items will start the bid with having a reserve price and if the winner of that bid didn’t met the reserve price the seller can turn around and refuse the sale or offer the bidder a second chance offer that is higher than the bidding end price and lower than the reserve price.

Sometimes it’s easier to sell the item without having to go through the bidding process, so another option is to have a buy it now choice as well as the bidding choice. Most of the current online auction systems already have this choice, i.e. Ebay who is the current online auction leader provide this option to some items depending on the way the account is registered.

Therefore regular users to an online auction systems have different tiers of selling account, an active seller with 100 sold items to his/her account get their first star “*” and for the next 100 sales the seller gets another star until it reaches 5 stars then the user becomes a trusted seller. The same goes for the regular buyer, for every bought item you get a feedback either positive/negative, and the more positive and less negative feedbacks you have to the buyer account the better chance of trusting that user.

The reason for having different tiers of sellers/buyers account is to determine the activity level and how genuine the sale can get through. So the higher positive feedbacks a buyer have the better account he/she’s got, and for seller the more stars the better.

Minimum Requirements

Below are the minimum requirements desired that I would like to achieve at the end of this assignment.

Evaluation and analysis of available systems on the market

Design of the system including UML design techniques.

Implementation of a suitable prototype auctioning system with the ability to login and creating reminders for bidder when an item they bidding for approach it’s ending time.

Prototype evaluation with the respect to the users requirements

Functional Requirements

In this section I will be giving a list of the functional requirements that are need for the online auction system. At the end of ever requirement I will be indicating the importance of the requirement.

(E) Essential, (D) Desirable, (L) Luxury.

Flexibility and Ease of Use (E)

Only users with administrative login can access the control admin page and have full access right to the system (E)

Basic account users can only view sales and bid (E)

Basic account users are recognised by the strength of their bought items and sellers feedbacks (E)

Seller account users can only sell items and have to pay a subscription fee (E)

Seller account users are recognised by how many positive feedbacks and stars a seller has (E)

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Advanced account users can only sell, buy or trade items (E)

Advanced account users are recognised by how well is their feedback from both sellers and buyers on the auction system, i.e. advanced account member that has 120 sales to his/her account with all positive feedbacks and stars then this seller/trader is very good (E)

Allow visitors to sign up for account online (E)

Login and Logout to the system options (E)

New members have the option to upgrade to seller or advanced account (E)

Admin user can create accounts (E)

Admin users can delete accounts (E)

Admin users can reset passwords and view full details of the auction system members (E)

Members have a favourite sellers or buyers list on their account (D)

Seller and Advanced members can create their own shop website online (D)

Basic account users can contact a seller privately (D)

Sellers can create their own discussion forum for the item on sale (D)

Enabling a reminder on an item for when its soon to finish (L)

Users can pay online using a secure payment system (L)

Admin users view members activities (L)

Sellers can have flash images or videos to add to their advertisement (L)

Categorise items on the auction system (L)

Guests can view and search for items but not be able to bid unless they sign up for an account (L)

Have a solution centre for any problems with sales (L)

Admin members can change sale status (L)

Basic, Seller and Advanced members can delete or edit their account/profile (L)

The use of case sensitive passwords (L)

Non Functional Requirements

Ease of navigation around the site

The use of simple colours and fonts on the system

All web pages that are generated through out the website should be downloadable in no more than 10 seconds over 40KBps modem connection.

Interface consistency through out the system.

The response to a query shouldn’t take a very long time and not more than 10 seconds to load on screen.

When a user sells or bids on the system they should be getting a conformation of what the member did, i.e. adding a new item on sale at the end of the adding to the system they should get a conformation message to say its been added.

Auction System Users

There are four different types of users to this system and they are

Basic account users

Seller account users

Advanced account users


Online customers are not always information technology literate, so we expect some of our customers to not have an excellent knowledge on how the online auction system works, and for that reason the design of the system and one of our main requirements is the flexibility and ease of use, therefore the system has to be user friendly and easy to work with.

To access the system as a customer who can view the sales and bid or add an item on sale when wanted, the customer will be asked to login to the system to determine the account type or register for a new account to bid or sell.

In the login page it will clearly specify where a user can login or sign up for a new account and whether to sign up for a new basic account to bid or other accounts to start selling but will not be given the option to sign up as administrators. As well as that in the login page, it will include how the user can retrieve lost passwords and give brief information on what each account does. The login process will include personal details that will not be shared with any other organisations and will be kept safe in the system for administrative use.

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If a user can’t login to the system for some reason, there will be a help or contact us links to support the customers when needed.

Once logged in to the system, you will be able to logout if needed or upgrade your account type. Therefore a user who has a basic account type can upgrade to an advanced or seller account type by logging in to the system as basic user then clicking on the upgrade button and selecting the required options.

Basic account users can only view sales and bid but don’t have the ability to sell items on the auction system and can upgrade to a seller or advanced accounts once logged in to the system for a small subscription fee.

Seller account users can view and sell items on the auction system but don’t have the rights to bid and they can upgrade to advance users to start selling and bidding, but to sign up or seller account you will need to pay a subscription fee.

Advanced account users are the users that know how to use the system very well and can bid for items on the system but not an item they are selling, and as advanced account users you are well recognised on the system and has a better and more feedbacks as this type of account can sell or bid. To sign up or seller account you will need to pay a subscription fee.

Both advanced and seller account users can create their own shop web page on the system to contain everything they are selling.

Administrators account users are the admins of the system, who monitor the activity and logs of the system as well as give support to clients with problems they have on the system. Administrator can create, delete and edit accounts as well as resetting customer password. And administrators can upgrade accounts or block accounts.

Basically the administrator login has full access rights to everything with in the system and for that reason not any one can sign up as administrator and the administrator login will be categorised to two types.

Normal Administrator is an admin who has full access rights to the system but can not add another administrator to the system.

Powerful Administrator is an admin who has full access rights to the system and can add another administrator to the system if needed.

Both administrators can give support to clients with any issues to the system and edit member details or refuse a sale.

Existing Auction Systems

In this section I will be looking into other existing auction systems login page and home page.


Fig 1 – Ebay home page

As you can see from above it’s a simple interface, the sign in or register options are clearly visible and the contact us link is what a user needs for any problems and the site map shows where everything is located in the system .

On the next page I will be analysing how the login page of ebay looks like and how any auction system login page should be.

Login Page

To remember your login details the next time you visit this page

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If you cant login and need help

To register for a new account

Fig 2 – Ebay login page

Password retriever

Username retriever

As you can see from fig 2 which is the login page for ebay, you can register or sign in from the same page. If you don’t have an account you click on register to sign up for a new account but if you already had an account you then enter your login details in the login fields.

If you forgot your username or password, the system gives you the support required to retrieve either of them, i.e. if you knew your username but not the password you can click on the I’ve forgotten my password blue link and that will ask you few questions to retrieve your passwords. And if you didn’t know or can’t remember your username then you will have to click on the I’ve forgotten my user ID to retrieve your login username.

If you can’t login and have difficulties login in, then you have a get help link on the system that will help you find out what’s wrong and how to get you logged in back to the system.

This system also has the ability to remember your login details the next time you visit this system again, it uses cookies to remember that and store the required details so you don’t have to enter them again. Some times it can be handy to have that but for security reasons its best not to remember the login and have the user to enter them manually.


Fig 3 – Madbid homepage

This website not a very user friendly system as it has so many images but not a lot of writings and directions, when a user first logs in to the system the first thing will do is click on Bid now but doesn’t know the need of registration until the next screen comes to say you cant bid unless you have an account,

If you already have an account you can click on the login page but if you are new to the system then you will have to click on the register page.

Login Page

To retrieve login password details

Password Field

To register for a new account

Username Field

Information on how the system works

The login page is better than the home page, as its straight forward and simple to user. If a user has a login details then it can be entered to get through the login process to login to the system but if the user is having difficulties login in and sure it’s the same username and password but need help from the support team there isn’t any link to help do that although it gives you the option to retrieve the password if you’ve forgotten it.

There are two different ways of registering to the system, the first one is by clicking the top menu register button and the second one is by clicking on the sign up here.

The top menu register button, is visible through out the whole site where as the sign up here is a link you can get to when you try to login.

The system doesn’t give the option to remember login details if you visit the system again.

There is no contact us option or site map option in the system which is not very helpful.

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