Before the evolution of technology, assignments such as this wouldn’t have a chance at perfection. If not for data validation, correcting misspellings, grammatical errors and punctuation mishaps would be the burden of the writer and his trusty red pen. Nowadays, we have a handy little feature known as data validation to thoroughly inspect data and ensure that its details are accurate (Wikipedia, 2006). Particulars such as range, presence and spell checks, batch totals and check digits are all essential areas in data entry that can be easily overlooked by the average, non-genius person (VonDieter, 2005).
Incorporating data validation into data processing applications has made accuracy a near impossible area to spoil. Although standard, the data validation feature most of us use so liberally is absolutely invaluable. Where would we be without that squiggly red line that frequently makes an appearance on our “Word’ documents to tell us something is wrong? Data validation is one of those “make life easier” niceties that none of us should be without. Range checks, for example, ensure that number ranges are…well…in check.
If a typist using a 10-key mistakenly entered a numeric birth date as 13/21/1978, the range check feature would alert him/her that there is no 13th month. Presence checks assist us in accurately completing forms and applications. If your phone number is required in an electronic application, for example, upon clicking the “submit” option, a little message will appear on the screen advising that you have not completely filled out the application and direct you to the error (VonDieter, 2005).
Batch total functions as a virtual mathematician. Upon command, the batch total feature of data validation will add up specified fields resulting in a total of the fields. This function is primarily used for spreadsheets (VonDieter, 2005). More familiar to computer users is the spell check function of data validation. Thanks to spell check, we have become accustomed to simply typing through a paper, Data Validation 3 then allowing spell check to make corrections for us (Wikipedia, 2006).
And finally, thanks to the grammar check function of data validation, even those with the lowest of IQ scores will appear to be grammatical geniuses. Thanks to the miracle of data validation, people don’t even have to think of whether or not “i before e except after c” is an applicable rule in their writings. Users beware, however. Becoming dependant on the corrections data validation functions make can prove carelessness on the user’s part.
Although programmed to check for errors, “DV” functions such as spell check does just that: it checks for spelling. It may find that a word is spelled correctly, but can miss that it was used in the wrong context. All in all, data validation has provided convenience to many a business person, student, writer and professor. This very important tool in today’s technology assists all persons involved in all types of business, education and even personal projects.