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Learning in ECE 156A,B A Brief Summary Li-C. Wang, ECE, UCSB

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Before we start … This course (ECE156A) is an entry point to begin an understanding on how design is done in the real world Verilog is just a tool to start I hope to teach you more about what’s going on in the real world But if your scope is focused on only exam questions and HWs, you will find half of the lecture materials boring and useless Li-C. Wang, ECE, UCSB

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**All About Handling The “Complexity”**

Design and manufacturing of semiconductor products are very complex processes Design methodologies Manufacturing methodologies All knowledge are to overcome complexity A good engineer has effective ways to overcome complexity in a problem Yet, complex problem usually doesn’t require complex solution Li-C. Wang, ECE, UCSB

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**Two Scientific Thinkings**

Realists – The results of scientific discovery are real laws in nature Find the fundamental laws governing the complexity we see Instrumentalists – The results of scientific discovery are instruments for making good prediction. The actual laws in nature can be very different from the ones discovered Find ways to predict the behavior we observe, without understanding the laws behind Li-C. Wang, ECE, UCSB

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**Two fundamental approaches**

Deduction Moving from general to particular Eg. Learn theories and algorithms, apply to solve complex problems Eg. Develop theories, models, and algorithms, and apply them to overcome the complexity The approach in the past 40 years Induction (Engineering) Moving from particular to general Eg. Learn from the behavior, find a solution to deal with the behavior Eg. Learn from multiple behaviors, generalize a solution to deal with a class of behaviors The problem to face in the next 10 years Li-C. Wang, ECE, UCSB

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Observation In the past 40 years, design and manufacturing processes are dominated by the thinking of deduction Develop the theories, models first Work well when the complexity is low In the next 10 years, the processes will mostly be dominated by induction methodologies Too difficult to find theories and models behind complex phenomenon we encounter Li-C. Wang, ECE, UCSB

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**Three Types of Skill Implementation skills (programming) Self-drive**

Knowing the limits Application domain knowledge Theoretical sense Experience In the engineering world, there are three types of skill Don’t have implementation skills -> marketing Don’t have domain knowledge -> solving a wrong problem Don’t have theoretical sense -> re-inventing the wheel Li-C. Wang, ECE, UCSB

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**How to learn the three skills?**

Implementation skill Basic constructs can be taught Skill to implement cannot be taught Depend on self motivation and learning Theoretical sense Theories and concepts can be taught There are only a few useful ones Application of theories and concepts cannot be taught – It is based on experience Application domain knowledge Facts and phenomenon can be described Empirical judgments are hard to teach Li-C. Wang, ECE, UCSB

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Lectures In addition to Verilog, I also talk about “application domain knowledge” Some that you can learn here are hard to get by self-study (and also most irrelevant to your grade) Trends (facts and phenomenon) Experience You can always learn more by self-studying Use the Internet Practice your Verilog skills Read papers and other books Li-C. Wang, ECE, UCSB

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**10 Things We Should Learn (ECE 156A -> ECE 156B)**

My Informal lecture Li-C. Wang, ECE, UCSB

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**10. Design means “constrained optimization”**

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**9. Design is based on models and models are not reality and they are never 100% correct**

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**8. No perfect design; you just need to be better than your competitor**

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**7. It is all about efficiently handling the complexity**

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**6. More important to put yourself into the right vision and perspective**

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5. When searching for a solution in a complex space, it is more effective to know where you don’t have a solution Li-C. Wang, ECE, UCSB

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**4.Understand your problem; If you understand it well, the solution will come to you**

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**3. When something does not make an intuitive sense to you, it probably does not make sense**

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**2. All practical answers are simple; Only simple answers are practical**

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**1. A good engineer is always honest to the truth**

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**Finally, there is no spoon (click on the link below)**

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**Do not try to solve a difficult problem That is impossible**

Instead … only try to realize the truth … What truth? --- There is no problem Then, you will see … it is not the problem that you solve It is only yourself! Li-C. Wang, ECE, UCSB

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