I conducted a 14 -day workshop on EDA at BMS College of Engineering,
Bangalore from August 12 to August 30, 2013. The target audience were
students who were going to begin their third semester (second year).
That's when we all get specific about our streams. All students were
from electrical/electronics branches. There was a mix of both 3rd and
5th semester students with a total of 25 participants. It was
conducted in collaboration with BMSCE IEEE and the Medical Electronics
department. It was sponsored by TEQIP (Technical Education Improvement
Programme) II. Highlights of the sessions:
1. Fedora Linux - Two days were spent on getting the familiar with the
terminal, Makefiles and basic shell scripting. All participants were
given a bootable pendrive containing Fedora + the FEL package and some
more software (Scilab, sagemath).
2. Circuit simulation using gEDA. For the next three days, the
students were trained in schematic capture, custom symbol creation and
3. Scilab. This three day session introduced the students to Scilab. I
first taught them how to use this for mathematical analysis and then
for signals analysis, DSP and control systems. They had a lot of fun
running music clips through filters :-)
4. Python. I structured this mostly based on MIT's 6.00x course. This
was also a three day session where the students learned the language
and the pylab library. I wrapped it up by introducing them to Monte
Carlo simulations and showing them how statistics works while
explaining electron diffusion.
5. Arduino. This was the last session. The students were given kits
containing an Arduino UNO R3 and several assorted components
(resistors, capacitors, breadboards, a couple of sensors, LEDs, LCD
displays). The students were taught to use all these to come up with
some nice projects of their own.
All students received a certificate as well as a textbook -
Microelectronic Circuits by Sedra and Smith.
I had a couple of reasons for doing this. I wanted students to get
familiar with the tools early on so that they could spend more time
using them to learn their subjects, Normally, they are introduced to
these only when they need it in labs and time is divided between
learning to use the software and learning the subject that uses it.
SPICE is never even touched. I also wanted to introduce students to
the free and open source alternatives available out there and convince
them that they are as good (I'd say even better) that the standard
proprietary tools they will use. This would increase support for FOSS.
At the end of the workshop, I'm glad to say that most students agree
that these are better options and they really do find the Linux
terminal easier than standard GUI.
About the selection of the sessions: I know there are a ton of tools
out there which I didn't cover. I shared what I know and I'm sure that
the students will be able to learn more themselves. I chose Scilab
over Octave because the students would be interested Xcos because
Simulink is very popular there.
The code, presentations and handouts are being uploaded to
I'm a bit busy at the moment
so things will go online gradually.
I'd like to thank Vignesh Ag, (Student Chairman, BMSCE IEEE), Prof.
Abhishek Appaji (Medical Electronics), Prof. Ajay Kumar D.
(Instrumentation Technology) and Dr. H. N. Suma (HOD, Medical
Electronics) for their support and for the the work they did in
organizing the event. They handled all of the logistics, kit
procurement and several details so that all I needed to do is go each
day and teach. Thanks also to the BMS administration, the Principal
Dr. K M Babu and TEQIP for supporting and sponsoring this event.
Thanks also to Chitlesh and the wonderful FEL team that's worked hard
in building Free electronic lab for us!
I'm posting this here because I was introduced to these tools by
Shakthi and Aanjhan when I was in my second year of engineering
(November 2007) at a talk organized by my senior, Shashank Bharadwaj.
This a long overdue to thank you to both of you as well Shashank who
helped me get better at Linux. Thanks to the two of you, I got
introduced to the GNU/Linux world and haven't turned back ever since.
This workshop is the outcome of the session you conducted. It's taken
a while but the next step of my workshop is that these participants
will train the first years who have started their engineering this
month. I'm hoping that more students will use FEL and become better
engineers in the process.
Pictures of the workshop: http://flic.kr/s/aHsjHRCDP4
BMSCE Website: http://www.bmsce.in/
TEQIP website: http://www.aicte-india.org/teqip.htm
Electron Diffusion: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VkrzoTuPgpI
Novemeber 2007 session details:
Ashwith J. Rego
My Webpage: http://ashwith.wordpress.com/
Find me on LinkedIn at: http://www.linkedin.com/in/ashwith
Follow Me on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/Louisda16th