Project #1

Final Report due dates:

Thursday, 2010 Oct 28

Friday, 2010 Oct 29

A draft report must be submitted on week #4:

Thursday, 2010 Oct 07

Friday, 2010 Oct 08

The objective of the first project is to demonstrate a knowledge of simple digital logic systems. It also gives you the opportunity to exercise and demonstrate proper writing and project management skills.

Design and build an instrument/meter/gadget which will display numeric results on a 2-digit 7-segment LED display. The following topics are suggested and you may also select a topic of your own. Consult the lab demonstrators before embarking on any topic.

A project based on an event timer or stopwatch is considered too simple and will not be accepted.

The Importance of a Draft Report

Successful completion of a project requires planning. It is important that you begin at an early stage and map out a strategy. The purpose of the draft report is to force you to start with a plan and to provide you with the opportunity to obtain feedback and to take corrective action before it is too late in the design stage.

Ensure that you do the following.

  1. Identify and define the problem.
  2. Survey all possible solutions to the problem.
  3. Assess the tools and building blocks that you will need.
  4. Start compiling and testing each building block or module one at a time. Some may be trival, others may not be so obvious. The important thing is that they are all identified via block diagrams and/or flow charts.

In parallel with the above steps, get the documentation process started immediately. Start writing drafts of the following.

  1. Abstract - This identifies the problem, defines your mission statement and keeps you focused.
  2. Introduction - This expands on the abstract and elaborates the justification for the project. It sets the theme and scope of what is to follow.
  3. Theory - This enables you to look at the broader picture and may allow you to see things from different angles that may otherwise have been missed.
  4. Design - At an early stage in the project you want to make sure that your solution to the problem is an appropriate one. You want to avoid "going back to the drawing board" too late into the project. Therefore, at the design stage, you want to document all your thoughts and ideas for two or more possible solutions.

Remember that this is just a draft. You do not need to have all the results and conclusions.

The draft report and final report of a hardware design must contain the following:

  1. A block diagram
  2. A timing diagram
  3. A circuit diagram

Similarly, the draft report and final report of a software design must contain the following:

  1. A block diagram
  2. A flow chart

For additional assistance on writing reports, see REPORT WRITING.