DigSys blog

___________ GENERAL AGENDA______________________  Digsys

Course 16-17 Q2

June 20

Your proposed CSD final grade has been upload as “Final_p” at NetArea. 

June 13

Yet another note after email discussions with you now at night-time : New due date for P12 is Monday 19 from 12.00 to 14.00 at lab 129B.

No problem. We all understand that our main goal here in this business is to pass as many subjects and with the highest grades as possible. Moreover, in this way, as you say, some of you will try to develop the project even with more attention, which as you know is what I’ve been pretending all the course.

I’ll still have some hours left for fixing the final CSD grade for all of you. On top of that, students can still try to meet me before the due date, as usual.

Remark: Now there is only P12 (4%) , eP2 (7%), AP (10%) presentation, and my final 6% (attitude and participation) left for marking, thus calculate yourself your current mark or ask me for it, and be smart trying to do your best for passing CSD.

Note: P11 and P12 are not going to be downgraded when considering the IT3 marks.

Remember that P12 will be corrected by Friday June 16 in lab 129B from 16:45 to 18:00, unless you like to contact me before this due date. And, like in P11, even if it’s a group mark, all the team members have to be in the lab ready for answering questions about the project.

June 9

This is the ePortfolio page where to find the eP2 assessment sheet.

And this is where to find information on how to proceed to produce a 10 min cooperative group video presentation of one of your course projects (AP). Presenting in English counts up to 20%.

This is the second chance IT2 and IT3.

June 8

My group and I have a question about deliver of P11. We like to know if all the members of the group have to come to deliver the project?

Answer: It is better if you are the three students of the cooperative group. Because if necessary, I can ask questions to you to infer which has been your personal involvement in the project development. 

June 7

In case you’ve not been able to see me in office, after the second chance IT1-IT2 test, by June 9, I’ll be in lab 129B for handing in your P11, from 16:45 to 18:00.

The same for Friday June 16, in lab 129B from 16:45 to 18:00 for handing in your P12.

By June 19, upload the oral presentation (video) of the project you have chosen (AP) on your ePortfolio, and send me by email your assessment sheet eP2.


May 31

You’ve got published the IT3 and the preliminary mean mark for the projects P5-P8 (P5-P8p) taking in consideration your IT2 result.

Second chance exams for IT2 and IT3 is:

Thus, let’s continue working to see if in the end we can pass all.

May 30

Thank you very much for your participation in the UPC questionnaires. They are still open until tomorrow if you like to add more comments. Your opinions are very important for us and the school staff. They are necessary for evaluating our studies and try to do it better the next term.

This is today’s IT3 with the initial introduction and also a project solution ready for running in the Proteus virtual laboratory. Here you are also an example of timing diagram for the question 8. In this way you can compare different technologies and procedures to implement the same application. It was solved in IT2 designing hardware using VHDL and synthesising the circuit in a PLD/FPGA. Now in Chapter 3 we solve it programming a microcontroller in C.

Comparing solutions arises a new set of questions that cannot be easily solved in this introductory CSD course, for instance:

– Which circuit is faster?, for instance, allowing you to build a sequencer at 400 MHz CLK?

– Which has less power consumption and can operate using a single button battery of 1.2 V?

– Which is cheaper and occupies less PCB board?

– Which can be easily enhanced with new features like remote control?

May 29

Question: How to prepare for IT3?

Answer: As the others, IT3 is NOT an exam. It’s a simple test to see how well you have solved and completed all the sections in the P9 and P10 tutorials and projects. The only valid and effective preparation for IT3 is:

1.- Run/study/analyse and take your own notes from the tutorial Dual_MUX4 in P9.

2.- Specify/Plan/Develop/Test the P9 BCD_Adder in the described mode of operation.

3.- Run/study/analyse and take your own notes from the tutorial BCD_Counter in P10.

4.- Specify/Plan/Develop/test the P10 Johnson_counter in the described mode of operation. .

5.- Study and solve (if you like it or have more time) any other project available in the CSD web or elsewhere in the usual way: trying to adapt them to the templates in P9 or P10. For instance, to continue with P11 and P12 you must be in this section 5. As you’ve seen, CSD is a ladder where you have to climb only one step at a time. In this fashion, you’ll fully comprehend the subject and  be empowered to solve small but quite complex digital systems any time. This is an example bachelor final thesis in this line from Alberto Gómez and here you’ll find more examples.


May 23

May 17

  • IT3 is scheduled by Tuesday 30.It will contain basically content on P9 and P10. See examples from other semesters.


  • IT2 is scheduled by Tuesday 23. It will contain questions from P5 to P8. See examples in this blog from previous semesters.

I know that working with projects may have left you worried about whether you have learned it all. Project based learning is not linear, and, naturally some people will have a better understanding of some chips than other people in class, who will be expert in other chips. You must have specified and planned them all, but only developed and tested some of them. The test will fair in this respect.


  • More on the questionnaire:

May 15

  • From now on you are invited to fill in the UPC questionnaire. We appreciate very much your opinions and general comments on the subjects you are matriculated.

  • Today, we’ll meet at room 028b to solve your doubts in P7 and P8.

May 5

Let us schedule the remaining due dates:

Projects: P7 and P8 : May 17; P9: May  24; P10: May  31; P11: June 9; P12: June 16.

The oral (video) presentation of project: June 19

ePortfolio sheet eP2: June19

Preview of the final grades: June 21

I like to remind you that in additional to the usual office time, we can have extra classes or tutorials in group any time if you find it necessary for solving questions about the projects. Remember that the better you understand the project and the planning the easier is the development, testing and documentation.

May 2

“digsys.upc.es” is fully functional again.

May 1

NOTE: The “digsys.upc.es” server cracked or hanged today. You see, our systems are not very reliable … Sorry! (I have to wait until tomorrow to see what happened).  So I’ve copied the web to this address in an emergency way to solve this crucial problem: http://1747.83.113.110

So, simply type it in your browse, and you’ll see the web again, I hope so. I have to have redundant servers (in this case a simple Raspberry Pi) to be sure that you can access any time the CSD information. Thanks for warning me of the problem.

April 18

The new due date for assessment sheet (eP1) on the materials of your portfolio is Thursday 20.

March 31

This is the second chance  IT1 and some discussion here.

March 27

I’ve got in my office your P4 corrected. You can pick it up for any comments and to upload it at your ePortfolio. Remember that the final validation of the P1 … P4 project grades depends on you passing your individual test IT1. There is a second chance by March 31 at:

March 21

Generate a group ePortfolio using the Google Sites tool and this instructions and send me the link by email, so you’ll have an archive location to store your projects and reflection produced in this CSD course.

Later on, by April 18, you’ll be required to send me this assessment sheet (eP1) on the materials and reflections archived by your cooperative group.

NOTE: You can scan yourself your projects and tests sheets and convert them to PDF files in any of the EETAC printers at no cost. If instead, you go to the reprografia centre at the CBL library building, you have to pay: a) If you have a USB –> 0.05 €/sheet; b) If the scanned files have to be sent by email or uploaded to a web page, –> 0.05€/sheet + 0.75€ additional.

March 12

  • The IT1 exam is scheduled for Tuesday 21 (45 min max).

February 12

  • The course agenda is quite simple: let’s design a project every week. After the P4, will sit for an individual test IT1 on projects P1 … P4.
  • First CSD class at room 022B. This is the first project P1.  And here is where the discussion will be located.

February 10, 17

  • Seminari sobre la Raspberry pi a l’ICE – UPC.

February 1

  • “Dissenys i aplicacions amb circuits digitals programables”, xerrada de presentació de la matèria de sistemes digitals per als estudiants de batxillerat. INS El Pedró, l’Escala. Pla de promoció dels estudis de la UPC. (1: pptx, pdf), (2: curs més detallat html), 2010 – 2016.

Course 16-17 Q1

January 13

  • Cooperative group video recording of an oral presentation  of a course project (10%): January 19. Check that anyone (for instance, me) can open the video file and watch it without any problem, because if I have a problem to watch it it cannot be assessed.
  • The ePortfolio eP2 self-assessment sheet (7 %) : January 19. (send it to me by email as you did for the eP1).
January 11

  • Remember that the due date for the P12 is January 16. For instance, from 10.00 to 13.00 (email me if you have to attend in another time during the day).  In addition to the documentation, grading also implies the reviewing of your project files, folders and program execution.

January 10

  • This is the IT2-IT3 second chance exam. As you see, the very same idea of a dedicated processor controlled by a FSM can be applied once and again to solve many projects in the industrial or telecommunications domains.  And for the many not very demanding projects, once the specifications and the general planning are discussed, there is the option to develop them using CPLD/FPGA (Chapter II) or microcontrollers (Chapter III).

January 9

  • Grading the remaining projects will be conducted as usual, you have to upload them as the other ones. And you have to show and explain them to me too, in office time or for instance tomorrow during the second chance exam (10.30 -12.00, 130G).

December 31

  • NOTE: Drive <L:\>is in operation again.
  • Can we report the P11 and P12 using a word processor? I mean, doing the same structure and the same things, but all in “word”(with our names in each page or something like this). All these because if we have to show to you all this two projects in the e-portofolio, we can save time for not having to scan all the project pages, and also save ink because we don’t have to print all the code and pictures. What do you think?

Yes, I agree, it’s a good idea to finish the last projects using a word processor instead  of pen and paper. Right. I should have given this option to everyone, if only I had remembered. I’ll annotate it in the agenda in case someone else wants to do it. We’ll meet in office by the due date to review and correct them as usual. This is a Word template with some features that you can use to write your report taken from this former CSD unit which I have yet to update… Yes, some resources to enhance your writing and presentation skills.

December 27

  • Your current grades has been updated at NetÀrea.
  • I’ll be in office (143E) from 10.00 to 12.00 to attend your queries or to give you back your projects by December 29 and 30, and by January 4.

December 23

NOTE: Drive <L:\>is currently down. You better solve the project P11 and the P12 in your own hard-drive and when completed, upload your documents and zipped files as usual at your ePortfolio page.

CSD final due dates:

  • P11: January 10  (4% if IT3 is passed)
  • P12: January 16  (4% if IT3 is passed)
  • Cooperative group video recording of an oral presentation  of a course project (10%): January 19.
  • The ePortfolio eP2 self-assessment sheet (7 %) : January 19.

General guidelines on how to to organise and perform the 10 minutes group oral presentation of a course project (examples of oral presentations from previous CSD are still available in our (1), (2), etc.):

1. Rubric chart to organize and grade oral presentations

2. Another material  that can help you on oral presentations.

3. Oral presentation resources from the EETAC library.  This an example of commercial software that can help you to organise and render the video: Camtasia.

December 21

These are the IT3a, IT3b. The idea of designing a simple remote control that can be enhanced in successive stages. Second chance exams for IT2 and IT3 is January 10.


  • You still have time to answer the questionnaires giving opinions on the subjects you are matriculated. Thank you for your participation.


December 5

Your marks for IT2 and projects P5, P6, P7 and P8 are at the NetArea. Remember that project marks (P5 to P8) are provisional until you get a pass in IT2: You’ll have a second chance exam by January, 10: finalsHence, some of you have to pay special attention to these last weeks to consolidate your performance.

November 30


  • The anonymous UPC questionnaire are online, so please, be kind to answer it expressing your opinions and comments respecting CSD and your lecturer. Thank you very much for your participation.


November 27

A new NOTE: The disk <L:\> is working again, however, let’s keep the new due date for the P8.

November 26

A new NOTE: Hi, yesterday I thought that the <L:\> problem was to be solved in the same day, and posted the note below, but I see that we’re not going to have it solved until the next week. So, let’s proceed as in other similar situations, let’s delay the due date of P8 one week, so it’ll be the next December 5.

By the way, well, let’s have the IT2 next week as stated.  I see that on Monday, better if all of us save a copy of all our files and projects in our hard-disk or better at Dropbox/Onedrive or somewhere similar, so that we won’t have to rely so much in this <L:\> because I see that it goes failing time to time, precisely on weekend where the service is not attended but we’re studying the same. We’ll have to go finding solutions when problems arise. That’s how it works. Remember that you have to zip all your projects once finished and place them safely in your ePortfolio, which is already a good archive system in case you need to recover them for some reason.

And yes!, thank you for your email feedback which is helping me very much to get everything organised and up to date.

November 25

NOTE: This evening, something is wrong with the “L:\” drive, it has stopped working. I’ll talk to the CBL Àrea Tècnica to see what they can do.
But, by now, you should have many of your files archived in your hard disk or even better, in your e-Portfolio, so, you may try to solve the problem using your “C:\CSD\P8” instead of your “L:\CSD\P8”, and copy everything there when it works again. Or imagine any solution you infer to bypass this technical problem.

But remember that this P8 is the last of a series and of Chapter 2, and in some way it has no end, hence, don’t get too much worried about it. I recommend you to invest in it 4-5 hours of study time as usual, trying to do your best accordingly to the plan and grading list proposed. I mean that don’t try to get a 10 if it means that you have to leave other subjects unattended.

November 24

Due date for sending by email the self-assessment eportfolio EP1 is December 1.

November 7

Once published your grades for the projects P1-P4 and the IT1 exam, some you have to change the way you are coursing CSD. Start asking questions and annotating the important concepts we’ll solve in laboratory and class.

November 4

This is the second chance exam IT1.

Generate a group ePortfolio using the Google Sites tool and this instructions and send me the link, so you’ll have an archive location to store your projects and reflection on the course.

October 24

This is the IT1 (v1) and the IT1 (v2), discussion of its internal architecture.
In November 4, we’ll have a 2nd chance exam to pass or improve the IT1:

exam_1And January 10 is the second chance for the IT2 and IT3:


NOTE: Please, take the IT1 2nd chance exam seriously, because if not, your projects P1 .. P4 will be downgraded to a 4. During this exams week come to my office to ask questions or whatever you need to understand the problems. For instance:

  • How to build a logic circuit using Buffer/NOT-OR-AND or Buffer/NOT-AND-OR gates?
  • How to build a circuit using only NOR or only NAND logic gates? How many VHDL files will contain the project? The VHDL description of the circuit, is behavioural or  structural?
  • How to use multiplexers to build logic functions? Is it a project based on a single VHDL file or a multiple file project (hierarchical)?
  • How to implement a large decoder (or multiplexer, encoder, one’s counter, adder, comparator, etc.) using smaller blocks of the same kind and logic? Which is the same as how to expand circuits? How many files will contain the project of such hierarchical circuits?
  • How to use decoders to build logic functions? How many VHDL files will contain the project?
  • How to calculate the worse case scenario representing the longest transmission time and thus the highest frequency of operation?
  • How to interpret the Minilog output table format to deduce the minimised expressions SoP or PoS?
  • How to draw the truth table from WolframAlpha results (rearrange inputs order)?
  • How to operate (add/subtract) signed integers of N-bits using the 2C? Why the operation can result in overflow?
  • If the circuit internal architecture is given, can you calculate the outputs of the circuit driving the inputs with some example vector and obtaining the values in every wire?
  • How to represent a timing diagram of a given circuit to show how it works and be able to translate it later in a VHDL test bench to perform a simulation?
  • How to obtain a SoP or a PoS using Boolean Algebra from the circuit’s equation?
  • How to obtain maxterms or minterms (so, the truth table) if the SoP or the PoS is given?
  • etc.


September 12

CSD course starts in lab L129B (09:30, class 3GM11; 13:00, class 3GM12).



July 2016

Curs de Raspberry Pi





Course 15-16 Q2

June 6

The second chance IT2 – IT3.

May 24

This is the IT3, and in June 6, we’ll have a 2nd chance exam for the IT2 and IT3.


IMPORTANT: The due date to upload the P12, your eP and the eP assessment sheets 1 and 2, and the video oral presentation of your project is Juny 11.

May 9:

Avui s’obre el període per a què els estudiants omplin les enquestes UPC sobre professors i assignatures: https://e-enquestes.upc.edu. And so, please, open the application in any computer or mobile device to fill in the questionnaire regarding this subject CSD.  Thank you very much for your participation.

May 3:

This is the IT2.

April 8:

This is second chance test IT1R.

April 5:

Hi students,

Now is midterm, and I like to congratulate you that this course is going on quite well. I’m satisfied to see that you are engaged and doing mostly what is expected on the weekly projects and getting good marks. So, let’s hope that you continue this way to the end.

Some of you have to do the second chance exam IT1 by Friday 8, and some of you can optionally try to get better scores.

On the other hand, it seems that a few of you have decided to drop, and I have to tell you that yet you’re still in time to engage again in the course due to the way it is organised week by week. I know that you can do it. Come back to class and participate, you know that I can attend you as well in office time if necessary. 

Remember that the objectives of this course include the specific content (combinational circuits, sequential systems and micro-controllers) as well as cross-curricular skills like teamwork, project management, efficient use of equipment and instruments (EDA tools and subject-related software), efficient oral and written communication, English and self-directed learning. This is why we have set this formative assessment scheme in which you have to hand in your projects and explain them weekly in order to get the marks that you are also invited to discuss. 

I wish you good luck in your exams and regards,

March 29

This is test IT1 that we had today (commented solution).

March 28:

Information on how to prepare your group ePortfolio is available here.

March 7:

Citrix technology: A virtual PC in Windows 7 with all the EETAC software. The tutorial for installation.

February 15:

This new EETAC tool will enable conversation on CSD subject. The posts will guide you to day to day information on the course and on how to solve problems and projects. Ask for registration in this blog (use your @estudiant.upc.edu address) to be able comment the posts. Surely your questions & answers will help your team and classmates to perform better. Older posts can be reached using the search tool.

Please: Use this rules to email me. Get used to your professional email address and organise your computer and mobile devices to be able to send emails from your UPC address.

2nd chance exams: