- Paperback: 150 pages
- Publisher: Pine Systems (June 2001)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0971270902
- ISBN-13: 978-0971270909
- Package Dimensions: 10.6 x 8.2 x 0.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 1 customer review
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #18,305,710 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Success By Learning Paperback – June, 2001
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From the Inside Flap
Is the wide and increasingly influential world of digital electronics a puzzle to you? Have you ever wondered how a computer works? What is inside that $5 calculator? How does the digital clock work? Why does your VCR blink at 12:00 after a power outage? What happens when you click or move your mouse, or type on your computer keyboard, or how is an email sent from your PC to your friend's PC? Well, you don¡¯t have to guess anymore. I want to show you that digital electronics and computers may seem complicated, but they can be understood in a simple way. The foremost objective of this book is to simplify computer electronics so that even the least technically-oriented person can understand the inner workings of the digital clock, the computer, and a host of electronic objects that populate our modern world. In fact, after reading the first two chapters, you will know how to design a digital clock, and perhaps even build one.
This book explains some of the most fundamental and important principles of computer hardware and software in terms that anyone can understand without having to labor through a stack of books. It's a good starting point for someone interested in computer electronics and who doesn't know where to begin. Vendors in the electronics business can use this book to understand more about the products in their business. Technical recruiters can learn the engineering jargon to more effectively match job openings with potential candidates.
This is also a book for the high school or college student who is considering studying computers but who is not sure whether it is something s/he would enjoy. It can be used by a hardware engineer who wants to know more about software engineering, or a software engineer who wants to learn more about hardware engineering. You might be a hardware engineer who wants to learn about the FPGA (Field Programmable Gate Array). By using FPGAs in hardware design, chips that used to take up the size of two refrigerators can now fit into a small microwave oven.
I wrote this book to illustrate how interesting and powerful it is to understand the basics of computer electronics. I simplify these basics by relating them to the objects you use in your daily life.
In Chapter 1, I explain how electronic devices display numbers 0 to 9 using the seven-segment display and how they display the alphabet using the dot-matrix display. It illustrates how something as simple as the binary system (ones and zeroes) can be the basis of everything in computer electronics.
Chapter 2 describes how you can design a digital clock. The digital clock consists of basic components, such as counters, oscillator, and decoder which are used in virtually all electronics designs.
The purpose of Chapter 3 is two-fold. It shows you how to design a digital clock using an FPGA. After learning what an FPGA is, you will appreciate how the electronics you see everywhere, such as cellular phones and camcorders, are getting smaller and smaller every day.
Chapters 4 and 5 then explain how data is transmitted over a single wire from a click of the button or a movement of your mouse and how this data is received by your PC's motherboard. More on FPGA.
Chapter 6 is an introduction to the microcontroller. You probably own several microcontrollers in your household and don't even know that. There is a microcontroller inside your mouse. There is also a microcontroller in your microwave oven, some in your VCR, and several under the hood of your car. This chapter illustrates what a microcontroller does when you press the keypad of your microwave oven. This chapter also touches on some software (firmware) programming.
To expand your programming skills even further, as well as to explain how a computer does simple arithmetic, Chapters 7 and 8 discuss how you can design a 1-digit calculator.
Chapter 9 explains the architecture of the microcontroller (i.e. what is inside the microcontroller). If you understand the principles in this chapter, you can apply the knowledge to the guts of your PC.
Finally, I give an introduction to Ethernet Networking in Chapter 10. This chapter discusses the mechanisms involved in sending an email from your PC to your friend's PC. It explains the term networking and the terms data packet, TCP, IP, MAC, NIC, PHY, HUB, 10/100, giga-bit, fiber optics, RJ45 (both regular and cross-over), client/server networking, peer-to-peer networking, server, router, ISDN, ADSL, T1, T3, and cable modem.
From the Back Cover
Suzanne Loube - FAI General Sales Manager / Trainer
This book is designed to assist sales personnel to understand the electronics component industry in layman's term. It is extremely easy to read and contains most up-to-date information. I recommend this book to all the new employees who have no knowledge of the electronics field as a bible to understand the terminology of this vast industry. All of my trainees have been instructed to read this book as a beginning of their career.
Jim Alfred - Bell Microproducts
I can't believe this book is so easy to read. I was able to use the knowledge on my sales call the next day. I am more confident in talking to the engineers because I am not dealing with only the buzz words, but I understand the general concept of the inner workings of electronic products.
John Strayer - Technical Recruiter
I am a technical recruiter in the networking industry. I had no idea what the words Ethernet, RJ45, crossover cable, email data packets meant until I read this book. What is amazing to me is that the microcontroller applications are limited to your imagination.
Niep Lam - Electronics Technician
I always wanted to improve my electronics knowledge and become an engineer someday, but I don't know how difficult or how easy this task would be. After reading Success By Learning, I have a totally different perspective. Designing computer electronics is not as difficult as it seems. In fact, digital clock design using a FPGA is really easy to learn. I was able to build a digital clock using the free Altera Maxplus II software downloaded from the web and soldered some components and wires on a prototype board.Andy Signal - Field Applications Engineer (FAE)
As a FAE, my knowledge needs to be as broad as possible. My expertise is limited in a very specific narrow area. I felt like a "handicapped" when I talk to my customers on the project details they work on. After reading Success By Learning, it gave me a better insight on hardware, firmware programming, Internet, Ethernet, networking. As a result, it helps me sell my products easier and I get more respect from my customers.
Shau Ng - Hardware Engineer
At first glance, Success By Learning is for electronics sales personnel. I have never done any computer programming before. After reading Chapters 6, 7, and 8, I not only know how to program a microcontroller to do certain things, but I also know the difference between firmware and software, and other terminology that I didn't know before.
Jennifer Wales - Software Engineer
Hardware is like black magic to me. However, during project integration, hardware engineer and software engineer always point fingers at each other, neither of them knowing much about what the other is doing. Now when something doesn't work, I can pin point whether it is a hardware or software problem. It increases productivity in the work place, and I gain better cooperation from team members.