Author Topic: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics  (Read 9536 times)

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Offline JenniferG

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Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« on: February 26, 2017, 09:43:36 pm »
With the very much appreciated help I've received from this most excellent forum, I purchased Art of Electronics and Learning the Art of Electronics, and will have them both within a week.

I'm told this book is approachable.  I haven't seen it yet, but I have fears.

I guess fears of the math. I got A's in Trig, Intermediate Algebra, Calc I, Calc II (a B actually), Calc III, Differential Equations and Linear Algebra, but wow, that was 20 years ago.  Also didn't have the fog of diabetes back then either -- it sucks.  I opened up my Calc book the other day (saved it from College -- Swokowski)  and oh my... just shaking my head!   Also was reading about FFT because someone mentioned they have a scope that does that.  Looked up FFT on wikipedia then went to Fourier transforms.. saw the good ole' matrixes I learned about in Linear Algebra, but have totally forgotten!   All those years learning all that math, but never used it, and it's hard to remember!  What a waste?!  You don't do much with Calculus, Linear & Diffy Q doing business applications  & database development with Software Engineering degree.

I suppose I could go to Kahn University vids or something on youtube to refresh.

My question is, how difficult is the math in these AoE books?

Also it's quite large book.  What should I set my goals to be for getting through the pair of books, including doing every lab?  How many semesters does that book typically cover. I can't imagine it's all covered in one semester!

Sorry for being a fraidy cat. LOL.
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Offline MagicSmoker

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #1 on: February 26, 2017, 10:03:49 pm »
I don't recall the math in AoE ever getting more complicated than algebra and trig; certainly no calculus or diff-eqs. I can also recommend Khan Academy for brushing up on the math you've forgotten. Oh, and don't be surprised if you have to go back a bit farther than you think when relearning all this stuff. It is not like riding a bike, as I have sadly learned over the years...
 
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Offline JenniferG

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #2 on: February 26, 2017, 10:16:23 pm »
I don't recall the math in AoE ever getting more complicated than algebra and trig; certainly no calculus or diff-eqs. I can also recommend Khan Academy for brushing up on the math you've forgotten. Oh, and don't be surprised if you have to go back a bit farther than you think when relearning all this stuff. It is not like riding a bike, as I have sadly learned over the years...

That's great, because I have a college Physics book here that I used for Mechanical physics.  It also has sections on Electricity & Magnetism (as well as Light).   And wow, do they get heavy with the Calculus in the entire book, including E&M.
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Offline Cerebus

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #3 on: February 27, 2017, 12:01:54 am »
The really nice thing about AoE is that you can read the whole thing and the mathematics that you will encounter that you have to understand in order to understand what you're reading is nothing that you would have been phased by in a maths class at age 13.

To get the absolute most out of it you'll need to understand little more than basic calculus and elementary complex numbers. By that, I mean little more than understanding what basic differentiation represents, what basic integration represents and a glimmer of what complex numbers are (and there's an appendix to get you up to speed on the basics of complex numbers). As long as you're at a level where you understand what ex represents you'll be fine.
Anybody got a syringe I can use to squeeze the magic smoke back into this?
 
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Offline rstofer

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #4 on: February 27, 2017, 12:23:32 am »
I didn't actually have the AoE, I only had LTAoE.  So I bought it and it came yesterday.

The differential equations for capacitors and inductors are in the first 50 pages.  We are up to complex impedances (vectors in the complex plane) in the first chapter and, BTW, the integral equations for capacitor and inductors are also in the first 50 pages.  In fact, the first chapter alone covers both DC and AC circuits much faster and perhaps deeper than any textbook I have ever had.  It's like they're in a hurry to get on to switches, knobs and dials.  So far, I haven't seen much time spent on mesh and nodal analysis.

I had heard how this was a 'math free' book but I'm not quite buying it.  OTOH, the equations are just thrown out there with not much tying things together.  But it's early times, I'm just in Chapter 1.

A couple of days ago I posted re: wxMaxima.  Seriously, get it installed.  It will do everything you can ever need for electronics and after a brief warm-up, you won't have any trouble at all.

You clearly have the math background, same curriculum as I had, and you'll do fine.  A few cobwebs need to be cleared away and, truthfully, helping my grandson with Calc I has sharpened my pencil quite a bit.

So far, the book has been a bunch of dV/dt and integral(i(t)/dt) and it's not very difficult at all.

For giggles, I attached the wxMaima code and graph for a capacitor charging through a resistor.  Pretty straightforward except that the charging function is traditionally in terms of time 't' seconds and I want the chart in terms of 'Tau', the RC time constant.  The point is, we get to 63% charge in one time constant and are essentially at the applied voltage in 6 time constants.  Somehow, this seems important to me...

I HIGHLY RECOMMEND the Khan Academy.  I spend a LOT of time over there trying to keep up with my grandson.  They have some electrical engineering videos as well.

Hit the "Learn" tab at Digilent.  The "Real Analog" is very good but more time is being spent on mesh and nodal analysis.

For general graphing, desmos.com.  For everything else, symbolab.com.

Otherwise, post questions here and let some of the more talented (than me) folks take a look.  You can find out who really knows the stuff in this thread for Simon's homework problem on mesh and nodal analysis.  Ignore my posts...

https://www.eevblog.com/forum/beginners/mesh-analysis/ 

Orolo nails this stuff!

The question comes down to "How much do I need to know as a hobbyist?".  That's hard to answer because on one end it can be a little as Ohm's Law and on the other end the speed of light is the limiting factor.  Which part of the sandbox is interesting?

With your background, I wouldn't sweat AoE.  It'll work out fine!

« Last Edit: February 27, 2017, 12:37:57 am by rstofer »
 
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Online Brumby

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #5 on: February 27, 2017, 03:29:53 am »
I don't actually have the AoE or LTAoE - but I am seriously thinking about pulling trigger.


My thoughts on your situation are this:

You clearly have the math background ..... and you'll do fine.  A few cobwebs need to be cleared away ...

Quote
With your background, I wouldn't sweat AoE.  It'll work out fine!

Here's another book which might help:

(Just need to read the front cover)
 

Offline mtdoc

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #6 on: February 27, 2017, 03:42:18 am »
Of course TAOE is not math free.  But as Cerebrus points out the math is minimal and with few exceptions is on the level of "back of the envelope" basic algebra.

From the introduction:

Quote
The treatment is largely nonmathematical, with strong encouragement of circuit brainstorming and mental (or at most, back-of-the-envelope) calculation of circuit values and performance.

Have no fear Jennifer.  I, like you have not used calculus for several decades (over 30 years in my case) and have had no issues following what's in TAOE.

Also, Dave himself has made the point that in decades working as a professional EE he has rarely needed to use anything more than basic algebra and occasionaly some complex numbers (which only comes up with AC circuit analysis).
« Last Edit: February 27, 2017, 03:46:53 am by mtdoc »
 

Offline JenniferG

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #7 on: February 27, 2017, 04:13:18 am »
Lol I forget how to differentiate and integrate! All I remember is the simple differentiation and integration:  the differential of x^2 is 2x and the integral of x^2 is (x^3)/3.  Stuff like that lol.

For some odd reason, I do recall how cool Laplace Transforms were in Diffy Q to where you can transform a discontiunous function to continuous to differentiate.  But that's all I remember.. how cool it was.. none of the math involved.  Also remember how cool it was to integrate in 3D along with line integrals in calc 3.  Calc ii if I recall was all about series, infinite series, fibonacci, complex numbers, fractals, etc.. that class I got a B in.. although I thought I was gonna get an A.. was disappointed.. must of been close to an A though.  Very cool thorough hippy match teacher for Calc II.. was always a pleasure hearing his lecture.. he smoked a corn cob pipe during break lol.  Wow that 24 years ago...seems like yesterday.
« Last Edit: February 27, 2017, 04:21:42 am by JenniferG »
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Offline rstofer

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #8 on: February 27, 2017, 04:29:25 am »
Lol I forget how to differentiate and integrate! All I remember is the simple differentiation and integration:  the differential of x^2 is 2x and the integral of x^2 is (x^3)/3.  Stuff like that lol.
I don't imagine that AoE will take much more than that.  Fourier and Laplace are usually advanced topics as are Maxwell's field equations (barely survived that class).
Quote
For some odd reason, I do recall how cool Laplace Transforms were in Diffy Q to where you can transform a discontiunous function to continuous to differentiate.  But that's all I remember.. how cool it was.. none of the math involved.  Also remember how cool it was to integrate in 3D in calc 3 and line integrals.  Calc ii if I recall was all about series, infinite series, fibonacci, complex nubmers etc.. that class I got a B in.. although I thought I was gonna get an A.. was disappointed.. must of been close to an A though.

Laplace is cool!  Khan Academy has a series on the topic.  There's a current thread that hits on the topic:
https://www.eevblog.com/forum/beginners/resonance-of-lc/

The book does introduce the equations and dances around them.  No real depth that I have seen as yet.  I like the equations and I really like being able to play with them.  For example:  That graph of the capacitor charging is in terms of Tau so, pick ANY resistor and ANY capacitor and the graph is the same.  The value of Tau changes but the graph doesn't - a time constant is a time constant.  I think there is something to be gained by playing around with the math.
 
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Offline SingedFingers

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #9 on: February 27, 2017, 09:37:18 am »
Just as a note, I did the older version of this course when I was 16 before doing A level mathematics in the UK. It's pretty simple stuff across the board really. You can get away with no calculus and basic algebra. Brush up on:

1. Basic algebra.

2. Complex numbers.

3. Engineering units.

That's it. Just ignore the calculus and life will be good.

You can use Khan Academy as a resource and training, Wolfram Alpha to check stuff.

It does help to understand how variables and their locations in the equations affect things.

Personally I got a taste for it afterwards and spent a few years working through Mathematics: from the birth of numbers". A goof reference to have around.

You need a decent calculator, not always but often enough. Preferably one with engineering units and a solver. I use an HP 50g (which has a CAS as well but I don't use that much). A Casio FX-991ES PLUS is a good bet as well. Stay away from TI ones; expensive or buggy.

FFT is just a conversion from the time to frequency domain in an instrument. Unless you're playing around with DSPs I'd be more concerned on interpreting the results than how you derive them.

You can get a long way really with not much knowledge.

Solving simultaneous equations with matrices is fun though.
« Last Edit: February 27, 2017, 09:39:28 am by SingedFingers »
 
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Offline JenniferG

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #10 on: February 27, 2017, 01:45:33 pm »
Thanks a bunch! 

Regarding scientific calculator, I used to use an HP 48GX back in college.  Gave it to my nephew some years ago.  Now I use a perfectly functional HP 48GX emulator on Mac OS X -- Emu48. (Was so happy to find this app, to be re-united with this calculator.) Love the reverse polish notation, the stack.. big fan of them :)

I see those used HP 48GX sell for quite a bit even now.

Would be nice to see a successor of 48GX with a very nice display comparable to iPhones retina display.  By the way were there any RPN successors to the HP 48GX?  Have no clue what's available these days.  But the thought of having a very fast HP 48GX with retina quality display, well is darn appealing! :)
« Last Edit: February 27, 2017, 01:49:56 pm by JenniferG »
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Offline SingedFingers

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #11 on: February 27, 2017, 02:03:16 pm »
Glad to see another RPN user :)

HP 50G is the only available HP48 style RPL successor  They do the HP Prime which is colour, touch screen etc but it does a poor job of RPN type input.

The 50g has a 150MHz ARM CPU which makes it orders of magnitude faster than the 48 series.

The 50g has a nice monochrome screen and CAS though, both demonstrated below. The CAS has made me lazy :)



I can't praise that calculator enough. But you have to meet it half way for there to be an understanding. TI/Casio attempt to meet you at your door and it doesn't quite work.
« Last Edit: February 27, 2017, 02:07:00 pm by SingedFingers »
 

Offline JenniferG

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #12 on: February 27, 2017, 02:18:25 pm »
Looking at the feedback given for 50G vs Prime.. it's obvious people want a calculator in the style of the HP 48GX.

Time for HP to make a Color touch screen version of the venerable 48GX, with as impressive an enclosure as the 48GX, which is one of the best looking calculators ever made if you ask me.  Rugged as well.   

HP 48GX style calc, color, touch screen and an all metal stylish enclosure would be dandy adn I bet many engineers would pay $300 for it like they did back in the 90's for the 48GX.

EDIT: That CAS feature is pretty impressive :)
« Last Edit: February 27, 2017, 02:22:55 pm by JenniferG »
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Offline SingedFingers

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #13 on: February 27, 2017, 02:24:48 pm »
TBH I'm happier with the 50g as you don't have to recharge it every 5 minutes and you just chuck 4 AAAs in it if it is. I owned a TI nSpire CAS and this was a big problem. You'd pick it up half the time and find it was dead and you'd then have to wait for a minute for it to boot up...
 
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Offline ady.price

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #14 on: February 27, 2017, 03:15:05 pm »
At the end of the preface to the first edition the authors write: "This book can be used.... with only a minimum mathematical prerequisite; namely some acquaintance with trigonometric and exponential functions, and preferably a bit of differential calculus.". I would also like to point out that Appendix A is called "Math Review" and even if it's not comprehensive enough to get you back on top of things, you at least get an idea about the concepts you need to refresh.

Sent from my Nexus 6 using Tapatalk

 
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Offline ebastler

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #15 on: February 27, 2017, 03:27:25 pm »
I feel that the whole discussion about math prerequisites for the Art of Electronics is missing the point. As stated by others, the required math is really manageable (and you can always just skip to results and accept them, if you prefer and don't want to dig deeper).

The really intimidating aspect of the Art of Electronics (and its beauty, at the same time) is its sheer bulk... ;)  Two ways to approach it, I think: Either go slowly and methodically, and don't expect do be done in a few weeks. Or use it as a reference, or a "tutorial on whatever topic interests me right now"; i.e. don't go through the whole book systematically, but read individual sections when you are interested in them. A perfectly viable way to use the book, in my experience.
 
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Offline SingedFingers

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #16 on: February 27, 2017, 03:36:03 pm »
It is and it isn't. You need some common mathematical ability to get by regardless of what the text states.

Just found my notebooks from it. Looks like I actually bothered to do at least the first few chapters' worth of questions.

First block of algebra for you from 22 years ago:



Looking at the first and last dates it took me 14 months to do up to the start of the microprocessors section where I gave up because I went to university. That's an idea of pace. Some of this took a long time because I had to build, borrow and bodge kit for the labs.

Edit: I just notice my handwriting has got even worse since then and it was abysmal then!
« Last Edit: February 27, 2017, 03:43:53 pm by SingedFingers »
 
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Offline rstofer

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #17 on: February 27, 2017, 03:49:58 pm »
I like wxMaxima better every day!  This package is a great Computer Algebra System.  Yes, it takes a bit of time to write the first great example but saving a few documents makes it easy to build on what you did before.

It's available for Windows, Max OS X, Ubuntu and source is available for those who care to work with it.
http://andrejv.github.io/wxmaxima/download.html

The User Manual is voluminous but terse - in other words, it's not a simple read.  There are a couple of .pdf booklets that do a nice job of getting a user up to speed:

https://wxmaximafor.wordpress.com/

The idea behind the booklets is to use them as a 1 unit lab course but I suggest they just be used as reference material.  Unless you like 1 unit lab courses...

We have a pair of HP48GX calculators for the number crunching required in my grandson's Calc I class.  We both prefer them to the HP Prime and TI npsire.  They're not as feature laden but they get the job done fast.  Unlike the HP50G, the ENTER button on the HP48GX is in the right place!
 
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Offline rstofer

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #18 on: February 27, 2017, 04:04:17 pm »
I feel that the whole discussion about math prerequisites for the Art of Electronics is missing the point. As stated by others, the required math is really manageable (and you can always just skip to results and accept them, if you prefer and don't want to dig deeper).

The really intimidating aspect of the Art of Electronics (and its beauty, at the same time) is its sheer bulk... ;)  Two ways to approach it, I think: Either go slowly and methodically, and don't expect do be done in a few weeks. Or use it as a reference, or a "tutorial on whatever topic interests me right now"; i.e. don't go through the whole book systematically, but read individual sections when you are interested in them. A perfectly viable way to use the book, in my experience.

I think I'm going to take the approach of skimming the book to get an idea of the content and then use if for reference.  I'm unlikely to be interested in each and every topic and I'm certainly not going to try an EE do-over.

The authors do try to inject a bit of humor like the comments re "amperage" on page 3 (3d ed).  It's funnier if you spent your entire career working in MW instead of mW.  They do everything possible to make the subject approachable. 

It's certainly not like any textbook I ever had!
« Last Edit: February 27, 2017, 08:38:38 pm by rstofer »
 
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Offline SingedFingers

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #19 on: February 27, 2017, 04:09:15 pm »
You don't read all the book, just the bits it says to read in the labs in the student manual, which is really about 20% of the text.
 
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Offline claytonedgeuk

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #20 on: February 27, 2017, 09:28:05 pm »
I'm going through learning the art of electronics book as well. 

I didn't really consider whether the calc would be too hard or not - I just started going through it.  It's actually been really useful seeing applications of differentiation (I've not really found much daily use for determining the area under a curve) - but makes it a bit more meaningful seeing the results on an oscilloscope.

I would also second the recommendation on getting a decent calculator....it makes life a lot easier.  I actually got an HP50g for this as well - it just means I spend less time fighting with calculations, and more time getting a feel for "I wonder what happens if I...xxx".  Ebay is a good source, and at a pinch Droid48 on the app store is a pretty good HP48 emulator.  I love my hp50g though.  :)
 
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Offline eugenenine

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #21 on: February 27, 2017, 09:40:32 pm »
I like wxMaxima better every day!  This package is a great Computer Algebra System.  Yes, it takes a bit of time to write the first great example but saving a few documents makes it easy to build on what you did before.

It's available for Windows, Max OS X, Ubuntu and source is available for those who care to work with it.
http://andrejv.github.io/wxmaxima/download.html

The User Manual is voluminous but terse - in other words, it's not a simple read.  There are a couple of .pdf booklets that do a nice job of getting a user up to speed:

https://wxmaximafor.wordpress.com/

The idea behind the booklets is to use them as a 1 unit lab course but I suggest they just be used as reference material.  Unless you like 1 unit lab courses...

We have a pair of HP48GX calculators for the number crunching required in my grandson's Calc I class.  We both prefer them to the HP Prime and TI npsire.  They're not as feature laden but they get the job done fast.  Unlike the HP50G, the ENTER button on the HP48GX is in the right place!

Maxima looks similar to SciLab.

My HP48SX got me though college, I didn't have any advanced match classes before college and struggled to keep up.  I'd use the HP equation editor and eval to check my work to make sure I was doing it right.  Recently found https://sourceforge.net/projects/x48.berlios/files/ so I dumped my rom into it.
 
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Offline eugenenine

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #22 on: February 27, 2017, 09:46:33 pm »
I keep reading about this book.  I don't have my college textbooks so I was tempted to buy this one, but I'm somewhat old school and sometimes like to use a book rather than a ebook.  I can't decide if I should look for some old college textbooks.  Actually found the old 8085 one we used.
 

Offline rstofer

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #23 on: February 27, 2017, 09:47:00 pm »
I'm going through learning the art of electronics book as well. 

I didn't really consider whether the calc would be too hard or not - I just started going through it.  It's actually been really useful seeing applications of differentiation (I've not really found much daily use for determining the area under a curve) - but makes it a bit more meaningful seeing the results on an oscilloscope.


But a wee bit of integral calculus will come in handy for calculating the charge on a capacitor after some amount of time.

That capacitor graph I posted above looks a lot like Figure 2N.6 on page 54 of LTAoE

But, no, I don't usually think about calculus at the dinner table.

Quote

I would also second the recommendation on getting a decent calculator....it makes life a lot easier.  I actually got an HP50g for this as well - it just means I spend less time fighting with calculations, and more time getting a feel for "I wonder what happens if I...xxx".  Ebay is a good source, and at a pinch Droid48 on the app store is a pretty good HP48 emulator.  I love my hp50g though.  :)

ANYTHING is better than doing the calcs on a sliderule.  But it was all I had...  Oh, and tables in the back of the book.

My grandson was just asking how I did ex on a sliderule.  Later this afternoon I will challenge him to a race of his HP48GX against my sliderule.  I get to pick 'x'....  He gets precision, I get speed - and it's a race!  He's doomed!
 
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Offline claytonedgeuk

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #24 on: February 27, 2017, 09:57:34 pm »
I'm going through learning the art of electronics book as well. 

I didn't really consider whether the calc would be too hard or not - I just started going through it.  It's actually been really useful seeing applications of differentiation (I've not really found much daily use for determining the area under a curve) - but makes it a bit more meaningful seeing the results on an oscilloscope.


But a wee bit of integral calculus will come in handy for calculating the charge on a capacitor after some amount of time.

That capacitor graph I posted above looks a lot like Figure 2N.6 on page 54 of LTAoE

But, no, I don't usually think about calculus at the dinner table.

Quote

I would also second the recommendation on getting a decent calculator....it makes life a lot easier.  I actually got an HP50g for this as well - it just means I spend less time fighting with calculations, and more time getting a feel for "I wonder what happens if I...xxx".  Ebay is a good source, and at a pinch Droid48 on the app store is a pretty good HP48 emulator.  I love my hp50g though.  :)

ANYTHING is better than doing the calcs on a sliderule.  But it was all I had...  Oh, and tables in the back of the book.

My grandson was just asking how I did ex on a sliderule.  Later this afternoon I will challenge him to a race of his HP48GX against my sliderule.  I get to pick 'x'....  He gets precision, I get speed - and it's a race!  He's doomed!
Wow...is the slide rule really that quick? Impressive!

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Offline rstofer

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #25 on: February 27, 2017, 10:05:39 pm »
I keep reading about this book.  I don't have my college textbooks so I was tempted to buy this one, but I'm somewhat old school and sometimes like to use a book rather than a ebook.  I can't decide if I should look for some old college textbooks.  Actually found the old 8085 one we used.

There are so many books out there it is hard to recommend anything.  In a lot of ways it depends on where you want to go.  AoE seems to be very approachable but so far I haven't seen the rigor of a college text but it's early and I have a long way to go with the book.  What it does have is a lot of practical circuits and comments about why things don't work.  For a hands-on approach, AoE and LTAoE seem to be a great way to go.  I need to spend more time with both of them.

"Electrical Engineering Principals and Applications" by Hambley is a lot more rigorous
http://www.roneducate.com/uploads/6/2/3/8/6238184/engr_1303_electrical_engineering_textbook_new.pdf

Page 219 is interesting...  as an example.  Actually, it looks a lot uglier than it is!

Back in the dark ages, the math was a problem.  Not only was it ugly, we didn't have tools to make it easier.  I was one of the fortunate ones, I had access to an IBM 1130 with the IBM Electronic Circuit Analysis Program (Hollerith card based predecessor to LTspice) and a drum plotter.  Bode' plots were kind of fun, actually!  Still, there was a lot of drudgery.  With the tools we have today, this stuff should be a cake walk.  Spend less time slipping the stick and more time thinking about the deeper meaning.

Engineers draw pictures as Step 1.  Drawing a graph is similarly important.  It's great when the machine will compute the points and you can sit back and reflect on the importance.


 

Offline rstofer

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #26 on: February 27, 2017, 10:19:26 pm »

Wow...is the slide rule really that quick? Impressive!


Absolutely, just slide the cursor to 'x' on the D scale and read ex on the LL3 scale for 'x' in the range of 1..10  e3 is about 20.0
There are other scales for other ranges.  2 on D scale gives 1.22 on the LL2 scale: e0.2 = 1.22.  I don't even have to move the slide, just the cursor.

True story, during WW II, the Alamogordo scientists would race the electric calculators with the slide rules.  They usually won!

The slide rule got us to the moon and it got us home

http://www.npr.org/sections/ed/2014/10/22/356937347/the-slide-rule-a-computing-device-that-put-a-man-on-the-moon
 
« Last Edit: February 27, 2017, 10:22:44 pm by rstofer »
 

Offline eugenenine

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #27 on: February 27, 2017, 10:32:57 pm »
I keep reading about this book.  I don't have my college textbooks so I was tempted to buy this one, but I'm somewhat old school and sometimes like to use a book rather than a ebook.  I can't decide if I should look for some old college textbooks.  Actually found the old 8085 one we used.

There are so many books out there it is hard to recommend anything.  In a lot of ways it depends on where you want to go.  AoE seems to be very approachable but so far I haven't seen the rigor of a college text but it's early and I have a long way to go with the book.  What it does have is a lot of practical circuits and comments about why things don't work.  For a hands-on approach, AoE and LTAoE seem to be a great way to go.  I need to spend more time with both of them.

"Electrical Engineering Principals and Applications" by Hambley is a lot more rigorous
http://www.roneducate.com/uploads/6/2/3/8/6238184/engr_1303_electrical_engineering_textbook_new.pdf

Page 219 is interesting...  as an example.  Actually, it looks a lot uglier than it is!

Back in the dark ages, the math was a problem.  Not only was it ugly, we didn't have tools to make it easier.  I was one of the fortunate ones, I had access to an IBM 1130 with the IBM Electronic Circuit Analysis Program (Hollerith card based predecessor to LTspice) and a drum plotter.  Bode' plots were kind of fun, actually!  Still, there was a lot of drudgery.  With the tools we have today, this stuff should be a cake walk.  Spend less time slipping the stick and more time thinking about the deeper meaning.

Engineers draw pictures as Step 1.  Drawing a graph is similarly important.  It's great when the machine will compute the points and you can sit back and reflect on the importance.

I don't know exactly where I want to go, I seem to have major project ADHD :)

Maybe part of it is to just make sure I don't forget everything I learned 25 years ago :(
 

Offline JenniferG

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #28 on: February 27, 2017, 10:41:45 pm »
At the end of the preface to the first edition the authors write: "This book can be used.... with only a minimum mathematical prerequisite; namely some acquaintance with trigonometric and exponential functions, and preferably a bit of differential calculus.". I would also like to point out that Appendix A is called "Math Review" and even if it's not comprehensive enough to get you back on top of things, you at least get an idea about the concepts you need to refresh.

Sent from my Nexus 6 using Tapatalk

Thanks for this info. I think I'll use Kahn University videos to supplement Appendix A.
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Offline JenniferG

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #29 on: February 27, 2017, 10:43:50 pm »
The really intimidating aspect of the Art of Electronics (and its beauty, at the same time) is its sheer bulk... ;)  Two ways to approach it, I think: Either go slowly and methodically, and don't expect do be done in a few weeks. Or use it as a reference, or a "tutorial on whatever topic interests me right now"; i.e. don't go through the whole book systematically, but read individual sections when you are interested in them. A perfectly viable way to use the book, in my experience.

I'd love it if I could get through the pair of AoE books in a year, working on it each day.  Don't know if this is obtainable.  Again, I don't work.
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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #30 on: February 27, 2017, 10:47:38 pm »
The really intimidating aspect of the Art of Electronics (and its beauty, at the same time) is its sheer bulk... ;)  Two ways to approach it, I think: Either go slowly and methodically, and don't expect do be done in a few weeks. Or use it as a reference, or a "tutorial on whatever topic interests me right now"; i.e. don't go through the whole book systematically, but read individual sections when you are interested in them. A perfectly viable way to use the book, in my experience.

I'd love it if I could get through the pair of AoE books in a year, working on it each day.  Don't know if this is obtainable.  Again, I don't work.

I would hope it is not possible - because I would hope some part has inspired you to go off and do something of your own :)
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Glider pilot's aphorism: "there is no substitute for span". Retort: "There is a substitute: skill+imagination. But you can buy span".
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Offline eugenenine

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #31 on: February 27, 2017, 10:52:16 pm »
They look about the same size as college textbooks.  I think my first college textbook and lab manual was used for two trimesters (we had three a year) so about 2/3 a year.

If you really want a time goal like a year.  take the table of contents for each and work our a syllabus so you can keep somewhat on schedule.

Clear a place if you can (part of my problem now is no dedicated space) and set aside a consistent time each day to sit down and work through it.
 
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Offline JenniferG

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #32 on: February 27, 2017, 10:55:07 pm »
The really intimidating aspect of the Art of Electronics (and its beauty, at the same time) is its sheer bulk... ;)  Two ways to approach it, I think: Either go slowly and methodically, and don't expect do be done in a few weeks. Or use it as a reference, or a "tutorial on whatever topic interests me right now"; i.e. don't go through the whole book systematically, but read individual sections when you are interested in them. A perfectly viable way to use the book, in my experience.

I'd love it if I could get through the pair of AoE books in a year, working on it each day.  Don't know if this is obtainable.  Again, I don't work.

I would hope it is not possible - because I would hope some part has inspired you to go off and do something of your own :)

Well I was thinking I'd do my own stuff after I finished the book :)  Perhaps I might skip some sections I am not interested in at the time.   And read those sections later when the project I am currently working on calls for it.  On the other hand, I figure if I get through it all first, my mind might be more creative and let me create something unique with a hybrid of technologies.
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Offline JenniferG

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #33 on: February 27, 2017, 10:59:00 pm »
They look about the same size as college textbooks.  I think my first college textbook and lab manual was used for two trimesters (we had three a year) so about 2/3 a year.

If you really want a time goal like a year.  take the table of contents for each and work our a syllabus so you can keep somewhat on schedule.

Clear a place if you can (part of my problem now is no dedicated space) and set aside a consistent time each day to sit down and work through it.

Thanks!  To be honest, right now since I don't have an electronics workbench, I am just gonna throw my scope, meters, power supplies, breadboards and laptop computer on my kitchen table :)  We never eat at the table anyways and I've done lots of crafts on it, at times, for extended periods of time, in the past.
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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #34 on: February 27, 2017, 11:01:12 pm »
The really intimidating aspect of the Art of Electronics (and its beauty, at the same time) is its sheer bulk... ;)  Two ways to approach it, I think: Either go slowly and methodically, and don't expect do be done in a few weeks. Or use it as a reference, or a "tutorial on whatever topic interests me right now"; i.e. don't go through the whole book systematically, but read individual sections when you are interested in them. A perfectly viable way to use the book, in my experience.

I'd love it if I could get through the pair of AoE books in a year, working on it each day.  Don't know if this is obtainable.  Again, I don't work.

I would hope it is not possible - because I would hope some part has inspired you to go off and do something of your own :)

Well I was thinking I'd do my own stuff after I finished the book :)  Perhaps I might skip some sections I am not interested in at the time.   And read those sections later when the project I am currently working on calls for it.  On the other hand, I figure if I get through it all first, my mind might be more creative and let me create something unique with a hybrid of technologies.

My approach is to skim it quickly so that I have a clue what it contains, accepting that I'll be diverted down interesting alleys.

Then start doing something, and refer back to the relevant sections.
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Glider pilot's aphorism: "there is no substitute for span". Retort: "There is a substitute: skill+imagination. But you can buy span".
Having fun doing more, with less
 
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Offline eugenenine

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #35 on: February 27, 2017, 11:04:46 pm »
They look about the same size as college textbooks.  I think my first college textbook and lab manual was used for two trimesters (we had three a year) so about 2/3 a year.

If you really want a time goal like a year.  take the table of contents for each and work our a syllabus so you can keep somewhat on schedule.

Clear a place if you can (part of my problem now is no dedicated space) and set aside a consistent time each day to sit down and work through it.

Thanks!  To be honest, right now since I don't have an electronics workbench, I am just gonna throw my scope, meters, power supplies, breadboards and laptop computer on my kitchen table :)  We never eat at the table anyways and I've done lots of crafts on it, at times, for extended periods of time, in the past.

That makes a big difference.  I carry my tools down from my closet and start plugging it in and one of my kids needs the table for homework so I put it away before I can start anything.  I've been looking at portable bench ideas.  To be able to spend more time working on a project than the time setting up the tools and putting them away helps.
 
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Offline ady.price

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #36 on: February 27, 2017, 11:27:49 pm »
At the end of the preface to the first edition the authors write: "This book can be used.... with only a minimum mathematical prerequisite; namely some acquaintance with trigonometric and exponential functions, and preferably a bit of differential calculus.". I would also like to point out that Appendix A is called "Math Review" and even if it's not comprehensive enough to get you back on top of things, you at least get an idea about the concepts you need to refresh.

Sent from my Nexus 6 using Tapatalk

Thanks for this info. I think I'll use Kahn University videos to supplement Appendix A.
There are a lot of calculus courses on coursera also. I liked the professor from Ohio State course(I think his courses are called Calculus one and Calculus two).

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Offline mtdoc

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #37 on: February 27, 2017, 11:34:44 pm »

There are a lot of calculus courses on coursera also. I liked the professor from Ohio State course(I think his courses are called Calculus one and Calculus two).


Yeah that's a great calculus course - great visual aids.  It's called Mooculus!   I watched some of the lectures on Coursera but it has it's own website with links to all the lectures on youtube:

Mooculus

It also has a free textbook!

But, as great as it is - none of it is needed for The Art of Electronics! :)
« Last Edit: February 27, 2017, 11:36:43 pm by mtdoc »
 
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Online Brumby

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #38 on: February 28, 2017, 03:34:15 am »

Wow...is the slide rule really that quick? Impressive!


Indeed.  The slide rule is actually closer to quantum computing than any calculator.

Set it up for a simple function and (within a given range) it gives you all the answers at the same time - you just have to pick the right one!
 

Offline ady.price

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #39 on: February 28, 2017, 11:58:31 am »

There are a lot of calculus courses on coursera also. I liked the professor from Ohio State course(I think his courses are called Calculus one and Calculus two).


Yeah that's a great calculus course - great visual aids.  It's called Mooculus!   I watched some of the lectures on Coursera but it has it's own website with links to all the lectures on youtube:

Mooculus

It also has a free textbook!

But, as great as it is - none of it is needed for The Art of Electronics! :)
thanks for the link
 

Offline oldway

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #40 on: February 28, 2017, 12:55:52 pm »
Very interesting too, with tons of circuits, Encyclopedia of Electronic Circuits [Vol 1 of 6] - R. Graf (TAB, 1985)
 
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Offline SingedFingers

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #41 on: February 28, 2017, 01:33:17 pm »
Very interesting too, with tons of circuits, Encyclopedia of Electronic Circuits [Vol 1 of 6] - R. Graf (TAB, 1985)

Available from archive.org:

https://archive.org/details/EncyclopediaOfElectronicCircuits
 
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Offline rstofer

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #42 on: February 28, 2017, 06:22:38 pm »
In messing around with LTAoE, I see that most of the theory is developed right there.  AoE is used as a reference only.

It's no secret that I like the Digilent Analog Discovery for working the lab problems.  I decided to work through lab 2L.2 which is a frequency domain view of a low pass filter.  We know from the components (15k resistor, 0.01 ufd capacitor) that the 3dB corner frequency should be around 1061 Hz and the phase shift at the 3dB point should be -45 degrees.

So I tried it with the AD and got a 3dB point of 1139 Hz and -44.8 degrees.  There are component tolerances that account for the difference.

LTAoE discusses how to get the Bode' plot on a scope by using XY mode and a signal generator that outputs both sine and ramp as well as a trigger.  That method of sweeping will probably work (I didn't try it) but it implies a lot of capability on the part of the signal generator.  The better dual channel generators can do this with no problem.  At some lower price point, this simply isn't going to happen.

This idea of sweeping frequency and measuring amplitude and phase is what the Bode' plot is all about.  The Network feature of the Analog Discovery does a pretty nice job of producing the entire plot.

 
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Offline mtdoc

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #43 on: February 28, 2017, 06:35:23 pm »

It's no secret that I like the Digilent Analog Discovery for working the lab problems.

I agree. The AD is excellent!

Quote
LTAoE discusses how to get the Bode' plot on a scope by using XY mode and a signal generator that outputs both sine and ramp as well as a trigger.  That method of sweeping will probably work (I didn't try it) but it implies a lot of capability on the part of the signal generator.  The better dual channel generators can do this with no problem.  At some lower price point, this simply isn't going to happen.

Not too difficult. Dave did a video on this:



 
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Offline rstofer

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #44 on: February 28, 2017, 07:17:05 pm »
That's an interesting way to go about it!
 

Offline JenniferG

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #45 on: February 28, 2017, 07:21:04 pm »
Oh my, that scope is over 5 grand.  I'd never be able to afford one like that!  Wow!
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Offline mtdoc

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #46 on: February 28, 2017, 07:35:22 pm »
Oh my, that scope is over 5 grand.  I'd never be able to afford one like that!  Wow!

Yes, Dave has a bad case of GAS - but has the advantage of getting most of his gear for free!

FWIW - the same thing could be done with an inexpensive used analog scope (like your Tek 2225) or inexpensive ($300-400) DSO.

Of course the $280 Analog Discovery will do Bode plots up to 10MHz without the fuss.

« Last Edit: February 28, 2017, 07:38:12 pm by mtdoc »
 

Offline rstofer

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #47 on: February 28, 2017, 07:57:41 pm »
One reason I come back to these RC circuits is that I remember having to take discrete measurements and plot the graphs by hand for a 1 unit lab course.  It was no big deal, really, but it was easier in the frequency domain than in the time domain.  Time marches on, get the readings quick!

The tools we have today take all of the grunt work out of learning.  Alas, it takes time to learn how to use the tools.
 

Offline iainwhite

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #48 on: February 28, 2017, 08:01:00 pm »
Oh my, that scope is over 5 grand.  I'd never be able to afford one like that!  Wow!

If you want a chance to win a Keysight scope during March, check out www.scopemonth.com
(ok, most of the prize ones are not the 5 grand version...)
 

Offline rstofer

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #49 on: February 28, 2017, 08:09:54 pm »
Oh my, that scope is over 5 grand.  I'd never be able to afford one like that!  Wow!

Then I suppose the $200,000 model is out of the question?  That's 6 times the cost of my first house (a long time ago)!

http://www.keysight.com/en/pcx-x205212/infiniium-z-series-oscilloscopes?nid=-32529.0&cc=US&lc=eng

At least it has 4 channels!

These scope prices vary all over the map.  That's one reason to drive a stake in the ground at a price point and work from there.  There is always something a little bit better for a bunch more money.
 

Offline SingedFingers

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #50 on: February 28, 2017, 08:12:48 pm »
Heres the same thing on my £10 ($15) analogue daily driver (Philips PM3217) being driven by my HP3312A. Sweep at top, output at bottom. Triggering on sweep. Circuit is an RC low pass:



Learning to make do with cheap crap first should be a rite of passage.

Edit: this is its sorry ass when I got it and it has blown up spectacularly twice but it will not die:



Oh and it's only a few years younger than me :)

I might be a TEA thread member but the old stuff feels better to use than nanovolt 99 digit golden poop meters and 4K screen scopes :)
« Last Edit: February 28, 2017, 08:21:04 pm by SingedFingers »
 
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Offline eugenenine

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #51 on: February 28, 2017, 08:59:50 pm »
Mine is an oldie like that too



https://goo.gl/photos/Zj5EXoqUfXNK2GSKA

ok, both google and photobucket suck

« Last Edit: February 28, 2017, 09:08:59 pm by eugenenine »
 
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Offline JacquesBBB

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #52 on: February 28, 2017, 09:48:44 pm »
Thanks for this info. I think I'll use Kahn University videos to supplement Appendix A.

TAoE does not contain much mathematics. Not much more than what is in appendix A.

When I  got TAoE for the first time, (2nd edition), I went entirely through the full book with a lot of pleasure,
but  I cannot believe that anyone can  master the book after a  unique reading.
The material is so dense, that afterwards,  you will come back to some specific chapters, and
always find something new in your reading.

This is the sign of a good book, that has been written with care.  I  have read part of  the 3rd edition, and many part have been largely improved compared to the 2nd edition.
You will never loose  the time you spend reading  TAoE.

 
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Offline electrolust

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #53 on: February 28, 2017, 09:55:53 pm »
HP 48GX style calc, color, touch screen and an all metal stylish enclosure would be dandy adn I bet many engineers would pay $300 for it like they did back in the 90's for the 48GX.

Did engineers actually buy the 48GX, or did they hang on to it from their university days?

Nowadays wouldn't an engineer just want software (avoiding the limiting calculator interface), or for simpler stuff a calc app like https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/scientific-graphing-calculator-2/id1066347637?mt=8?  Even if the calculator were just $30.

An actual calculator is great but limited.  Perfect for university so that you only have the calculator and can't "cheat".

ps. love my 48GX but can't recall the last time I really used it for anything non-trivial.
 
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Offline Tom45

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #54 on: February 28, 2017, 10:13:26 pm »
Wow...is the slide rule really that quick? Impressive!

For many calculations, the slide rule is indeed much faster. For ex just set the cursor to x and read off the result on the proper scale.

Here's an example for x=6:





The cursor is set to 6. On the bottom scale e6 is a little over 400. Next scale up is e0.6=1.822, and then e0.06=1.068,   e0.006=1.0062.

Turn it over and you can get e-6 through e-0.006 in the same way with no further slide or cursor movements.
 
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Offline rstofer

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #55 on: February 28, 2017, 10:23:02 pm »
Calculators are more complicated than that.  Some have CAS (Computer Algebra System features - like factoring polynomials) and these features have to be disabled for some standardized tests.  So, for the homework, you can 'run what you brung' but when you take the tests, you have to do without.  The HP48GX can probably run as-is for these tests and it's better the devil you know.

I've mentioned (too many times) that I am helping my grandson with Calc I.  We have the bar in the kitchen set up as a "homework station".  A pair of 27" monitors, two Surface pads, a color laserjet, 2 HP48GXs and a bunch of quadrille paper (engineers draw pictures!).  The calculators get the most work when we're dealing with numeric problems.  Trig and some word problems tend to be numeric.  Limits?  Not so much...  There is simply no way we would want to do without the HP48GXs.  And the TI nspire and the HP Prime are sitting on the counter, unused!

The touch and feel of a real calculator far surpasses the emulations.  Tactile response, button sizes, hand motion, all of the ergo things favor the real calculator.

Now, when it's time to see how to solve a problem, we head over to symbolab.com.  If we just want to see a quick graph, it's off to desmos.com.  Maybe a Khan Academy video...  That's the reason there are two tablets and displays.  We're working here, not just fooling around!  Homework runs around 70-80 problems per week and we spend on the order of 15 hours per week working them.  Sometimes more, sometimes less but, still, a lot of time!

 
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Offline rstofer

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #56 on: February 28, 2017, 10:30:48 pm »

The cursor is set to 6. On the bottom scale e6 is a little over 400.

And getting the number of digits correct is an exercise left to the user.  The scale reads 4 and you know it is 400 because just a bit to the left, the scale reads 50, 100 then 2, 3 & 4 obviously multiples of 100.  Sometimes it's not so obvious.
 
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Offline eugenenine

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #57 on: February 28, 2017, 11:02:08 pm »
HP 48GX style calc, color, touch screen and an all metal stylish enclosure would be dandy adn I bet many engineers would pay $300 for it like they did back in the 90's for the 48GX.

Did engineers actually buy the 48GX, or did they hang on to it from their university days?

Nowadays wouldn't an engineer just want software (avoiding the limiting calculator interface), or for simpler stuff a calc app like https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/scientific-graphing-calculator-2/id1066347637?mt=8?  Even if the calculator were just $30.

An actual calculator is great but limited.  Perfect for university so that you only have the calculator and can't "cheat".

ps. love my 48GX but can't recall the last time I really used it for anything non-trivial.

I paid $300 for my SX (before the GX in case you don't know).

I do have droid48 on my phone and tablet and X48 on my laptop (I learned to stay away from anything Apple) but the feel just isn't the same as the real thing.  This is one place where HP stood out above the rest and why we paid the extra, they didn't have cheap rubber buttons like the other brands, they had real keys with the quality of an adding machine or older computer keyboard.
 
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Online tggzzz

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Re: Some tips please about going through Art of Electronics
« Reply #58 on: February 28, 2017, 11:18:11 pm »

The cursor is set to 6. On the bottom scale e6 is a little over 400.

And getting the number of digits correct is an exercise left to the user.

And a good thing too. It means you have to think about the expected results and what you are seeing. That reduces the "but the computer say so" thinking-avoidance syndrome.
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
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