# I need help understanding...

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by kevinbeingkevin, Nov 23, 2012.

1. ### kevinbeingkevin Thread Starter New Member

Nov 23, 2012
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How is it that we know that certain components arranged meticulously in a circuit will result in the desired function?

Know that I'm not an electronics guru or anything of the sort, merely trying to understand this before I delve deeper into the electronics realm.

2. ### Wendy Moderator

Mar 24, 2008
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In the beginning there is the concept, which begets the schematic.

Usually the schematic is prototyped, and if it works that begets using a PCB layout program that is a modest aid in laying out said board. It is very hard work, but there is a certain art to it.

Basically you are looking at the final result, and find the layout, which is the final step of many, the impressive part. I have found the hard way that neatness counts for a lot, if you are paying attention you are less likely to make other mistakes.

3. ### kevinbeingkevin Thread Starter New Member

Nov 23, 2012
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Where do I start in understanding relationships between components and their functions?

4. ### ScottWang Moderator

Aug 23, 2012
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nepdeep likes this.

Oct 29, 2009
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6. ### crutschow Expert

Mar 14, 2008
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Here's a good place to start. Understanding the information in Volumes I through VI will have you well on your way to your goal.

7. ### WBahn Moderator

Mar 31, 2012
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How is it that we know that certain peices of wood arranged meticulously just so will result in a place we can call home?

Or that certain peices of metal arranged just so will result in something that will power our car from one place to another?

In each case it is because we designed it that way.

This comes about by standing on the shoulders of those that came before us. We learn what they discovered about the basic properties of the components we will use as our building blocks. We learn the enough of the language of mathematics to express those properties in that language. We learn from the many mistakes and successes those that came before us suffered and achieved. We turn all of that into a foundation upon which to explore and expand on their work and learn from our own mistakes and achievements and those of our peers. In doing so, we continue to add to the body of knowledge so that those that follow can build a large and more solid foundation as the basis for their own work and contributions.

Engineering is both an art and a science. The art is learning from your own mistakes, and the science is learning from the mistakes of others.

8. ### bountyhunter Well-Known Member

Sep 7, 2009
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In the beginning, designers would envision the function and use their minds to picture the circuitry that could do those functions..... then they would build up said circuitry to make sure it worked as hoped (it never does) and find all the hidden problems that Murphy's Law dictates must always occur. They would make changes as needed to squash said problems and all was well.

Then, after the design was perfected, the engineer would run a Spice model to shut his boss up who had signed off on the expenditure of said software and needed to appease the gods in upper management by showing how useful it was in "reducing design time".

Unfortunately, the process is now very different:

"Designers" who could not actually design a recepticle that could hold coffee without leaking, use Spice programs to tell them their "design" is wonderful and they go to production with said "design" without ever building anything. Then, when their product doesn't work, they start calling all of the companies who manufacture the components they purchase to build their "design" wanting to know why their parts are defective, why they don't work as the Spice model says they should, and then they turn the whole matter over to the legal department and a settlement is reached.

Then the process repeats itself ad infinitum.

I liked the old way better.

9. ### atferrari AAC Fanatic!

Jan 6, 2004
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Is it yours? Please be advised that I could be using it, shamelessly, at any moment...

10. ### WBahn Moderator

Mar 31, 2012
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To the best of my knowledge it is mine, but who knows what I might have heard, read, or seen that planted the seed. I came up with it about 15 years ago the second time I was teaching electronics II. The first time I taught it I used the prior syllabus and their "design projects" involved only simulations and a written report. They did horribly and, worse, didn't know how horribly they had done. SO the next time I told them that they would design it, simulate it, and then they would build it, test it, and demonstrate it. Then I would throw out my little gem of a saying and then then tell them that the point of my lectures was to let them practice the science while the point of my design projects was to let them practice the art. It really worked, too, because the first lectures went in one ear and out the other, then they started smoking components and, after being shown how the prior lecture material had directly dealt with the mistakes they made, they started paying a lot more attention in lecture and made a lot fewer mistakes in the lab - and learned how to learn from their mistakes, too.

11. ### ScottWang Moderator

Aug 23, 2012
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Yes, you are right.
Typing the keywords to search on this forum, it can be find a lots infos.

12. ### takao21203 AAC Fanatic!

Apr 28, 2012
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You don't. You create such relationships on purpose, basically.

For the time being, maybe watching the Street Fighter cartoon animation movie could give a helping.

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13. ### spinnaker AAC Fanatic!

Oct 29, 2009
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No

No searching. Click on Vol I - DC, Vol II - AC and so on.

14. ### ScottWang Moderator

Aug 23, 2012
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That is a long term learning, I am prefer to use the keywords to search, sometimes it's easy to get the infos, because when I using the search function, I will get more infos provided from the members.

15. ### spinnaker AAC Fanatic!

Oct 29, 2009
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Not really.

If you know nothing or little about electronics then I don't see how searching the forum and reading random messages is going to be faster then reading a formal lesson.

16. ### ScottWang Moderator

Aug 23, 2012
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You could ask the people whom not study the subject on EE, when they learning the EE, how do they start, as you said or as i said?

17. ### Wendy Moderator

Mar 24, 2008
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I started by reading, lots of reading, all the boring articles I could. This is how you learn electronics. When I went to college, I still learned a heck of a lot through a formal course, it filled in the gaps I had, and there were many.

So I am one who does not think haphazard searching accomplishes much.

On the other hand, there is lots to be learned from hands on practice (Vol. 6). Not all electronics is theory, some of it is knowing how to put things together. This also allows you to experiment with theory, SPICE simulators are not perfect, and I feel there is a over dependence on them now days. If you are serious about learning electronics hands on is very important.