Microprocessors and Toys: An Introduction to Computing Systems
Engineering 100 (section 250), Winter 2016

1. Instructors

Peter Chen 4640 Beyster
Erik Hildinger 323 GFL
Rhonda McCaffery 324 GFL
Scott Su 2322 EECS
Joshua Adkins 2322 EECS
James Connolly 2322 EECS
Austin Rovinski 2322 EECS

2. Weekly schedule

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday

10:30-11 office hours (Su)
2322 EECS





lab 251
2322 EECS
2331 EECS

lab 255
2322 EECS
2331 EECS

1-1:30 office hours (McCaffery)
324 GFL
office hours (McCaffery)
324 GFL

lab 253
2322 EECS
2331 EECS
lab 257
2322 EECS
2331 EECS
2-2:30 office hours (Hildinger)
323 GFL

2:30-3 lecture
1500 EECS
1500 EECS


office hours
4640 Beyster
office hours
323 GFL


The lab (2322 EECS) is used by ENGR 100 and EECS 270 and is open during many (but not all) hours of the week (see lab hours for 2322 EECS). You are welcome to use the lab any time it is open. ENGR 100 students have priority when the lab is staffed by an ENGR 100 instructor; EECS 270 students have priority when the lab is staffed by an EECS 270 instructor. GSIs are able to provide support only for students in the class they are teaching.

3. Course overview

Engineering 100 (section 250) introduces first-year students to engineering in general and computer engineering in particular. Our goal is for you to experience the life cycle of a substantial engineering project. Over the course of the semester, your team will propose, design, build, and demonstrate a microprocessor-based educational toy.

To carry out this project, you will learn the basics of a broad sweep of computer engineering, including number representation, digital logic, CPU architecture, assembly-language programming, I/O devices, general-purpose computers, and digital audio. You will also learn aspects of technical communication that are integral to any real-world engineering project, such as working on teams, understanding your audience and purpose, organizing your ideas, structuring your presentation, writing memos and reports, and giving presentations. Finally, you will be exposed to how ethical issues can impact an engineering project and how engineering projects can impact society and the environment.

This course will emphasize a hands-on approach to learning. You will apply the concepts covered in class throughout the life cycle of your educational toy project. You will apply computer engineering concepts over seven laboratory sessions (culminating with a working microprocessor) and while building your educational toy. You will apply technical communication concepts as you write or present a memo, project proposal, progress report, and final report. You will apply concepts on teamwork as you work in a team of students to propose, design, build, and demonstrate your educational toy.

4. Prerequisites

Students must have prior programming experience to enroll in this course. Specifically, you should have written programs that used variables, arithmetic operations, if-then-else statements, loops, functions, and arrays. You may have gained this experience through classes in high school or college (e.g., ENGR 101), or you may have learned programming on your own. You should be comfortable using computers.

5. Course materials and information

We will post all assignments, lecture notes, and supplementary readings on the course web page, which is http://web.eecs.umich.edu/~pmchen/engr100/.

The required textbook for this course is A Practical Guide to Technical Reports and Presentations for Scientists, Engineers, and Students, by Pauline Bary-Khan, Elizabeth Hildinger, and Erik Hildinger (Pearson Custom Publishing, ISBN 978-05-5878-181-1).

6. Team work

Students are expected to work diligently on team assignments to the benefit of their entire team. All team members should be familiar with all aspects of an assignment, irrespective of their role. We expect all team members to contribute their fair share, and we expect to give the same assignment grade to all members of a team.

Team members will evaluate periodically the contributions of other team members. Members who contribute less than their share may receive a lower grade on assignments; non-contributing members will receive a zero.

Managing team dynamics and using each team member's time and talents effectively can be as difficult as solving the project. If there are problems with your team, please see us as soon as possible. Be open and candid with your team about problems early on so that your team can address these issues before it's too late.

Your interactions with your teammates should be honest, respectful, and considerate. Disagreements should focus on the technical problem rather than the people who are disagreeing. Do not engage or permit others to engage in personal harassment. Consider the safety of your teammates when selecting group meeting times and locations.

7. Assignments, deadlines, and extensions

Most labs will be turned in by demonstrating your circuit or program to the lab staff during your lab section. You must demonstrate your work by the end of your lab section, then submit your work through a web form.

Assignments that require you to submit a document (e.g., written report, presentation slides, homework answers) will be submitted through a web form. Submissions are due at 6 pm but can be submitted until exactly 11:59 pm. In case of multiple submissions, your last submission will count as the official one.

Sometimes unexpected events (e.g., illness) make it difficult to complete an assignment on time. To deal with these events, each individual will have a total of 3 late days that can be used throughout the semester. These late days should only be used to deal with unexpected problems such as illness. They should not be used simply to start late on an assignment or because you are having difficulty completing the assignment. Once late days are used up, assignments received after the due date will receive a zero. For most assignments, weekend days are counted in the same way as weekdays (e.g., if the assignment is due Friday and you submit it Sunday, it's two days late). For in-lab demonstrations, only weekdays count (e.g., demonstrating a lab on Monday instead of the preceding Friday counts as one day late).

For team assignments, submitting the assignment late uses late days for each of the team members. E.g., turning in the final report two days late counts as two late days for each member. Thus, the number of late days available to your team is effectively the minimum of the late days of the members.

No late days may be used on exams, presentations, or the final project. You will receive a zero for a missed exam/presentation except in cases of documented medical or personal emergency. If you anticipate a conflict with an exam/presentation time, talk with an instructor at least one month before the exam/presentation. The exam/presentation dates are given at the beginning of the semester so you can avoid scheduling other commitments on these days. Outside commitments are not considered a valid reason for missing an exam/presentation.

If a family/personal emergency causes you to miss a significant number of days in the semester, please see an instructor to decide the best course of action. To request an extension, you must discuss your situation with an instructor before the deadline and provide written documentation.

Please contact an instructor at the beginning of the semester if you have a disability that might interfere with your ability to participate in class, turn in assignments on time or in the form requested, or take exams in the time allotted.

8. Honor code

All assignments are to be conducted according to the College of Engineering Honor Code. Violation will result in a zero on the assignment or exam in question and initiation of the formal procedure of the Engineering Honor Council.

The main tenet of the Honor Code is that "It is dishonorable for students to receive credit for work that is not the result of their own efforts." Among other things, the Honor Code forbids plagiarism. To plagiarize is to use another person's ideas, writings, etc. as one's own, without crediting the other person. Thus, you must credit information obtained from other sources, including web sites, e-mail or other written communications, conversations, articles, books, etc..

On team assignments, the co-authors listed on the submission should include only those team members who have contributed their fair share to the assignment. If you allow a teammate's name to appear on an assignment to which he/she has not contributed fairly, you are violating the Honor Code.

You may consult with other students to understand an assignment, but you may not consult with other students to help create the solution or document for an assignment. You may not use work done by prior students of the class. On team assignments, you may consult freely with your teammates.

9. Grading

Your overall course grade will be based on the total number of points earned on all assignments. The table below summarizes the assignments and their point values (TC represents a technical communication assignment). Regrade requests for an assignment must be made within 1 week of when the assignment is returned.
Assignment Individual / team Description Points
(total 1000)
Lab 1 individual Intro to DE2-115/Quartus 5
Lab 2 individual Combinational logic 20
Lab 3 individual Registers and memory 20
Lab 4 team Hardware encryptor/decryptor 20
Lab 5 individual E100 part 1 20
Lab 6 team E100 part 2 20
Lab 7 individual I/O devices 35
Lab 8 team Educational toy 230
TC 1 individual Introductory essay 5
TC 2 individual Memo about educational toys 20
TC 3 individual Project proposal 40
TC 4 team Proposal presentation 35
TC 5 team Progress report 30
TC 6 team Ethics presentation 10
TC 7 team Final presentation 60
TC 8 team Final report 80
Midterm exam individual Midterm exam 150
Final exam individual Final exam 200

10. Semester schedule

Week Date Type Topic Assigned Due
1 Wed Jan 6 Lec Course overview TC 1
Thu Jan 7
Fri Jan 8
Disc Introductions and team formation

Lab Data representation; revision control Lab 1
2 Mon Jan 11 Lec CSE: Combinational logic

Wed Jan 13 Lec TC: Intro to technical communications TC 2
TC book: Intro, Ch. 1-2
TC 1
Thu Jan 14
Fri Jan 15
Disc Team skills, issues, and management

Lab Intro to DE2-115/Quartus Lab 2 Lab 1
3 Mon Jan 18 Martin Luther King, Jr. Day -- no class
Wed Jan 20 Lec CSE: Connecting components; sequential logic

Thu Jan 21
Fri Jan 22
Disc Forewords and summaries

Lab Combinational logic Lab 3 Lab 2
4 Mon Jan 25 Lec TC: Clear thinking: persuasion, proposals
TC 2
Wed Jan 27 Lec CSE: Finite-state machines TC 3
Thu Jan 28
Fri Jan 29
Disc Case study

Lab Registers and memory Lab 4 Lab 3
5 Mon Feb 1 Lec CSE: Implementing algorithms in hardware

Wed Feb 3 Lec CSE: Stored-program computers

Thu Feb 4
Fri Feb 5
Disc Gantt chart and project planning

Lab Hardware encryptor/decryptor Lab 5 Lab 4
6 Mon Feb 8 Lec CSE: E100 instruction set

Wed Feb 10 Lec CSE: E100 implementation

Thu Feb 11
Fri Feb 12
Disc Outlining

Lab E100 part 1 Lab 6 Lab 5
7 Mon Feb 15 Lec CSE: Assembly-language programming TC 4 TC 3
Wed Feb 17 Lec CSE: I/O devices TC book: Ch. 8 Project meetings
Thu Feb 18
Fri Feb 19
Disc Logical fallacies

Lab E100 part 2 Lab 7
Lab 6
8 Mon Feb 22 Lec TC: Presentations; teamwork

Wed Feb 24 Lec Midterm exam (in class)

Thu Feb 25
Fri Feb 26
Disc Visuals

Lab I/O devices Lab 8 Lab 7
9 Mon Mar 7 Lec Midterm debrief TC book: Ch. 3
Wed Mar 9 Rehearsals of proposal presentations -- no class
Thu Mar 10
Fri Mar 11
Lab Proposal presentations Peer evaluations TC 4
10 Mon Mar 14 Lec TC: Progress reports TC 5 Peer evaluations
Wed Mar 16 Lec TC: Organization and plain language TC book: Appendix A
Thu Mar 17
Fri Mar 18
Lab Project work

11 Mon Mar 21 Lec CSE: Implementing digital logic TC 6
Wed Mar 23 Lec CSE: General-purpose computers

Thu Mar 24
Fri Mar 25
Lab Project work

12 Mon Mar 28 Lec TC: Visuals; statistics TC 7
TC 8
TC 5
Wed Mar 30 Lec TC: Final reports TC book: Ch. 6
Thu Mar 31
Fri Apr 1
Lab Project work

13 Mon Apr 4 Lec Sustainability and ethics
TC 6
Wed Apr 6 Lec Writing workshop

Thu Apr 7
Fri Apr 8
Lab Project work

14 Mon Apr 11 Lec CSE: Computer science and engineering preview

Wed Apr 13 Rehearsals of final presentations -- no class
Thu Apr 14
Fri Apr 15
Lab Project work

Sat Apr 16 Lab Final presentations
Section 252: 8-10:30 am
Section 254: 10:30 am - 1 pm
Section 256: 1-3:30 pm
Section 258: 3:30-6 pm

TC 7
Lab 8
15 Mon Apr 18 Lec Project showcase Peer evaluations TC 8
Peer evaluations
Wed Apr 20 Final exam (1:30 pm - 3:30 pm)