ECE 576 Engineering of Computer Based Systems - Spring 2007

Course Information


Roman Lysecky (
Office Hours: R 10:45-11:45AM (or by appointment)
Office: ECE 320F


TR 9:30-10:45AM, HARV 316

Optional Textbook:

High-Performance Embedded Computing, Wayne Wolf, Morgan Kaufman
Wayne Wolf's Book Website


The objective of this course is to provide students with the methods and techniques for supporting engineering design of complex, computer based systems. A design framework covering all levels of design from system-level modeling and simulation to design space exploration and design synthesis to dynamic optimizations will be discussed and applied in term projects. This course focuses on the engineering of systems that are comprised of heterogeneous, distributed, software, hardware, communication, and other components. The Spring 2007 course will focus on rapidly emerging embedded, heterogeneous, real-time systems with special emphasis on transaction level modeling and SystemC.

Course Topics:


Most projects will focus on applying the methodologies, techniques, and concepts discussed in class to a specific computer-based system design problem with the current emphasis on system modeling of complex systems using SystemC and transaction level modeling approaches. Students will work in small groups and select a project in conjunction with the instructor. Project designs can range from conceptual implementation to physical implementation depending on the scope and complexity of the project. Alternatively, some projects may focus on improving or extending a specific methodology discussed in class and conducting a case study of the related benefits compared to the existing techniques. Past projects ranged from smart cruise controllers, networked embedded systems, intelligent appliance controllers, avionics applications, etc.

Complete Project Description


Grading for the class will be performed on an individual basis. You will not be competing with the other students for your grade. If all students do well in the class, it is possible everyone will get an A. Your grade is only dependent on the effort you put into the class. Letter grades will be assigned using a 10% scale: 90% and above is correspond to an A, 80% and above to a B, 70% and above to a C, 60% and above to a D, and less than 60% to an E.

The grading will be based on a weighted sum as follows:

40%  Midterms
40%  Project
10%  Homework Assignments
10%  Quizzes


Punctuality: Please arrive on-time to class.

Academic Dishonestly: Any academic dishonesty will no be tolerated. Unless otherwise specifically stated by your instructor or teaching assistant, all course work should be done on your own. Please consult the UA Code of Academic Integrity.

Reading: Be prepared. Read over the material being covered in lecture before coming to class. For the most part, the lectures will follow the organization of the book. Any planned deviations from this order will be announced beforehand.

Regrades: All requests for regrades must be submitted in writing within one week of the distribution of graded material. Problems requested to be regraded will be regraded in their entirety, which could possibly result in a lower score for the requested problem. Other problems within the same assignment might also be regraded, but such regrades will not negatively impact your score, i.e., regrades for problems not specifically requested will NOT result in a lower score.

Cell Phones: Please turn your cell phone off before you come to class.

Late Homework: Late homework assignments will be accepted for a maximum of two days after the due date. For each day your assignment is late, 10% of the total possible points will be deducted from your score.


- April 24, 2007 : Project report due date extended to Friday May 4, 2007.

- Lecture cancelled for Tuesday, January 30 and Thursday, February 1, 2007.


Narayan, S., Vahid, F., Gajski, D.D., System specification with the SpecCharts Language, IEEE Design & Test of Computers, Vol. 9, No. 4, Dec. 1992, pp. 6-13
Harel, D., Statecharts: A Visual formalism for Complex Systems, Sci. Comput. Programming 8 (1987), 231-274. Pages 231-250 Required
Harel, D., STATEMATE: A Working Environment for the Development of Complex Reactive Systems, IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering, Apr 1990 Volume: 16, Issue: 4, Pages: 403-414
Harel, D., The STATEMATE Semantics of StateCharts, ACM Transactions on Software Engineering and Methodology (TOSEM), October 1996, Volume 5, Issue 4, Pages: 293 333
Gajski, D., F. Cai, Transaction Level Modeling: An Overview, CODES+ISSS, 2003. PDF (PPT Slides)
Vahid, F., T. Givargis, Embedded System Design: A Unified Hardware/Software Introduction, Chapter 8 Slides
Edwards, S., Dataflow Languages, (PDF Slides)

Lecture Schedule


Homework Assignments

Homework 1, Due Feb 20 (beginning of class)

Homework 2, Due Apr 05 (beginning of class)

Homework 3, Due Apr 19 (beginning of class)

Presentation/Reading Schedule: