ECE354 - Computer Systems Lab II

A designer knows that he/she has achieved perfection in design not when there is nothing left to add but when there is nothing left to take away
Antoine de Saint-Exupery

Course Info


Some of the Monday & Wednesday 2:30 p.m. - 5:30 p.m. slots plus additional lab times

(check schedule for dates where we have a lecture)


Lectures: Engineering Lab I room 306 (double-check on spire)

Lab: Duda Hall


ECE353 - Computer Systems Lab I


Prof. Csaba Andras Moritz, Office Hours: Tue 11:30PM-12:30PM, Th 11:30PM-12:30PM, or by email appointment; office is in Knowles 2nd floor (next to elevator).

If you contact the TAs by email please always email first to the TA who introduced the Lab in question. See Labs page for additional info on reports and demos.

Recommended Text:

Marilyn Wolf: Computers as Components 3rd edition, Morgan Kauffman Publishers, 2012.

Course web page (course information and lab instructions).


Grad TA:        

Sachin Bhat (

TA Office Hours:

  This schedule below is preliminary and will change - reload to check updated version



12AM to 2PM

2PM to 5PM



1:30PM to 5:30PM


10AM to 1:00PM


10AM to 1:00PM

1:00PM to 40PM

3PM to 5:30PM



11:00 AM to 1:00PM

2:00PM to 5:00PM



10AM to 12PM



Course Description

With the advent of low cost embedded devices, ubiquitous computing will soon be a reality. This course teaches design of embedded systems and other key areas such as sensors and signal processing. Students are presented with the theory behind real time operating systems, web servers, sensors, DSP and get a chance to apply these concepts in the labs. The labs focus on modern embedded systems design with rapid prototyping using FPGA's, soft core processors, ARM hard processors real time operating systems and some sophisticated development tools. Students thus get hands on experience in designing real applications and get exposed to the current methods in embedded systems design. It is expected that students have familiarity with basic digital design and Verilog, and have some knowledge of C/C++ before taking this course. The course is taught using the new Altera DE1 SOC boards. Students work with NIOS 2, a 32 bit microcontroller from Altera using Quartus Prime, QSYS, NIOS2 IDE software, ModelSim and Altera Monitor program.  

 Course Objectives:

1. To understand the principles of Embedded Systems and the tradeoffs which guide the hardware-software partitioning of any design.

2. To develop embedded software, including reusing existing components.

3. To prototype, debug and demonstrate embedded systems combining sensors, interfaces, computation, memory and networking.

4. To understand how embedded systems play an increasing role in society.

5. To work in teams of 2 and larger teams of teams to solve design problems.

6. To evaluate and document laboratory processes and products.


Student Feedback on the course:

It is consistently one of the highest rated courses in the department.


UMass Calendar: