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February 23, 2022

Welcome to Digital Design and Computer Architecture, Spring 2022 (first lecture, 24.02.2022, 2pm)

Dear Digital Design and Computer Architecture Students,

I would like to welcome you to our course. We have an exciting semester ahead of us, where we will learn How Computers Work, from the ground up. We will start from the very basic building blocks (i.e., the transistors) and study how powerful computers (like state-of-the-art CPUs, GPUs, memories, and machine learning accelerators) can be built from those basic building blocks, in a methodical way. We will also do some exciting lab assignments using real hardware and implement a very simple microprocessor. Many ideas we will cover are fundamental and they have had significant impact on the computing systems that are designed today (as we will discuss with examples in lectures). I very much hope that this course opens your eyes and minds to new ways of thinking and questioning. Before we get started on Thursday, I would like to mention some important course logistics and point you to some important resources.

First, the course website is ready: Please get familiar with its different sections as soon as you can. The course website will be the main synchronization point of the course. The course Moodle is also ready: You will use Moodle to submit different assignments over the semester.

Second, we will hold the class lectures in hybrid mode. There are several ways in which you can attend the lectures live:

You can choose to attend lectures in person in rooms HG F7 and F5 (overflow room). However, in-person attendance is NOT required. In fact, attendance in lectures is NOT required, as long as you can learn the material.

You can attend the lectures remotely via Zoom: Please do not share this Zoom link.

You can attend the lectures live on Youtube:

You can watch the lectures online on the ETH video portal:

All modes of attendance are fine. Note, however, that it is easier to ask questions on Zoom, in-person, or on Youtube live chat. It is your preference to decide what form of attendance best fits your learning style.

Third, if you decide to attend the lectures in person, recall that wearing a mask is required, as specified by the ETH regulations: Please do NOT attend in person, if you are feeling sick or not well. It is important that everyone, including the most vulnerable among us, is kept safe and none of us act as agents unnecessarily spreading a dangerous virus that has already wreaked too much havoc in the world.

Fourth, all lectures will be recorded and made available online. You can watch the recorded lectures at your convenience, in case you cannot attend or choose not to attend live in any form. Recorded lectures are also a good resource for when you study the material again. All recorded lectures will be here:

All lectures and materials from past incarnations of this course are online as well, and they can give you a good idea of what we will study this semester. Lectures and materials we will use this semester will be updated, but fundamentals will remain the same. You can, for example, find the Spring 2021 lecture videos and the course website/materials in the following links:

Spring 2021 lecture videos: Spring 2021 course website:

You will soon hear from us about the organization of the labs.

Together with my teaching team, I am very much looking forward to an exciting course and semester with you all, covering fascinating topics in Digital Design and Computer Architecture.

I wish you an excellent start to the new semester and all the best in your studies.

Professor Onur Mutlu

announcements.txt · Last modified: 2022/02/23 08:32 by juang