Getting The Most Out Of Your Analog Discovery: Lab 7

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Recently I announced that National Instruments has released a set of example labs designed to show you how you can get the full use of your Analog Discovery 2. If you have since forgotten and want to review the summaries and mission of the seven labs, you can check out the original post here.

The table of contents from the 7 free labs.

Over the next few weeks I’ll be covering each lab, the tools it uses, and concepts that can help you teach your students. In my previous post I went over Lab 6: UART Serial Communication. In this post I’ll be going over Lab 7: SPI Communication.

Lab 7 is designed for a microcontroller or embedded systems course.

Lab 7: SPI Communication is design to teach students about SPI communication. They will learn about the functionality of the different SPI lines, how to transmit SPI from a master device, and validate the data sent from the master to check for data integrity. By the end of the lab students will be able to send, receive, and decode data from a SPI bus.

This lab utilizes 1 set of software, LabVIEW.

LabVIEW is a development environment design specifically to accelerate the productivity of engineers and scientists. It features a graphical programming syntax that makes it simple to visualize, create, and code engineering systems.

Lab 7 uses the logic analyzing features of the Analog Discovery 2 to receive and decode SPI signals.

For this lab students will need:

Similar to Lab 6, Lab 7 goes through theory, simulation, and practical analysis.

The lab starts by going through the theory behind SPI communication: explaining slave select, clock, MOSI, and MISO.

First, students are asked to analyze example signals given in the lab. Then they are asked to analyze the effect of changing certain parameters.

Once the lab moves on to examining SPI signals in practice, students set up a LabVIEW VI to send and receive SPI data from a microcontroller.

That data is then read by the Analog Discovery 2 and displayed in a LabVIEW window. From here students can learn the real implications of adjusting SPI parameters, and how the data is decoded.

For more advanced students that want to challenge themselves, they can design a LabVIEW VI to transmit, receive, and decode ASCII characters. They can also continue and explore encryption.

Now that you’ve seen a preview of each lab, download and checkout the labs yourself. If you are interested in the tools that the Analog Discovery 2 has to offer, more information can be found on its Wiki Page.

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When I started school I wasn’t interested in any of things I’m passionate about now. In fact originally I started out wanting to study art. But then I decided I didn’t want to have people telling me what to create, so I changed to music. Then I decided I didn’t want to ruin a hobby by making it my career. At the same time my Physics class was teaching a unit on the physics of music, and I thought that was way interesting, so I changed to physics. Then by the time physics was over I decided that the coolest part of physics was electricity and magnetism, and I may as well get a degree that transfers directly into a career. So while all this was happening, I was attending Shoreline Community College, and during that time I found my passion, or rather presented itself repeatedly, until I realized, maybe I should take a hint from the universe. While at community college, I was asked to help at the high school by tutoring chemistry students. Then I was asked to help at the elementary school by being a math Olympiad coach. I continued both because I found I really enjoyed it. I also had an opportunity, and was hired to be a tutor in the Math Learning Center at the Community College, a job I really loved. At the same time I was working as a Nanny, which I had been doing for several years, the main reason because I could and would answer the hard questions the kids asked honestly (i.e. why is the sky blue). I then was recommended by the patrons of the MLC to the transfer tutoring center (private tutoring,) and developed a wait list of students. Through all these opportunities at some point I realized that I loved watching people go from totally lost, to masters of a subject. I was also forced to admit that having all these opportunities continually renewed, I must have been somewhat good at it. So I decided I wanted to teach, which fits with my mission oriented personality. I saw a serious lack of passionate ECE professors in the institutions I attended. At WSU I continued this trend by being ask to TA for computer science and electrical engineering, being a TA for a total of 4 semesters. This continued by getting an amazing opportunity in my first semester at Washington State University to work at Digilent, an educational company. So even if I didn’t want to teach, turns out I can’t avoid it. Luckily it is my main passion.

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