Round 3: Combinational logic


(A 2-to-1 multiplexer circuit for two 4-bit buses.)

Learning objectives

In this round you will learn …

  • … that binary logic gates form the basis of digital computing

  • … that logic gates can be combined to yield combinational logic

  • … the principle of bottom-up design

    • to start with simple designs and gradually evolve them towards larger and more ambitious goals

    • to simultaneously build up both the designs and your software tools to shape the designs

    • the practice of testing (“playing with”) your design, one functional unit at a time

  • … to use software simulation as a tool to study a concept or a design

  • … the notions of

    • specification (“what is it that must be done?”) and

    • implementation (“exactly how is it done?”)

  • … the usefulness of encapsulating an implementation behind an interface

  • … that combinational logic admits configurability by separating data and control

  • … to use combinational logic to carry out simple operations on words

(Material that is marked with one or more asterisks (*) is good-to-know, but not critical to solving the exercises or passing the course.)