You are about to embark upon a journey through the fascinating world of microelectronics. Fortunately, microelectronics appears in so many facets of our lives that we can readily gather enough motivation to study it. The reading, however, is not as easy as that of a novel; we must deal with analysis and design, applying mathematical rigor as well as engineering intuition every step of the way. This article provides some suggestions that students may find helpful in studying microelectronics.
Rigor and Intuition Before reading this book, you have taken one or two courses on basic circuit theory, mastering Kirchoff’s Laws and the analysis of RLC circuits. While quite abstract and bearing no apparent connection with real life, the concepts studied in these courses form the foundation for microelectronics—just as calculus does for engineering.
Our treatment of microelectronics also requires rigor but entails two additional components. First, we identify many applications for the concepts that we study. Second, we must develop intuition, i.e., a “feel” for the operation of microelectronic devices and circuits. Without an intuitive understanding, the analysis of circuits becomes increasingly more difficult as we add more devices to perform more complex functions.
Analysis by Inspection We will expend a considerable effort toward establishing the mentality and the skills necessary ...