Analog university goes online

National Semiconductor has launched ‘Analog University’, an online educational resource devoted entirely to analog semiconductor technologies.

Designed to meet the information needs of novice, mid-career and experienced design engineers, Analog University is a free online tool created to give designers fast access to technical information.

Analog University features beginning, intermediate and advanced classes in eight different technologies: amplifiers, audio, data conversion, displays, low voltage differential signalling (LVDS), power management, thermal management and wireless.

All Analog University classes are interactive multimedia lectures that are focused on techniques for designing new products with National’s analogue components. Each class module is built around a lesson plan designed by 16 National engineers who form the university’s first faculty. Most lessons begin with an hour-long online streaming media seminar. Students may access new live seminars or choose among 22 archived seminars presented by the Analog University faculty member engineers.

After the introductory seminar, each course progresses through interactive reading and research assignments. Courses also feature links to relevant materials including data sheets, applications notes, and design simulation tools. Students move through the self-paced coursework and finish each lesson with an interactive multiple-choice computer-graded quiz. If students miss a question, they will be directed to related reading resources. Once students pass the quizzes, they will receive an online certificate of completion for the course.

National’s new online research tool, Knowledge Base is designed to work with Analog University. Knowledge Base offers access to 1,820 data sheets, 750 applications notes, 350 frequently asked questions (FAQs), and the National Edge online monthly magazine.

Knowledge Base enables users to type questions in natural conversational language – as if they were speaking to another person. The system interprets the request, retrieves the most pertinent data from multiple sources and dynamically generates a results page tailored to the user’s query. The system also recognises abbreviations, variations in spelling or language usage.