DoCircuits: An offering of Sparsha Technologies, this circuit simulator allows you to store your circuits on the cloud, making it available for use and analysis anywhere on earth
Sparsha is a learning technology startup headquartered at STEP, Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur with an extended R&D arm in Bengaluru. Sparsha works with education content providers, online learning companies, publishers, universities and autonomous institutes to develop custom solutions for activity-based learning solutions across K-12 and higher education domains. Let’s dive in straight into the functionalities of DoCircuits and how it differs from an offline simulator.
An electronic circuit simulator is a software that uses mathematical models to replicate the behaviour of an actual electronic device or circuit. Simulation software lets you model a circuit operation and is therefore an invaluable analysis tool. Its highly accurate modelling capability is one of the main reasons why colleges and universities use this type of software for teaching electronics and electrical engineering classes. A simulation software engages the users by integrating them into the learning experience. These kinds of interactions engage learners to analyse, organise, synthesise and evaluate content.
There are several issues with the solutions offered presently in the simulation domain. The software needs to be downloaded/installed. The software has a steep learning curve requiring help of an expert to guide you side-by-side.
User-experience isn’t exactly a priority with these software. One of the bigger issues is that people who are just starting out in this field are in no position to use the high-end simulators. They need to get an in-depth knowledge before beginning work.
The biggest obstacle is that most of today’s simulators are offline versions; you install them in your machine and then work from there. If you want to continue work on the model at a place other than your home machine, you need to carry the file with you, have the simulator installed there and continue, which is, frankly, a very arduous process.
This way, DoCircuits is a boon for simulation students, hobbyists and starters as it lets them simulate their models online and reduces the hassle of having to carry the model and simulator with them.
DoCircuits supports schematic capture (or schematic entry), which is a step in electronic product design cycle where the circuit diagram (schematic) of the design is documented by a designer. It is done interactively with the help of a schematic capture tool also known as schematic editor. Typically, sketches are drawn on paper and then entered into a computer using a schematic editor. Schematic entry is a front-end operation of several others in the design flow.
DoCircuits gives you the ability to upload SPICE models directly onto the simulator, thereby extending your flexibility and reach vis-a-vis other simulators. It lets you export netlists onto your circuit design and work with them along with the option to share your circuits via direct link or even Facebook. The simulator also has a library, which makes it easier for you to post or download circuits to work with.
Advantages of DoCircuits
The simulator offers advantages for students, teachers and the institutes likewise. Students get to familiarise themselves with industry-level simulations and acquire real skills while maintaining a digital portfolio of their circuits on the cloud. This makes them confident on industry T&M devices while making them more employable. Teachers can use this simulator for assignments, thereby reducing the boredom and monotony normally associated with college assignments. Colleges can use it to dramatically reduce the cost associated with buying the licences for the traditional simulation tools and hence increase audit points which would help in accreditation.
The author is a tech correspondent at EFY Bengaluru