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Assignment # 1

1. Write down significant events in the development of communication systems.

Tabulate them in the same format as the example below.

Year Breakthrough Remarks

Morse code is a variable-length binary code
in which letters of the English alphabet are
represented by a sequence of dots and
dashes (code words).
Telegraphy is demonstrated
by Samuel Morse
In this code, more frequently occurring
letters are represented by short code word,
while letters occurring less frequently are
represented by longer code words.
Digital signals are used to transmit text
and images over standard telephone lines.

Fax machines worked on two tones – one

for there being an image on a certain point
on the page, and one for not being an
Fax Machine is invented by image on a certain point on a page. This
Alexander Bain system would result in either a black dot
or white dot being transmitted over to the
other machine. Just like a computer screen
or LCD display is made up of many tiny
dots to put a picture together, a fax
records that information to send it back in
much the same way.
A mechanical machine for writing printed
messages by means of keys to transmit ink
or carbon impressions onto paper.

The first typewriter had no shift-key

mechanism—it wrote capital letters only.
Typewriter is invented by
1867 The first shift-key typewriter—the
Christopher Latham Sholes
Remington Model 2—appeared on the
market in 1878. Soon after appeared the so-
called double-keyboard machines, which
contained twice the number of keys—one
for every character, whether capital or small
Traditional telephone system using copper
wires and fiber optics to transmit voice.

Telephone is demonstrated
1876 The Harmonic Telegraph was based on the
by Alexander Graham Bell
principal that musical notes could be sent
simultaneously down the same wire, if
those notes differed in pitch.
Amplitude and frequency modulated radio
waves used to transmit voice and music.
An Italian inventor,
Guglielmo Marconi proved It all started with the discovery of radio
the feasibility of Radio waves—electromagnetic waves that have
Communication the capacity to transmit music, speech,
pictures, and other data invisibly through
the air.
Transmission of images and sound using
short wavelength microwaves.

Electronic televisions rely on a technology

called a Cathode Ray Tube (CRT) as well as
two or more anodes. The anodes were the
The world’s first Electronic positive terminals and the cathode was the
1923 Television was created by negative terminal.
Philo Taylor Farnsworth
The “Cathode” part of the Cathode Ray
Tube was a heated filament enclosed in a
glass Tube (the “T” of CRT). The Cathode
would release a beam of electronics into the
empty space of the tube (which was actually
a vacuum).
This machine played an important role in
breaking codes used by the German army in
World War II. Turing's main contribution to
the field of computer science was the idea of
the Turing machine, a mathematical
formalism widely used in the study of
Electronic Computer is computable functions. The existence of
designed and built by John Colossus was kept secret until long after the
1942 Vincent Atanasoff and war ended, and the credit due to Turing and
graduate student Clifford his colleagues for designing one of the first
Berry working electronic computers was slow in

A device that can be instructed to carry out

an arbitrary set of arithmetic or logical
operations automatically such as digital
messaging via email, internet, etc.
The high frequency radio waves used for
telecommunications links travel by line of
sight and so are obstructed by the curve of
the Earth. The purpose of communications
satellites is to relay the signal around the
curve of the Earth allowing communication
between widely separated geographical
Satellites is launched by
Soviet Union
Communications satellites use a wide range
of radio and microwave frequencies. To
avoid signal interference, international
organizations have regulations for which
frequency ranges or "bands" certain
organizations are allowed to use. This
allocation of bands minimizes the risk of
signal interference.
National and international communication
system used to send email, data and web
Based on this and earlier
work by Paul Baran, Thomas
Marill, Lawrence
The first message was sent over the
1968 Roberts and Barry
ARPANET in 1969 from computer science
Wessler created the Interface
Professor Leonard Kleinrock's laboratory
Message Processor (IMP)
at University of California, Los
Angeles (UCLA) to the second network
node at Stanford Research Institute (SRI).
Like many of the Internet inventors,
Tomlinson worked for Bolt Beranek and
Newman as an ARPANET contractor. He
picked the @ symbol from the computer
keyboard to denote sending messages from
one computer to another. So then, for
anyone using Internet standards, it was
simply a matter of nominating name-of-the-
Email is invented and
developed by Ray Tomlinson Internet pioneer Jon Postel, who we will
hear more of later, was one of the first users
of the new system, and is credited with
describing it as a "nice hack". It certainly
was, and it has lasted to this day. Despite
what the world wide web offers, email
remains the most important application of
the Internet and the most widely used
facility it has. Now more than 600 million
people internationally use email.
Cell phones use radio waves to
communicate. Radio waves transport
digitized voice or data in the form of
oscillating electric and magnetic fields,
called the electromagnetic field (EMF).
Cell phones transmit radio waves in all
directions. The waves can be absorbed and
reflected by surrounding objects before they
reach the nearest cell tower.

Cell phones contain at least one radio

Mobile Phones is
antenna in order to transmit or receive radio
1973 demonstrated by Martin
signals. An antenna converts an electric
signal to the radio wave (transmitter) and
vice versa (receiver). The magnitude of the
received signal from the cell tower is called
the “signal strength”, which is commonly
indicated by the “bars” on your phone. The
connectivity between a cell phone and its
cellular network depends on both signals
and is affected by many factors, such as the
distance between the phone and the nearest
cell tower, the number of impediments
between them and the wireless technology.
2. What are the elements of a digital communication system? Present your work in a
block diagram. Discuss each element.





The Source encoder ( or Source coder) converts the input i.e. symbol sequence into
a binary sequence of 0s and 1s by assigning code words to the symbols in the inputsequence.
The important parameters of a source encoder are block size, codeword lengths, average data
rate and theefficiency of the coder (i.e. Actual outputdata rate compared to the minimum
achievable rate).

Aim of the source coding is to remove the redundancy in the transmitting information, so
that bandwidth required for transmission is minimized. Based on the probability of the
symbol code word is assigned. Higher the probability, shorter is the codeword.


Error control is accomplished by the channel coding operation that consists ofsystematically
adding extra bits to the output of the source coder.These extra bits do not convey any
information but helps the receiver to detect and /or correct some of the errors in the
information bearing bits. There are two methods of channel coding:

1. Block Coding: The encoder takes a block of k information bits from

the source encoder and adds r error control bits, where r is dependent on k and
error control capabilities desired.

2. Convolution Coding: The information bearing message stream is encoded in

a continuous fashion by continuously interleaving information bits and errorcont
rol bits.

The Modulator converts the input bit stream into an electrical waveform suitable for
transmission over the communication channel. Modulator can be effectively used to minimize
the effects of channel noise, to match the frequency spectrum of transmitted signal with
channel characteristics, to provide the capability to multiplex many signals.


The Channel provides the electrical connection between the source and destination. The
different channels are: Pair of wires, Coaxial cable, Optical fiber, Radio channel, Satellite
channel or combination of any of these. The communication channels have only finite
Bandwidth, non-ideal frequency response, the signal often suffers amplitude and phase
distortion as it travels over the channel. Also, the signal power decreases due to the
attenuation of the channel. The signal is corrupted by unwanted, unpredictable electrical
signals referred to as noise.

The important parameters of the channel are Signal to Noise power Ratio (SNR),
usable bandwidth, amplitude and phase response and the statistical properties of noise.


The extraction of the message from the information bearing waveform produced by the
modulation is accomplished by the demodulator. The output of the demodulator is bit
stream. The important parameter is the method of demodulation.


The Channel decoder recovers the information bearing bits from the coded binary
stream. Error detection and possible correction is also performed by the channel decoder. The
important parameters of coder / decoder are: Method of coding, efficiency, error control
capabilities and complexity of the circuit.


At the receiver, the source decoder converts the binary output of the channel decoder into
a symbol sequence. The decoder for a system using fixed length code words is quite simple,
but the decoder for a system using variable length code words will be very complex.

Aim of the source coding is to remove the redundancy in the transmitting information, so
that bandwidth required for transmission is minimized. Based on the probability of the
symbol code word is assigned. Higher the probability, shorter is the codeword.
3. In what ways is a digital communication system advantageous over its analog
counterpart? What are its disadvantages? Briefly Discuss each.

As the signals are digitized, there are many advantages of digital communication over analog
communication, such as −
 The effect of distortion, noise, and interference is much less in digital signals as they
are less affected.
 Digital circuits are more reliable.
 Digital circuits are easy to design and cheaper than analog circuits.
 The hardware implementation in digital circuits, is more flexible than analog.
 The occurrence of cross-talk is very rare in digital communication.
 The signal is un-altered as the pulse needs a high disturbance to alter its properties,
which is very difficult.
 Signal processing functions such as encryption and compression are employed in
digital circuits to maintain the secrecy of the information.
 The probability of error occurrence is reduced by employing error detecting and error
correcting codes.
 Spread spectrum technique is used to avoid signal jamming.
 Combining digital signals using Time Division Multiplexing (TDM) is easier than
combining analog signals using Frequency Division Multiplexing (FDM).
 The configuring process of digital signals is easier than analog signals.
 Digital signals can be saved and retrieved more conveniently than analog signals.
 Many of the digital circuits have almost common encoding techniques and hence
similar devices can be used for a number of purposes.
 The capacity of the channel is effectively utilized by digital signals.

4. What are the different transmission media or channels that can be used to transmit
information? Give a brief but concise discussion on each.

 Copper cable

Types of cable include unshielded twisted-pair (UTP), shielded twisted-pair (STP),

and coaxial cable. Copper-based cables are inexpensive and easy to work with
compared to fiber-optic cables, but as you'll learn when we get into the specifics, a
major disadvantage of cable is that it offers a rather limited spectrum that cannot
handle the advanced applications of the future, such as tele-immersion and virtual

 Wireless

Wireless media include radio frequencies, microwave, satellite, and infrared.

Deployment of wireless media is faster and less costly than deployment of cable,
particularly where there is little or no existing infrastructure (e.g., Africa, Asia-Pacific,
Latin America, eastern and central Europe).

Wireless is also useful where environmental circumstances make it impossible or

cost-prohibitive to use cable (e.g., in the Amazon, in the Empty Quarter in Saudi
Arabia, on oil rigs).
There are a few disadvantages associated with wireless, however. Historically,
wireless solutions support much lower data rates than do wired solutions, although
with new developments in wireless broadband, that is becoming less of an issue (see
Part IV, "Wireless Communications"). Wireless is also greatly affected by external
impairments, such as the impact of adverse weather, so reliability can be difficult to
guarantee. However, new developments in laser-based communications—such as
virtual fiber—can improve this situation. (Virtual fiber is discussed in Chapter 15,
"WMANs, WLANs, and WPANs.") Of course, one of the biggest concerns with
wireless is security: Data must be secured in order to ensure privacy.

 Fiber optics

Fiber offers enormous bandwidth, immunity to many types of interference and noise,
and improved security. Therefore, fiber provides very clear communications and a
relatively noise-free environment. The downside of fiber is that it is costly to
purchase and deploy because it requires specialized equipment and techniques.