When I was a first-year PhD student, I got easily lost in the sea of papers. Always dream that I could come up with fancy ideas and flash circuits. And, you know, it always ended up with despair.

As time goes by, I came to realize that a good circuit design is not at all about proposing new ideas and circuits. **I believe that a designer (or researcher) is good if he/she knows the fundamental limit of the problem and provides the simplest way to solve the problem.**

What do you think?

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I realized the same this week, second sem of my PhD

I am delighted to view this. Thanks…

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I have spent my whole career designing circuits. Engineers constantly discuss the merits of different circuits — just like mathematicians discuss the merits of different proofs for a theorem. I guess it all comes down to elegance, which is a hard word to define but I know elegance when I see it. To me, elegance is about creating a solution that is minimal in some way. One should note that the definition of an elegant solution changes with time. When I was an NMOS designer back in the early ’80s, it was about coming up with repetitive structures that were easy to verify. In ECL circuits, it was about minimal delay. When I worked on CMOS gate arrays, it was about gate count. Today, it is about minimizing power for portable devices.