Principles of Digital Communications


Instructor Emre Telatar
Office INR 117
Phone +41 21 69 37693
Email [email protected]
Office Hours By appointment
Teaching Assistant Mani Bastani Parizi
Office INR 032
Email [email protected]
Office Hours By appointment
Student Assistant Sepand Kashani-Akhavan
Email [email protected]


Lectures Wednesday 15:15 – 18:00 (Room: INM202)
  Friday 10:15 – 13:00 (Room: INM202)
Language:   English
Credits :   6 ECTS


See the course information.

Special Announcements

  • Please make sure that you have registered for the course on IS-Academia so that you can access the lecture notes on Nota Bene.
  • You can find a tutorial video on how to use Nota Bene here
  • If you want a printed copy of the textbook, please send an email to [email protected]
  • Your midterm quiz will take place on Friday, April 17, 2015.
  • The average and the standard deviation of your midterm grades are 15.09 and 6.94 respectively. Here you can find a histogram of the grades.
  • Your final exam will take place on Monday, June 22, 2015 at 12:15 in room CO2. You are allowed to have one handwritten A4 page of summary (double-sided) with you for the exam.


  • Please find instructions about your final project here.
  • You should register your groups at latest by Wednesday April 29.
  • You will present your projects on Friday May 29.
  • Here is some more information (based on the frequently asked questions) about your project:
    • On the presentation day (Friday, May 29), you will run your projects on your own laptops (in Airplane Mode). However, you should send us your codes (by a deadline just before the presentation session that we will announce later).
    • You cannot use external speaker at the transmitter but you may use an external microphone for the receiver if you wish.
    • The text file that you will be asked to transmit will contain roughly 150 characters.
    • Each group will have 5 minutes in total to present their project during which they first have to explain their signaling scheme briefly in about 2 minutes. The remaining time (2 to 3 minutes) is for transmitting the text file (that will be given to you on-the-spot).
    • As we have already mentioned, you don’t need to implement a real-time decoder. You can record and store the transmitted signal and decode it afterwards. Furthermore, you don’t need to communicate the length of the data to be transmitted to the receiver. You can manually start and stop recording at the receiver side.

Detailed Schedule

Date Topics Covered Reading Assignment Exercises Solutions    
Feb 18 Background on Probability   hw1.pdf hw1_sol.pdf    
Feb 20   Chapter 1 [1.2 – 1.6]
Chapter 2 [2.1 – 2.2.1]
Feb 25 Binary Hypothesis Testing   hw2.pdf hw2_sol.pdf    
Feb 27   Chapter 2 [2.2.2 – 2.4]        
Mar 4 m-ary Hypothesis Testing,
Discrete-Time AWGN Channel
  hw3.pdf hw3_sol.pdf    
Mar 6   Chapter 2 [2.5 – 2.7]        
Mar 11 Sufficient Statistic,
Error Probability Bounds
  hw4.pdf hw4_sol.pdf    
Mar 13   Chapter 2 [2.12],
Chapter 3 [3.1–3.4]
Mar 18 Continuous-Time AWGN Channel   hw5.pdf hw5_sol_v2.pdf    
Mar 20   Chapter 3 [3.5 – 3.7, 3.9]        
Mar 25 Alternative Receiver Architectures   hw6.pdf hw6_sol.pdf    
Mar 27   Chapter 4 [4.1–4.4.1]        
Apr 1 Isometric Transformations
  hw7.pdf hw7_sol.pdf    
Apr 15 Review for the Midterm      
Apr 17 Midterm Quiz Chapter 4 [4.4.2–4.7] midterm.pdf midsol.pdf    
Apr 22 Scalability (cont’d)   hw8.pdf hw8_sol.pdf    
Apr 24   Chapter 5 [5.1–5.4]        
Apr 29 Power Spectral Density
Nyquist Criterion
  hw9.pdf hw9_sol.pdf    
May 1   Chapter 5 [5.5,5.6,5.8]
Chapter 6 [6.1–6.3]
May 6 Root-Raised-Cosine Family
Eye Diagrams
Convolutional Codes
Viterbi Algorithm
  hw10.pdf hw10_sol.pdf    
May 8   Chapter 6 [6.4–6.5]        
May 13 Bit-error Probability
of Convolutional Codes
  hw11.pdf hw11_sol.pdf    
May 15   Chapter 7 [7.1,7.2,7.4]        
May 20 Passband Communication   hw12.pdf hw12_sol.pdf    
Jun 22 Final Exam final.pdf final_sol.pdf    


B. Rimoldi, Principles of digital communication: a top-down approach. To be published by Cambridge University Press. Available online.