After 16 weeks, 80 days and approximately 640 hours, my time at Aeste Works finally came to an end on 20th December 2013. It feels like such a long time ago that I was fretting about making it on time on my first day. I definitely feel older and wiser about many aspects of engineering, programming and research and design work. This has been the most fruitful four months of work of my life so far. Although I’m sad that it’s coming to an end, I’m also a bit excited about finally having a bit of a vacation over the Christmas period. But not before wrapping up everything at work first. This week saw some small touch-up, bug-fixes and code cleanup work done.
The whole stack of code was analysed and through performance testing, some small bugs were ironed out. One bug was found where the function checking for the AESTE footprint failed every time. Upon closer inspection, it was found that it was a faulty sector address that was the problem. This was quickly rectified and the code was tested and found to be completely functional. Another little piece of touch up done was to check whether the read function implemented to read the bitstream is actually transmitting any data. This was done by switching the USART to Asynchronous mode and running the read function, then checking whether Minicom receives any data or not. This test was positive, and proved that the assembly implementation of the read operation was indeed able to transmit the data. This was a good step forward as in the previous week, it was verified that the data was being read correctly out of the SD card.
At the beginning of the week, the flash memory for the project was almost exactly 50%. After some more cleanup, taking out the LCD related code and functions, this was reduced more and now the project’s flash memory usage reads about 48%. In the process, it was also possible to reduce the RAM usage from 78% to 64% which is also a nice bit of improvement on the existing code. By the end of the week, the complete stack was tested for functionality and everything still seemed to be working fine.
Much of the week was spend doing cleanup on the existing code. Both mine and my colleagues parts were revised for leftover bits of code and unnecessary lines of codes were removed. Some useful comments, and proper descriptions for the functions written were added. For the functions modified, proper account of the modifications was also included to aid the users who might work with the source code next. The cleanup work took up some time but all was successfully completed on schedule.
A couple of extra files were added to the project repository. The bash script previous used to generate the random test files was included in the “Test Files” folder together with the test bitstream that was being used during the last couple of months.
It has been a wonderful privilege to be able to complete my internship here at Aeste, and I would like to thank Dr. Shawn Tan for the opportunity and the guidance. There have been many ups and downs during the last 4 months but it was a learning curve that, I have no doubt, will help me improve myself, both technically and as a professional. I have had the opportunity to look at myself at a different light and in doing so my shortcomings have become more clear to me and I am determined more than ever to improve myself. I would also like to just say thanks to all the colleagues I’ve worked with, for their support and friendship. This has truly been a very friendly work environment that I’ve had the chance to be part of. But now it is time to go. Upwards and Onwards!