CT 515 Error Control Coding

Error-control coding (ECC) is at the heart of Information and Communication Technology (ICT). Whenever you want to send information from one point to other point (communication) or send information from now to then (storage) you require error-control coding. Richard W. Hamming created first error-control codes out of frustration when he was working on Bell Model V computers. Every weekend the machine use to stop because of errors and Hamming said “why a computer can not detect and correct the errors itself". This resulted in his invention of Hamming codes that can correct single bit error. Error control coding was known before Hamming but very efficient codes were not known and it was after Hamming's discovery it has become a field of research for mathematicians, computer scientist, electrical engineers for about 50 years now. In fact Von Neumann wrote that error control is an integral part of every information processing. . So whenever there is information processing, there is error control coding. We can see now its importance in new computing paradigms such as quantum computers, bio-molecular computers. Network coding is another area that is emerging for all kind of networks. All ICT applications uses some form of coding from CD/DVD, hard disk data storage, deep space communications, wireless communications, power line communications, cell phones, sensor networks, data compressions, VLSI etc...Applications are endless. Now even people are trying to decipher what kind of error control coding is used in biological information processing? This is the greatest challenge for ICT in 21st century.

We ourselves use a crude form of error control coding in our day to day conversation between us (without knowing that it is ECC): Can you guess how?

In almost 50 years error control coding has found many deep connections with diverse areas such as the theory of computation, complexity, algorithms, algebra (finite fields and finite rings), linear algebra, cryptography, number theory, algebraic geometry, discrete mathematics and statistical physics. In this course we will study the basics of coding theory with main focus on codes which are optimal in the sense Shannon’s results.

More in the course…..so fasten your seatbelt ………….

This course is designed for 1st year MTech and final year BTech students. 3rd year BTech (6th Semester) students with strong academic record can also take this course.