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Development of a mobile spreadsheet-based PID control simulation system

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2 Author(s)
Kok Kiong Tan ; Dept. of Electr. & Comput. Eng., Nat. Univ. of Singapore ; Goh, H.L.

The use of the electronic spreadsheet as a modeling and simulation tool in the engineering fields is increasingly popular with an increasing number of tertiary institutions, including spreadsheet as a teaching resource in the core curriculum of these fields. Concurrently, the dramatic improvement in Internet speed allows certain course material to be delivered online, facilitating electronic-learning (E-learning). E-learning frees students from the restriction of time, although they are still largely constrained by space to the nearest wired computer. However, the boundary of computing has expanded with the advance in wireless communication; now numerous handheld mobile devices (e.g., personal digital assistants (PDAs) and cellular phones) are available that will allow computing to be accomplished on the move. In turn, this wireless trend has contributed to move E-learning toward mobile learning (M-learning). Based on the previously mentioned trends, this paper presents the development, implementation, and evaluation of a mobile spreadsheet-based Proportional, Integral, Derivative (PID) control simulation system that aims to enhance the learning of the student in the field of control engineering. The system has been used in an industrial control system course at the National University of Singapore (NUS), Singapore. The mobile spreadsheet system developed is able to work with most handheld mobile devices, including the cellular phone. The methods and difficulties (e.g., limited storage space and small screen display of a cellular phone) involved in the development of the system will be duly discussed. Feedback from students that is used to assess the usefulness of the system will be released to share the benefits of such an M-learning system

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Education, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:49 ,  Issue: 2 )