Ports and Connections
Each element in INTERCONNECT has at least one port that can be used to connect to and from other elements. The connections are the links between different ports. The types of connections and ports in the INTERCONNECT schematic layout editor can be identified by their different colors and shapes. This convention is meant to facilitate the proper usage of INTERCONNECT. For example, electrical (blue) ports can only connect to electrical ports, output ports can only connect to input (triangle) or bidirectional (square) ports.
Triangle: input/output ports
Circle: input ports to analyzers
Square: bidirectional ports
Red: digital signals
Blue: electrical signals
Green: optical signals
Dotted lines: inputs to analyzers
Bold lines: connections that have been selected
Ports are automatically "monitored" when it is connected to an analyzer. Users can also assign ports to be monitored if it will eventually be connected to an analyzer in analysis mode. To do this, make sure the "Select ports to monitor" button is selected and click on the port in the layout editor. Once the simulation completes, the users can then add analyzers to this port and calculate the results without having to re-run the simulation (see the Analyzers in analysis mode section in the Elements section below).
Inserting a pin in a connection allows you to drag and modify the path of the connection between the two components. Simply right-click on a connection and select "Insert pin".
INTERCONNECT uses different colors to denote the current states of elements.
Analyzers in analysis mode
Once the simulation is complete, users can look at the results from the analyzers using the visualizer. If the user wishes to change the calculation parameters of the analyzer (or to add new analyzers to monitored ports), he or she can do this without having to re-run the simulation. In this case, the analyzer will be displayed as "orange", and the user needs to click on the "Validate all analyzers" button in order for the analyzers to recalculate the values corresponding to the new input settings.
Ann new analyzer:
Validate all analyzers:
Note that the Optical Network Analyzer is an exception to this since the calculation involves re-running the scattering analysis in order to get the new frequency-domain results.
Elements with errors
Elements that contain errors (ex. missing files, missing connections...etc) are displayed as "red". When the simulation is running, the output prompt will show any warning/error messages as shown below:
Users can choose to disable elements by setting the "enabled" property to false. Disabled elements are displayed as "gray", and the signal will simply bypass these elements. For example, the following two simulations will give identical results.
When the "animate simulation" property of the Root Element is set to True, while the simulation is running, currently running elements and threads will be highlighted.
Changing the layout
Users have control over the hiding and docking location of the windows and toolbars. The current layout is saved when the file closes so the next time the program is opened, your previous layout will be used.
Hiding/showing windows and toolbars
There are two methods to hide or show windows and toolbars
1) In the main title toolbar select VIEW-WINDOWS or VIEW-TOOLBARS. The visible windows/toolbars have a checkmark next to their name; the hidden ones do not.
2) By clicking the right button anywhere on the main title bar or the toolbar, the following pop up menu will show up. As before, checkmarks indicate when windows and toolbars are visible.
To move a toolbar, hover the mouse over the top of the toolbar, where the dotted line is. When the mouse cursor becomes a four-headed arrow, press the left mouse button and drag-and-drop the toolbar. If you reach a region where you can place a toolbar, the CAD environment makes room for the toolbar indicated by a blue void.
Moving and undocking windows
Windows can be undocked by double-clicking the name with the left mouse button. This is particularly useful for the script file editor since it can be convenient to make the window quite large when writing script files. Non-view-port windows can be docked on top of each other either to the right or to the left of the viewports. If they are placed on top of each other, tabs on the sides allow toggling between them. In the image below, the Object Tree window is about to be docked over top of the Object Library window.
Tip: Moving undocked windows in Linux
To reposition an undocked window on Linux operating systems, hold down the Alt key before attempting to move the window.
Following is a commonly used window layout for normal INTERCONNECT simulations.