Informatics / TAMS / Applets / Karnaugh-Veitch Diagram Applet
This page demonstrates KV diagrams and logic minimization. It is intended for our computer science undergraduate students. For a detailed explanation of KV (Karnaugh Veitch) diagrams see any standard computer science or electrical engineering textbook. The applets supports minimization in both disjunctive (AND-OR) and conjunctive (OR-AND) forms. Minimiziation of multiple-output functions, however, is only supported in disjunctive form.

In order to minimize a given logic function in a two-level and-or representation, one has to merge minterms into other terms, which cover multiple (2,4,8,16, etc) minterms each. Such terms are much cheaper in the resulting logic realization.

The basic idea of a KV diagram is to represent a given boolean function in a two-dimensional function table with a special arrengement of terms. In a KV diagram, neighbored entries represent function-table entries which differ in only one variable. Therefore, drawing 'loops' around multiple minterms is equivalent to find merges of minterms. For an example, click here.

The applet visualizes this process, because at each step the two-level logic realization of the function is plotted in a seperate window and updated whenever you combine terms. You can watch how the function schematic gets simpler (and the logic realization gets cheaper) while you minimze the function.

Applet features
Currently, the applet provides the following functionality:
  • functions with up to 6 inputs and up to 8 outputs
  • minimization in disjunctive (DNF, and-or) and conjunctive (KNF, or-and) forms
  • minimization of multi-output functions (DNF only)
  • several example functions
  • user-defined functions
  • student mode for visualization
  • circuit schematics display

The applet
Note that the applet will not appear here, but will open two separate top-level windows.

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At the moment, we offer the following documentation and downloads for the KV diagram applet:
applet usage, with some example screenshots (in German only).
old tutorial
An older version of the tutorial, which does not match the current version of the applet. However, it is available in English, and it has a very short introduction to KV-diagrams.

applet doc
Full documentation about the concepts and implementation of the current KVD applet. (compressed Postscript, reverse page order, in German)
an archive (ZIP-format) with all classes and images, to use locally on your own computer. Unpack and open the file 'start.html' in a Java-enabled browser.
22.04.99 Impressum