## Time-Invariant Systems

A system is time-invariant if shifting the input sequence on time axis leads to an equivalent shift of the output sequence along the time axis, with no other changes.

## Demodulation – From Signals Back to Numbers

Remember that in the article on correlation, we discussed that correlation of a signal with proper normalization is maximum with itself and lesser for all other signals. Since the number of possible signals is limited in a digital communication system, we can use the correlation between incoming signal $r(nT_S)$ and possible choices $s_0(nT_S)$ and $s_1(nT_S)$ in a digital receiver. Consequently, a decision can be made in favor of the one with higher correlation. It turns out that the theory of maximum likelihood detection formalizes this conclusion that it is the optimum receiver in terms of minimizing the probability of error.

## Sampling a Continuous-Time Signal

Most signals of our interest — wireless communication waveforms — are continuous-time as they have to travel through a real wireless channel. To process such a signal using digital signal processing techniques, the signal must be converted into a sequence of numbers. This can be done through the process of periodic sampling. From Continuous to Discrete Time Consider a band-limited continuous-time signal $s(t)$ and its frequency domain representation $S(F)$ with bandwidth $B$, shown in the above figure. A discrete-time signal $s[n]$ can be obtained by taking samples of $s(t)$ at equal intervals of $T_S$ seconds. This process is shown in

Now we turn out attention towards a topic that causes a lot of confusion for communications and DSP learners: what is the difference between a matched filter and a correlator in a communications receiver? Let us start with the definition of a correlator: A correlator is a device that performs correlation of a received signal with its template within a given window of time. In our context, that window of time is the symbol duration, $T_M$. So a correlator performs the following operations. It takes this sample-by-sample product and sums them together. Next, it samples the output of this accumulation