I come across a number of electronic circuits - simple ones - in my studies as an undergrad student in Applied Physics. But I often wonder: the circuits that we are taught about are all run under idealised conditions. Even during practical demonstrations and labs, we run them with function generators, voltage generators and DSOs which all have myriad electronics within them to check and balance any discrepancies that may arise (over-potentials, over-currents and what-not). How might electronics in these devices work? Electronics in real devices like laptops and amplifiers? For example, we learn about a diode clamp for voltage protection at inputs in electronic circuits. But I just can't believe that such a simple solution might be used to limit input voltages in a laptop's power supply or in a USB stick's interface. There are probably a hundred more things that go into making these devices robust and usable in real conditions. But what are these hundred other things? It seems the things I study in college only lay down the basic ideas for me. When building something 'electronic' on my own, the lowest level device I might use is an IC. But it just never happens that I think of building something simply with diodes or resistors and capacitances - because what I've learnt about using these devices is just too idealistic. I'm beginning to feel my electronics courses are pointless. I want to know what real electronics looks like. I want to know where I can learn the real stuff.