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assembler

Simulating Micros from Command Line

Simulating Micros from Command Line

Introduction Microchip's MPLAB X permits simulation from the command line.  This is interesting from the perspective of teaching if we have automatically-graded programming assignments that take the student's program and runs it against a simulated chip in an LMS like Moodle. Background I'm interested in how we can use the MDB in MPLAB X to […]

Virtual Programming Lab

Virtual Programming Lab

Virtual Programming Lab is a plugin for Moodle (eClass at YorkU) that permits interactive programming assignments to be made for students.   There are some really good examples at Smith College on how to set it up with Python and a few with Java and C. I've posted, on YouTube, an example of how to […]

Disassembling in MPLABX & MCUXpresso

Disassembling in MPLABX & MCUXpresso

[to be updated] When you write programs in languages like C or C++ the programs get converted by the compiler tools into commands that the computer can read and understand.  Just before the compiler tools do that they convert your work into a sequence of commands into a language called Assembler. Back in the day […]

Sabbatical Report: Updating Microcontrollers

Sabbatical Report: Updating Microcontrollers

As part of my sabbatical activities I took on the "Temps Pratiques" microcontroller laboratory sessions for electrical engineering and mechatronics students at INSA Strasbourg.  In pre-sabbatical discussions with faculty and staff at INSA Strasbourg I found out that the students were learning using what I considered to be outdated technologies.  The PIC16F84A microcontroller chip used […]

Programming the INSA PIC16 Board

Programming the INSA PIC16 Board

After a few months twiddling PIC16 bits in simulation I need to get three, three-hour lab sessions written up for the PIC16F84.  The school has provided me with two versions of their PIC16F84A boards, one designed for Mechatronics students and one for EE students. The board designs date to the dawn of the Arduino era […]

A Simple Program on Three Simple Microcontrollers: Compare and Contrast

A Simple Program on Three Simple Microcontrollers: Compare and Contrast

Introduction Here we're going to "kick the tires" on examining a simple example program, using three 8-bit microcontrollers: the classic PIC16F84A, it's updated cousin found on the Microchip Curiosity Board, the PIC16F1619, and the ATMEGA328P made famous by the Arduino UNO. We'll be using a "debugging first" approach to programming that is intended to enable students […]

Is Assembler the Latin of Programming Languages?

Is Assembler the Latin of Programming Languages?

How bad and outdated is Assembler?  For many of us, Assembler is the Latin of programming languages.  Below, I talk about my changing perspective on this. In preparation for the embedded systems course I'll be helping to teach at the INSA in Strasbourg I'm reviewing my PIC-based teaching material, mostly based on the PIC32.  This […]