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A related interesting project would be to start with a uC and write a small C compiler for it
Quote from: trigger on December 09, 2006, 01:11:34 AM A related interesting project would be to start with a uC and write a small C compiler for itI'm not sure you fully understand what this entails but as a graduating CS major who has written a compiler for a kiddylanguage(micro-pascal), I'm going to tell you this is very non-trivial and really doesn't have much to do with 'robots'besides the fact that you would be learning your uC really well (probably more than you'd want to know, or need toknow for a beginner bot).
I wrote a compiler for the PIC a bunch of years ago, because I hated the assembler so much. It was 1998, and the 16F84 was the only FLASH-based PIC available. I tried all the free compilers that were available then, and they all sucked (were very limited, or just didn't work).You can see what I did here, and download it:http://www.huv.com/uSeeker/smalltalk/pic.htmlI wouldn't advise anyone to try and use it though - the 16F84 is way outdated, and there are far better PIC chips available.For someone starting off now, I would strongly advise, unless you have $250 to spend on micro-controller tools, that you go AVR. There is an excellent quality C compiler available for free (gcc), a decent (although demo-limited) free BASIC compiler (Bascom), and you can build a programmer for the things for under $10.PICs are temperamental little beasts, which is why in the end I decided I wanted to be in the robot-building business rather than the compiler-writing business, so I stopped working on PIC/Smalltalk and bought a commercial C compiler (CCS) and a good programmer (Warp-13).- Jon
Well, lets put it this way - if you need a tutorial to help you write a compiler, you aren't anywhere near the expertise level required to do it. Compilers are hard, not because the parsing part is hard - that's actually relatively easy. The hard part is two-fold:
One other thing that isn't clear to me is the purpose of a development board. What functions does a development board have that an augmented controller doesn't?
Any links to sites that talk about augmenting uCs would be greatly appreciated. I'd like to figure out how to add a few ADCs and digital I/O ports and thereby start with a very inexpensive uC setup.
You are probably right. What I didn't tell you is that I have a secret weapon--my wife was a CS major. Together with my EE knowledge, we could figure it out. But to be honest, that would come down the road, after I'd already become familiar with robot building in general.