An Ametuer Who needs Advice

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Greetings Everyone!

 I'm an Undergrad student studyin Electronics Engg. As part of my
course I've sudies 8051 and PIC microcontrollers. I find that I'm
greatly interested in Embedded Systems design. However, the flood of
info. on the net has me confused. Where should I begin? I've done (or
doing) the following :-

1) Studied Assembly Language Programming of 8051/PIC micros
2) Learning Linux with Redhat
3) Got hold of a list of Embedded Linux books that I'm gonna buy this
weekend

 Anything i can do more? What are the companies working on Embedded
Sys? Is there any Ametuer resource for guys like me? (I'm also
searchin Google right now, not happy with the results).

Grateful if any of you can take time of to post a reply.

Regards,
Devyn

Re: An Ametuer Who needs Advice


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Devyn, how about starting with a small project? Check out
http://www.olimex.com/dev/index.html , for example, for proto boards,
projects, etc. For me, it is the combination of
understanding/designing/building stuff that makes electronics
interesting. -- Mike




Re: An Ametuer Who needs Advice

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Time to start building stuff.  Snag yourself a
cheap scope and logic analyzer off of ebay and
design something.  Start with some simple blinkenlights
and go from there.  Nothing impresses me more in an
entry-level job candidate than them being able to
pull out a piece of working hardware software
that they built themselves.



Re: An Ametuer Who needs Advice

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The three fundimentals of electronics are blink, buzz, whirr and smoke!

OH, if you smell somthing burning, don't go poking around on the board with
your finger to find out what it is.



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Another fundamental is learning to count!

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If you can read the part number off of the
tip of your finger, it's probably running
too hot.






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with

That must have been a 2.2k resistor.



Re: An Ametuer Who needs Advice
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 Hi!
         Yeah. I realized that sometime ago. I've built 2 small
applications :-

1) Light Guided Rover - 8051 based rover that goes straight or takes
left/right turn based on light stimulus (such as a flashlight on the
left/right sensor)

2) Keypad Interfaced PIC Clock - A simple app. Takes in time set from
user, displays real time on 7 segment LED disp. I'm working to include
an alarm and somehow try and bring in the watchdog timer to good use.

 I felt that these were too amateur and needed a linux based project.
Am i right in thinking so?

Regards,
Devyn

Re: An Ametuer Who needs Advice
Hi, you need to think of something useful and not allready in production.

Re: An Ametuer Who needs Advice

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Well, if you're into Linux, then sure! But there are a lot of other
directions.

I think your idea of going through books is a good idea, but you should take
a look at what is out on the Internet, too. Check out the piclist
(piclist.com). Microchip.com has a ton of application notes and sample
projects. Those two URL's I mentioned earlier are a good resouce. You can
also see a lot of interesting things people in this group have done if you
search the archives on google.

The last project I did had a Rabbit Semiconductor based control board, which
gave my project the ability to communicate through LAN systems and the
Internet. I don't have much info online right this second, but you can check
it out, http://keydrawers.com .

Oh, there you go. Check out rabbitsemiconductor.com . They have a pretty
good product line. Maybe your next project can be something like a motor
control (garage door opener?) that you can operate over the Internet.

Mike



Re: An Ametuer Who needs Advice

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This sounds like fun, but I'm too practical for this kind of thing.

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I like clocks, so this seems a better pick to me.

As a student, you might not fully appreciate this but a clock idea I've
had is a "meeting clock."  A meeting's attendees enter their hourly
rate and the clock accumulates the cost of the meeting as time elapses.

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I don't think so.  Embedded programming is as much about hardware as
it is software, and you'll learn a bunch building these.  Hint: As
you're designing and building these, consider what you might need to
do differently if you were going to manufacture 10,000 of them rather
than just one!

--
========================================================================
          Michael Kesti            |  "And like, one and one don't make
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Re: An Ametuer Who needs Advice

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I love it!  

It also needs a button to push for every power-point slide
displayed.  The button would add some amount (e.g. $100) to the
total.

--
Grant Edwards                   grante             Yow!  Ask me the DIFFERENCE
                                  at               between PHIL SILVERS and
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Re: An Ametuer Who needs Advice
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One of these should be in every meeting room in every company.



Re: An Ametuer Who needs Advice

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I have this feeling that I have given away one of my best ever product
ideas.  I'll expect royalties from anybody who profits from it.  ;-)

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Hmmm...  It seems to me that the cost of the slides is in producing them
and is incurred regardless of whether they are shown in a meeting, so I
wouldn't add their cost to a clock that measures the cost of a meeting.
I mention this primarily to provide an example of how easy it is to
generate design errors without complete problem analysis.

--
========================================================================
          Michael Kesti            |  "And like, one and one don't make
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Re: An Ametuer Who needs Advice

[...]

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For normal slides, that would be correct --- and the cost would be
amortized over many meetings, as the slides are recycled, so it would
be unjust to count it as an inherent cost of the individual meeting.

But the grandparent spefically talked of PP slides.  Those extra $100
are costs, but they're too indirect to be obvious.  They're actually
compensation for damages done to the audience during the meeting.  So
they should be proportional to the number of attendees, too.  For
better effect, add punitive damages per different colour and per
different font used, and double the resulting fee for every completely
superfluous animated effect.

--
Hans-Bernhard Broeker ( snipped-for-privacy@physik.rwth-aachen.de)
Even if all the snow were burnt, ashes would remain.

Re: An Ametuer Who needs Advice
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How about a $50 penalty for using the word 'Leverage'?
Unless the meeting is about moving things about using large bits of
metal of course.

Andy

Re: An Ametuer Who needs Advice

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So, you're saying that after the meeting, everybody should stick around?

My first reaction to the _time is money meeting reminder machine_ was that
meetings are where all the important work gets done. I know I'm gonna get
shot for saying that. Really, I would have kicked myself in the arse if I
weren't sitting in a chair.

Then again.... nevermind. Here is a holiday poem for the overly embedded
mind.

If the ocean were vodka
And I was a duck
I'd swim to the bottom
And drink my way up

But the ocean's not vodka
And I'm not a duck
So pass me the bottle
And shut the hell up!

Happy holidays, everyone. Enjoy your families and don't bother building
temperature sensors into the cocoa cups.

Mike



Re: An Ametuer Who needs Advice
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I imagine they'll want to have a meeting first to discuse it.  D'oh!

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If they are shown, every slide should reduce a bar displaying the average
effective IQ in the room.  Once it drops below a safety set-point, the
fire alarms should ring to evacuate -- hopefully everyone will still
remember what the warning is for.

--
Ron Sharp.
FLASH! Intelligence of mankind decreasing. Details at ... uh, when the
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There seems to be a lot of anger in this group regarding meetings.



Re: An Ametuer Who needs Advice
oN 19-Dec-03, Mike Turco said:

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Many years ago, when I first began consulting, a client took me aside,
and pointed out that one of the responsibilities of a consultant is to
bring some discipline to meetings. Remember that outside help is often
hired because the inside crew is bogged down. But also keep in mind the
general principles laid out in Gerald Weinberg's "Secrets of
Consulting" -- they're as valid today, as when first published.

If you take some control over meetings, you may find them less hateful,
and far more productive. And your client may even thank you for it.

--
Bill
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