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Microcontroller Programming Guide

So you want to learn microcontroller programming, where do you start?

Programming microcontrollers is essential in modern electronics and it is a vital skill to learn but it isn't that easy as there is a lot of concepts to understand. Some people, like Arduino, claim there are short cuts but these come at a cost.

Microcontroller Programming

Simple Kit
pickit3 programmer and board

Full training kit with tutorials and modular PIC board and PICKit4 debugger and programmer

Update AVR microcontroller firmware without a computer.

Complete PIC Kit
pickit programmer and board

Full training kit with tutorials and modular PIC board and PICKit4 debugger and programmer

What Do You Need To Learn?

  • Some basic electronics
  • Numbering systems, like binary and hexidecimal
  • Boolean logic - AND, OR, NOT etc
  • Microcontroller structure
  • Program planning
  • Using a development environment
  • Assembly language or C programming for microcontrollers
  • Debugging your code and downloading it
  • How to use peripherals like serial ports

This may seem like a daunting list but our new Kanda MICRO-X kit breaks it down into bite size chunks and covers it all with a series of tutorials. Other systems, such as Arduino, skip most of this list and present a simplied view of microcontroller programming. This is ok if you just want to copy a project but it doesn't teach you very much or let you make your own projects.

What Resources Do You Need?

By its very nature, learning about embedded systems requires some hardware, on-line tutorials are just not going to be sufficient. On the other hand, just buying a low cost microcontroller board is just going to leave you baffled. To learn about embedded system programming and be able to develop your own microcontroller projects requires:
  • A microcontroller programming course
  • A professional development environment with assembler and C compiler included
  • An efficient emulator to debug your code
  • A programmer to download code to your hardware
  • Modular hardware that can be extended once you have learnt the basics
  • Lots of sample projects, documentation and schematics to get you started
Fortunately, Kanda have developed a new microcontroller kit that includes all these features so you can learn all you need to know to create your own microcontroller projects.

MICRO-X Microcontroller Programming Kit

This kit has been designed to teach you how to make your own embedded projects using one of the latest PIC microcontrollers. It includes a full microcontroller tutorial plus a book that covers microcontrollers for beginners. This starts with the basics and goes right through to creating your own embedded projects.

It includes a main board that can accept extra modules as you need them:

microcontroller programming kit picture

It also has a Microchip PICKit3 emulator and programmer to debug and download code, a training board, USB interface and LCD. More details are available here:

MICRO-X Microcontroller Kit

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