File Size: 30624 KB
Print Length: 838 pages
Publisher: Course Technology PTR; 1 edition (December 29, 2008)
Publication Date: February 1, 2013
X-Ray: Not Enabled
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Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
Best Sellers Rank: #1,008,116 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store) #48 in Books > Computers & Technology > Hardware & DIY > Microprocessors & System Design > PIC Microcontroller #9665 in Books > Computers & Technology > Computer Science #18316 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Computers & Technology
I have read fairly major parts of the book, and looked at a fair amount of the code.In general, the code is well-enough documented.The kernel code is pretty simple too - which is as it should be. You want an RTOS to be simple and stripped down.The book goes into a lot of detail that is useful to a beginner. You can learn a lot about embedded systems from this one book, but a knowledge of C and any assembly language would really help.Having actual device driver code is useful, too, both because you have running code and as examples of device drivers. You can compare the code to the hardware registers and better understand why specific choices are made in register bit selections.The only reason I have not yet used this RTOS is we are on a tight deadline on a PIC24 project and I do not have time until the project is done. I have over 34 years experience in the computer field, with the last 25 in embedded systems.If my actual experience with the running code is good, we are going to make this RTOS a basic toll in our toolbox. I also like the choice of the MPLAB C compiler, which is ANSI compliant, unlike the CCS compiler.The book could use a few more schematics, and deal with issues like power monitors (external supervisors), etc. These are the things that differentiate a standard embedded system from a really good one.The book also does not seem to take into account the errata for the various chips. It could have the errata on a few major chips, and talk about the work-arounds. This would give the reader a sense of the types of hardware bugs that can occur and how to deal with them. Beginners do not normally think about these types of problems, so some examples would be a good start.
As a student of computer and control systems engineering, I am constantly looking for good books based on microcontrollers and electronics. Most of the books that I have seen, up to this point, have neglected to mention several important components regarding either the software or hardware portions of microcontrollers causing me to find another book to supplement the previous book. In all, I wind up having to use 5 or 6 different books to get a full understanding of the microcontroller theory and operation.However, I recently came across the "Microcontrollers From Assembly to C Using the PIC24 Family" by Professors Robert Reece, J.W. Bruce, and Bryan Jones. This book encompasses all of what 6 books did for me. I certainly wished that I had came across this book first!The one thing that really struck the home run for me on this book was that it has/uses excellent examples. It details what each instruction does and literally points out what its function is -- and it does this in both C and assembly! And if that is not enough, it compares the C code to the assembly instruction. VERY IMPRESSIVE.The explanations of how microcontrollers work, specifically the PIC24 family, is such that a person with little to no experience can easily grasp the concepts. This book is also a fantastic reference for the more experienced microcontroller users. I personally have worked with the Atmel 8051 and Cypress' PSoC. I got this book because I wanted to expand my knowledge of embedded systems.Whether you are a hobbyist, or a student dealing with microcontrollers, or an expert in the field, this book is a great tool to have regarding the understanding of the PIC24 microcontroller. I am very pleased. Thank you professors Reese, Bruce, and Jones for doing such a great job!
As a student of Dr Reese, I can attest that this book is the closest thing you will get to a university course in printed form. There is a dizzying amount of information available about the PIC24, only some of which is useful. Though useful, the tutorials and manuals distributed by Microchip are extrememly terse and dense. They are a sharp contrast to this book, which lucidly walks through the concepts needed to begin development for the microcontroller. Every step, example, and concept is clearly explained; the information that you would have spent hours Googling for (to find a *decent* writeup anyway) is all here, curated by professional electrical engineers.A few notes.First, if you are familiar with C, you will have a very easy time with this book, as it assumes you know a little bit of C. If you know C++, that will do fine.Second, for our class, we are using the dsPIC33EP128GP502 (in a DIP package of course). These are pin-compatible with the chip the book uses. If you are a student you can likely get some samples from Microchip for little to no cost.Third, once you've completed the course, the book has enough useful information (and suitable diagrams cribbed from Microchip's documentation) that it is a fantastic reference manual.My only complaint is that the bootloader interface software that is supplied with the book is *not* compatible with Linux, which disappointed me, perhaps more than it should have. However, if you're using Windows, this isn't a problem. Additionally, the code is open source (this pleased me greatly!) so perhaps it could be ported.Overall, there's no reason you shouldn't buy this book if you're interested in PICs.
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