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'[PIC]: 16F877 datasheet version A and B compared:'
2000\11\02@143438 by farmerpentium

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It was with some irritation that I printed out the 1999 datasheet
DS3029B, which replaces version A of the previous year.  Irritation
because I already have the older version, and it took 5 hours for my
inkjet to print out the full new version with me attending to turn the
sheets over.

I could have stuck with the older version if had only been advised
where any changes had been made.  But the Appendix A: Revision history
simply made the terse and misleading comment "FLASH EEPROM access
information", and so forced me to print out and compare the versions,
then transfer my handwritten notes into my new copy.

<PIC16F877 1999 datasheet:  DS3029B> The new datasheet gives a much expanded description of the Parallel
slave port functioning.  This is vital new information.

The new version Appendix A: Revision History  says "FLASH EEPROM
access information."  This is not even a descriptive sentence! I compared the chapters dealing with reading and writing Flash EEPROM
and they are laid out differently but say the same things and include
the same code snippets.  So there are no information changes here.

In the details of the new version I can find no corrections to errors
the older one, as far as I can see, but it tidies up text in some
places and standardises the presentation.  These are trivial changes.

Three flowcharts describing I2C have been removed, and the amount of
text dealing with I2C  increased.  The Mid Range Reference Manual
section 17 duplicates all 3 of these flowcharts, thus no information
is being lost.

The new datasheet also includes the full description of the
Instruction Set, not just a summary.

If Microchip are reading this, I'd point out that my pencilled notes
give Mid Range Reference Manual section references and specific AN
references published in the Embedded Control Handbooks for further
details.  Also in the margins on the SFR summary pages I include page references
to the full descriptions of operation of these registers found around
the datasheet.  Also my pencilled notes include an open-ended list of all places I can
search for more information, including the CD ROM application notes
and 3rd party publications and web pages.
I also include notes about the PIClist on the notes pages of my
datasheet.

I hope this information helps.

Best

Peter



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2000\11\11@065317 by Robert Rolf

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Peter wrote:
>
> It was with some irritation that I printed out the 1999 datasheet
> DS3029B, which replaces version A of the previous year.  Irritation
> because I already have the older version, and it took 5 hours for my
> inkjet to print out the full new version with me attending to turn the
> sheets over.

So why not just read the new version on your screen and look
for changes that way?

> I could have stuck with the older version if had only been advised
> where any changes had been made.  But the Appendix A: Revision history

Yes, the lack of 'change bars' is something that has always irritated
me. They are trivially easy to add to the document. Most composers
will do it automatically for you.

{Quote hidden}

Including the same inefficiencies? (do the movlw 55h BEFORE you
turn off ints. That way you have less dead time). The interrupt
code example (12-1) has inconsistant syntax, is redundancy filled and
errored (where's the FRS restore instruction?).
Is it any wonder that newbies get so frustrated with the PIC when the
example code has fatal flaws that bite them later.


> In the details of the new version I can find no corrections to errors
> the older one, as far as I can see, but it tidies up text in some
> places and standardises the presentation.  These are trivial changes.
>
> Three flowcharts describing I2C have been removed, and the amount of
> text dealing with I2C  increased.  The Mid Range Reference Manual
> section 17 duplicates all 3 of these flowcharts, thus no information
> is being lost.

But those flowcharts are really useful to have when learning I2C.

> The new datasheet also includes the full description of the
> Instruction Set, not just a summary.

I guess that's one improvement worth having.

> If Microchip are reading this, I'd point out that my pencilled notes
> give Mid Range Reference Manual section references and specific AN
> references published in the Embedded Control Handbooks for further
> details.

Good idea.

> Also in the margins on the SFR summary pages I include page references
> to the full descriptions of operation of these registers found around
> the datasheet.

So did I. Funny how two different people would do that. Maybe it's
a 'good idea' eh? Too obvious for Microchip?

> Also my pencilled notes include an open-ended list of all places I can
> search for more information, including the CD ROM application notes
> and 3rd party publications and web pages.
> I also include notes about the PIClist on the notes pages of my
> datasheet.

I also found it annoying that I had to look up the 'debugger resources'
used. My A version says 'TBD'. I had to search far and wide to find out
that it uses 70, 1EB-1EF. Would have made more sense to use 7F and
1EA-1EE (since 7F aliases to 1EF on some parts).

> I hope this information helps.

It sure does. Thanks for taking the time to share with us.

Robert

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