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PICList Thread
'[PIC]: Beginning with F877'
2004\01\12@191814 by Intosh, Ph.D.

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Hi everyone i have recently got a 16F877 chip to use with my college
electronics project and i would like to know where i can get hold of a
burner for it, or a circuit diagram so i can build one, also wots the
easiest language to program this chip, i have done some programming before
but only on smaller chips, and using flowsheets instead of proper code,
                                 thanks for youre help


- ----

I'm making just the item you need.  I need some students at a different
institution to try it out.  Your professor and I should correspond.

1.  Are you pretty comfortable talking with your professor?
2.  Do you have another student or two in the class who are of a like mind?
3.  Would you be willing to work long hours then write up your thoughts, a
real report that could change a project, not this bland & useless "the
experiment went mostly OK."
4.  Would you be comfortable discussing your work frequently with another
5.  Do you want to be part of a bigger project?

If all of these answers are "Yes" I wish you would forward this email to
your professor and correspond with me.

- -----

I am producing materials for a class titled "Instrument Design" that could
carry upper division credit and carry designations for Chemistry (Advanced
Instrumental, 2nd semester), Physics (Advanced Instrumental), and Computer
Science (microprocessors).

A snapshot of the current status of this effort may be seen in  This is currently informal, like a log book
and a desk top, and it is not yet a coherent report or release document.

I have touched on some thoughts relevant to the professor's side of the
desk today and yesterday in postings to the PICLIST, which your student
Chris can make available to you.  Those postings lead to specific CAD files
to make the PCB, and some photographs, at the above referenced URL.

I also have a suggested syllabus for my lab.  This version of the syllabus
is ambiguous in target between a standard semester course, or a series of
weekend seminars for ex-university consumption.  It is on page 8 of the PDF
file located at  This
syllabus is only a starting point for discussion, as it clearly is overly
ambitious and a bit "edgy."

I cannot introduce this to my class this spring, so I would like to put
this project in front of 2 or 3 motivated or advanced students who are not
my own and see how it goes.

- ----

The syllabus would be restricted in scope and adapted to your course needs,
however I want to keep the "design goal and signoff," "notebook" and
"submit revised design to board house" elements intact.  I get scanned
color copies of the notebook, and Chris's permission to publish them.

The student would do a substantial amount of your originally conceived project.
The communications project in the example syllabus would be changed to a
PIC programmer project.
The final project CAD files would be delivered as 2 circuit boards, the
controller board and the project board.  The board house can panelize these
and deliver 1 board, if desired.

Chris would write the firmware to program a PIC 16F877 (or other processor
of choice).  Existing 16F877 programmer firmware hosted on a Motorola
68HC11 will be provided in the Oberon language, the member of the Algol
family located after Modula-2 and before Component Pascal.  The Oberon
programmer firmware is working and mature.  A compiler exists for the
68HC11 processor (MS thesis, ETH, Zurich).  No compiler is known for this
language on the PIC processors, but this source was written with a view of
hand compiling to a different target.

- ----

I would follow the syllabus idea of giving Chris an existing board at the
beginning of the class, and having him produce a revised board at the end
of class.  I receive a permission letter to use his revisions, he receives
a permission letter to use the revised design, contingent on submitting the
report and passing your course.  I get rights to the PIC assembly
programmer source.  He keeps his choice of the revised board or the first
board, you keep the other.

There is a choice of boards available:
1.  Free, as is.  The Sept. 9, 2003 Controller board prototype.  The EAGLE
CAD files for that board are at the above URL in the zip file with the
relevant date.  That board is on the right of the photo at

This board has the bit assignments between PortD and the LEDs
scrambled.  The "lift & jumper" 74HC373 in the photograph corrects the
problem without cutting traces.  The sockets on the Rev 2 board are second
hand as-available parts.  This board is known to work with the lift &
jumper part.

2.  Assembled, working.  The Nov. 11, 2003 Controller board.  I ship my
working current prototype.  You pay $50.  I lose 2-3 weeks.  These EAGLE
files are at
on the web.

3.  Next prototype, availability in 2-3 weeks.  Tentative designation Jan.
15, 2004 Controller board.  Revised from Nov. 11, 2003 board.  Bare board
$20.  The next CAD file is ready to send.  There are a small number of
mechanical placement issues that have changed, including a change from a 2
row socket to a 1 row socket, and rotating the oscillator so the lettering
aligns with the silk screen.  I may / can still make changes due to ICSP

4.  Make your own board from my files.  Royalties waived under collaboration.

- ----

Will a couple of people make a donation to Chris's college?
Does Chris' professor have any curriculum development funding?

- ---
Aubrey  McIntosh

Version: PGPfreeware 7.0.3 for non-commercial use <>


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2004\01\13@020626 by Wouter van Ooijen

face picon face
> Hi everyone i have recently got a 16F877 chip to use with my college
> electronics project and i would like to know where i can get hold of a
> burner for it, or a circuit diagram so i can build one, also wots the
> easiest language to program this chip

Unfortunately there are no *the* answers to these questions. For a
start, read

Wouter van Ooijen

-- -------------------------------------------
Van Ooijen Technische Informatica:
consultancy, development, PICmicro products

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