The Microchip Microstick
The Microchip Microstick is a flexible platform for microcontroller education using the PIC24 family. The DIP socket for 28-pin family members allow easy replacement of the CPU for trying out different family members or failure due to the type of mistakes that occur in a learning environment. An onboard PIC18 offers PICKIT debugging and programming of the CPU, making it easy for students to determine what is happening inside of their programs. The back of the board offers a socket that plugs into a breadboard, giving easy access to all pins, and thus offering maximum flexibility in terms of using the board in lab experiments. The board is compatible with our book's examples, and the optional 6-pin header on the right side of the board allows a FTDI TTL-232R-3V3 USB cable connection for serial communication. Two sources for the right-angle 6-pin header on the right-side of the board are Sparkfun.com (40-pin, cut to 6-pin length, part number PRT-00553) and digikey.com (6-pins, part number WM2737-ND). This silent video shows shows using the board with the book's examples, including using the programming and debugging aspects of the board.