Welcome to Symbola, the site that likes to share…

Here are some of the project categories you will find on this site: –

About

On this site you will find a wealth of information covering electronics and computer science, old and new technologies. Much of the information will be in the form of downloadable PDF’s. If you would like to get in contact, please feel free to do so. All information is provided free of charge and free from advertisements.

Here is an overview of some of the topics covered on this site: –

The Raspberry Pi is a Single Board Computer (SBC) that runs a full Operating System (OS), normally a Linux distribution. The operating system runs from a microSD card, which is the main storage used by the system. It can be used as a normal desktop computer with a monitor, keyboard and mouse or used in “headless” mode, i.e. where no monitor, keyboard or mouse is attached.

Like most computer systems the Raspberry Pi has the common interfaces, such as HDMI (monitor), Ethernet port, USB ports… etc… But it also has a 40 pin General Purpose Input Output (GPIO) connector, this can be used to interface electronic projects to.

The more recent versions of the Raspberry Pi also have Wi-Fi and Bluetooth built on.

For more info visit: –
www.raspberrypi.org

and of course: –
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Raspberry_Pi

Arduino is an organisation that produce open-source hardware and software. They design and manufacture microcontroller-based products and develop an associated Integrated Development Environment (IDE).

Some of their more popular products are: –

  • Arduino Uno – R3
  • Arduino Mega 2560 – R3
  • Arduino Nano

There are many more, which one to use depends on the project at hand.

The Arduino IDE is used to program the microcontroller on the Arduino, this is free to download, and versions run on Windows, Mac OS X and Linux. There is also the Arduino Web Editor, this online version allows coding to be done in a web-browser and sketches (source-code) to be saved online.

They also develop shields which add extra functionality, such as: –

  • Ethernet
  • USB
  • Motor control
  • GSM

They also produce many more shields.

For more info visit: –
www.arduino.cc

and of course: –
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arduino

Microchip design and manufacture Integrated Circuits (IC’s) such as microcontrollers, memory devices, digital and analogue devices.

Some of their popular products are: –

  • PIC microcontrollers
  • AVR microcontrollers
  • ARM based microcontrollers and microprocessors
  • Memory storage devices

And many more…

For microcontroller development they supply a variety of hardware, such as: –

  • PicKit 3 & 4 (low cost programmers / debuggers)
  • ICD 3 & 4 (higher specification programmers / debuggers)

And much more…

They also supply software, such as: –

  • MPLAB X IDE
  • Various C compilers
  • Code generators

And much more…

For more info visit: –
www.microchip.com

and of course: –
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microchip_Technology

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Arm develop and supply microprocessor cores as Intellectual Property (IP), they do not physically make microcontrollers or microprocessors but instead licence these cores to third parties, to use in their own designs.

There are many companies that licence ARM cores, far too many to list here…

Here are some popular suppliers of ARM based microcontrollers: –

  • STMicroelectronics
  • NXP
  • Microchip

To compliment the vast array of ARM hardware, there is a vast array of development hardware and software, both commercial and open-source.

Arm based microprocessors are used in a range of products, notably the Raspberry Pi.

For more info visit: –
www.arm.com

and of course: –
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arm_Holdings

C is a powerful general-purpose programming language. It is fast, portable and available on many platforms.

C can be used to program many devices, such as: –

  • Computers (servers, desktops, laptops… running Windows, Mac OS, Linux, Morph OS, Amiga OS…)
  • Raspberry Pi (which normally runs a Linux distribution)
  • Microcontrollers (Arm based, Microchip, MOS 6502, Motorola 680×0…)
  • Android devices (smart phones, tablets…)

Basically, if it can be programmed, it can probably be programmed in C…

There is a lot of information on the internet regarding C programming…

Some good sites are: –

www.cprogramming.com
www.learn-c.org
www.mycplus.com
c-language.com

and of course: –
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/C_(programming_language)

Old, not obsolete…

This site focuses mainly on computer systems from Commodore International (1954 – 1994), In particular, the Commodore VIC-20, Commodore 64 and the Amiga range.