|Introducing the Microchip PIC18F252|
Many people would like to get started with microcontrollers, but don't know how to begin. That's what this page is all about -- how to get started. With a microcontroller you can do things that would be difficult to do with discrete logic. Besides its power, you can easily "change your mind" with a microcontroller -- something you can't do with discrete logic.
The PIC isn't for every project. It won't replace a PC, or even a larger processor. But for many jobs it is just the right size, inexpensive, and doesn't require much in the way of support hardware.
What are some things people have done with a PIC?
There are several steps you need to take to get started:
1) Select a PIC
2) Assemble the tools you need
3) Learn to program
In truth, if you just want a learning experience, you can download a free simulation environment from Microchip and practice programming without spending any money or buying any chips at all. Of course, its just a simulation, so your pretend program won't do anything, but you can still learn the basic concepts.