Category: Electronics

What’s an SoC? Defining system-on-chip is harder than you think.

As gadgets get more advanced, the technology inside them has been subtly changing. Not too long ago, microcontrollers were the mainstay of most battery-powered gadgets and appliances around the home. But over the last decade or so this has started to shift, and ever more devices are now based upon system-on-chips (SoCs). But what exactly is this new class of...

Arduino vs. Raspberry Pi: 9 Crucial Differences You Need to Know

A lot of newcomers ask which is best: Arduino or Raspberry Pi? There’s no “right” answer to that question. It depends entirely on your needs, because even though they look similar and cost roughly the same, it’s like comparing apples with oranges.  There are a lot of differences between Raspberry Pi and Arduino. No-one has the time to read the...

Microprocessors vs. Microcontrollers vs. SoCs: All You Need to Know

  What does the word “processor” mean, nowadays? People use it to talk about a bewildering array of microprocessor technologies, from humble 8-pin microcontrollers to today’s massively integrated, multi-die packages that keep pushing the boundaries of the smartphone revolution.  Once upon a time there were CPUs. And then there were microprocessors (MPUs), quickly followed by microcontrollers (MCUs). And finally there...

Build an ATtiny44/24/84 Programmer Using an Arduino Nano

This tutorial will demonstrate how to build a programmer that can directly flash Atmel’s ATtiny range of microcontrollers, using only an Arduino Nano and a few additional parts. The programmer will work unmodified with the ATtiny44, ATtiny24 and ATtiny84, and is easy to adapt to the ATTiny25/45/85 by reconfiguring the breadboard wiring. Why Would I Use a Raw AVR Micro?...