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Designing Embedded Hardware [Paperback]

John Catsoulis
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)

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Paperback, Nov. 30 2002 --  
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Designing Embedded Hardware Designing Embedded Hardware 4.4 out of 5 stars (12)
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Book Description

Nov. 30 2002 0596003625 978-0596003623 1

Intelligent readers who want to build their own embedded computer systems-- installed in everything from cell phones to cars to handheld organizers to refrigerators-- will find this book to be the most in-depth, practical, and up-to-date guide on the market. Designing Embedded Hardware carefully steers between the practical and philosophical aspects, so developers can both create their own devices and gadgets and customize and extend off-the-shelf systems.

There are hundreds of books to choose from if you need to learn programming, but only a few are available if you want to learn to create hardware. Designing Embedded Hardware provides software and hardware engineers with no prior experience in embedded systems with the necessary conceptual and design building blocks to understand the architectures of embedded systems.

Written to provide the depth of coverage and real-world examples developers need, Designing Embedded Hardware also provides a road-map to the pitfalls and traps to avoid in designing embedded systems.

Designing Embedded Hardware covers such essential topics as:

  • The principles of developing computer hardware
  • Core hardware designs
  • Assembly language concepts
  • Parallel I/O
  • Analog-digital conversion
  • Timers (internal and external)
  • UART
  • Serial Peripheral Interface
  • Inter-Integrated Circuit Bus
  • Controller Area Network (CAN)
  • Data Converter Interface (DCI)
  • Low-power operation
This invaluable and eminently useful book gives you the practical tools and skills to develop, build, and program your own application-specific computers.

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Product Description

About the Author

John Catsoulis is an electronics engineer, programmer and physicist who specializes in advanced computer architectures. He is responsible for the design of over 25 embedded computer systems, and since 1996 has been Managing Director of Embedded Pty Ltd., a company that designs computers for industry, government, military and scientific agencies.


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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Designing Embedded Hardware, 2nd Ed. May 8 2006
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
I found the book to give a decent introduction to the various issues involved in embedded hardware design. I think that the book would best suite 1st year electrical engineering students since it's theoretical coverage is rather lean, but it does provide a fair amount of "real world" issues that are often missed in textbooks. The author discussed basic computer architectures and assembly programming in the early chapters followed by a couple of chapters on electrical components and power source designs. He gave a fairly good coverage of the various interfaces (SPI, I2C, RS-232, IrDA, and USB) to microcontrollers. It's handy to have this covered in a single text. The last part of the book dealt with several microcontrollers on the market (PIC, AVR, 68HC11, MAXQ, and 68000), along with a chapter on DSPs. I was a little disappointed not to find coverage on the ARM processor architecture(s) since ARM is such a popular core and the fact that there was no coverage of device driver/OS related design issues. So definitely the emphasis is on hardware rather than software embedded design.
So can you learn embedded hardware design from the book? Yes you can to some extent. Expect to use this book to round out the standard textbooks used in electrical and computer engineering (unless you're looking for a refresher) by providing you with a little bit of theory and more "real world" issues. For example, when was the last time a book on electrical engineering discussed soldering issues? (It is covered in this book.) Having said that, the author did not mention anything about very real issues such as RoHS compliance or reflow temperature profiles. The book also only gives a few references, which themselves are buried within the main text (footnotes and/or a bibliography would have been nice). Overall the book is a good read. Consider a stepping stone to becoming an embedded designer.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Designing Embedded Hardware, 2nd Edition April 21 2006
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
I found the book to give a decent introduction to the various issues involved in embedded hardware design. I think that the book would best suite 1st year electrical engineering students since it's theoretical coverage is rather lean, but it does provide a fair amount of "real world" issues that are often missed in textbooks. The author discussed basic computer architectures and assembly programming in the early chapters followed by a couple of chapters on electrical components and power source designs. He gave a fairly good coverage of the various interfaces (SPI, I2C, RS-232, IrDA, and USB) to microcontrollers. It's handy to have this covered in a single text. The last part of the book dealt with several microcontrollers on the market (PIC, AVR, 68HC11, MAXQ, and 68000), along with a chapter on DSPs. I was a little disappointed not to find coverage on the ARM processor architecture(s) since ARM is such a popular core and the fact that there was no coverage of device driver/OS related design issues. So definitely the emphasis is on hardware rather than software embedded design.
So can you learn embedded hardware design from the book? Yes you can to some extent. Expect to use this book to round out the standard textbooks used in electrical and computer engineering (unless you're looking for a refresher) by providing you with a little bit of theory and more "real world" issues. For example, when was the last time a book on electrical engineering discussed soldering issues? (It is covered in this book.) Having said that, the author did not mention anything about very real issues such as RoHS compliance or reflow temperature profiles. The book also only gives a few references, which themselves are buried within the main text (footnotes and/or a bibliography would have been nice). Overall the book is a good read. Consider a stepping stone to becoming an embedded designer.
Was this review helpful to you?
4.0 out of 5 stars Way above average April 18 2004
Format:Paperback
Some of the O'Reily books really shine and this is one of them. I'm an experienced hardware engineer, but I still got some good tidbits out of this book which is all the more impressive when you consider it's written for a relative beginner. The author does a nice job with both the content and writing style.
It covers many topics which are relatively common knowledge among experienced hardware designers but you rarely find in one book. Some of those topics I've never seen in ANY book. There's some good stuff here. That said, it's probably not the ideal book for someone who's already tackled a few successful embedded hardware designs.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good for the absolute beginner Feb. 27 2004
Format:Paperback
This book has some good information for the absolute beginner. Most of the information in this book should already be familiar to a person with some experience with Microcontroller development. Data sheets can be found on the Internet for most of the components described in this book. For everything related to the AVR Microcontroller, visit [...] They have a GNU C compiler and some cool tools and links.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Well worth the read Jan. 27 2004
By Andrew
Format:Paperback
While I don't know if I could build my own embedded device after reading just this book (I don't think I'd be able to this after pretty much any one book), I still felt like this book still delivered on that promise more so than any other single hardware book I've read. So many books gloss over details, either because knowledge is assumed (which is fine in many cases), or because the author doesn't have the detailed knowledge to begin with. And even when the data is in the book, far too often it's exactly that: book data, repackaged information from other sources (often books themselves). It's much better when the knowledge ultimately comes from the author's experiences. Most of the knowledge in this book really seems to be of the latter, and better, variety. I also thought the detailed introductions to a wide range of topics were 'just right' - not too high-level, so they glossed over important details or the underlying fundamentals of how the particular thing worked, but also not so low-level that they assumed knowledge I would have had to go find elsewhere. This goes for a lot of different protocols (RS-232, RS-422, SPI, I2C, USB, and so on) as well as technologies (what's a DSP exactly?).
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Very well done ! Way more interesting than I imagined...
I've only read half of it so far, but it's been exceptionally good to this point. I can't say enough about how informative the first chapter "Introduction to computer architecture"... Read more
Published on Jan. 16 2004 by Travis Truax
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book
This book is great for beginners. It is very informative and easy to read. I like the way the author describes timing diagrams seen in many microcontroller datasheets. Read more
Published on July 15 2003
4.0 out of 5 stars This Rating May Change
I assume I'm the real target reader for this book. I've been programming microprocessors and microcontrollers for 20+ years now, but I'm a hardware dunce. Read more
Published on July 2 2003 by Gary Kato
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent for All
This book is an exceptional text for anyone interested in electronics and microcontrollers. It provides all the basics and no prerequisites are required. Read more
Published on May 2 2003 by Michael E. Ferguson
5.0 out of 5 stars Practical guidance in easy to read format
With the enormous variety of components, processors, interfaces and architectures available for embedded designs, the learning curve seems intimidating. Read more
Published on April 27 2003 by Christian Valcke
5.0 out of 5 stars Good book for beginner
I like this book because it talks briefly about different MICs and interfaces. I gained enough knowledge to build my own embedded computer. Read more
Published on Feb. 28 2003 by preet katari
5.0 out of 5 stars Where has this book been all my career?
Though an EE by training, I've spent over a decade developing software. Of course, writing embedded software does keep me close to the hardware. Read more
Published on Feb. 28 2003 by Michael Barr
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