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M. A. Parker c2015

Blinky One, the blinking LED, shows how to use the C/C++ language in Atmel Studio (AS) to control the Atmel MCU ports for input and output (i.e., IO) and reveals the ‘secret’ life of the Atmel PORT, PIN and DDR registers. Blinky One uses the circuit platform constructed for the previous Startup 2 as well as the cable adapter constructed for the first Startup [0]. In all cases, we provide abbreviated reviews of the circuit platform and the adapter for convenience. The next Startup develops Blinky Two in order to illustrate the use of sensors with the pull-up resistors internal to the MCU as well as discuss and demonstrate bit operations. As with all the Startups, this instructable focuses on ‘getting started’ with an Atmel Microcontroller MCU [1]. Working with the individual MCU offers significantly lower cost for each project with much better control over the size, function and power requirements compared with the MCU-on-a-board systems such as Arduino [2] and the Rhaspberry Pi [3]. The Startup #5 Instructable will convert the Blinky circuit and software (actually more like firmware once installed) for use with the Lifeline that, although easy, provides means to correct clock settings for an MCU. Startup #2 described and set the fuses in the ATTiny2313A using the constructed platform. It should be pointed out that the Lifeline does not correct non-clock fuses - a high voltage programmer (12V) would be required as discussed in Startup #5.

**NOTE: For those wanting the PDF of this instructable, download the attached PDF using the below link rather than the one automatically generated by the website - that automation does not maintain the association of the captions with the pictures.

A good first Startup project consists of programming the ATTiny to blink an LED in order to become familiar with some ATTiny programming and operation. Blinky One uses the same circuit as constructed on the experimenter’s board and so nothing needs to be changed in hardware. Blinky One uses the first secret of Atmel Input/Out – the Data Direction Register DDR. And actually, LEDs make an inexpensive debugging tool for more complicated programs. Startup 4 will make a second Blinky that demonstrates the use of an input pin. Startup #5 will show the Lifeline program which is essentially the Blinky program but running on steroids at a much faster rate. In all cases, we first write and load the program [4] into the MCU, then view the effects on the LED, and then afterwards, explain the C++ statements used in the programs. The references [5-11] include some example language references for C/C++.

We begin the programming and coding. While this Instructable explains each coding statement, the reader might still want to consult some of the many excellent C/C++ references [5-11].

Step 1: The Circuit

Figure 2: Schematic diagram of the Blinky circuit replicated from Startup #2.

By this point, two separate components should have been constructed: the programming cable adapter and the circuit on an experimenter’s board (Figure 2). These should have been tested in Startup #2 [0] by setting the fuses for the ATTiny2313A.

Make sure the breadboard circuits has been connected as shown in Figure 2. Be careful that the 9v battery positive terminal connects to the regulator input and NOT the 5v rail at the top of the breadboard. Keep in mind: do not reverse bias the MCU (or else kaput), do not reverse bias the capacitor (or else stinky kaput), do not reverse bias the LED (or else maybe nothing). The capacitors and resistors either have the value printed on the side or else they have codes as shown in References [12,13].

For the LED, choose Red or Green for use with the 2.2k resistor shown in the schematic. Blue will be ok but you might want to change the resistor to 1.5k to make it brighter. It is always good to have an ample supply of LEDs and resistors.

As a point worth remembering, do not connect any powered 5v device to an MCU running on less than 5v since generally an over voltage of 0.5V – 0.7V is enough to smoke the MCU.

Step 2: Create the Lifeline Solution If Not Previously Created

This Step should be skipped if the Lifeline solution was previously created in Startup 2. The abbreviated procedure appears below.

1. Connect the programmer to the USB port and start Atmel Studio 6 (AS6).

2. Click the menu sequence Files > New Project. Choose C++Executable.

3. Next to ‘name’ type ‘Atmel Lifeline’. Check the box next to ‘Create Directory for Solution’.

4. The Device Selection Dialog pops up. Select ‘ATTiny 2313A’. Click OK.

5. Select the Atmel menu sequence: Project > Atmel Lifeline Properites.

Select the left hand Device tab and verify Device = ATTiny2313A

Select the Tool tab and Select your programmer. The ISP Clock of 125 kHz will work – this value must match the one set in Tools > Device Programming. It must be less that ¼ of the clock rate of the MCU to be programmed.

6. Connect the 9V battery to the experiment’s board circuit and connect the programmer to the board through the adapter cable previously constructed.

7. Select the Atmel menu sequence: Tools > Device Programming. Verify that the Tool box displays your programmer and the device box displays ATTiny2313A, and the acronym ISP should appear in the 3rd box. Read the Target Volts – it should be within a few percent of 5V. Set the ISP Clock to 125 kHz to match that in Item 5 above.

8. Save and close the solution. Note: The full solution can be saved by clicking the icon showing multiple disks in the tool bar or else use File > Save All.

Step 3: Open the Existing Lifeline Solution

As mentioned in previous Startups, the Atmel Studio AS essentially uses the Microsoft Integrated Development Environment IDE for the Visual Studio VS. The files produced by AS (and VS) are bundled together to form a Solution rather than a program. Open the existing Atmel Lifeline solution as follows. We follow this procedure each time we open an existing solution (except we don’t mess with the fuses once they have been set).

1. Connect the programmer to the USB port and attach it to the experimenter’s breadboard through the cable adapter constructed in Startup #1. Connect the battery to the 9v batter clip.

2. Start Atmel Studio. Open Lifeline using the menu sequence:

File > Recent Projects and Solutions > Atmel Lifeline.atsln

3. Select the Atmel menu sequence: Project > Atmel Lifeline Properites.

Select the left hand Device tab and verify Device = ATTiny2313A

Select the Tool tab and verify your programmer. The ISP Clock of 125 kHz will work – this value must match the one set in Tools > Device Programming. It must be less that ¼ of the clock rate of the MCU to be programmed.

4. Select the Atmel menu sequence: Tools > Device Programming. Verify the Tool box names your programmer and the device box names ATTiny2313A, and the 3 rd box should show ‘ISP’. Click the APPLY button. If AS wants to upgrade the programmer firmware then go ahead and do it. If an error occurs then refer back to Startup#1 [0]. Next, read the Target Volts – it should be within a few percent of 5V. Set the ISP Clock to 125 kHz to match that in Item 5 above. Do not close the dialog – proceed to Item 5 below.

5. If the fuses have not been set for the current ATTiny2313A, then verify the following settings by clicking the fuses tab on the left. Refer to Startup #2 for details. Caution Caution Caution: Do not unnecessarily play with the fuses! And definitely don’t look cross-eyed at the ‘Lock Bits’ at this time – they are used to prevent the viewing of flash content – different MCUs have different lock bits.

SELFPRGEN : No Check; DWEN: No Check; EESAVE: No Check;

SPIEN: Checked; WDTON: No Check; BODLEVEL : Disabled;

RSTDSBL: No Check; CKDIV8: No Check; CKOUT: No Check;

SUT_CKSEL : INTRCOSC_8MHz_14CK_0MS

Step 4: Atmel Secret: DDRs and PORTs and PINs

This current Step takes a break from construction and test. People often ask (and should ask) how to toggle the voltage level (i.e., logic state) on an MCU port pin to make an LED blink (Figure 1) and how to read a digital input.

Often with respect to a microcontroller (MCU) or processor, one speaks of ‘port’ meaning a group of wires that either brings data out of the MCU or into the MCU. For an integrated circuit, the ‘wires’ refer to the physical pins on the IC. The Atmel AVR MCUs generally have ports with 8 pins each since the MCU uses 1 byte wide data busses. The ports are often referred to as Input-Output ports or as IO ports or as just IO; these are the digital IO ports. The Atmel MCUs can have many such IO ports that are labelled as A, B, and so on. One often finds the Atmel key words of PORTA, PORTB, PORTC, PORTD. Please reread this paragraph and notice that a physical port refers to the physical pins on the IC. Atmel uses the keywords of PORT and PIN (note caps) in reference to Output and Input and registers. By way of definition, a register [14] is a type of memory location (perhaps better termed ‘storage location’) with special relations/interconnectivity to hardware. The register is not considered to be part of program and variable memory although it might be possible to read, write, manipulate and transfer the register contents.

Now here’s part of the secret. In Atmel jargon, the word PORT (as used in PORTB for example) refers to a digital OUTPUT port whereby the MCU will generate a voltage on the wires exiting the MCU. The Atmel word PIN (as used in PINB for example) means the MCU places the group of physical wires in a high impedance state and the MCU can read the digital voltages (0 or Vcc where Vcc = 5 for the experimenter’s board setup). Perhaps more importantly, PORTB and PINB refer to the same group of physical wires on the MCU. A similar comment applies to PORTA and PINA except the physical pins will general differ from those to which PORTB and PINB refer. So how does one determine whether a physical pin on the MCU is an input or an output for the MCU?

Let’s say this again with other words. There’s a difference between PORT and PIN in ATMEL using C/C++. The word PORT refers to a register that provides outputs to the MCU physical pins. The PORT register stores 1s and 0s and the MCU translates these logical values to voltages of Vcc and zero, respectively, at the physical pins. The word PIN refers to a register that receives the input from a group of physical pins. The MCU will translate the voltages of Vcc and zero on the physical pins to logical 1s and 0s, respectively, for the PIN register. Notice the word physical refers to the actual short wires protruding from the MCU package. We often use the word ‘port’ in reference to the collection of 8 pins; this should be read as physical port and physical pins.

OK, so how does one specify whether a physical pin is an input or an output for the MCU? Atmel AVR uses the concept of Data Direction Register DDR. Each group of wires forming a physical IO port has such a DDR and labeled as DDRA, DDRB, DDRC, DDRD and so on. A DDR is an 8 bit register (i.e., memory/storage location) similar to the corresponding register for the 8 bit IO ports. A value of 1 in a DDR position corresponds to an output for the corresponding physical pin. A value of 0 produces an input on the corresponding physical pin. As an example, DDRB corresponds to physical PortB. When DDRB bit #i has the value of 1 then pin #i in physical PortB will be an output for the MCU. On the other hand, when DDRB bit #i has a zero value then physical pin #i in physical PortB will be an input. Perhaps more concrete examples would be better.

Example 1: Single digital output and seven digital inputs

Consider physical PortB on the ATTiny2313A and consider Table 1 below. The top row lists the physical pins on the 20pin DIP package as shown on the first page or two of the Atmel data sheet. The second row shows the Atmel name for the physical pin.

Table 1: Example showing ATTiny2313A Pin 12 as an output and the other port B pins as inputs.

Physical Pins

19

18

17

16

15

14

13

12

Name

B7

B6

B5

B4

B3

B2

B1

B0

DDRB

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

1

Physical PortB

In

In

In

In

In

In

In

Out

Now suppose that we have first set DDRB=1 as shown in the third row of Table 1. The DDRB register would ordinarily be set prior to reading or writing PortB. The MCU reads the DDRB register and sets the physical pin #12 as an output. Because the other bits in DDRB are zero, the remaining physical pins 13-19, which are named B1-B7, are all inputs. At this point, the program could read or write the PortB since the input and outputs have been set.

Example 2: Two output pins and 6 inputs

Table 2: Example with pin 13 and 14 as outputs and the rest inputs.

Physical Pins

19

18

17

16

15

14

13

12

Name

B7

B6

B5

B4

B3

B2

B1

B0

DDRB=00000110

0

0

0

0

0

1

1

0

Physical PortB

In

In

In

In

In

Out

Out

In

The third row of Table 2 shows that we have first set DDRB = 00000110 in binary. In C/C++ this is written as DDRB = 0b110 where the ‘0b’ means ‘binary’. The leading zeros have been omitted for simplicity to form the ‘110’ part but they can be included in the C statement as DDRB = 0b00000110 if desired. The same value can be written in decimal as DDRB=6. And it can be written in hexadecimal as DDRB = 0x06 where the ‘0x’ stands for hexadecimal. The physical PortB therefore has pin13 and pin 14 as outputs and all other pins as inputs.

Comment: Those physical pins that are outputs will be able to generate either of two states, namely, zero and Vcc. For our project, the experimenter’s board uses Vcc=5v while the Lifeline to be constructed in a plastic box uses Vcc as the battery voltage, which can range from 4.9 volts to 3 volts depending on the charge state of the batteries. The output voltage can then be used to control other components. Atmel physical pins can either source or sink 40mA of current. To verify, refer to the Electrical Characteristics in the spec/data sheets such as http://www.atmel.com/Images/doc8246.pdf. So the output pin can provide (i.e., source) bias current when the physical pin has on output voltage of +Vcc or it can receive current (i.e., sink) when the physical pin has 0v.

Example 3: Write values to outputs

Ok so let’s take a couple examples for using DDRB, PORTB and PINB. First consider the PORTB.

Table 3: An example making IO Port B pins outputs.

Physical Pins

19

18

17

16

15

14

13

12

Name

B7

B6

B5

B4

B3

B2

B1

B0

DDRB

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

Physical PortB

Out

Out

Out

Out

Out

Out

Out

Out

PORTB=0b0100100

0

1

0

0

0

1

0

0

Physical Pin Result

0v

Vcc

0v

0v

0v

Vcc

0v

0v

In the example of Table 3, we first set DDRB = 0b11111111 = 0xFF =255 decimal so that physical pins 12-19 are all outputs for the MCU. Next suppose we write the following byte to the output register for B as PORTB=0b0100100 as shown in the sixth row of Table 3. Note ‘PORTB=’ means to set the PortB output register to a value – it’s easier to think of PORTB as a variable and ‘PORTB=’ means to set that variable equal to a value, which the MCU translates to voltages on the physical port. When PORTB has logic ‘1’, the output should exhibit the physical realization of the ‘1’ which is Vcc or, for our experimenter’s board,

Logic 1 => Vcc=+5volts

Using logic 1 in this manner allows for a great many different platforms to use the same coding so long as the MCU knows how to transform the logic values into voltages. So comparing the sixth and seventh rows of Table 3 shows that those physical pins to which a logic 1 has been written will exhibit a voltage of Vcc. The other pins have zero volt potential. IMPORTANT POINT: The characters “PORTB=” in this case means to WRITE something to the physical pins in PortB (actually this first writes to the PORTB register and then the logic values are translated by voltage generating circuitry in the MCU). In this way, the MCU can control external circuitry.

Example 4: Read values from input pins

Now consider another case where we first set (in our program) DDRB = 0b00000000 (binary) = 0x00 (hex) = 0 (decimal) as in Table 4. Here all of the physical pins 12-19 will be inputs because of all the zeros in DDRB.

Table 4: Example showing Pins 12-19 are all inputs.

Physical Pins

19

18

17

16

15

14

13

12

Name

B7

B6

B5

B4

B3

B2

B1

B0

DDRB

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Physical PortB

In

In

In

In

In

In

In

In

Applied Volts to Pin

0v

0v

0v

0v

0v

Vcc

0v

Vcc

PINB Contents

0

0

0

0

0

1

0

1

Further suppose some external agent (such as me or you) applies voltages to the MCU physical pins 12-19 as shown in the sixth row of Table 4. IMPORTANT POINT: Using “=PINB” means to read the voltages present on the physical pins corresponding to IO PortB and convert them to logic values. This would be used in a C/C++ assignment statement such as ‘x = PINB’. The contents of the variable x (i.e., PINB) can be seen in the last row of Table 4 to have the value

x = 0b00000101 (binary) = 0x05 (hex) = 5 (decimal)

The MCU converts Vcc on an input pin to the logic value of 1 and zero otherwise. In this manner, the MCU can read the states of external circuitry.

Example 5: Mixed IO and Pull-up Resistors

There remains another possible situation whereby an IO port has both Input and Output and the MCU performs a write to the port. What happens? For a pin that is an input, the write (using PORTB etc) can enable or disable an internal pull-up resistor depending on whether the corresponding bit in the write is a 1 or 0 respectively. Refer to Startup 4. Reading a port (using PINB etc) of mixed IO (some pins in the port are output and the rest are input) will read the input when the pin is set as input and it will read the previously written value (which is still in the PORTB register) if the physical pin is an output. Refer to Startup 4 or to the user manual for details [0,1].

Now to code the Blinky One project.

Step 5: Blinky One – Ready the Coding Page

Now it’s time to start coding but we first need to ready the coding page named ‘Atmel Lifeline.cpp’. Once the Atmel Lifeline solution has been opened, the file name ‘Atmel Lifeline.cpp’ will appear on the right hand side of the IDE in the ‘Solution Explorer’ panel and possibly as a tab under the AS tool bars.

  1. Make sure the programmer is connected to the Experimenter’s board and also to the USB port. Make sure the power is applied to the experimenter’s board.

  2. Start AS6

  3. Click File on the top menu strip, place the mouse pointer on Recent Files and select “Atmel Lifeline” (or open it using Open). On the top AS6 menu strip, click ‘Project > Atmel Lifeline’ and then click ‘Tool’ in the left menu and make sure the programmer is set to your programmer (either AVRISP or Atmel ICE) and set ‘ISP Clock’ to 125kHz. Close this dialog.

    Next, click on Tools > Device Programming found in the top AS6 menu strip. Make sure that your programmer is selected (either AVRISP or Atmel ICE) and the correct device appears (ATTiny2313A). Click Apply next to the ISP box. Click the Read Signature and Voltage buttons and the voltage measured by the programmer should be within a few percent of 5V. Now set the slider ‘ISP Clock’ for 125 kHz and then click the SET button. Close out of the Device Programming dialog. The procedure of this item should be carried out each time a solution is opened in AS. If the two ISP Clocks do not have the same value, then AS will not properly load the software/firmware into the MCU.

  4. Make sure that the Atmel Lifeline.CPP (for C++ language) or Atmel Lifeline.C (for C language) coding forms can be seen. It will have /* at the top with the name of the program. The code window can be viewed by either clicking the Atmel Lifeline.cpp tab just under the icons in the top tool bar, or else double clicking the Atmel Lifeline.cpp file name appearing on the right hand side under Solution Explorer.

  5. Remove the line reading “// To Do:: Please write … code.” - it is a comment line.

    The lines between /* and */ at the top are comments and do not compile with the rest of the program. Any single line with // is also a comment and does not compile. Any text starting with // after the semicolon is a comment and does not compile.

  6. Do not turn off the circuit and do not disconnect the programmer and do not close AS6.

Step 6: Blinky One – Enter the Blinky One Program

Modify the Atmel Lifeline program to look like the following although the colors might vary but the color is not important at the moment - just type the text. The line '#include ' should already be present as should a few others. Make sure to observe and keep the case of the text (i.e., retain the capitalized and non-capitalized text). Make sure to accurately place the semicolons at the end of the lines. Make sure to keep all braces and parentheses.

#include

#define F_CPU 8000000UL

#include

int main(void)

{

DDRB = 0b00000001; // or 0x01; should have 8 bits

while(1)

{

_delay_ms(1000);

PORTB = 0b1;

_delay_ms(1000);

PORTB = 0x00;

}

}

The meaning of the lines of code will be described later below. For now, we want to see the LED blink.

Step 7: Blinky One – Compile and Run

Figure 3: The small, right-pointing triangle can be clicked instead of pressing F5.

Several methods can be used to compile and run Blinky or any other program. Use method 'b' but be aware of method 'a'.

  1. Compile, Error Check, and Create File (F7)

    The program can be checked for errors without loading the program into the MCU by clicking on the Build menu item at the top of AS and then click the Build Solution item in the drop down list. The result of the compile will appear in a window at the bottom of AS6. Notice the two tabs at the very bottom: Error List and Output. If all is successful, the Output window will show 'Build succeeded'. If there is a typing error then the Error window will show the error and the line number. The errors need to be corrected for the program to run. If your code compiled successfully, consider adding an error to see what happens when the program compiles but remember to correct the error! By the way, warnings should be corrected too. Building the solution will also save the solution text to file as well as the Hexadecimal file. Some people prefer to program the MCU with the Hex file rather than going through the trouble of compiling the entire solution again.

  2. Load, Compile, Error Check, and Create File (F5)

    Click on the small triangle on the Tool bar (Figure 3, fifth icon from the left - not the one with the two vertical bars). The same effect can be had by pressing F5 on the keyboard. AS6 will perform the same operations as in 'a' above but in addition, if there aren't any errors, the compiled program will be loaded into the MCU and it will run. If there are errors, correct them.

    At this point, the LED should be blinking. Take note of the LED brightness both 'on' and 'off'. We will see the Lifeline program produces brightness somewhere in between 'on' and 'off'.

Step 8: Blinky One – LED Brightness

Figure 4: Voltage and current definitions for the Resistor-LED combination.

Blinky switches the LED-Resistor combination (schematic of Figure 2) from +5V to 0V and back with a result similar to that in Figure 1. Take note of the brightness at each level. We will need to be able to see the difference in LED optical power between Blinky and Lifeline. Call the brightest emitted power Pmax. Obviously, when Pin 12 has zero voltage then the LED will have zero output power so the minimum output optical power Pmin will be Pmin=0.

Now, what would happen if a voltage V=2.5 volts were to be applied to the LED-Resistor combination? One might think the output power would be Pmax/2. But this is not the case because an LED has a threshold voltage Vth, which is the approximate voltage dropped across the LED when forward biased. The applied voltage V must be larger than Vth for the LED to light [15-16].

For an analysis, assume that the power P of the emitted light is proportional to the current I through the LED as given by

P=kI

where k is a positive constant. To predict P, we need to know the current I. The current I through the LED is identical to the current through the resistor. If Vr is the voltage drop across the resistor then the current I through the resistor R will be given by Ohm's Law

I = Vr/R

The voltage drop across the resistor (Figure 4) will be the difference between V and Vth, namely Vr=V-Vth, and so Ohm's Law becomes

I=(V-Vth)/R

As a result, the emitted power from the LED depends on the voltage V applied to the LED-Resistor combination

P = k I = k ( V - Vth ) / R for V > Vth

P = 0 for V < Vth

where Vth is the approximate voltage drop across the LED. The threshold voltage Vth can range from 1 volt for IR LEDs to more than 3.5 volts for deep UV LEDs. In other words, threshold voltage is roughly inversely proportional to the emission wavelength Vth ~ 1/wavelength. Blue might have Vth = 3.3 and red might have Vth=1.8. So according to the previous two equations, the emitted power is not proportional to the applied voltage. In fact, if Vthr = 2.6 and the voltage applied across the LED-resistor combination is V=2.5 then approximately zero power will be emitted from the LED which is definitely not ½ Pmax.

Now on the other hand, what will be the brightness if we cycle the LED-resistor combination very fast (1.5MHz) between +5 volts and 0 volts? Our eyes cannot distinguish the discontinuity of light changes faster than around 20-30Hz. The Lifeline operates at a much higher frequency of 1.5MHz. In such a case, we expect our eyes/brain to register approximately an average of the maximum emitted power Pmax (when Vcc is applied across the LED-Resistor combination) and the minimum emitted power Pmin=0 (when zero volts is applied to the combination). Assume that the time 'on' is the same as the time 'off' (i.e., Duty Cycle D = 1/2 or 50%) so that the average should be

Pave = (Pmax+Pmin)/2 = (Pmax+0)/2= Pmax/2

The analysis is only approximate for high modulation rates since the LED can have capacitances and material properties that should be included, and our eyes might not respond as assumed. The switching between rails (0V and Vcc) is similar to Pulse Width Modulation PWM with a duty cycle D=0.5 (i.e., 50%). In fact, duty cycles D other than 50% can be included as

Pave = D * Pmax + (1-D) Pmin or P = D * (Pmax-Pmin) + Pmin

The Lifeline uses the LED-resistor combination as an indicator of the proper operation of the MCU. The LED will not APPEAR to be 'on' all the way (i.e., Pave won't have the value Pmax) and it won't APPEAR to be off all the way (i.e., we won't have Pave=0) because our eyes/brain can only see something related to the average for fast blinking.

Step 9: Blinky One – Meaning of the Coding Statements

The references provide some very good books and articles for learning C and C++ for the Atmel MCUs [5-8, 11]. The items below essentially follow the order found in the Binky One program.

  1. #include: A compiler directive to include a header file into the code with specified functions and methods. Most of the header files can be viewed by placing the mouse cursor over the name and right clicking and selecting 'go to implementation'.

  2. avr/io.h: Consists of other header files (i.e., .h extensions) for the specific MCU [17]. The header files include keywords such as DDRB, PORTB, PB0, TIMSK, and TCNT0. Apparently io.h cannot be viewed with the 'go to implementation' described in Item 1 above.

  3. util/delay.h: Methods to delay program execution. Includes one to delay milliseconds and another for microseconds.

  4. #define x y: A compiler directive to substitute the text y whenever the text x is encounter in the program. Often the compiler definitions are used so that the program can be easily changed without searching through the entire code for all the places to change a parameter when needed.

  5. #define F_CPU 8000000UL: The compiler will substitute 8000000UL for the text 'F_CPU' whenever encountered in the code. NOTE: the delay.h header file requires the F_CPU to be defined prior to importing delay.h since the delay.h file uses the F_CPU. The 8000000UL refers to the clock speed. In our case, we are using 8MHz selected by the fuses. However, F_CPU of 16000000 would be correct for a 16MHz crystal for example. The UL at the end refers to 'unsigned long' integer.

  6. int main(void): main is a function that every C and C++ program must incorporate. The program execution starts at the 'main' function. The key word 'int' indicates that 'main' can return an integer (16bits). Functions have arguments in parenthesis (). In this case, 'void' indicates the function does not use a parameter. If we had the keyword void preceding the function name as for example in 'void main(void)' then the function would not return a value - it would be a subroutine.

  7. Braces { }: The range of code defining the function 'main' is enclosed in { }. In fact, most C and C++ coding structures (for example, ' switch' and 'if') use braces { } to indicate their scope. Make sure to include them!

  8. Semicolons: Coding statements are terminated by the ';'. The statement can run across several text lines as needed.

  9. _delay_ms(x) : A method (i.e., function) defined in delay.h that delays program execution by x milliseconds. In our case, x=1000 and so the delay is 1000mS which is 1 second. Notice tha the parentheses surround the parameter x.

  10. DDRB = 0b00000001: Data Direction Register for Port B. B0 will be an output and the rest will be inputs. For the ATTiny 2313A, the B0 is Pin12.

  11. PORTB = 0b1: Sets B0 to 1 which translates to Vcc at the physical pin (12) corresponding to B0. A simpler and preferred way to write this statement is PORTB = 1; or PORTB = 0x01;

  12. PORTB = 0x00; Sets B0 to 0 which translates to 0v at the physical pin (12) corresponding to B0. This could also be written as PORTB = 0;

  13. while(x): The MCU will execute the statements between the ensuing two corresponding braces { } so long as the statement x is true. The x might question whether two variables a and b are equal such as a==b (note the double equals). In our case, we want the LED to continuously blink so the statements between the braces must continuously execute. We could write 'while(true == true)' where '==' is the C/C++ operator checking logical equality (a single '=' means to assign something to a variable such as in z=3). The statement 'while(true==true)' would cause the infinite loop that we want since 'true' is always true. In our case, 1 is taken to be a 'true'. So 'while(1)' will cause the infinite loop because this is the short cut for writing 'while(true)' which is a shortcut for writing 'while(true=true)'.

Step 10: Optional: Experiment With the Clock Rate

If you feel adventuresome, reprogram the clock fuse to change the clock rate. But caution! some settings can render the MCU inoperative until the Lifeline has been completed in Setup 5. The crystal can be added and tested. Just remember to undo any changes made to the software and circuit once finished and prior to continuing to the next startups. Keep in mind that the Blinky One program has been coded to have the LED 'on' for 1 second, 'off' for one second and then repeat.

Complete Step 2 and repeat Step 3 except for Item 5. Do not close the Tools > Device Programming dialog.

1. Operate at 4MHz internal clock rate

In the Tools > Device Programming, select Fuses on the left menu. Find SUT_CKSEL and select INTRCOSC_4MHz_14CK_4MS for example. Click the Program button. The LED should now be 'on' for 2 seconds and 'off' for 2 seconds. Why? Because the timing statement '_delay_ms(1000)' relies on the statement F_CPU to provide the correct clock rate. If you change the Blinky One statement to read 'F_CPU=4000000UL' then the LED will once again blink 'on' for 1 sec and 'off' for 1 second. Be sure to reset the fuse and F_CPU to

SUT_CKSEL = INTRCOSC_8MHz_14CK (or similar)

F_CPU=8000000UL

2. Crystal 16MHz

Refer to the crystal setup described in Startup #2, Step 2. Briefly connect the crystal to MCU pins 4 and 5 of the MCU (there isn't any polarity). Connect a 22pF capacitor from MCU pin 4 to ground, and another 22pF capacitor from MCU pin 5 to ground. In the dialog for Tools > Device Programing choose the Fuse menu on the left side. Set SUT_CKSEL=EXTXOSC_*MHZ_XX_14CK_4MS. Click Program. The LED should blink 'on' for 1/2 second and 'off' for 1/2 second. The correct rate for blinking can be fixed by changing the Blinky One statement to F_CPU=16000000UL. Once finished investigating this option, return the clock fuse F_CPU as

SUT_CKSEL = INTRCOSC_8MHz_14CK (or similar)

F_CPU=8000000UL,

and remove the crystal and two 22pF capacitors.

Step 11: Parts List

The parts should already have been accumulated in Startup 1 and 2. However, the list will be repeated here in brief for convenience.

  1. Adapter: The construction of the programmer adapter appears in Startup 1 (see Reference [0]). In brief, the adapter is constructed using a piece of double row male header available from Amazon.com for example. Clip off a piece of the header so as to have 2 rows, 3 columns. Solder 6-inch 24guage plastic-coated solid wires to the short side of the pins. Apply quick dry epoxy to the side of the header with the short pins being sure to cover part of the wires (no more than about 1/4 inch and being careful not to put any epoxy on the longer side of the pins. Label the wires according to Figure 2 in this text.

  2. Atmel Programmer: ATATMEL-ICE-BASIC at Mouser.com or Digikey.com for about $55.

  3. Atmel Studio AS6 (free): http://www.atmel.com/tools/atmelstudio.aspx

  4. ATTiny 2313A: Digikey.com ATTINY2313A-PU-ND at $1.70 (pDIP package, 20pins).

  5. Startup #5: 20 pin socket for DIP package (0.3" row spacing, 0.1" pin spacing), low profile: Digikey.com ED3054-5-ND or AE9998-ND for about 30cents. Similar sockets can be found on Amazon.com.

  6. LM7805 Regulator: Digikey.com LM7805CT-ND or LM7806ACT-ND for about 70Cents.

  7. Electrolytic Capacitor 10uF, 50V: A large variety of capacitors but aluminum type will work ok:

    Digikey.com: P997-ND (mfr. number: Panasonic ECE-A1HKS100) about 30cents. Actually Amazon has a capacitor kit with both ceramic and electrolytic for $20 called "Joe Knows Electronics 33 Value 645 Piece Capacitor Kit" which looks like a reasonable set.

  8. Ceramic Capacitor 0.1uF 50V: Again, a large variety available here. Digikey.com 399-4454-1-ND (Kemet C410C104M5U5TA7200) for about 25cents. See also the kit listed in #7 above.

  9. Optional: Two Ceramic Capacitors 22pF (25-100V ok) such as Digikey.com 490-8663-ND at 34 cents.

  10. Optional: Purchase a crystal from the HC-49US series or a series with a similar profile. Capacitance loads in the range 18-22pF more or less and less than about 50 Ohm equivalent series resistance ESR will work ok. Amazon has nice packages of crystals as found by searching Amazon for 16MHz Crystal or 8MHz Crystal etc. Here are some from Digikey.com:

    16MHz Crystal from Digikey 300-6034-ND at 54cents each.

    20MHz Crystal from Digikey 300-6042-ND at 54cents each.

    8MHz:

    8MHz Crystal from Digikey X164-ND or X1093-ND at 81cents each (but ESR=80).

    8MHz Crystal from Digikey X100-ND 70cents each (but larger profile)

    Amazon.com: Search 8MHz Crystal - good selection, low profile, good ESR

    10MHz Crystal from Digikey 887-1010-ND at 33 cents each.

  11. LED: Amazon has a package of 50 LEDs of various colors for $10 (see Microtivity IL 185). Ebay has many.

  12. Resistor: Search Amazon.com for 'resistor kit'. The SparkFun 500 1/4W resistor kit and the E-Projects - 400 Piece, 16 Value resistor kit look OK. Here are the values listed for Digikey:

    1K Digikey.com: CF14JT1K00CT-ND 10cents each

    1.5k Digikey.com: CF14JT1K50CT-ND 10cents each

    2.2k Digikey.com: CF14JT2K20CT-ND 10cents each

    2.7k Digikey.com: CF14JT2K70CT-ND 10cents each

    3.3k Digikey.com: CF14JT3K30CT-ND 10cents each

    4.7k Digikey.com: CF14JT4K70CT-ND 10cents each

    5.6k Digikey.com: CF14JT5K60CT-ND 10cents each

  13. Resistor 10k required for the RST and 1k for using Lifeline with 3.3V.

    1k Digikey.com: CF14JT1K00CT-ND 10cents each

    10k Digikey.com: CF14JT10K0CT-ND 10cents each

  14. Optional for Startup #4: Photo-transistor. Order from either Digikey.com or Amazon.com

    Digikey: Everlight PT334-6C 38cents each

    Amazon: Search 'Everlight PT334-6C' about $5 for ten.

  15. Optional for Startup #4: Photo-resistor from Amazon. Just about any will work ok.

    Amazon.com search for 'photoresistor GM5539'. Cost $5 for ten.

    Digikey PDV-P8001-ND by Advanced Photonics mfg # PDV-P8001 for $2.22

  16. 9v Battery clip: Radio Shack or search amazon.com for '9v battery clip' (10 for $2).

    Digikey.com: BS6I-ND 60 cents.

  17. The plastic housing for the Lifeline is constructed from a battery holder for 4 AA batteries that also has a switch. These come from Radio Shack or Amazon.com. For amazon, search for 'plastic battery holder 4 AA switch'. Make sure the case holds 4 AA batteries and has a switch. I found a deal of five cases for $8.

  18. Experimenter's breadboard: There are many types and sizes and places to purchase.

    Amazon.com: MB-102 Point Prototype PCB breadboard for $5 includes wires

    Amazon.com: MB-102 830 Solderless Breadboard for $4 with wires. 8-32 screw 1.5" long.

  19. Screw 8-32 1.5inches long: check HomeDepot.com or Lowes.com. Any 8-32" screw longer than 2" will be ok so long as it is later cut to a length of 1.5". You need two 8-32 nuts. Many times the 8-32 screws come with either a large flat head (truss head) or the smaller round heads (round head). Find the round head since these fit better with the spring. The truss head would likely need to be filed down.

  20. 24 gauge solid core copper wire. 0ld telephone/intercom wire and intercom wire will work and has many colors. The 24ga has a diameter of approximately 0.51 mm but it's not critical.

    Amazon.com: search on '4 conductor 24 awg cable solid copper' either 60cents/foot or $20 for 100 feet. Ebay.com has nice 24 ga. solid core wire with multicolors. Search: 'solid 24 gauge wire kit'. Home Depot: 100 ft. 6-conductor Indoor Phone wire for $20. I have not checked this for solid core copper. For soldering the ICs and components, you might want to use 24ga stranded copper wire since it is more flexible and less likely to pull loose from the joint. Amazon.com: search for '24 gauge stranded wire'. Nice 6 spool kits (150' total) will come up for $20.

Step 12: References

[0] The Atmel Startup articles, Instructables.com, 2015, M. A. Parker, Angstrom Logic:

A. Atmel Startup 1: Atmel Studio and Programmer

B. Atmel Startup 2: Microcontroller Circuits and Fuses

C. Atmel Startup 3: Blinky One - PORT, PIN, DDR and LED

D. Atmel Startup 4: Blinky Two - Switches, Pull-Up Resistor, and Bit Ops

E. Atmel Startup 5: Lifeline

As a note, these Instructables made extensive use of the free HTML conversion tool at http://word2cleanhtml.com/ by cutting and pasting into the tool and then cutting and pasting the results into the Instructables page using the HTML view.

[1] The complete Atmel manual for the ATTiny 2313A: http://www.atmel.com/Images/doc8246.pdf.

More information on the ATTiny2313A can be found at

http://www.atmel.com/devices/ATTiny2313A.aspx .

[2] Arduino products and learning: http://www.arduino.cc/

[3] Raspberry Pi products and learning: https://www.raspberrypi.org/

[4] Coding vs. Programming http://workfunc.com/differences-between-programmers-and-coders/

[5] The classic masterpiece: B.W. Kernighan, D. M. Ritchie, "The C Programming Language", Prentice, 2nd Ed. (1988). Available on amazon.com for $7.

[6] Good C++ review after reading the Kerninghan-Ritchie book and some background in OOP. "C++ Super Review" written by The Staff of Research and Education Association, published by Research and Education Associated (2000). ISBN: 0878911812. Amazon.com for $8.

[7] A good C++ tutorial site can be found at http://www.cprogramming.com/tutorial.html#c++tutorial

[8] Good overview of Atmel concepts and C but uses the AVR Butterfly:

J. Pardue, "C Programming for Microcontrollers Featuring ATMEL's AVR Butterfly and the free WinAVR Compiler", Published by Smiley Micros (2005). ISBN: 0976682206. Amazon.com

[9] Keep in mind that avrfreaks.net has tutorials and project help

http://www.avrfreaks.net/forum/newbie-start-here?name=PNphpBB2&file=viewtopic&t=70673

http://www.avrfreaks.net/forums/tutorials?name=PNphpBB2&file=viewforum&f=11

[10] SparkFun website has a variety of tutorials ranging from electronics to software:

https://learn.sparkfun.com/tutorials/tags/concepts

And a blinky here: https://www.newbiehack.com/MicrocontrollerTutorial.aspx.

[11] GCC reference:

http://www.gnu.org/software/gnu-c-manual/gnu-c-manual.pdf

https://gcc.gnu.org/onlinedocs/

https://gcc.gnu.org/onlinedocs/libstdc++/

[12] Capacitor codes: http://www.wikihow.com/Read-a-Capacitor

[13] Resistor color code https://en.wikipedia.org/?title=Electronic_color_code

[14] Register definition:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Processor_register

http://whatis.techtarget.com/definition/register

http://homepage.cs.uri.edu/faculty/wolfe/book/Readings/Reading04.htm

[15] LED information: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LED_circuit

[16] LED information: http://www.gizmology.net/LEDs.htm

[17] Content of avr/io.h: http://www.nongnu.org/avr-libc/user-manual/io_8h_source.html

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More by AngstromLogic:Atmel Startup 1: Atmel Studio and Programmer Atmel Startup 2: Microcontroller Circuits and Fuses Atmel Startup 3: Binky One – PORT, PIN, DDR and LED 
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