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ImageCraft
01-15-2009, 10:00 AM
Want to get started on C or know someone who does? Want an extra Prop demo board practically for free? Visit our website http://www.imagecraft.com, click on "Hardware," then "Special Price Bundle Kits" for details.

Buy now and often http://forums.parallax.com/images/smilies/smile.gif

// richard

// EDITED: see later post: buy a compiler, get a Prop Demo board for free.

Post Edited (ImageCraft) : 1/16/2009 9:45:27 PM GMT

heater
01-15-2009, 12:55 PM
I was about to post a question about ImageCraft C so I'll do it here.

Before ImageCraft C was launched there was much talk on the forum about it and other ways to get C on the Prop. After the launch I have not seen much talk in that vein. No wizzy objects in C coming up or projects/problems using it discussed.

What happened? Is anyone doing C on the Prop ?

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For me, the past is not over yet.

BradC
01-15-2009, 02:37 PM
Hippy managed a very nice version of LCC targeted at a special VM he wrote. I believe that and ICC are the only two known ways of C on the propeller thus far.

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Cardinal Fang! Fetch the comfy chair.

jazzed
01-15-2009, 02:48 PM
I've made some contributions. I think the current audience is more interested in spin though. Hippy said C would shine with PropII. That might be the case because the LMM model is byte hungry relatively speaking, and memory is a constant headache. Spin however slow it is, is memory efficient, and if one needs selective speed in prop you can't beat PASM ... it's just a pain in the arse to write some days. If C generated spin bytecodes, that might be an interesting optimization for space. Still without enough memory, some things are just not possible. I really like Prop in the hobby market and small apps, but there are too many limits otherwise.

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--Steve

heater
01-15-2009, 02:53 PM
@BradC: Shame on you. I've been able to run C code on the Prop since before either of those two were available. Via my 8080 emulation and the BSD C compiler :)

See the "CP/M for the Propeller anyone ?" thread. Not only that but Pascal, PL/M, Fortran, Algol etc etc is possible.

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For me, the past is not over yet.

BradC
01-15-2009, 02:56 PM
heater said...
@BradC: Shame on you. I've been able to run C code on the Prop since before either of those two were available. Via my 8080 emulation and the BSD C compiler :)



Sorry about that, suitably chastised I shall go out the back and saw myself in half as punishment.

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Cardinal Fang! Fetch the comfy chair.

rjo_
01-15-2009, 03:03 PM
Richard,

I've committed myself to and am quite excited about my ProPPhone project. One thing is really obvious... either I'm going to need something like a modified SuperDos as an operating system or something like ICC with it's large memory model.

I can download the demo, examples, etc... but I'm a complete C idiot, do you have a book that can be purchased separately?

Nice website... great offers.

Rich

heater
01-15-2009, 03:04 PM
Only joking...Please don't do that we need you.

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For me, the past is not over yet.

waltc
01-16-2009, 01:56 AM
The Prop in its current form isn't friendly to compiled languages period so it doesn't surprise me in the least that C hasn't taken off.

Its also why you don't see any other compiler vendor offering to port their tool sets to the Prop.

Mike Green
01-16-2009, 02:50 AM
waltc,
What do you mean by "isn't friendly to compiled languages period"?

If you're referring to the limited memory space in the cog, that's not going to change.

I think you're not seeing much in the way of compiler vendors porting their tool sets is that the size of the Propeller's customer base is small and 3rd party vendors are competing with a free toolset (Spin + assembler). ImageCraft took quite a chance on porting their tool set and they haven't had a lot of business as far as I know. I'm sure they understood that they're positioning themselves for the Prop II with its larger hub memory.

Phil Pilgrim (PhiPi)
01-16-2009, 03:37 AM
I think there's a general perception afoot that CPUs which don't directly support stack frames in hardware are unfriendly to high-level compiled languages. This, of course, is a misperception. While such CPUs may be less friendly to compiler writers than those that have the fancy stack features, languages themselves are CPU-agnostic. A compiler writer could get C to run on a universal Turing machine, if he were clever enough; and, except for a severe speed hit, the C programmer need be none the wiser.

-Phil

ImageCraft
01-16-2009, 07:48 AM
A bunch of stuff here, so lets see...

Propeller C as a strategic product for us. Traditionally, software tools sales have always been challenging at the best of time, hence you do not see too many tools companies. With the Propeller, Mike is absolutely correct in that the starting pool size is small and it's tough to compete with free. When we released the compiler, people complained about the lack of low cost hobbyist version, so we released the -NC version for $99, then people complained that they will "never buy it" without floating point support, so we added that (to the STD version). I am sure there are people now clamoring for this and other features to make it just so much better.... and that could be right. One never knows what features will be the tipping point to make a best seller product. All I know is that we will listen to customers and potential customers, and continue to make our products more compelling. Hopefully one these days, the Propeller will get popular and the user base gets big enough and the floodgate will open.

// richard

Mark Swann
01-16-2009, 08:26 AM
Richard:

I admire your patience.

That brings to mind a comic strip panel done by Gary Larsen showing two vultures perched on a tall cactus in the hot dry desert with no carrion to be found for miles around. I believe one vulture turned to the other and said "Patience, hell. I'm about ready to kill something."

Humourously yours,

Mark

ImageCraft
01-16-2009, 08:38 AM
As there is no other commercial C product for the Propeller, I can't even "kill something" http://forums.parallax.com/images/smilies/smile.gif

ImageCraft
01-17-2009, 04:42 AM
rjo_ said...
Richard,

I've committed myself to and am quite excited about my ProPPhone project. One thing is really obvious... either I'm going to need something like a modified SuperDos as an operating system or something like ICC with it's large memory model.

I can download the demo, examples, etc... but I'm a complete C idiot, do you have a book that can be purchased separately?

Nice website... great offers.

Rich


Hi Rich, no separate book yet. What exactly is your requirements with ProPPhone? There are several ways to enhance ICC, before PropII. One possibility is the XMM-C chip with slapping some extra RAM chips on a Propeller. The modification to the ICC LMM kernel is trivial and this would allow tons of program space. Would this help?

ImageCraft
01-17-2009, 05:27 AM
Hmm... where's the BIG GAINT FLASHING FONT when I need them? http://forums.parallax.com/images/smilies/smile.gif

SPRING PROMOTION!!!

You thought the bundle prices were good, wait til you read about this new promotion: for a limited time, buy a Propeller C compiler (either STD or NC), and get a Propeller Demo Board for ... $0. That's right, $0. What better time to start C programming on the Propeller?

Hurry, as they like to say, while supplies last.

Chuck Rice
01-17-2009, 05:41 AM
ImageCraft said...
Want to get started on C or know someone who does? Want an extra Prop demo board practically for free? Visit our website http://www.imagecraft.com, click on "Hardware," then "Special Price Bundle Kits" for details.

Buy now and often http://forums.parallax.com/images/smilies/smile.gif

// richard


When you fail to make your tools cross platform, you cut out a percentage of your user base. Too bad. I would be interested in a cross-platform version.

D.P
01-17-2009, 06:34 AM
I would buy the professional version and contribute necessary resources if I could get an psam driver for the ENC28J60 chip and I had a good chance to get this micro IP stack ported to the Propeller. Maybe I'll just have to wait for PropII

http://www.sics.se/~adam/uip/index.php/Main_Page

simonl
01-18-2009, 08:32 AM
@Richard: Too good to pass-up! I've just ordered http://forums.parallax.com/images/smilies/smile.gif Now I just need to find time to learn C!

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Cheers,
Simon
-------------------------------

www.norfolkhelicopterclub.com (http://www.norfolkhelicopterclub.com)

You'll always have as many take-offs as landings, the trick is to be sure you can take-off again http://forums.parallax.com/images/smilies/wink.gif
BTW: I type as I'm thinking, so please don't take any offence at my writing style http://forums.parallax.com/images/smilies/smile.gif

Ale
01-18-2009, 05:35 PM
simonl: Learinig C is not very difficult, especially if you leared before something like Pascal, Java, or similar. (BASIC excluded). There are tons of tutorials on the net and plenty of books. I'd recommend you do all the simple excercises like variable assigment, arrays, value passing, pointer passing before you embark in something like structures (unless you know Pascal or Java). C really opens the door to many possiblities.

Richard: Those are nice deals!

simonl
01-19-2009, 09:11 PM
Thanks for the encouragement Ale.

I've had "An Introduction to 'C'" by Petersen gathering dust since c.1992, so now I can finally prove to my wife that I keep all this 'clutter' for a reason!

Also; I've been pointed to a very good introductory text at Leicester University (http://www.le.ac.uk/cc/tutorials/c/).

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Cheers,
Simon
-------------------------------

www.norfolkhelicopterclub.com (http://www.norfolkhelicopterclub.com)

You'll always have as many take-offs as landings, the trick is to be sure you can take-off again http://forums.parallax.com/images/smilies/wink.gif
BTW: I type as I'm thinking, so please don't take any offence at my writing style http://forums.parallax.com/images/smilies/smile.gif

Ale
01-20-2009, 12:46 AM
From what I saw of the course you posted, it seems that following all guidelines (doing the exercises, using a debugger...), it should be quite straightforward.

jazzed
01-20-2009, 12:49 AM
Simon,

I recently audited an introductory C programming class so that I could be a more useful tutor at the college. There are some points I got from the experience that you might find useful.

1. Use·a C programming development tool in the learning environment that is easy to understand. I think Richard has this covered pretty well, but all tools have a learning curve. Good alternatives are GNU (Linux/Cygwin),·Bloodshed (Windows), or Microsoft VC 2008. If your tool has a debugger, it will be easier to understand your program.

2. VC 2008 has a nasty habit of creating non-standard main by default and this initially confuses C language students. Best to create an "Empty Project" if you want to use the standard main(...) function. It has the best debugger though.

3. Many students don't grok the great value that using white-space indents bring for·brace {}·body code, loops, or conditionals. You will do this out of habit because Spin requires it. C is of course not indent sensitive, but human eyes are :)

4.·Always have a clear idea of what you are going to do before you start writing code!· Document in the comments the general ideas/goals of the file in plain English (British or American ok :) at the beginning of each file. Define what the program will do. Define input/output/processing features·(variables and statements automatically come from this feature analysis). Describe steps (algorithms) for solving problems with the language.

5. Almost anybody·can write programs who can write the steps for acheiving simple to moderate tasks.

The link you mentioned is indeed a nice little introduction to C.

Best of luck.

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--Steve

hippy
01-20-2009, 02:52 AM
I don't personally like C and don't use it much, but having said that I've had no problems using it as if it were a high-level assembler ( PIC rather than Prop ). The basics are pretty simple to get to grips with, and you can take it from there. I'd recommend looking at examples of C for simple micro use rather than C for desktop use to start with. Look at stuff which is simple rather than written by experts who know every trick in the book - Exactly how I'd recommend learning Spin in fact !

SRLM
01-20-2009, 03:34 AM
For witting desktop C (or C++), I particularly like Code::Blocks. It's free and fully featured (debugger, projects, etc.).

simonl
01-20-2009, 04:35 AM
WOW! Loads of great words here guys - many thanks. Now; if only I can get my current (web) project finished - and stop reading this forum (LOL) - I might actually get to learning!

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Cheers,
Simon
-------------------------------

www.norfolkhelicopterclub.com (http://www.norfolkhelicopterclub.com)

You'll always have as many take-offs as landings, the trick is to be sure you can take-off again http://forums.parallax.com/images/smilies/wink.gif
BTW: I type as I'm thinking, so please don't take any offence at my writing style http://forums.parallax.com/images/smilies/smile.gif