Integrated development environment for a microcontroller systems laboratory

Manuel A. Perez-Quinones, Jose L. Cruz-Rivera

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

1 Scopus citations


The MC68HC11 is one of the most popular microcontroller families in existence. Software simulators and development boards are routinely used in undergraduate education in order to familiarize students with MC68HC11 applications development. Simulators offer graphical user interfaces that allow students to visualize all the inner workings of the MC68HC11. Development boards provide all the necessary tools to write code for the MC68HC11 and to interface physical devices to the chip. Unfortunately, development boards used in academia (e.g., MC68HC11 EVB) rely on command-line driven interfaces that result in steep learning curves that must be overcome in the course of an academic quarter or semester. This situation has led many academic institutions to opt for the use of simulators rather than development boards in their courses. The problem with this approach is that software simulators do not allow students to experience the issues that arise in the software-hardware integration step of microcontroller-based system implementations. In order to address this situation, we have designed an integrated development environment (IDE) for MC68HC11 that uses a Graphical User Interface to interact with a low-level development board debugger (Buffalo Monitor). The IDE seeks to improve on the drawbacks of the simulator and command-line interfaces by implementing an easy to use graphical user interface to the most common commands used by the students in our Microprocessors course. This paper presents the design and implementation of the first prototype of this IDE. Also the paper presents the results of a preliminary evaluation of the IDE and plans for future extensions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings - Frontiers in Education Conference
Pages12c6-11 - 12c6-16
ISBN (Print)0780356438
StatePublished - 1999
Externally publishedYes
Event29th Annual Frontiers in Education Conference: 'Designing the Future of Science and Engineering Education' - San Juan, Puerto Rico
Duration: Nov 10 1999Nov 13 1999

Publication series

NameProceedings - Frontiers in Education Conference
ISSN (Print)0190-5848


Conference29th Annual Frontiers in Education Conference: 'Designing the Future of Science and Engineering Education'
CitySan Juan, Puerto Rico

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Education
  • Computer Science Applications


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