25. Embedded Systems Programming

“‘Unsafe’ means ‘Somebody may die.’”

—Safety officer

We present a view of embedded systems programming; that is, we discuss topics primarily related to writing programs for “gadgets” that do not look like conventional computers with screens and keyboards. We focus on the principles, programming techniques, language facilities, and coding standards needed to work “close to the hardware.” The main language issues addressed are resource management, memory management, pointer and array use, and bit manipulation. The emphasis is on safe use and on alternatives to the use of the lowest-level features. We do not attempt to present specialized machine architectures or direct access to hardware devices; that is what specialized ...

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