Eric's Friends' PIC Projects

Rich Ottosen has compiled a very long list of what he refers to as "Stupid PIC Tricks". Here are some of the more interesting ones that he has actually designed and built: Schematics and code for some of these may be available directly from Rich. I don't have info on any of them, so don't send me email requesting them. Eventually some of them might be available here, but don't hold your breath.

If you want more information on any of Rich's projects you can give him a call at (303) 892-9352. Or, you can email him at richard at (change the at to an '@'). But you're more likely to get his attention with a phone call.

Don't send me email about these, as I don't know anything about them. Talk to Rich.

Jim Phillips (jim at has made an interesting X-10 monitor gadget using a PIC16C84. It monitors most kinds of X-10 commands sent to up to 48 devices (3 house codes). It directly monitors the 120 KHz signals superimposed on the AC line.

The TW-523 module isn't adequate for this purpose. While it allows you to receive some of the control codes, it hides others.

It uses a 2 line by 24 character LCD display. The programmable characters of the LCD module are used to create vertical bar graphs.

Jim designed a programmer for the PIC16C84 that connects to a PC parallel port. It is more complicated than David Tait's programmer, but meets Microchip's requirements for voltage control for production programming. It also is designed to be a bit more robust with regard to preventing rogue software from damaging parts.

Jim is also doing some stuff with PICs and flux gate magnetometers.

Gary Lawrence used a PIC16C84 for a video frame counter which is used to step through and count video frames from a VCR. Five frame counters are provided. He started from Rich Ottosen's Serial LCD Terminal code, and in the process fixed several bugs and made general enhancements to that. Rich helped with the debugging since this was Gary's first PIC project.

Currently Gary has interfaced the PIC directly to the pause button of a VCR, but it could be done by IR or a wired control input (for instance using code from my Remote control for Sony A/V equipment project.

Back to Eric's PIC Projects page
Back to Eric's home page

Last updated December 14, 1998

Copyright 1995, 1996, 1998 Eric Smith