Great website and excellent book-recommendations from David Prutchi to anyone considering working or wishing to work in biomedical engineering design, research & development or even if they just want an insight into how the stuff works. www.prutchi.com
For anyone interested in developing medical instrumentation using PIC-based microcontroller systems (for a college project, for example) then you could try: www.microchip.com
(Free PIC Data, Application Notes, S/W Dev Tools, etc) www.rfsolutions.co.uk
(Cheap In-Circuit Development tools, etc) www.crownhill.co.uk
(Project Development Tools, PIC Devices, Components, etc) www.ccsinfo.com
(Cheap C Compilers, H/W Development tools, etc) www.labcenter.co.uk
(Schematic Design, PCB, etc)
I develop mid-range Microchip PIC microcontroller-based stuff using products from these companies but there are loads out there.
A colleague of mine borrowed the system to develop an ECG simulator based on a design of his, a year or so ago for a college project, and was able to develop the code for basic simulator very quickly indeed. Hardware was simplified using the on-board capabilities of the PIC.
I use the “JW” EPROM programmable mid-range PIC devices but the newer PICs use flash-memory and simpler programming hardware so development systems are now really cheap. An ICE is not really required anyhow. David’s book probably goes into the choice of PIC and Tools for development.
Just for information Microchip provide the MPLAB development environment, including assembler, PIC device simulator, and cut-down versions of PIC-BASIC and C-Compiler, and cheaper programming and development options are available that don’t have to use more sophisticated tools - perfectly adequate to develop a simple ECG simulator no doubt. Just that it might take longer to get things working that’s all.
Also consider the PIC BASIC-Stamp and the Scenix microcontrollers – these may come with programming tools, etc, in a single package are readily available and are really cheap hence ideal for purchasing to complete a college project.