Embedded System Basics

What is Embedded System?

An embedded system is a combination of computer hardware and software,and which makes system dedicated for an application or specific part of an application or product or part of larger system.Embedded system are designed to do some specific task,can’t perform multiple task like general purpose computer.The program instructions written for embedded systems are referred to as Firmware and stored in read-only memory or flash memory chips.

“It is any device that includes a programmable computer but is not itself intended to be a general purpose computer”

Wayne Wolf 

“Embedded Systems are the electronic systems that contain a microprocessor or a microcontroller,but we do not think of them as computers-the computer is hidden or embedded in the system”

Tom D.Morton

History of Embedded System


  • An early mass-produced embedded system was the Autonetics D-17 guidance computer for the Minuteman missile, released in 1961. When the Minuteman II went into production in 1966, the D-17 was replaced with a new computer that was the first high-volume use of integrated circuits.220px-Autonetics_D-17
  • In 1960s the Intel 4004, was designed for calculators and other small systems but still required external memory and support chips. In 1978 National Engineering Manufacturers Association released a “standard” for programmable microcontrollers, including almost any computer-based controllers, such as single board computers, numerical, and event-based controllers.intel-4004-3-638
  • In 1970 and 1971,Gary Boone of Texas Instruments was working on quite similar concept of intel microprocessor and invented the microcontroller TMS1802NC. Boone designed a single integrated circuit chip that could hold nearly all the essential circuits to form a calculator;only the display and keypad were not incorporated.


  • In 1976 Intel developed its first microcontroller 8048.The original IBM PC keyboard used an 8048 as its internal microcontrollerKL_Intel_P8048H

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