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Compiler Included?
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Author:  Elspin [ Fri Jan 30, 2009 1:49 pm ]
Post subject:  Compiler Included?

Going through the VEX site looking at programming options, there's a comparison chart for what each different options has. Going through the list, this option is the only one that has the "Built-In Microchip Compiler Included" option unchecked... So what I need to know before I get this is if this means I can't use this out of the box for vex or if I need to get and install something else along with it. I did I try asking them, but they said as they didn't develop the software they can't answer the question.

The comparison chart, with the last box I'm wondering about:
http://www.vexrobotics.com/vex-robotics ... -kit.shtml

Author:  fryfrog [ Sat Jan 31, 2009 9:55 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Compiler Included?

To *program* the Vex hardware, you need the programming kit. Period, end of story. With out this, it is really just a smart-ish remote controlled device.

I believe they have a few options, you can just get the bare kit (for $50) or the kit + software for $100. In the kit + software side, I *think* there are 3 options: EasyC, RobotC and MPLAB. I would also rank them in that same order for their skill level.

You might also try ebay, where they frequently go for a little less.

I got the kit very early, when it came with EasyC as the only option. I don't think I've even installed it, a few months ago I purchased RobotC and I much prefer the environment. I'm not much of a "drag blocks around" or what ever EasyC is kind of person.

Was any of that even what you were asking?

Author:  Elspin [ Sat Jan 31, 2009 10:18 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Compiler Included?

fryfrog wrote:
To *program* the Vex hardware, you need the programming kit. Period, end of story. With out this, it is really just a smart-ish remote controlled device.

I believe they have a few options, you can just get the bare kit (for $50) or the kit + software for $100. In the kit + software side, I *think* there are 3 options: EasyC, RobotC and MPLAB. I would also rank them in that same order for their skill level.

You might also try ebay, where they frequently go for a little less.

I got the kit very early, when it came with EasyC as the only option. I don't think I've even installed it, a few months ago I purchased RobotC and I much prefer the environment. I'm not much of a "drag blocks around" or what ever EasyC is kind of person.

Was any of that even what you were asking?


Sort of, if you mean what I think you do. What I'm wondering is if RobotC will let me program for VEX AND put the program on the microcontroller the way they send it. It kinda seems like it can't because it says basically that a compiler is not included? I'm not sure what that means. If I bought it I'd be buying a starter kit with robotC as the programming kit.

I mean, if you didn't even install easy C, how did you put programs on it before then? Did you just write C++ files then run them through something else? Did you buy a compiler seperately? If so, how did you know what function names and variables to use?

Author:  fryfrog [ Sun Feb 01, 2009 2:34 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Compiler Included?

So if you buy the programming kit with any of the languages, you'll be able to write, compile and download programs to the robot. I'm not sure what implied you wouldn't be able to do this. So rest assured, if you get the $100 kit that comes with 1 of the 3 languages, you'll be fine.

RobotC has the ability to write both the master code and the user code to the Vex, I believe it either comes with it or you download it from Vex's site (been a *long* times since I set it up). Hopefully I have those terms right :)

When you are writing a program in RobotC, you just do the "compile" and "download" buttons/menu/keyboard shortcut and you are good to go. I usually compile it as I write, to make sure I'm not forgetting ; and syntax stuff, then when I'm ready just "compile + download" and watch the debug output you get while connected to the bot.

Quite nice, I think.

The one thing lacking that I *think* EasyC has (and I could be totally wrong) is computer control of the robot via the serial cable. As in, there is no way to do using the computer itself what the controller does (4 analog channels, 2 "button (digital?)" channels).

Author:  rshoop [ Sun Feb 01, 2009 6:05 am ]
Post subject:  Test the program before you download it.

You can just download the program and test it for 30 days at the site. :)

Author:  Elspin [ Sun Feb 01, 2009 4:05 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Compiler Included?

Thanks for all the help guys :). I'll definitely be using RobotC with VEX, no idea why they put that it has no compiler.

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