The value of assembler language programmers [was RE: Algol vs Fortran was RE: VHDL vs Verilog]

Ethan Dicks ethan.dicks at
Tue Feb 9 19:34:21 CST 2010

On Tue, Feb 9, 2010 at 8:24 PM, Chuck Guzis <cclist at> wrote:
> On 9 Feb 2010 at 18:13, e.stiebler wrote:
>> That's why I love to embedded stuff. And even here, any "reasonable"
>> Real Time OS of today, can't really boot with 48 kbytes of memory.
> Been on the AVR forums much lately?  It's getting more difficult to
> find someone who writes in assembler.  I suspect it's almost
> impossible on the ARM uC area.

I myself have only ever programmed AVRs in C (including older parts
that had a mere 2K of code space), but I've done some PIC and MCS51
assembler in the past 5 years.  Not much point to it usually, though.
That much optimization is rarely needed in a part that has limited I/O
and very limited memory.  Occasionally, though, tasks like video
timing or less-sloppy clock precision can benefit from some
well-formed assembler.

It wouldn't surprise me to learn that ARM microcontrollers were
"impossible" to program in assembler.  Workstations turned that corner
when they went from CISC to RISC - I know very, very few RISC
assembler programmers, but dozens who have done CISC assembly.


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