Meet Dany, the first place winner of the 10th Anniversary of Compiler Development Libstock Award.
Looking at his Libstock page (pictured above), one can see that Dany's work focuses on PICs and mikroPascal. He contributed 50 pieces of code since he joined our community in 2011. And as a testament to their quality, they have been downloaded over 50,000 times. Perhaps you used some of it yourself.
Meet the man who was selected by a jury consisting of MikroElektronika's senior software & support staff members as the top Libstock contributor. Get to know a little bit more about Dany, his thoughts on Pascal vs C, his favorite libraries, challenges with PICs, but also his favorite TV shows. Here's the interview:
1) Introduce yourself a bit. What's your background, what do you do for a living? That is, what do you do when you're not contributing to Libstock?
I am a retired HW/SW developer. I worked at Philips in Bruges Belgium, in the TV development department. I am 64 years old now.
2) How did you discover MikroElektronika?
Well, my son did. After I retired he searched for a Pascal compiler for microcontrollers, because I showed interest in using PICs or other microcontroller devices.
3) What do you like about MikroElektronika compilers?
The ease of use, the number of built in tools, the possibility to add extra tools, the automatic downloading of the .hex file to the programmer (and starting it up), the “begin” “end” grouping, the large numbers of libraries available, the possibility to install additional libraries, etc…
4) Why do you prefer Pascal to C?
Pascal sources are very readable (Pascal started as a “teaching” language). In my job I used many languages on microcontrollers (a.o. assembler for 4 bits processors, PLM, C, some high level language from a university), but Pascal always stayed for me the most code developer friendly: the source-text does not looks like abracadabra as in some other languages.
5) When do you find the time to code for yourself?
Well, since I am retired, I have all the time in the world for myself (that is: if the family does not consume it).
6) How did you get into PICs? What have you learned since then?
I had the luck that in my job I learned a lot about SW development including architecture, coding and debugging, so that gave me a big advantage I suppose.
Nevertheless the start of using the PIC family was a big step for me: the PIC configuration (in some PIC’s many possibilities) was the most difficult part for me. What I learned always to do is study the PIC datasheet carefully. A lot of reasons why a project does not work reside in a mismatch between MCU configuration and hardware used.
7) What are you working on now?
Currently I am busy working on a simple LM35 library.
8) Do you have an idea what will you be spending your voucher on?
9) What's your favorite Libstock project (not counting your own)?
This is a difficult question. There are so many very good libraries, projects and examples to be found in LibStock… Well, my favorite is not really a project, it is a tool: “Timer Calculator”, also the one most downloaded from Libstock. From other tools published I like most “BitCalc” and “Datasheet Manager”. Concerning libraries and Projects: my favourite is “USB Device Library”, followed by “FixedFIFO” and “USB FPGA programmer”.
10) What's your other passion in life besides hardware & software?
Drinking coffee, going for (not so long) walks, watching crime series and films (Dexter I loved most), good food. Also watching road or building works in progress, watching science programs and programs related to space and space travel.