Microchip’s PIC microcontrollers are extremely popular and the subject of many books, but this one probably wins the prize in terms of weight. It concentrates on the PIC 16 family. As a whole, the book resembles an embedded development-training manual with the PIC as its example. It helps to know a bit about electronics—programming includes assembler and C as the book dives right into details about the chip in its overview where it tackles things like power-on reset before moving onto other PIC architectural aspects. The book switches gears to MPLAB, Microchip’s IDE. There is a CD but you can also download the IDE from Microchip’s Web site. It includes a simulator so hardware is not required. There are a couple of chapters dealing with MPLAB and the tools it provides. New embedded developers will appreciate the progression through programming techniques that are useful in general but presented with the PIC in mind. There is some discussion of hardware and specific chips. This includes the tiny 8-pin PIC12F50x. The book diverges to other programming platforms based on Basic. These include PicBasic and Mbasic. The book reroutes back to C, but repeating some projects provides a common frame of reference. The book can be a handy teaching tool where embedded developers are the target audience. It presents PIC reasonably well in addition to some development tools that are available and how they work with the PIC architecture. If you know the tools you will be using then you can skip parts of the book, but overall it will be useful if you have not worked with PIC before.