Embedded systems

System On a Chip

The Internet of things(IOT) is quickly becoming an integral part of our culture. It is the concept that all our devices are connected to the cloud/network, speaking a common language and share data seamlessly. At the core of the IOT

structure is the System On A Chip technology which allows an operating system to be stored in the memory of an Integrated circuit. One such device is the ESP8266.

The ESP8266 is a low-cost Wi-Fi microchip with full TCP/IP stack and microcontroller capability produced by Shanghai-based Chinese manufacturer, Espressif Systems.

The chip first came to the attention of western makers in August 2014 with the ESP-01 module, made by a third-party manufacturer, Ai-Thinker. This small module allows micro-controllers to connect to a Wi-Fi network and make simple TCP/IP connections using Hayes-style commands. However, at the time there was almost no English-language documentation on the chip and the commands it accepted. The very low price and the fact that there were very few external components on the module which suggested that it could eventually be very inexpensive in volume, attracted many hackers to explore the module, chip, and the software on it, as well as to translate the Chinese documentation.

ESP8266
ESP-01.jpg

 

ESP-01 module by Ai-Thinker
Manufacturer Espressif Systems
Type 32-bit microcontroller
CPU @ 80 MHz (default) or 160 MHz
Memory 32 KiB instruction, 80 KiB user data
Input 16 GPIO pins
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