Serial communications

I’ve recently found myself funemployed with another month or so free, so I’m resuming this article series. I’ve been focusing on rebuilding core competence in a couple targeted technologies, and so I’ll be using this time to describe some of the work there.

Before I dive into specifics, we should talk about the idea of serial communications. This often is used to mean the serial port, which is actually a UART (Universal Asynchronous Receiver / Transmitter). Really, though, serial just means sending data sequentially (e.g. one bit at a time) and there are a few technologies to consider, although the term will generally refer specifically to UARTs. The three we’ll be looking at are UARTs, the two-wire interface (or I²C), and the serial peripheral interface (SPI). It’s helpful to place these in context:

I’ll talk more about these in future articles.