I am new to microcontrollers and saw that there are so many different types.
I am familiar with the Arduino family of microcontrollers but I also noticed that there are other types like the picaxe microcontroller.
What is the difference between an Arduino and something like the picaxe? Do they work the same way? Is the picaxe easy to use? Do we simply need to program them by connecting them with to an external computer the same we do with Arduino microcontrollers? What language do they use and do I need to download a special software to be able to program them?
I would like to build a rocket and put sensors on board (altimeter and other sensors). Do I need to have a microcontroller onboard connected to the sensors? Would the sensors output get recorded in the microcontroller memory? Is that how the process would work? I guess I would need a very small and light microcontroller to place it on the rocket. What is the smallest Arduino microcontroller I could use for an application like this?