New to arduino

Hello there, My name is Greg and I am a senior in college for Electrical Engineering and within the last week I have came across this technology and I have a few questions I guess. These maybe bad questions but please bear with me.

First of all are the microprocessors the same as others where that I can plug them into the board and program them and then remove them? If they are, what kind of interaction can i do with them on a circuit if they are not on the board but independent?

Secondly, this is going to sound bad but I am building a more advanced beer pong table lol. I want to be able to use an LCD display and EEPROM to store the next people in line and add and delete them as i go? Would this be possible as well and what kind of coding would need to be for that (I understand how to hook up the LCD and type to it but I meant how much harder would this be to accomplish)? Also would I need this to be plugged into a PC or could i interface it with something else somehow?

That is my main questions so far. I am going to order an Arduino board tomorrow and stop fiddling with it so any early on help would be very appreciated.

Hey now! Nothing wrong with some good ol' beer pong!

I'm fairly new myself, so I'm afraid the best I can do is to direct you to some links, but hopefully they'll get you started! If you've got the LCD coding semi-down, then you're halfway there!

You could use the Arduino as a stand-alone, or you could connect it to the PC. There's also the choice of doing the Wireless connection between the PC and the Arduino, just for that extra uber-ness if you will. :D (you can program the chip on the Arduino board, and then put it into a separate circuit, or just use the board to program the chip while it's in the circuit, take a look at this link

But, I must say, when you're tackling something like this, start with 1 thing at a time. Learn how to use the LCD to do what you want, then save that. Start all-over, and use the EEPROM to do what you want, then save that. And after you get all the separate coding figured out, at least working, then writing the final code will be MUCH easier to comprehend.

And as for the EEPROM, there are a few choices. I'm not sure how much space you'll need, but I'm guessing the Arduino on-board EEPROM should be more than enough. (adding external EEPROM sounds fairly easy, as the tutorials show)