Unholy question..?

I've got a silly, and probably holy-war inciting question:

Has anyone successfully ported the Arduino language, etc to (ducking) PICAXE or PIC? I've been reviewing, and seen that Atmel chips are the only that have had Arduino ported.. is this THAT different a platform, internally?

On the face of it, it might be really convenient to be able to develop in the friendly Arduino environment for small PIC projects. I ask mainly because I got given a pack of 2 8-bit PIC one-time-programmable chips, and know these and the PICAXE are both cheap microcontroller platfrms also, but (imho) harder to implement.

Or is there enough hardware differences to make this unreasonable?

The "Arduino language" is nothing more than C++, which does exist for PIC from several vendors.

I'm guessing you are referring more to the "middleware" that Arduino provides, functions like millis() and pulseIn() that simplify some of the common microcontroller programming tasks. I don't know of any efforts that have ported the same functions for PIC, most likely because regardless the effort it is unlikely to be 100% compatible, given the hardware differences between the processors.

At the microcontroller hardware level, there are sufficient hardware differences to make what you are proposing quite challenging. Even moving from one Atmel processor to another requires fairy careful consideration. If you look at the Arduino core code and libraries there are several places where different code must be compiled to support the relatively small number of Atmel AVR variants supported (small relative to the total number of microcontrollers Atmel manufactures).

The Gadget Shield: accelerometer, RGB LED, IR transmit/receive, light sensor, potentiometers, pushbuttons

none that I know of.

the pic compiler is windows only and closed source, so the is little incentive to do so.

as for picaxe, translating from C++ to BASIC and then back to C is far too rube goldburg IMO.

Maple IDE

PIC Based "Arduinos"

As evo mentions, there are several "Arduino-like" projects for PICs and other CPUs, depending on what you consider to be the important parts of "Arduino-like."

One "problem" is that the Arduino uses some C++ features, and C++ compilers are relatively rare for most microcontrollers. Now, you can put together a plain C library that looks an awful lot like the Arduino Library, and it'll probably be a useful thing, but ...

Another problem is "community." Building a community around something like Arduino is an interesting chicken-and-egg sort of problem; the better the community, the more people it attracts, and the better it gets.
"In theory", there are LOTS of projects/environments "somewhat similar" to Arduino that never quite achieved "critical mass." (USB Bit Whacker, for example. Even the Atmel Butterfly...)

Another problem is "community."

I think if you could figure that part out, you could die a wealthy man...


That's certainly the strongest factor when it comes to Arduino. Even other AVR-related sites simply don't stand up- it's not the hardware really, as in many cases we're talking about the same hardware. Some shun new users and hobbyists, only really servicing professionals, while others have problems actually discussing things as they really only function as places for flame wars... both things very noticably absent from this environment.

Amazingly, that seems to be yet another effect of the community. Said it before, I'll say it again, it's amazing what's been built here- and I'm not talking about the microcontroller board..