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ABC of electronics terms

(To find chips for distinct functions, see the functional pages.)


local This entry got it's own page.

I2S At Philips

COMSOL the largest range of embedded development tools in Europe

Can mean:

IDE (Hard disk bus standard)

Integrated Device Electronics (also sometimes called: Integrated Drive Electronics).

The reason it's called Integrated Device Electronics is cause most of the goo needed to make the drive talk is integrated into the drive. In contrast with the ST506 days when the controller and drive BIOS were on a separate card. The design was made to be better, cheaper and more upgradeable. There's more the drive manufacturer can play with to suit themselves, such as packing more sectors in the outer cylinders, caching and upping speeds, without affecting the rest of the system.I believe it was a Micropolis invention, but my memory is getting a little rusty here.Bill
Roger Barraud later suggested that it was invented by Quantum.
Someone from Electronics 2000 in Australia (international computer company, I think) recalls that the first ones they could buy came from Miniscribe, were 40 Mbyte in size and used a 8051 MCU.
Miniscribe was later swallowed up by Maxtor who then used the factory to produce the infamous turn it on and see if it will boot this time 7040 and 7080 drives. They had no solid connectors between the drive and the controller board but landing pads on each side with a rubber connector with vertical metal strips in it. Press together job to make the connection. The problem with these was the expansion and contraction of the rubber with temperature breaking the bond (just after warranty of course).

local More (Good!)
local Even more
local Peter Faasse's IDE project (110+ K)
local Free C source with IDE routines Enhanced IDE/Fast-ATA FAQ, by John Wehman and Peter den Haan At Seagate Pin description In Finland Peter Faasse's IDE Interface for the 6803 About CD-ROM standard A lot of CD-ROM data and software EIDE/fast ATA FAQ many related links and info

ATA Packet Interface (ATAPI) for CD-ROM, SFF 8020I

title order at Amazon USA price indication
SCSI Bus and IDE Interface, the ISBN: 0201422840 out of print
SCSI-Bus und IDE-Schnittstelle. Peripherie-Schnittstellen: Hardware, Protokollbeschreibung, Anwendung ISBN: 3827314178 DM 80

General sites: Micro House SupportSource Phoenix Technologies Western Digital

See also:

COMSOL the largest range of embedded development tools in Europe

IDE (Integrated Development Environment) Their "Development Assistant for C" supports directly the Keil C51, IAR 8051 and HIWARE 8051 compilers and has very useful functions: Editor with structured and non structured Flow Chart, Browser, Lint, Call and Type Hierarchy Graph, Software Metrics, Make file generator, Version Control Systems and Debugger interface, Tools integration, Project management, ... Small but wonderful Java IDE. Written in Java itself so portable. Costs about $150. Downloadable demo that can't compile.

See also the chapters Assembler, Disassembler, Emulator and Simulator. These things are also called SDK (Software Development Kit), when it's for developing software for specific hardware.

International Electrotechnical Commission.

Standards commission. For example: IEC-601 is a well recognized international EMC and/or electrical safety standard suite.

Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers

They establish electrical standards among other things.


IEEE 1284 Warp Nine (has info and FAQ)

IEEE 1394
This is a fast serial bus. Apple calls it 'firewire'. Sony calls it 'i-wire' I think. Buy PC boards and adapters etc.

Order scarce chips via the Chipdir

Image Sensor
This is a part that can record a whole image at once. It used to be done with very expensive radio tubes, but now there are solid state CCD* and CMOS* image sensors resulting in cheap appliances as WebCam's. CMOS* Image Sensors

local Inductor manufacturers
local Some emails about measuring inductance

local Text with lots of hints, mainly about IrDA Infrared Remote Control Project Project and explanations
local Lite-On

See also IRDA, local.

Instruction Set
The set of instructions a processor or controller understands and can execute.

local Instruction sets

Where Manufacturer John Fluke Telogy

Where Manufacturer TransTherm

Internet is the world-wide network connecting a lot of computers.

See Internet.

IPI The T11 Technical Committee home page (Fibre Channel, HIPPI, IPI, SBCON)


The bus of the original IBM PC/XT.
Later expanded to the EISA bus.

ISA Bus Specification P996
IEEE Service Center
445 Hoes Lane
PO Box 1331
Piscataway, New Jersey 08855

local About the ISA and the PC/104 bus Hardware Web: ISA bus and ... Hardware Web: ISA bus and ...

See also EISA

Another interesting source of information on ISA is the documentation from various support chipset manufacturers. The quality varies, but they usually define ISA signals, supply timing diagrams, provide AC specs, etc. Ask you local distributor for datasheets on as many different products as you can get.

For example:

is one I have handy, and may still be available. This is for a chip that converts signals between PCI and ISA. As a byproduct, you get documentation on ISA signals.

RadiSys sells chipsets for embedded applications. Our datasheets cover these signals, but the quantity and quality of documentation is poorer than what is found in Solari. We can't afford to write a book for every chipset we make. You can find our stuff at

Bohdan Tashchuk

AT Bus Design

Covers the ISA-bus* in painful detail.
About as much fun as reading an ISO document though.
ISDN Chips from Cologne Chip Designs work from 3V-5V!

Integrated Services Digital Network. This is the conventional form of digital telephony.

Lots of books about ISDN.
ISDN Everything about ISDN!

International Standards Organization - Not this one, it's the Insurance Services Office, Inc.


ISO 9000

This is a (bit hypy) quality norm for businesses.

For info about free ISO 9000 information seminars, call +1-248-543-6040, ext. 412. - Integral Solutions <>

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