What is Interrupt ? - Embedded Interview Questions - Micro-Controller basics

The most programs use interrupts in regular program execution. The purpose of the microcontroller is mainly to react on changes in its surrounding. In other words, when some event takes place, the microcontroller does something... For example, when you push a button on a remote controller, the microcontroller will register it and respond to the order by changing a channel, turn the volume up or down etc. If the microcontroller spent most of its time endlessly a few buttons for hours or days... It would not be practical.

The microcontroller has learnt during its evolution a trick. Instead of checking each pin or bit constantly, the microcontroller delegates the “wait issue” to the “specialist” which will react only when something attention worthy happens.

The signal which informs the central processor about such an event is called an INTERRUPT.



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