Re: RE: Just getting started with Microchip-need advice
You are pretty close to me in Catonsville. I often attend the free concerts at Lurman Theater, and I took machine shop classes at CCBC in 2014-2015.
If you plan to do serious development using PICs you might as well get used to MPLABX and XC8. Unless you have good reason to learn assembly, you may find C a lot easier. I have a PICkit2 and an ICD2 and I started out with a PICstart+, but I now use my PICkit3 exclusively. Your PK2 must be a clone - and the currently available tool is the PICkit4. Your tool may not be the problem, but it is good to use genuine Microchip parts in case you need support.
You are welcome to PM me if you want to discuss your projects on the phone or (eventually) in person.