A project at work has me a bit interested in some of this stuff. The simple version of the project is: Move a backstop using forward and backward buttons, but when it's in the stop position, the motor needs to hold its position. More complex version: Enter a value into a controller, and have the motor move to that position, using some manner of linear encoder, likely an optical one, something like this. I'd like to use a PIC chip, either PIC18 or PIC32, to control this whole mess, and use Microchip's MPLAB compiler. What's a good, and not terribly-expensive, way to get started on learning the basics of motor control in this manner? I would have limited access to a circuit board router in order to make something like a breakout board to give some convenient pinouts for the PIC32 (TQFP package), for some breadboarding.