PIC is a family of RISC microcontrollers made by Microchip Technology, derived from the PIC1650, originally developed by General Instrument's Microelectronics Division. PICs use a Reduced instruction set, varying in length from about 35 instructions at the low-end, to about 70 instructions at the high-end. The set includes instructions to perform many operations on the accumulator. and a constant or the accumulator and a memory location, and for conditionally executing code and jumping/calling other parts of the program and returning from them, and specific hardware features like interrupts, and a low power mode called sleep. Microchip provides a freeware IDE package called MPLAB, with a software simulator and assembler.
Jal is an acronym for: Just another language. It is a high-level, imperative, Algol- and Pascal-like programming language and compiler. Its original author, Wouter van Ooijen, describes it as an Algol-style, meekly typed, block scoped language, which looks much like Pascal, but can be called a 'microcontroller Ada' or 'structured Basic'. It emits machine (executable) code for PIC and compatible microcontrollers, by Microchip (PIC), and Ubicom (SX, was Scenix). The compiler runs on Linux, Mac OS X, and MS Windows. It was released in 2003 as open source (free) software with a GNU General Public License, GPL; van Ooijen has released several other tools and tutorials to the PIC community. He, and the Jal home website, always spell Jal with mixed case letters.