My question is in two-folds:
Can I program a chip and program it myself? Or must I have a company to do that for me?
If I can program a chip myself, what are the best languages to program a chip?
You can program microcontrollers, unlike microprocessors they include more things on chip like memory, IO interface, RS232, DAC and some times even USB and RF functions. I recomend you PIC (from www.microchip.com) especially 16F84A or 16F877 (compared their price to their performance almost always it is cheaper to use a PIC than using a couple of standart logic ICs). You can code both in PIC ASM and using some C compilers written for PIC. They are fairly easy to upload code to; google PIC programmers you can build one yourself with few parts or buy one cheap (don't spend more than $20).
>> If I can program a chip myself, what are the best languages to program a chip?
Well bro , I'm learning the Verilog these days.It comes free for the linux.
>> Can I program a chip and program it myself? Or must I have a company to do that for me?
Yes you can program your chip yourself.There are FPGA and ASIC chips, both can be
designed with a HDL language like Verilog/VHDL.
To develop ASIC , you need can consult a company.But before you do that you need
to test and debug that using a FPGA chip.
In the industry we typically use ASIC chips because they are low costy, but some
hardware manufactures are ship their products in FPGA chips when they release a
hardware product that need more beta testing.
and another one thing to told, this is one of a Lounge so I feel no problem of
mentioning this.It's really worthless to become a hardware design engineer.Because
the job market SUCKS !.Before 6 or 7 years there was a huge demand in the job
market but not now.I know these facts because my father is a VHDL/Verilog programmer.
He lost his job and our family lost the wealth economy personally(no expensive iPads iPhone ,speed computers anymore).Now he is doing his own business.Unless you could find a job inside USA or Suid Arabia it's worthless to learn.