Something about the Raspberry Pi
Soon, one day, there will be computers that will do everything a regular one can do, but will be super cheap and really small. Someone once said that like 15 years ago, I don’t remember what he said because I wasn’t there, but someone had to have said it. That day is almost here.
A long time ago, when I was still in trade school. I learned about these tiny machines, I saw an ugly little prototype. Kind of like this.
Not the prettiest thing on the market, but this had something that caught the attention of a lot of people. And that was, tiny and affordable. Ok so those aren’t the only good things about it, but hey, it’s what sticks out. What are you looking at here exactly? It’s a really small computer. Capable of running off of batteries, USB power, plug, (maybe) potatoes, and really quite powerful for it’s size. Here’s a spec sheet in case you know what these numbers mean.
For those of you who do not know what all the numbers mean, don’t worry, It’s kind of the same power as a small smart phone. Except built in a way that allows you to play around with it and program anything you want on this little baby. (if you look closely at the picture it’s kind of neat how they pile the RAM on top of the CPU.) (I think)
Now what can these Pi’s be used for? They sure as heck aren’t going to play Need for Speed or replace your home desktop, keep in mind the specs and the fact that it’s ARM! Meaning that it’s a different processor than what Windows usually needs, for example, X86 and X64 CPUs. Those run Windows, but ARM does not, maybe one day. So if Windows can’t run on this machine, we will have to use Linux. Or some other Operating System that runs on ARM processors. But before you go around telling people that these are useless weak pieces of junk, know why it was created. You have to learn more about computers and software to get this working, and think of the students working in this field, how much would it cost to get started to program stuff on one of these?! In fact, this is they very same reason these were created.
A long time ago, there were these expensive machines called computers. Not many people had them since they required a lot of time to get working and to do what you wanted them to do, like play games, write word documents, calculate databases, access information. And if you wanted to achieve this, you needed to learn more about the machine, how to program, how it worked. And those people who liked this, went on to become programmers and computer designers that built the stuff we enjoy nowadays, such and Easy to use and intuitive User interfaces, Multimedia home theater pcs, cell phones and tablets. All designed by old guys who worked in a Command Line operating System.
Now we fast forward to the present where too many schools have no budget for Tech class, students are taught only how to USE a computer and not work a computer, and they are forbidden to mess with the family computer because it costs too much money to fix. (I know, I’m the guy they call to fix it.) Plus most don’t care how it works, they only want it TO work. And well, there goes perfectly good young talent. Because I worry about the future and what kind of nooby technology will come up next.
But how can we help this? What can be done to interest new future programmers to actually get started and doing something? This is where the Raspberry Pi comes in. I’m sure you saw this coming. In fact, no one can explain it better than them. Raspberry Pi here is their web page and you can find much more info on this project if you’re interested, keep in touch with them to know when they release the hardware cause I know I want one! Print server here we come! I think my mom needs a new typewriter as well. Let’s build one from scratch!
So how much does it cost? You said cheap. Yes I did. It costs a lot to design and build a product like this, and in the end, these people are hoping to sell it for 25$ and 35$. I know right? Epicly awesome.
Just when are these tiny machines coming to the market? Cause I want one now! Well, after many months of testing, they are planned for sometime this month (January) and they have the schematics and everything ready, they just need to wait for the fabrication of the hundreds and hundreds of boards. Heck I’m almost sure these will sell like hotcakes! If people still bought hotcakes. The reason I’m saying this is because when they started selling stickers, to raise some money to continue production on the boards, they where gone quick, I didn’t even get a chance to buy one. So if people bought the stickers, (stickers are still for sale by the way) then I’m sure people will buy these awesome little computers. Maybe you can get one too and see what you can do with it. If you think you can handle it! Seriously I’m already thinking of homemade laptop designs with this thing. I wonder if they have ROM emulators for ARM…
More Notes: Some things the Raspberry Pi can do.
Play Video Games. Brush up on your old gaming skills.
Play Videos Brad Pitt never looked better.
Play Music. Forget Apple, I can make My own MP3 player!
Connect to any Television pretty much new or old. VGA is for noobs anyways.
Can attach more parts through another board. Yeah what about a Camera?
And so much more. We’ll see once it finally comes out. Yes I did write this up too soon, I mean come on, a product that isn’t even out yet! But just warming you up for what’s to come. The future is now! Still looks like the 90’s.
Posted on January 4, 2012, in Computers and Internet, Linux Stuff and tagged arm processors, Central processing unit, Ethernet, Linux, Random Access Memory, Rasberry Pi, small computer, Universal Serial Bus, Windows. Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.