1 January 2014

Raspberry Pi an Affordable Computer for Learning Programming

Eben Upton, Rob Mullins, Jack Lang, and Alan Mycroft from the University of Cambridge’s Computer Laboratory came up with the idea of creating a small and cheap computer that can help kids to learn programming in 2006. They started developing and designing their idea till 2008. At that time, the processors which were designed for mobile devices became more affordable and had the more powerful functionality. They teamed up with each other and founded the Raspberry Pi organization. The Raspberry Pi model B entered mass production in 2011 and within a year they sold over one million items.

Now today Raspberry Pi with support from educational community is one of the most popular learning devices that ordered from around the globe. The Raspberry Pi is an excellent alternative for those that cannot afford a Personal Computer, for educational purpose, and for anyone who is interested to learn about programming and computer science.

We don’t claim to have all the answers. We don’t think that the Raspberry Pi is a fix to all of the world’s computing issues; we do believe that we can be a catalyst. We want to see cheap, accessible, programmable computers everywhere; we actively encourage other companies to clone what we’re doing. We want to break the paradigm where without spending hundreds of pounds on a PC, families can’t use the internet. We want owning a truly personal computer to be normal for children, and we’re looking forward to what the future has in store.

What is the Raspberry Pi?

The Raspberry Pi simply is a computer with the size of a credit card. You can plug it into your TV, use a keyboard and mouse to interact with the computer. It is mostly capable of doing things that an ordinary Personal Computer (PC) does such as creating spreadsheets, word processing and even gaming. The Raspberry Pi is able to play HD video as well. The main purpose of this device is to help children learn programming but it can be used by anyone. Raspberry Pi has a SD card place holder for transforming your information and a New Out of Box Software or NOOBs for installing your operating system. When you first boot the device with a SD card which contains the NOOBS, you get an option to select the OS including Raspbin, Pidora and two choices of XBMC (free and open source media player). You can easily install different operating systems on Raspberry Pi lick Windows or OSX.

The Raspberry Pi uses a Broadcom BCM2835 SoC (system on a chip) with a 700 MHz processor (ARM1176JZF-S), and VideoCore IV GPU. This tiny computer available in two models, model A and B. The model A has 256 MB RAM, one USB port without a network connection (Ethernet) and the model B has 512 MB RAM with two USB ports and an Ethernet

You can purchase the Raspberry Pi from any authorized supplier and as the company foundation is a charity, they try to keep the price as low as possible. Currently the model A costs $25 and the model B costs $35 plus the local taxes and shipping fees. The Raspberry Pi foundation has won INDEX: award 2013 and €100,000 for their effort of creating an affordable computer for all people around the world.