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  •  Raspberry Pi (1+ / 0-)
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    First off, LOL!!!! The voices were so real. I sear I was listening to Tony Bennett and Mel Torme.

    I could not resist and bought myself a Raspberry Pi, In case you don't know, the Raspberry Pi is a credit card size computer for $35. They have a $25 one on the way. It is made by a charitable foundation based in the U.K. The idea was to build a cheap educational computer to teach students programming and electronics. But it has been picked up by the hobbyists and even R & D departments around the world.

    My plan is to hook it to a breadboard with a MCP3008 chip attached (don't worry, I didn't know what a MCP3008 chip was either until a couple of days ago) and hook up some sensor to wow the kids. Actually I have this rather disturbed idea to build a robotic arm that holds a simple hand fan and starts waving it when the temperatures reaches say 80 degrees F.

    What some people are doing with this is simply amazing. Check out this link from Cambridge's Computer Lab Raspberry Pi Tutorials. And remember, this is being built by kids.

    In this tutorial, we will be building a circuit to connect a temperature sensor to our Raspberry Pi, and writing a program to read the sensor data. The circuit we will build is going to connect to the Raspberry Pi using the GPIO pins.

    Once we have built our circuit, the next step is to write a program to read the temperature, and give it to us in a nice format. Once that is done, we will add some LEDs and a button to our circuit, and find out how to measure button presses and turn the LEDs on and off from our program.

    Finally, we will put all these bits together to make a button controlled temperature logger—a program that will measure the temperature every second and put this in a file, which can be started and stopped by the press of a button.

    Anyway, the Raspberry Pi is one of those gifts that will keep giving. Whether it is simply learn Linux and the Python programming language, building a HTC or exploring robotics, the RPi is a great buy at the price - and it is for a good cause.

    It is possible to read the history of this country as one long struggle to extend the liberties established in our Constitution to everyone in America. - Molly Ivins

    by se portland on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 08:48:22 AM PST

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