The Raspberry Pi Foundation can take credit for developing a single board computer that boasts the incredible fact of being the size of a credit card. This innovative device is sold online by companies RS Electronics and Element 14/Premier Farnell. The two distributors sell Raspberry Pi in many parts of the world. Some more good news is that the one product purchase per person rule has been lifted since they first became available. This gives everyone (even you!) an opportunity to purchase as many products as they would like to. Lets take a step back though, and talk about why you would even need or want one? Glad you asked :D.
A Closer Look: What Is Raspberry Pi (RPi)?
This single-board computer is being developed by the Raspberry Pi Foundation. Earlier version of the Raspberry Pi took inspiration from the Atmel ATmega644 microcontroller. The PCB layout and schematics for the device have been made available for download. The Trustee of the foundation brought together a group of academics, computer enthusiasts and teachers to design a computer that would be an inspiration for children. The aim was to create and launch a computer that is so affordable that every child in Britain could get one, an ambitious effort no doubt, but they have made great strides.
Raspberry Pi is being counted as the world’s smallest and cheapest PC, for good reason. This tiny computer that runs a free, open-source Linux operating system, is more or less the size of a credit-card and can be easily plugged into your television and keyboard and it performs just like any other PC does. You can use it to play 3D games, get the usual work done and watch videos in High Definition (HD) as well as connect to the internet. It packs in its petite frame two USB ports, an SD card slot, and an Ethernet connection, with all of these features and its tiny size it is truly a modern marvel, all powered by a universal USB mobile charger! Did we mention that it only costs about $35 (depending on the model)? Yeah. This thing is awesome.
The Two Models A & B
First Model A samples off the line!
Raspberry Pi is available in two flavors. They are known by the predictable names Model A and Model B (Keeping it simple!). The difference between the two models is the RAM capacity, the number of USB ports, and Ethernet (network connection). Model A boasts 256MB of RAM while Model B comes with 512MB RAM. Model A comes equipped with one USB port and no Ethernet, while Model B sports 2 USB ports and an Ethernet port as well. The devices are powered by 5v micro USB. The two models dimensions measure 85.60mm x 56mm x 21mm and they weigh 45g. The two models A and B are priced at approximately $25 and $35 respectively.
Raspberry Pi: Comparison between Model A and Model B
Un-boxing Raspberry Pi
On un-boxing Raspberry Pi you will find the Pi Board. However, SD cards or power supply do not come included with the package. You can purchase them though from either of the companies; Farnell or RS Electronics. You will also be able to purchase a preloaded SD card as well.
Raspberry Pi: The Story So Far
Ever since it was launched its manufactures imagined that it would be nice if only they could sell about 10,000 units of Raspberry Pi. However, post launch demand shattered their expectations, and their supply (hence the waiting list). Even today more and more people want to get their slice of the Raspberry Pi. in the first year of its availability manufactures of this ambitious product aim at selling about 1 million units (they are already well over 500,000 units sold).
Raspberry Pi Factory Processes – Also, That is one catchy tune from 1933!
Since its arrival into the tech scene it has opened up the possibilities of being customized or personalized in a do-it-yourself fashion, which has spawned its own revolution in the do-it-yourself movement. You can let your imagination run wild and create pretty much whatever you want with a little imagination, some computer skills, and some cheap tools!
For example, at FamiLAB (a hackspace in Orlando, Florida) they recently made an awesome Raspberry Pi SNES hack where they gutted an old console and stuffed a RPi inside, so now it’s a Super Nintendo emulated on the original hardware; and it even reads (and stores the information from) old cartridges; it can write saves to them too! So it isn’t your ordinary casemod. Also not a project for beginners, but its something to inspire, and strive for if you want to get into this sort of thing :D. Check out the project video below!
Raspberry Pi Powered SNES – Such A Cool DIY Project!
The little computer that could is well on its way to making a real difference in the world. The humble Raspberry Pi started out as an attempt to perhaps reboot some of the 1980s computer industry feel that had been responsible for giving us a constant and innovative stream of very talented students. With its small footprint, and affordable price, it is clear that it is doing just that, and much much more. We look forward to watching this little guy, and its community grow!
Additional Raspberry Pi Resources
If you want to get down and dirty with the Raspberry Pi then check out these awesome resources to get inspired to learn more or start your own DIY Pi Project! Click through the images (as on all of our posts!) to get to the source of the epic resources below!
CAS Raspberry Pi Educational Manual
A Good Place To Start 😀
Build a Retro Computer: The Raspberry Pi!
Raspberry Pi Tutorials
Turning A Raspberry Pi Into A Tiny Linux Notebook
How To Build A Raspberry Pi-based Micro Arcade Cabinet
8 Interesting DIY Raspberry Pi Case Ideas
Best of 2012: Raspberry Pi Projects
If you had a Raspberry Pi, What would YOU Do with it? Have you already done something with a Raspberry Pi or a similar gadget hack? Let us know in the comments below! Thanks for Reading!