What is a Raspberry Pi? Can you eat it?
While it may sound like something you would eat, the Raspberry Pi is actually a computer, about the size of a credit card. That costs as low as $35.00, and runs on an operating system (OS), that you install on an SD card. Powered by a micro USB plug, like you plug into the wall to charge a cell phone.
The main OS that was developed especially for the Raspberry Pi (RPi), is called Raspbian, which is based on the open source and free, Linux distribution of Debian. But, many developers have designed other OS’s that will run on the computer, that are also open source and available for free. There is even a Windows 10 distribution available, that developers can download and install.
There are a few different RPi models available, some with more capabilities than others. And, while lots of people are discovering new things the RPi can be used for (build a home media center, retro gaming system, server, robots and several other DIY projects). It was originally developed as an affordable computer, to help teach children how to write and implement code, to develop and run their own computer programs and project builds. When logged in to the graphical interface (sort of like you have on Windows with a browser and menu), there are several programs installed that can be used for learning to write code. One in particular that was designed for young children, is called Scratch.
The RPi I have been playing with, is the newest model, RPi 3. Here are the specs of this little computer.
SoC: Broadcom BCM2837
CPU: 4× ARM Cortex-A53, 1.2GHz (processor)
GPU: Broadcom VideoCore IV (video)
RAM: 1GB LPDDR2 (900 MHz)
On Board Networking: 10/100 Ethernet, 2.4GHz 802.11n wireless (Wifi)
On Board Bluetooth: Bluetooth 4.1 Classic, Bluetooth Low Energy
Storage: microSD (8GB recommended or higher, but not included)
GPIO: 40-pin header, populated
Ports: HDMI, 3.5mm analogue audio-video jack, 4× USB 2.0, Ethernet, Camera Serial Interface (CSI), Display Serial Interface (DSI).
And, I am using a (recommended but not included) 5.24 volt 2.4 amp micro usb power supply, to run the power to it.
After I tinker with it a bit more, I will start using it to teach myself how to write program code, and also to help teach my children to do the same! I will also be documenting my experiences setting up my RPi, to share with beginners like me!
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You can find more information about all thing RPi, here!