Non writing pursuits

Horray for the Raspberry Pi

When I found out about the Raspberry Pi I asked around about it, and got better responses than I thought to the question of; Do you know what a Raspberry Pi is?

The answer to that question is a fairly straight forward one. It’s a cheap computer (of sorts) aimed at teaching kids about programming and hardware. There’s a picture of one over there to the right, and that’s it. No case, just a board, which is about the size of a credit card, and comes in at about $35 US (or $55 NZ).

I instantly wanted this tiny computer (I haven’t yet got one) and thought about all the possible things I could use it on. After a little plotting and planning, I realized that one idea I had was just building an Asus Eee, which I already have for writing (I am forever looking for something that can just write up text documents at a pinch, for writing). What about a dedicated MAME machine, or gutting the insides of a c64 and putting that in its place?

All in all, there’s absolutely no end purpose for one of these little pieces of machinery other than what they’re intended for; learning and experimenting with. And that’s that I think is probably the coolest thing about them. I think back to when I was a kid, and pushed the c64 to its programming and memory limits. Then when I moved to PC, it was a lesson in hardware and obscure DOS commands. Now days we’re a whole number of layers removed from that sort of thing. I strike it in technical support all the time. I lament that people just flick a switch and ta-da. Internet.

Once I get a hold on one of these things and mess around with it, I might well post what results I have. It makes me think of all sorts of non writing projects, it does. But I continue to push on with writing, regardless.


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