Welcome to a Science episode of Nerdy By Nature. Chris takes over our show notes and leads you through his Pi projects. Enjoy!

 

Hey all 🙂

Happy Wednesday! Glad you could join us for an update to my Raspberry Pi experience. We chat about how it’s been working with this little cheap -yet powerful mini-computer that has taken the world by storm.

The Raspberry Pi was originally released in February 2013 to promote the teaching of basic computer science in schools and in developing countries, but has morphed into a following. According to the Raspberry Pi Foundation, over 10 million Raspberry Pis have been sold since inception.

 

My Pi was purchased from CanaKits and included a starter kit for CAD$74.95. This kit has everything from wires, LEDs, resistors, breadboard, power supply and case. A real value for someone who wishes to immerse themselves into the world of Pi.

The kit came with a pre-loaded SD card with NOOBS (new out of the box software) and allowed for you to select from a small list of core operating systems. For starters Raspbian, a Unix-like code based on Debian was installed. The Pi itself comes with:

  • 4 USB ports
  • WiFi
  • RJ45 port
  • HDMI
  • ARM processor that boasts a 1.2GHZ speed.

The boot up on this unit is very fast and was quick to respond within a minute.
Raspbian OS comes with a barrage of pre-loaded software, specifically programming applications. It also comes with Chrome browser, and has the usual system and file settings that you would find in an OS.

During this episode, I explain how he got started using Scratch (a visual programming language that lets you make simple graphic  games using sprites). Select the corresponding logic instructions, assign inputs, add background and manipulate  sprites.  A fair bit of time was put in to make a simple little game of an ant trying to get a piece of pollen without being touched by the flying bee.

 

The Pi comes with General Purpose Input Output pins (GPIO) which can be programmed depending on the application required. For learning purposes Chris explained how he was able to hook up the breadboard and turn LED lights on/off emulating a traffic light situation complete with walk button. All the programming was conducted using Python 2 which he described as being very close to C++.

There is so much more to this little device as you can probably guess, and Chris has only scratched the surface. There is a huge following for Pi from young to old, as open source all makes it possible with the sharing of knowledge.
There is a ton of resources on the internet, and even the Pi Foundation hosts a lot of good learning tools, including a forum which you may find here.

I hope that I have inspired you to create, learn, and explore with this little device!   Follow us on twitter so you can find out when we go through my next project where I builds an old school video game emulator using RetroPi OS.

 

Thanks for taking part in my Raspberry Pi adventure! Have you taken on your own Pi Projects? Let me know in the comments below or on Social Media. Find us on twitter, instagram, or facebook by searching @letusgetnerdy!

– Chris, Nerdy By Nature

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