Feeds
90%
Raspberry Pi ARM PC

Review: Raspberry Pi

Bare bones computing

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

Firm Foundation?

The price will get it in the doors of schools, and its open source nature will ensure that there'll be a ready supply of developer tools. More to the point, if it is taken up by education, then it's unlikely to be as a glorified typewriter. ICT will certainly have to change tack slightly, when the kit they're given won't run Office 2010. This may seem a big 'if', but with 75,000 registered interests on the RS site by 29th Feb, I'll take some of that action.

Raspberry Pi ARM PC

Measuring up against a 2.5in HDD – the Rπ uses an SD card for local storage though

The whole point of this adventure is to make something that kids can learn how to program with. As it stands right now, the Rπ has the potential to fulfil its promise: but it's clearly not there yet. Just having the kit out there is not enough. To paraphrase one astute El Reg commentard, "it's the manuals stupid".

To its great credit, the Raspberry Pi Foundation acknowledges this: an educational release is due in the Autumn, which is expected to include a user guide and programming manual. The Rπ Foundation has said that by default, Python will be the educational language – although anything that will compile for ARM6 is fair game – and a number of well-resourced initiatives are organising materials to exploit the availability of Rπ come the Autumn.

But for a grassroots take-up, Rπ will also need tools that make writing teachers' own materials straight forward, and an interface that makes getting started seem less of an initiation into some Linux cult, and more like the "just one way in, zero-distractions, would you like to play a game of chess" command prompt of the the early 80's.

Verdict

So, tongue slightly in cheek, the ultimate success test for Rπ will be, does it help to initiate a second golden age – or is that Diamond Age – of self-educated programmers? No, this isn't nostalgia. It's a reboot; with better production values, a ready-made audience, and priced perfectly for austerity Britain. All we need are some decent writers. Anyone know if Russell T. can write Python? Does anyone have Moffat's number? ®

More Computing Reviews

Unsung Heroes
of Tech
ARM creators
Retro Week:
Complete Coverage
Ten...
Ultrabooks
Best and the Rest:
ARM Mini PCs
Intel Ivy Bridge
Core i7-3770K
quad-core CPU

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

90%
Raspberry Pi ARM PC

Review: Raspberry Pi

Unbelievable bang-for-your-buck educational/hobbyist ARM-based PC.
Price: $25 (£16) RRP

More from The Register

next story
Nexus 7 fandroids tell of salty taste after sucking on Google's Lollipop
Web giant looking into why version 5.0 of Android is crippling older slabs
All aboard the Poo Bus! Ding ding, route Number Two departing
Only another three days of pooing and I can have a ride!
Heyyy! NICE e-bracelet you've got there ... SHAME if someone were to SUBPOENA it
Court pops open cans of worms and whup-ass in Fitbit case
SLURP! Flick your TONGUE around our LOLLIPOP – Google
Android 5 is coming – IF you're lucky enough to have the right gadget
Official: European members prefer to fondle Apple iPads
Only 7 of 50 parliamentarians plump for Samsung Galaxy S
Fujitsu CTO: We'll be 3D-printing tech execs in 15 years
Fleshy techie disses network neutrality, helmet-less motorcyclists
Space Commanders rebel as Elite:Dangerous kills offline mode
Frontier cops an epic kicking in its own forums ahead of December revival
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Getting ahead of the compliance curve
Learn about new services that make it easy to discover and manage certificates across the enterprise and how to get ahead of the compliance curve.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.