Hacker uses Kindle as Raspberry Pi screen
DIY instructions await the brave or foolish
A hacker named Gef has rigged up his Raspberry Pi to use a Kindle e-reader as its monitor.
“Hacker” may not quite be the word, actually, as the individual responsible identifies himself as an “eclectic yogi discovering the world of computational art and new media” on the blog post where the recipe for the KindleBerry Pi is revealed. Names aren't the guy's long suit either: his Twitter account says he's called “Gef” although his handle is @damarusama.
We'll nonetheless proceed on the basis this is the work of a human, not a canine, and report that the way to achieve the feat of using a Kindle as a Pi's monitor requires you to:
"Jail break the Kindle, install this terminal emulator … and then install UsbNetwork. Make sure the usbNetwork is enable, Connect the devices through USB, do a quick ifconfig usb0 192.168.2.1 and Voila … login into the Raspberry Pi with no problem."
At this point it is apparently possible to use the Kindle's keyboard to control the Pi, but as the display operates in landscape mode the keyboard is at a 90 degree angle to the screen. That's hard enough to manage without the nasty nature of the Kindle's keyboard, so Gef recommends using a USB keyboard.
That turns out to be a non-trivial task as installing the USB keyboard can't be done without first entering some commands with the Kindle's keyboard.
While the rig worked, Gef eventually figured out it wasn't very practical.
"I quickly realized that if I wanted to do anything productive at this point it was better to get myself a computer," Gef wrote. Feel free to disagree. ®
Its the age old question, the answer?
It might not make sense to you, it might not be productive or useful but it sure is cool.
I had nothing better to do at the time (I was studying for an HND at Plymouth Polytechnic). Admittedly I didn't emulate a lot of Unix but I implemented file paths (using CP/M 'user areas'), email, utilities like cat and ed. I even wrote a simplified version of nroff which displayed the output on screen using WYSIWYG by modifying the fonts in RAM. There was even a compiler for a language that had procedures (Locomotive BASIC didn't have them) and that could evaluate expressions. It also had a primitive form of multi-tasking but IIRC the events in Locomotive BASIC didn't fire while waiting for a keypress so it was a bit rough.
All very educational. I'd recommend writing a compiler or at least an expression parser to anyone as an educational experience :)
'Because it's there' :)
I once wrote a Unix emulator for the Amstrad CPC. In Locomotive BASIC.
Re: WHY would you do this?
To learn how, why else?
Re: Looks like an iPad
Steady on old chap, he's just having a laugh.