A Dysfunctional Playground

$25 Computer

by on Oct.30, 2011, under News

Rasberry PI Alpha board

Note: Alpha board for Rasberry PI

 

$25 Computer?

Yep, that’s correct and not a typo. Rasberry PI I had heard about these guys off and on for several months now and what they will be offering is awesome. A tiny yet powerful computer that can be used as anything from a makeshift desktop pc, home automation, media player for your television, to countless other projects. The limit is only your imagination. These are scheduled to go on sale sometime toward the end of November or the beginning of December, so keep an eye on their website and forums for up to date news and information. You can click the link to their website for more information and forum discussions.

Update: The Rasberry PI folks had an original plan of shipping these end of last November first of December, but things got pushed back. From this updated link it looks like January is the target for shipping – http://www.raspberrypi.org/archives/422

So what exactly is Rasberry PI?

From their website:

The Raspberry Pi Foundation is a UK registered charity (Registration Number 1129409) which exists to promote the study of computer science and related topics, especially at school level, and to put the fun back into learning computing.

We plan to develop, manufacture and distribute an ultra-low-cost computer, for use in teaching computer programming to children. We expect this computer to have many other applications both in the developed and the developing world.

 

So the common question now would be what’s the details on this tiny $25 computer?
Keep in mind these specs could change upon release of the final product

  • 700MHz ARM11
  • 128MB or 256MB of SDRAM
  • OpenGL ES 2.0
  • 1080p30 H.264 high-profile decode
  • Composite and HDMI video output
  • USB 2.0
  • SD/MMC/SDIO memory card slot
  • General-purpose I/O
  • Optional integrated 2-port USB hub and 10/100 Ethernet controller
  • Open software (Ubuntu, Iceweasel, KOffice, Python)

They have plans to offer 2 models, Model A $25 will have 128MB ram and Model B $35 will have 256MB ram according to the Rasberry PI Wiki

 

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9 Comments for this entry

  • Nick Kent

    This seems Like an excellent product. I would like each of my children having one. I would like to order 4 please

  • jem lyons

    I have heard about a simple computer that a child coudld use to do simple programming, and I was wondering if it would be something you could give to a twelve year old boy to learn simple programming.

  • Stephen

    I started coding at the age of 6 with a far less powerful computer; I’d have loved one of these little babies when I was 12! They have been designed specifically with school-level education in mind, so I think it’d be a perfect “toy” for your 12-year old son to get into our craft :)

    • Cito

      Yea, I got started coding at the age of 12, for Christmas I was given a Tandy 1000 EX it had 1 5 1/4″ floppy, 256K ram and came with Dos and Deskmate :)

      my folks had got me a subscription to Home and Family computing I think it was called and it always had a section of Basic games usually 1 sometimes 2 games spread across 4 pages and had code for apple basic, gwbasic, etc.

      So I started manually writing the code copying it from those magazines and eventually got a book on basic and started writing my own little programs and sharing with friends who would also write games and share with me and others. It was fun trying to beat friend’s games.

      The new generation don’t have that discovery as we older computer generation did. In the 80′s we had to write our own software if we wanted that computer to do anything. Nowdays kids have lost that, they just go online, download, and never think about the how & why it works. Rasberry Pi I hope will bring that new sense of discovery to a new generation, writing software from scratch… There is no better feeling than writing your own software.

  • Marcin

    When will it be released? I can’t wait any longer…I want to by it!

    • Cito

      They have an update on their main website here:
      Some nice screenshots of the small board with connectors and what we will be getting when this ships.

      Quote from Liz at Rasberry Pi:

      Once we’re happy that this test run is fine, we’ll be pushing the button immediately on full-scale manufacture in more than one factory. I’ll be checking in here again before Christmas with more pictures and any more detailed information I can squeeze out of the team making and testing these – ding dong merrily on high!

      So I sorta realized the release date would get pushed back a little, they originally were hoping for end of November or first part of December to start shipping. But it seems it may be pushed back to end of December or January now. If you go to their website and click forums there are a lot more detailed information on releases and what they are sorting through to get these shipped out and start selling. They do have their web shop set up now, selling stickers at the moment, but looks like a testbed for their online web store.

      Fingers crossed it won’t be much longer!

  • Henry

    when will this be available, i need it for experiment :)

    • Cito

      They have the expected release dates on their main website in the links above.

      It looks like this month hopefully. Things seem to got pushed back.

      here is an update on their website on where they are at on production

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