Any experience of a Raspberry Pi

(28 Posts)
Sticklebug Tue 08-Oct-13 19:15:59

My DD has just started secondary school and has been put into an 'extension' group for maths and computing. One recommendation from the teacher is that they buy a 'Raspberry Pi' if possible. I have had a look on line and they are £25, so doable for a birthday present (next week) - but what would she do with it? Not many details on-line apart from that it helps children learn to programme.

Has anyone got any experience of these and are they challenging for a bright child?

greentea72 Fri 29-Nov-13 21:48:18

Not looked in detail but this looks good for that age group. I Remember having something similar for my ZX81- many years ago. (Went on to get a degree in Electronic Engineering!)

Carrie Anne Philbin Adventures in Raspberry Pi.

AngryBuddha Sat 23-Nov-13 09:04:55

I have bought my DS a kit one for Christmas, plus a Dummies guide to a Raspberry Pi and a magazine Raspberry Pi for Children.

Meglet, yes exactly but on Linux.
I only use it to stream tv and movies, but it's very cool.

Before anyone gets their pants hoiked, stream not download.

Ferguson Fri 22-Nov-13 19:57:17

I haven't used a Pi, but have read a lot about it, and our grown up DS is a programmer and has used one for fun.

There are a lot of local support groups, which are listed on the Pi web site.

Takver: Yes, for those who DO know, but not many do, and Messrs Gates and Wozniak don't really want 'amateurs' writing software.

Meglet: Yes, that's it - coding makes it all work! I don't know how many thousands of times faster or more powerful Pi would be than your Spectrum, or our Sharp MZ80K, but it may even be MILLIONS, not just thousands!

oscartopia Fri 18-Oct-13 11:49:02

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

ILoveAFullFridge Mon 14-Oct-13 09:20:20

Yes, you bypass the computer completely. The Pi itself is the thinking part of the computer, you build the rest of the computer yourself. You can buy all sorts of peripherals and add-ons, but part of the point of a Pi is to get you to salvage and cobble stuff together.

sittinginthesun Mon 14-Oct-13 08:19:23

When you say you need a keyboard and monitor, could you just plug it in to a laptop, or is the point that you bypass the computer completely? I've got a monitor somewhere, but haven't seen it for months...

ILoveAFullFridge Sun 13-Oct-13 23:12:08

Megletme too grin. Even then it was mostly pale skinny boys doing it - I don't recall any other girls. And at school I seemed to know more than the teachers and was utterly bored by their attempts at 'Computing lessons'.

The language was Basic, IIRC. I could make sentences appear all over the screen, and created a fairly simple if-then type story game (any surprise that I became an Dungeons and Dragons player at Uni?).

But my interests turned elsewhere, and I don't understand anything about it now. Not even the answer to Takver's question.

thecatfromjapan Sun 13-Oct-13 22:26:52

I think part of it must be the whole Linux thing, and part of it must be that it's cool (???) - though perhaps that's the Linux thing. Am I even right about the Linux? I am so out of touch.

thecatfromjapan Sun 13-Oct-13 22:25:26

Ds has built his own computer - which he sits in front of all the time.

I know absolutely nothing - but have learned quite a lot from this thread, so may go and chat to him about this summer camp thing.

The pi thing kept him quite busy because he had to earn the money to buy all the bits, so it was a project with a number of aspects to it ...

Oh, and he found out how to build the computer, and what to get, and where from, on-line. So it must all be there, somewhere.

Takver Sun 13-Oct-13 22:25:02

For those who know - why programme on a Pi when you could programme on a regular computer, IYSWIM?

invicta Sun 13-Oct-13 22:15:44

My son has one but never uses it. In maplins they do starter kits with all the accessories in.

Meglet Sun 13-Oct-13 22:11:40

Is coding what I would have done on my ZX Spectrum almost 30yrs ago?

It was something like;

BEEP 65/3
CIRCLE 3/16/45
BEEP 65/9

And so on.........

I could draw circles, colour them in and make a beepy tune grin blush. The raspberry pi fascinates me, not sure I'd know where to start.

applebread Sun 13-Oct-13 21:58:32

A pi costs £25. But it's useful to have a case which will set you back a tenner at least and you need a power cable £6, a keyboard and mouse £18, a monitor £100, an hdmi cable £2, a usb hub £14, a wifi dongle £6 and an sd card which can be £10 to much more depending what you want.

The pi is just a computer so if your dc already programs scratch it's just a different environment. But you can really get under the lid if you want. I have a pi for age 7 and he loves scratch programming and is starting python. It's a good gift but will end up more than £25.

sittinginthesun Sun 13-Oct-13 17:26:30

I've been wondering about this too - I have a bright year 5 son, and his maths teacher has suggested looking into coding as extension work at home.

Mumsnet is as technical as I get, so don't even know where to start!

ILoveAFullFridge Fri 11-Oct-13 20:23:03

If she enjoys coding, and has a geek someone to help her get started, then I think a Pi is probably a good idea.

I confess that I'm like you, don't 'get' the Pi, but dh and ds are both geeks and it makes sense to them!

Sticklebug Fri 11-Oct-13 17:50:12

Thanks for all the replies. She already uses Scratch at home and loves it. She has made some fairly complex cartoon images with it. I have no idea though whether the Pi would be if interest to her, mainly because (even after doing lots of reading on it) I am not clear what you do with it.

Sounds like it may be worth buying though as the links to Scratch type activities?

Her uncle is computer geek and always leaves buying her birthday present until the last minute, so may suggest this as an idea for him....and then he can show her how to use it!

ILoveAFullFridge Fri 11-Oct-13 10:41:54

Try Scratch on your home comp, before deciding whether to invest in a Pi.

(I'm not being very clear today - need intravenous chocolate.)

ILoveAFullFridge Fri 11-Oct-13 10:39:56

I think you can download Scratch for free. Why not try your dd on it, see how she takes to coding? (That is, if she's not already being taught coding at school. Some of the stuff schools describe as IT or computing...[tutting and slow head-shake emoticons])

lljkk Thu 10-Oct-13 10:44:44

I think I'd only get one if child themselves was quite keen & generally self-motivated. You can take a child to the keyboard but can't make him into a proper geek...

DD is being taught FLOWOL at school; good thing about that is free 30 day trial. And it teaches some programming concepts, too.

chocobox Wed 09-Oct-13 11:25:41

I would be interested to know more about what you can do with this as I saw this on the news last night and considered buying one for my DD 8, is this too young?

iseenodust Wed 09-Oct-13 11:00:53

There was a short clip on BBC yesterday with the inventor (try Google?). People have made them do all sorts, one example was a Sat Nav on a bog standard bicycle.

Dollybird86 Tue 08-Oct-13 20:54:47

Hi I have one thst my dh built but the only thing I use it for is watching tv online but im not very technology minded. I will ask him what it could be used for and reply later.

ILoveAFullFridge Tue 08-Oct-13 20:40:45

He doesn't connect it to the computer, he connects it to the screen and keyboard.

ILoveAFullFridge Tue 08-Oct-13 20:32:20

Ds bought himself a Pi with his birthday money this time last year (he was in Y7). You do need various accessories to use it, but he connects it to the computer that lives in the living room. He loves it and has learned 3 languages to a useful level, as well as bits and pieces of another 4-5 languages.

If you think your dd is interested in coding, google Young Rewired State. Ds attended a summer camp run by them, learned plenty, and loved it.

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