Raspberry Pi, everyone’s favorite ugly-but-cheap mini-computer, may be about to get a lot more mobile. Ars Technica reports that a company called SparqEE is developing a yet-to-be-launched Kickstarter project that’s looking to raise $70,000 to produce an add-on for the Raspberry Pi that will let users install a SIM card that will give it access to 3G networks around the world. Even more impressively, SparqEE says that it can sell users low-cost SIM cards they can use in their Raspberry Pis since the company has “contracted with a worldwide SIM provider” that can deliver global SIM cards cheaply. In the United States, 3G-enabled Raspberry Pis will be able to hook up to AT&T’s 3G network, the company says.
Google is always looking to push technology forward and in its latest effort has donated €1.5 million, roughly $1.95 million, to Trinity College in Dublin. The money will help fund a new project that looks to transform computer science education in Irish schools over the next 10 years, Silicon Republic reported. The project will send 1,000 teachers back to school for a course in modern computer science that is aimed at improving teaching skills. Google’s donation will also help increase teaching for science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) in disadvantaged schools in an effort to revamp educational and social change throughout Ireland. To further enhance the project, the Raspberry Pi Foundation will be providing more than 1,000 Raspberry Pi computers to participating students and teachers to make their coding journey even easier.
The Raspberry Pi foundation on Tuesday announced the availability of a $25 camera module for its popular Raspberry Pi computers. The module can be purchased from distributors RS Components or Premier Farnell/Element14, and is compatible with both the Model A and Model B versions of the Raspberry Pi. The 5-megapixel camera is capable of taking pictures at a 2592 x 1944 resolution and can record full 1080p HD video at 30 frames per second. The module’s ribbon cable must be plugged into the CSi port that is located between the Ethernet and HDMI ports on the unit. The Raspberry Pi must also be on the latest firmware to recognize the camera, which can then be enabled in the configuration settings. A video demonstration follows below. More →
The bulk of Raspberry Pi production moved from China last September to one of Sony’s factories in Wales. The Raspberry Pi Foundation this week announced that the U.K. plant has now produced more than 500,000th units in a little over six months. Weekly production of the popular credit card-sized computer is now said to be around 40,000 units in the U.K. facility alone, and that number “is set to climb further.” The company wouldn’t go into further detail, although it did confirm that it sold its millionth Pi unit in January, adding that there will soon be “more Made in the U.K. Pis in the world than their Made in China cousins.” More →
The cheaper model of the Raspberry Pi Foundation’s microcomputer is now available in the United States. The Raspberry Pi Model A is equipped with the same 700MHz processor as the more expensive Model B but includes only one USB port, no Ethernet port, and half the RAM of the original model to keep the price low. Sales of the Model A began in Europe in February and expanded to Asia last week. Raspberry Pi founder Eben Upton has revealed that sales of the cheaper Pi unit are around “a few thousand a week” so far. More →
The Raspberry Pi was invented in the United Kingdom and now it’s going to be manufactured there was well. Computerworld UK reports that the Raspberry Pi Foundation has decided to move the main production facility for the Linux-based mini-computer from China to Wales in a bid to meet unexpectedly high demand in western markets. Apparently the foundation was experiencing manufacturing bottlenecks at its Chinese facilities and thus decided to move production closer to home where it will be easier to monitor. The $35 Raspberry Pi has become a surprise hit since its launch in 2012 and has sold around 1 million units in just over a year on the market.
Minecraft, the popular sandbox construction game that has taken the world by storm, is now available for the similarly popular Raspberry Pi computer. Mojang, the company behind the hit game, announced on Monday that Minecraft: Pi Edition is available for free on the credit card-sized device. The game supports the same creative gameplay, although it doesn’t support the survival mode that mobile and desktop users have come to know. On the other hand, it also grants users the unique ability to edit the game’s code at a base level and allows them to manipulate the game to their liking. More →
It has been a big week for the organization behind the credit card-sized Raspberry Pi computer. The Raspberry Pi Foundation on Monday announced the availability of the cheaper Model A version of its popular microcomputer and on Wednesday it revealed a new camera add-on for the device. The 5-megapixel camera module will be able to connect directly to the Raspberry Pi and is capable of capturing 1080p HD video. The Foundation revealed that the camera will cost $25 and is “at least a month away” from being released.
The Raspberry Pi Foundation announced on Monday that the cheaper model of its microcomputer is now available in Europe and is coming “very soon” to the rest of the world. The Raspberry Pi Model A is equipped with the same 700MHz processor as the Model B but includes only one USB port, no Ethernet port, and half the RAM of the original model. The device consumes roughly a third of the power of the Model B, however, making it the perfect solution for projects that use a battery or solar power. The Raspberry Pi Model A is now available to European buyers for $25 from RS Components and Premier Farnell/element14.
How’s this for a cool initiative? The Raspberry Pi Foundation announced on Tuesday that it will team up with Google (GOOG) to give 15,000 Raspberry Pi computers away to children in the United Kingdom to help them develop their programming skills. The foundation says that it and Google are “going to be working with Google and six U.K. educational partners to find the kids who we think will benefit from having their very own Raspberry Pi,” and will presumably target kids who have shown an aptitude for programming. More →
Raspberry Pi’s $35 Linux-based computer is a runaway success. Creator Eben Upton told ZDNet in a recent interview that his team thought they would sell 1,000 units when they were designing the mini PC, but sales have now topped 700,000. ”We honestly did think we would sell about 1,000, maybe 10,000 in our wildest dreams,” Upton said. “We thought we would make a small number and give them out to people who might want to come and read computer science at Cambridge.” On a slightly disappointing note to those hoping for an upgraded model in 2013, Upton said in the interview that the company has no plans to launch a sequel to the latest Raspberry Pi “Model B” this year.
The numbers are in and the $35 Raspberry Pi Linux PC is a success. After pre-orders sold out in less than 24 hours, the credit card-sized computer faced a number manufacturing hiccups and distribution problems. In April, the first batch of Raspberry Pis finally arrived at distributors and begun to ship worldwide. The company announced this week that one of its two distributors, Premier Farnell, has sold more than half a million units. More →
The holidays are over, but if you find yourself the owner of an iOS device with Siri and a Raspberry Pi computer, you can combine the two to automatically open up your garage door with this cool little hack by “DarkTherapy.” Using “SiriProxy running on the Raspberry Pi, along with wiringPi to access the Pi’s GPIO pins and turn a relay on/off,” DarkTherapy was able to upgrade his iPhone 5′s personal assistant with a nifty new skill — the ability to open garage doors. Brave geeks can head over to DarkTherapy’s forum post for instructions on the hack and a video of Siri the butler opening a garage door follows below.