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16 July 2012, 17:07

Hardware Hacks: The Raspberry Pi is everywhere

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Hardware Hacks is a new section on The H that collects stories about the wide range of uses of open source in the rapidly expanding area of open hardware. Find out about interesting projects, re-purposing of devices and the creation of a new generation of deeply open systems. This edition is all about the Raspberry Pi mini-computer.

  • FishPi – Developer Greg Holloway is building an unmanned, autonomous boat controlled by a Raspberry Pi. The solar powered FishPi is being designed with the goal of being able to cross the Atlantic Ocean all by itself. At the moment, Holloway is building a 20-inch long proof-of-concept vehicle and he has not yet tested it for actual seaworthiness, but the plans are to eventually produce a kit that can be sold to interested parties. Holloway expects the finished product to be able to sustain long-term operations and perform observations and data logging, aided by two-way satellite communication.

  • Raspberry Pi in space – Raspberry Pi founder Eben Upton thinks the device will go further than just across the Atlantic, however. He envisions the mini-computer being used in sounding rockets, experimental balloons and even satellites. Plans are already being made by the University of Leicester to shoot Raspberry-Pi-powered mini-satellites into space on board a converted intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).

  • Pi Cobbler – For those more down-to-earth types, Adafruit Industries has released the Pi Cobbler breakout box for the Raspberry Pi. The kit is available for $7.95 (£5.12) from the US-based supplier and has to be assembled before use, with some soldering being required. The Pi Cobbler lets hackers run the Raspberry Pi's 26 I/O ports to a solderless breadboard that makes it easier to prototype hardware projects involving the mini-computer.


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