Practical Technology

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What is a Raspberry Pi and why you should care


Today, February 29th, 2012, the technology world’s eyes are on the release of the Consumer Preview of Windows 8 or on the latest iPad 3 rumors. We don’t know exactly how these products will turn out but we can be sure of one thing: They’ll cost a pretty penny. On the same day, the non-profit Raspberry Pi Foundation released a bare-boned, Linux-powered computer that costs between $25 and $35.

When I say “bare-boned,” I mean just that. The Raspberry Pi, which is the creation of UK-based academics and technology companies, is a credit card sized board with a Broadcom 700Mhz BCM2835 System-On Chip running a lightweight Remix of Fedora Linux for ARM. It doesn’t come with a keyboard, mouse or monitor. Heck, it doesn’t even come with a hard drive or a case. It’s a single board computer without even a case for the bare board.

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