Beginners Section

April 10, 2013

Raspberry Pi – Let’s get started!!

Have you ever thought to yourself, ‘I wish I could do some programming – but I don’t understand anything about computers or Java C++’. I HAVE!!! I am so rubbish when it comes to this type of stuff, I know nothing. However what I do have and this is quite important, it’s the eagerness to learn.

Rasp PI LogoSo when I came across this thingy-me-bobby called Raspberry Pi, I was pretty excited about it, especially when schools have adopted this to teach kids how to do programming. So regardless of your age or your skill set this is a great piece of kit that will allow everyone achieve a similar type of learning curve (which is up up and up).

This brings me on nicely to what this Raspberry Pi series is all about. If you are like me, wishing you could go back in time and learn about programming or you’re a school kid deciding on a new hobby, this is the place for you!

I will cover a series of tutorials over time on things like:

  • Introduction of the Raspberry Pi
  • What can you do with the Raspberry Pi
  • Python basic programming so that you are ready to conquer the Raspberry world!!

You on board? Great!! Let us Begin

What is the Raspberry Pi?

Raspberry Pi is a small, capable computer and development board to help educate a new generation of programmers and electronics engineers

Developed by the Raspberry PI foundation the Raspberry Pi computer is a miniature ARM based PC which can do many of the things a desktop PC can do like word-processing, games or playing back High-Definition video.

Rasp Pi Pic

Where can I buy one from?

You can buy the Raspberry Pi through Premier Farnell/Element 14 and RS Components. Both distributors sell all over the world.

How much will it cost?

The Model A will cost £19.12 and the Model B £25.92, shipping included.

What’s the difference between Model A and Model B?

  • Model A has 256MB RAM, one USB port and no Ethernet (network connection)
  • Model B has 512MB RAM, 2 USB port and an Ethernet port

What else do I need?

Easy! Below is a list with links to pick up the stuff for cheap! Remember the Raspberry Pi is a very cheap way to build a computer.

  • SD Card : A 4Gb Class 4 should be the minimum requirement (the class indicates how fast the card is). This SanDisk is perfect
  • Cables : You only need one of the following:
    HDMI to HDMI (for TVs and monitors with HDMI input)
    HDMI to DVI (for monitors with DVI input)
    RCA Video Cable (for your analogue display if you are not using HDMI)
  • Keyboard and Mouse : Any standard USB Keyboard and USB Mouse will do – again these can be picked up for quite cheap on Amazon. Please note: that if you choose the Model A which only has one USB port, you will have to purchase a USB hub.
  • Ethernet Cable : Networking is optional, although it makes updating and getting new software for your Raspberry Pi much easier (only needed for Model B). Here is a cheap Ethernet cable.
  • Audio Lead : Only needed if you are using the analogue RCA connection. You can pick up and Audio lead for less than £2.
  • Power Adapter : A good quality, micro USB power supply that can provide at least 700mA at 5V is essential. Phone chargers work a treat or you can this one.

Thanks for this! I have ordered all this now, what’s next?

Great! Now here is some bad news! As I mentioned earlier, I am also doing this, I am travelling the same journey as you. The problem is that you will have to wait a minimum of 2 weeks before you get your stuff, this is due to the high demand for the Raspberry Pi.

My stuff should be arriving soon, and when it does I will post a tutorial on how to get your Raspberry Pi up and running. If I come across any problems I will hopefully get them answered before your stuff arrives.

So in the meantime pour yourself a massive cup of tea and sit back and get excited for the most awesome adventure ever!! Stay tuned dudes!!

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Kaedyn Sheikh

Hi my name is Kaedyn, and I’m a guest blogger on BeginnersTech as well as running my own site Gadget Dweebs. My biggest passion I have in life is gadgets, and I’m not fussy with the genre. It can be a sport gadget, a cooking gadget, a gaming gadget, a useful gadget (and a fair few un-useful ones)…if its new, I have to play with it. My day job is a city boy helping entrepreneurs get funding for their dreams, by night, I’m a gadget loving dweeb.


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