Friday, 16 March 2012

Raspberry Pi

Proving that lots of people can still get excited about enthusiast hardware platforms has been the recent runaway success of the first batch of Raspberry Pi computers offered for sale in February 2012.
The Raspberry Pi computer is a tiny, very cheap, modern spiritual successor to the Acorn BBC Micro. Its makers pay homage to the BBC Micro by including a clone of BBC Basic in the distributed Linux operating system, and continuing the model naming convention used by Acorn.
Raspberry Pi measures approximately 3.3 inches by 2.1 inches in size, costs $AU54.75 delivered, and is capable of playing back full 1080P video. It features a low-power, powerful DSP-based VideoCore IV (the less powerful VideoCore II was used in the iPod), an Arm11 700mhz CPU, 256MB of RAM, and an onboard SD card slot for storage.

An initial production run of 10,000 units was manufactured, however global demand has been very high, with retail servers crashing and millions of expressions interest being registered in the days after its release.

Whilst we here at MACE are very happy for the success of a retro-referencing, enthusiast platform, we feel it only fair to mention that marketing and viral, word-of-mouth communication is a funny thing! A number of equally interesting alternatives have been around for longer!

EDIT - someone was going to do it sooner or later! Here is a picture of a Raspberry Pi emulating an Atari 2600

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