This week I attended the first Raspberry Jam at The Museum of Computing, Bletchley. I currently do not own a Raspberry Pi device yet but I am interested in getting one and wanted to see what uses other people were making of them.
I enjoyed the meeting, there was a variety of people (although I have to admit I was one of possible 4 females out of 20) however I was not the youngest person there which is unusual! The event began with someone displaying how they had used their Raspberry Pi inside a 1940s TV to play old TV shows. Although this was not necessarily utilising the power of a Raspberry Pi it really shows how the price of the computer makes it open to a far greater range of uses.
The meeting continued with other people talking about what they had used their Pi’s for as well as how they had approached certain ideas. Another person asked about coding and using a Pi from initially getting the device and was surprised to see that there was still an amount of access through the command prompt. As these devices were not yet expected to be in the mainstream there is an amount of ‘behind the scenes’ stuff that users may not be used to.
From an educational perspective I am most interested in using the Raspberry Pi’s; I have already suggested that I would like to learn Python, in part as a way to remember what it is like to be a learner of something from scratch (see post: The end of the first chapter…). The main pull from the educational perspective is that it will allow the children to easily experience a variety of operating systems (the Pi’s are mostly designed for Linux but one person at the Jam suggested using RISC OS as an alternative). As well as this the ease of access for offering children the opportunities to learn code are a great incentive.
I look forward to the next jam, there is talk of having a specific educators jam which I think will be fab if we can get enough people on board. If you’re interested in an Educators Raspberry Jam in Milton Keynes please tweet me!