By Dave LeClair @ gizmag.com
For tinkerers and people who love programming complicated projects, devices like the Raspberry Pi and Arduino are amazing, but for those without technical knowledge, they can be a terrifying proposition. A new device called Verve 2 aims to bring the functionality of these devices to the masses without the need for programming skills.
The crux of a lot of cool projects you see developed using Arduino is the device itself, along with some connected sensors. From there, someone with electronics and programming knowledge writes the code that tells the system what to do when the sensors detect something. The general idea for Verve 2 is the same, except it doesn’t require the programming step.
Verve 2 is like Arduino for people without programming skills - [Link]
by drcurzon @ instructables.com:
This is my first Instructable so all criticisms and comments are welcome.
This will show you how to set up a simple wired web server on your Raspberry Pi, with PHP and MySql.
The Raspberry Pi is a good choice for a webserver that will not recieve too much traffic, such as a testing server, or small intranet, as it doesn;t get too hot (so is nice and quiet), and only uses around 5 Watts of power (costing £3.50 a year where I am if it’s running 24/7)
Raspberry Pi Web Server - [Link]
Arduino has its shields, the Beaglebone Black its capes and up until recently the Raspberry Pi just had expansion boards. The latest B+ version of the Pi comes with more I/Os increasing the pin count to 40 of which 26 are backward compatible with the original connector fitted to the A and B boards. Two of the extra pins ID_SC and ID_SD are data and clock lines to connect to a serial EPROM fitted to the expansion board, sorry HAT. The EEPROM holds the board manufacturer information, GPIO setup and a thing called a ‘device tree’ fragment – basically a description of the attached hardware that allows Linux to automatically load the appropriate driver.
HATs On for the Raspberry Pi - [Link]
A four-channel remote control built using the EnOcean Pi by Kerry Wong:
In my last couple of blog posts, I did a brief overview of the EnOcean Pi sensor kit from Newark and demonstrated how to compile and run the example code using a Raspberry Pi. In this blog post, I will show a real world example – a four-channel remote control built using the EnOcean Pi in conjunction with the EnOcean pushbutton module.
A four channel remote control using EnOcean Pi - [Link]
Actually the first ‘project’ I ever did with a Raspberry Pi was sending a push message to my Iphone. It was 2012, I was lying sick in bed and found a new app on my Iphone called Pushover (what else to do when you’re sick?). With Pushover you can send and receive custom made push messages. On the website I found a simple Python script to send messages. I knew the Rpi was able to run Python code, so here my Rpi adventures started. Within 30 minutes I was able to receive ‘hello world’ on my phone (needless to say I wasn’t lying in bed anymore). Seeing ‘hello world’ on your screen is like the software equivalent of the blinking led, THE coolest feature ever!
Doorbell alert with pushmessage and mail with webcam footage - [Link]
When you think Raspberry Pi and camera you probably already know the score; a small camera board that plugs into the Pi’s CSI connector fitted with a fixed-focus wide-angle lens. This versatile setup has been the basis of all sorts of homebrew applications. The SnapPiCam takes the Pi down a different route and converts it into a 5 MP digital camera with interchangeable lens.
Gregory L Holloway is the brains behind this idea, he developed it as an entry into an Instructables competition (which he won) and the response he got encouraged him to launch it on Kickstarter. The design uses the lower spec RPi A without an Ethernet port and with 256 MB of RAM. The camera includes a LiPo battery and DC-DC converter to make it truly portable and different versions allow you to add a rear touchscreen and various interchangeable, magnetic-mount lens ranging from wide-angle to telephoto zoom.
SnapPiCam, a DIY Digital Camera - [Link]
by TONY DICOLA @ learn.adafruit.com:
Have you heard about small Linux-based development boards like the Raspberry Pi or Beaglebone Black, but been confused about which one is best for you? This guide will compare the specifications, performance, power usage, and development experience of four popular Linux-based development boards to help you choose which is right for you!
Embedded Linux Board Comparison - [Link]
by Russell Barnes @ www.raspi.today
The Director of Hardware at the Raspberry Pi Foundation, James Adams, walks us through the making of the new and improved Model B+ and more…
While he was a chip designer at Broadcom, James Adams ran the design team that created the 3D graphics engine that went on to feature in the Raspberry Pi, arguably the Pi’s strongest asset.
Later he moved to a tech startup called Argon Design that was created by the same man behind the original company that Broadcom bought many years ago for its multimedia technology. The 4th generation of that very chip also features in the Raspberry Pi, so Adams was already well versed with its capabilities long before joining the Foundation in February 2013.
The making of the Raspberry Pi Model B+ - [Link]
I had recently bought an original Gameboy DMG from Good Will for a whopping $5.00, condition unknown. Taking a gamble, I purchased it and took it home to find that it had severe damage caused by a battery that exploded and leaked all over the mainboard.
I had also recently started looking on eBay for the elusive Gameboy Light. It’s a system I have always wanted but could never allow myself to buy since they are pretty expensive on eBay. The Gameboy Light is the Gameboy Pocket with an Indiglo light and was only released overseas in Japan.
I had bought a Raspberry Pi a while back and really didn’t know what I wanted to do with it. At that moment, like a Reese’s Peanut Butter cup, it dawned on me – could the Raspberry Pi be used with a Gameboy?
Super Mega Ultra Pi Boy 64 Thingy Build - [Link]
Ray has a great reverse engineering project! Check out more on his blog rayshobby.net. [via]
At the Maker Faire this year I got lots of questions about soil moisture sensors, which I knew little about. So I started seriously researching the subject. I found a few different soil sensors, learned about their principles, and also learned about how to make my own. In this blog post, I will talk about a cheap wireless soil moisture sensor I found on Amazon.com for about $10, and how to use an Arduino or Raspberry Pi to decode the signal from the sensor, so you can use it directly in your own garden projects.
What is this?
A soil moisture sensor (or meter) measures the water content in soil. With it, you can easily tell when the soil needs more water or when it’s over-watered. The simplest soil sensor doesn’t even need battery. For example, this Rapitest Soil Meter, which I bought a few years ago, consists of simply a probe and a volt meter panel. The way it works is by using the Galvanic cell principle — essentially how a lemon battery or potato battery works. The probe is made of two electrodes of different metals. In the left picture below, the tip (dark silver color) is made of one type of metal (likely zinc), and the rest of the probe is made of another type of metal (likely copper, steel, or aluminum). When the probe is inserted into soil, it generates a small amount of voltage (typically a few hundred milli-volts to a couple of volts). The more water in the soil, the higher the generated voltage. This meter is pretty easy to use manually; but to automate the reading you need a microcontroller to read the value.
Reverse engineer a cheap wireless soil moisture sensor using Arduino or Raspberry Pi - [Link]