Most of us are familiar with the Raspberry Pi. It’s a computer that’s about the size of your credit card and it was developed by the Raspberry Pi Foundation of the UK to help teach computer science in schools. Two things stand out about the Raspberry Pi: It costs only $25 or $35 and, it runs on Open Source Software which, as you know, we’re crazy about. In the year 2013, there are thousands of documented stories of how people used this pocket PC to change their lives or the lives of others, and we’re going to cover six of the best.
First on the list is an offering from Logi.cals which has considerable experience with the Raspberry Pi, and they have designed an automated decanting machine which runs on the said PC. Decanting is usually needed in upscale restaurants where the wine has been aged and has to be poured carefully. The fact that persons associated with such upscale indulgences would consider using a simple device to accomplish this task is mind boggling and points to the marvels that can be wrought with the right software. Micro switches and sensors determine whether a bottle and glass are present and the position of the bottle as it pours its fine content. This marvelous creation is sure to turn heads no matter where it is set up and I’m sure that the well off customers won’t mind being served by this automated wonder or even care for that matter.
“The goal of this project was to produce a computer system, based on the Raspberry Pi, with an absolute minimum of cable clutter. I think I have succeeded.”
There’s no doubt that some might have been turned off by the bare appearance of the Raspberry Pi. Many have created cases to host their prized possession, but one man took it a step further. Michael Davis, through his love for fine things decided to use his Pi to create his very own desktop computer, but with as little clutter as possible. “The goal of this project was to produce a computer system, based on the Raspberry Pi, with an absolute minimum of cable clutter. I think I have succeeded,” a confident Michael shared on his blog. Michael documents the step by step process and even provides a list of parts that he used to accomplish his build.
Michael attached his Pi to the back of his Dell Monitor, and via an HDMI to VGA adapter, was able to have his display up and running. A dongle connected to the monitor allowed him to make use of his wireless keyboard and mouse combination and allowed him to feel right at home. The setup runs on the Raspbian download embedded on an 8GB SD card and a 1TB USB hard drive is also connected to the set up for more storage options. Such a set up is a modern marvel and cannot go unnoticed. Head over to Mike’s page for a full run down of his ingenuity.
Raspberry Home Automation
Home automation gained a lot of traction in 2013. Apps like tasker and InControl for Android made a lot of buzz and many took the opportunity to create futuristic homes and power them from their cellphones. A user by the name of ‘willq44′ on the instructables network goes into great detail of how he used his Pi to set up his home automation. Said ‘willq44′, “I had heard heard about GPIO (General Purpose Input/Output) pins on the raspberry pi and decided to do something with it. And with the holidays coming, wouldn’t it be great to be able to turn on and off your light display from the web!” To answer his question, yes; it would be great to do that.
Willq44 acquired his Pi, remote controlled outlets, ribbon cable and a solder, and got to work. “I chose the Web2Py framework for it’s ease of installation and use. Installation is very simple,” he continued as he displayed pictures of what was acquired. A set up like this is sure to wow your friends when they come over for some hot tea, and the best part about it is that you won’t have to break the bank to accomplish it. Have a closer look at the original post for more details on how to do this yourself.