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Byte Insight

Raspberry Pi

The Raspberry Pi is the infamous credit card sized computer that has revitalised the computer based experiementation first seen with the BBC Micro in the 1980s.   It runs a special flavour of Linux called Raspbian, which encourages students to explore the inner workings of a modern operating system.  The Pi comes with GPIO (General Purpose Input/Output) pins that allow it to be connected to external devices ranging from LEDs and motors to temperature and movement sensors.   There many things that you can do with a Raspberry Pi including:

Network Configuation

One problem with using a Raspberry Pi in school is that you are protected from evil-web-ness by the PxxxY.  You see we cannnot even say the word without getting this page blocked too.  This page explains how to set up your RPi so you can access the network and internet.

Python – Strings

A string is a list of characters and, in Python, they are easy to declare using speech marks.

myquote = “Talk is cheap. Show me the code.”

MySQL – Create Table

The process and command for creating a table in MySql are similar to that for a database. You will need to make decisions about data types and key fields. Detailed information on creating tables is available at W3Schools/Create Table.

MySql – Create Database

If you need to create a database via the command line (or through the MYSQL prompt in PHPMyAdmin) then you can use the following where dynamo is the name of the database you wish to create. See W3Schools/Create DB for more information.

CREATE DATABASE dynamo;

MySql

MySql is the worlds second most popular database engine (July 2013) and its open source. It is based on SQL (Sequential Query Language).  Unlike MS Access it does not run as a stand-alone application.   It runs as a background service on a computer (typically called ‘a server’) and you connect to it using a username and password.  Once you have connected to the MySql server you can query it using SQL or Structured Query Language.  The server will respond with the results of your query.

MySql – Insert

Inserting rows into MySql can be done in a couple of ways. You can use the INSERT…VALUES and INSERT…SET commands.

RoboCode

Robocode is a programming game, where the goal is to develop a robot battle tank to battle against other tanks in Java or .NET. The robot battles are running in real-time and on-screen.

Python

Python is a highly readable language that is easy to use and learn hence it is gaining popularity as an education language.  However, this should not lead anyone to consider it a child’s language for it is not.  It is very powerful, flexible and platform independent.  It supports many styles of programming from scripting and web design to  GUI/Game development.

Arduino

The amazing versatile Arduino microprocessor board that can be used in many projects.