Yay for the Pi!
Handy little thing. I run the RasPi Thin Client Project on mine http://rpitc.blogspot.com/. Good for using VM Horizon and Citirx for remote access. One day I should do some more useful things like Pi-hole or Picade!
The Register popped into the Raspberry Pi Foundation's retail outlet in Cambridge to chat with founder Eben Upton about power, sales and occupying the family television. It is less than eight years since the first Pi fell into the hands of excited users. Sales of the diminutive computer, produced by a Sony facility in Wales, …
Can't imagine anyone waiting 7 years for delivery unless they've ordered a nuclear sub!
Our idiot former PM signed a contract with the CESM for as yet undersigned diesel subs based on their nuclear version. Class leader of the
NBN Pyne Attack class, HMAS Attack should hit the water in 12 or so years and her 11 sisters will be delivered over a period of 30 years after that.
I don't think the article stated anything. Seriously i'm not trying to be rude, it's just every questioned asked seemed to be answered with a probably not. I started to get interested in what China was doing with them, but I guess that's another story.
In later news, Pi 4 still exists.
My question really is: When can I buy a Pi4 with compliant USB-C (I'm surprised they're even allowed to use the name if their POWER profile - of all things - is misrepresenting itself as a set of headphones, which is what the problem is)? I don't mind a fixed 4 or a 5, but every hardware issue of the Pi has had some unfixable problem or other that needs a board revision - even down to PoE hats which are literally just a PoE chip and a transformer coil.
It won't work with properly compliant cables and chargers that provide dual cc-line. The way the Pi is wired, it advertises itself as an audio device, and so chargers/cables that detect how a device is advertised will not send power to it. Cheaper cables don't detect, and always send the power.
Ward's original blog post describing the issue explains it better, I'm probably misdescribing something.
They got a small error on the USB c but you’d need to be wanting to stir it in order for it to be a problem. Pi is all about low cost, and their own cheap PSU will power it, as will any number of cheap ones.
It’s sttil a fabulous device with a fabulous world wide community, solid OS and doesn’t cost much, I can’t hold the odd minor oversight against them. Especially when their approach is to hold their hands up and get on with putting it right.
It’s not like they burst into flames on aircraft.
I don't really think it's "minor".
It has a relatively cheap workaround, but it's a straightforward failure to comply with the standard that very simple early testing (or design review) should have found long before shipping - it's not like E-marked cables are rare or hard to find, and powering a Pi from a PC is a reasonably common use case.
The idea that it (and the thermals!) weren't noticed is what's worrying. Shipping with an errata note would have been just fine.
That's fine if you plug a Pi into an official supply in your house.
For *anything* more useful, that USB-C needs to be compliant or you need to dig out the soldering iron. USB-C is the choice of power-banks now. If you buy cheap ones of those, they will work but you risk the cheap-battery. If you buy proper ones, they won't necessarily work.
It's not a small thing. USB-C is my next upgrade for everything I do - USB-C power banks, charging cables (from a centralised power source, not the official RPi thing that takes up a whole power socket to power one cable for one device and doesn't even have an in-line switch), car interface, etc.
I'm literally holding off on the Pi4 because of that. I'm not shoving amps into a device that can't properly advertise itself as high-power compatible and, like I say, I'm surprised they're even allowed to say USB-C if they're not compliant.
If you just run a Pi as a toy, you're not affected. If you want to use it in a project, as a replacement for an existing project, in anything other than your home, etc. then it's a problem.
For reference - I want a leisure battery in my car that power a USB-C power bank with multiple outputs, which will cover all my devices and keep the Pi running 24/7 between engine startups. I can't. And I'm not going to shove either a dumb high-power DC supply, or a unit that can't run from an intelligent one, into a car and leave it unattended.
P.S. I was a RPi 1 beta tester, helping resolve the SD/USB/Ethernet issues with Broadcom. I work in schools and was trying to champion their inclusion into schools while helping them break into the market (they do a piss-poor job of that, BTW, and always have mainly because they think they can just throw a Pi at a teacher and get better grades, they don't understand education AT ALL). I have multiple Pi's in work and at home doing actual, real jobs.
Now consider - a school like mine - with USB-C charging banks for tablets, which are highly compliant and managed because they are charging things, in schools, with potentially damaged cables, etc. and you want to have every Pi plug in with either only the official supply and take up a socket, or in a way that it literally won't power up in the class.
My Pi4x4 is more than good enough for a desktop. In the PiTop its is more than good enough for a laptop*. A Pi4X4 compute engine will be fantastic in a tablet.
Unless a massive leap in AI makes these things redundant then Pi5X16 for $50 will be a drop in replacement in a lot of devices!
*7hrs usage is pretty good. The keyboard needs sorting but as a demo machine it points to a different future than most manufacturers want.
Got one of the first ones, 4gb, had to wait. I got one of those kits with the joke-size heatsinks, and wound up putting a Noctua fan on the box, and now it stays in the low 40's. Now, I'm a fan of pies, and use a few around the homestead. Most have a webserver (NGINX), MySQL or MariaDB, the camera, some perl CGIs to show me logged data...and are loafing as is (I think one is even still a pi 2). Like they work really hard for half a second once a minute unless I'm streaming the camera...
Now this thing comes along, and it's roughly as quick as say, my old Lenovo Core2 duo laptop. Which isn't super, but is way not-shabby (added SSD).
It's usable as a desktop. Arduino IDE is on the slow side, and won't support ESP32's here, but it's slow on my 7th gen i5 too...
So, I'm struggling with a use-case for it, other than a bench toy. It's not going to make linux controller stuff hard realtime - that's linux' fault, it's a pre-emptive opsys, so I use slaved arduinos for things like that (for example, ECM for a backup generator). I don't need another low grade desktop.
I'll be interested to see what people use these for that you couldn't do with one of the earlier ones (using less power). I tried really hard to make this run out of 4gb and it took chromium with many tabs open, all the above background stuff, and finally, Arduino pushed it into swap. Linux is efficient!
I wonder if Eben is going to be right in the end - he predicted 2gb was going to be "the one".
Like a PiTop? (The link is to v3 with ~7 hours battery life, there is a v4 in the pipeline)
PiTop V4 is already here. It's a little box with a built in battery, small screen and connectors.
Not doing a laptop style Pi-top 4 was disappointing because a laptop format device is kind of tricky to knock up yourself, but anyone can do a little recatangle box.
If there is a proper aptop on the way then I'm interested, but they will need to improve the keyboard. Im yping on a pi-top. Can you tel?
Ah yes, the PiTop. A UK company (according to the address at the bottom of the page) with prices without VAT and in USD.
Raspberry Pi - the $35 computer.
Components are sourced in $ so they price it in $, otherwise the exchange rate would mess with it.
The complaint was about the people who make a laptop enclosure for the pi, not the foundation themselves. It's a reasonable complaint, as if you are buying in a currency, they often will at least tell you the cost in that currency. The places that sell the pi give the purchase price in the local currency, after all. As for this company, they have a .com address rather than a .co.uk one, but they have a London address. I'd expect them to have a currency selector on their store, but evidently not.
"TBH I'm amazed there aren't knock-off Pi-es out there. Is there anything proprietary or custom to them?"
There are plenty of similar products. Many of them are so obviously meant to be like the raspberry pi that they've called themselves "[insert other name of fruit] pi". Some actually have better specs than the raspberry pi. However, they are less popular for many reasons. One reason is that they don't have as much community support, sometimes supporting fewer operating systems or working in an incompatible way. Another reason is that, while they often support similar hardware modifications, they aren't directly compatible with the ones designed for the raspberry pi. A third reason is that these usually don't have a guarantee of continued manufacture or software support, something all pi models have received since they first came out. But if you're looking for other versions, you'll find them thick on the ground.
"They are verging on being usable low-end computers now."
They passed this point for many users quite a while ago. It depends what you're doing on them, but for traditional office tasks, the version 3 was quite capable of the load. If you need a lot of memory, nothing before the pi 4 gave you more than a gigabyte, but plenty of use cases didn't need that. It won't replace the full desktop for the people who need that amount of performance, but it could probably replace many an old one.
"Perhaps an official PiBook (in the vein of the OLPC XO netbooks) might be in the offing?"
The PiTop people did make one of these. I'm hoping some other people will also do so, as I found their one somewhat overpriced and underwhelming. Unfortunately, for the price of their enclosure, you can get a comparable laptop with better battery life, builtin storage, and a slightly faster processor. I'm hoping that people will start to realize the potential of using the pi as the computer for various form factors.
Downvoters - I wasn't advocating knock-offs, just surprised there are none. I though the hardware was all off-the-shelf parts, so in theory anyone could make their own Pi board that's 100% compatible? Wouldn't compatible ARM devices be a good thing?
I hadn't heard of the Pi-Top, I was thinking of something netbook sized but Raspbian compatible.
The SOC is normally slightly varied for each customer, which is one of the reasons that it isn't totally open source.- The binary blob sets a bunch of options that control what otherwise identical silicon does.
But the big difficulty of making your own is that Broadcom won't talk to you unless you are already buying a million units a month
It's not exactly easy to make a completely compatible board. The major problem is the SOC. While it's as open as such parts tend to be (now, that took a while to come to pass), you can't exactly go out and buy one. You could probably go out and get a couple million, but that carries a few financial problems. The rest of the parts are very standard. While you could probably make a board with exactly the same shape but a different processor, there's no guarantee that it will work well with existing raspberry pi disk images. Unfortunately, ARM chips can be like that. Furthermore, when other companies try to copy the pi, they want to distinguish themselves from the pi to get customers. Since the pi already has a pretty narrow profit margin, it's hard to compete with it on price. People can, however, compete on specs. For a while, lots of people complained that the pi didn't have gigabit ethernet. Plenty still complain that it doesn't have a SATA connector on the board. Still others had a massive problem with the single gigabyte of memory on previous iterations. In each case, some place tried to make money by making a similar product with those features, usually at a price point at about 1.5 times that of the raspberry pi. I don't know how successful they were, but plenty of those boards are out there.
"....hearing stories of younger users hogging the family television with their latest and greatest software creations."
Lovely to hear, but I reduce such problems by running a Pi 4x4 behind both of our TV's (kitchen and lounge) and politely moving aside when live TV is in demand and just quietly carry on doing what I was doing by VNCing into the Pi from my Chromebook.
Super flexible, maintains domestic harmony and leaves my desktop PC quietly gathering dust [quiet as it's mostly 'off' these days].
And, btw, running the /root partition from a USB3 240GB SSD makes it even more able to sideline my PC ;-)
I got one of those fan heatsinks. It's wraparound and nearly a case in itself. It works fine.
My problem with these handy little inexpensive education computers is that now I have thousands of things I want to do with them and can't advance them all at once. Been wanting a home OScope my whole life and now that I have that nothing short of an electronic makerspace will do.
There are worse problems to have.
I am using something like this:
It works fine, but I only got it last Monday. Future will tell. I replaced the stock fans with some branded ones, silent type and software control to modulate the speed.
I started gathering data this morning only. right now, it is sitting idled at home, no air conditioning...
The FanShim in the official case just about works, but there isn't sufficient airflow really. I just did some testing of a bunch of different cases under varying amounts of load. Might (or might not) be of interest to some here: https://www.martinrowan.co.uk/2019/09/raspberry-pi-4-cases-temperature-and-cpu-throttling-under-load/
At what they were intended for - are kids really using them like we used our Speccy/CBM64/BBC Micro (rich kids)
How many kids have them? How many schools have them, and are they letting kids play with them - or are they used to make a powerpoint but using chromium and Office365 instead of windows ?
When I'm not using my DVB-T dongle* for software defined radio I can plug it into a headless Pi3 running TVheadend**. With the Pi connected to my router I can watch TV over wifi. I don't own a normal TV so it's laptops all the way.
Another Pi is running Pi-Hole and will never be switched off :) I'll buy a Pi4 when I think of a use for one. Any ideas?
TVheadend can also be used as a tuner for Kodi but I have not tried it. Might be a good project for people with kids.
See here: https://forum.kodi.tv/showthread.php?tid=91716&pid=699753&highlight=tvheadend
*Nooelec Nesdr (cheaper dongles are available)
Any news on when the man in the street can buy more than one Pi Zero at a time without either placing multiple orders for single parts or commit to buying in the hundreds ?
I recently had to place 3 separate orders with one supplier just to get 3 Pi Zero W's and the combined carriage cost more than another unit. The original argument of making sure that everyone who wants one gets one must be outdated by now so I assume it's an economics thing. I would happily pay a fair price for each one on those rare occasions where I suddenly wanted a few more if they're being shifted at such a low mark-up that the suppliers don't want to be fiddling with them otherwise.
Note: In case anyone is interested, 1 went into an existing domestic Pi-Hole application to provide some cheap and absolutely silent redundancy and the other 2 went into Retroflag GPi Gameboy style cases so my partner and I can re-live our gaming youth on the go. I have used zeros on more demanding applications than that before now but they were nowhere near as much fun or as immediately rewarding, but just as hard to get hold of in twos and threes.
...Arcade emulators and console emulators.
Some guys here are building "arcade tables", the best way to describe them, with 2 sets of arcade buttons and joysticks, an HDMI cable, and of course a power supply. Over 10.000 titles, from Atari 2600 to SNK arcades and every console in between. The size of a skateboard, with ample room to shove everything in its "thicc" body.
I'm not judging legality here, but oh boy is that thing lots of fun. Customizable as a PC, portable as a console, and with arcade-like, industrial-grade buttons!
Sure there are better things to do on these things, but as for leisure time, there it is.
They want to maintain the ability to run in power-restricted environments. Maybe it's also a principle thing as well. But imagine trying to run a raspberry pi powered robot off a USBPD cable rather than a mobile phone power bank. While not that many people use their pi for that, you'll see lots of plans and pictures in raspberry pi media, and it wouldn't be so impressive if it were handicapped by a wall connection. I would also say that a raspberry pi's utility to me has often been its ability to run with relatively little power; if I'm running something nonstop or off something with limited power availability, the pi is my go to solution.
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