One of my Christmas presents this year was a Raspberry Pi! A Raspberry Pi (also referred to as a RasPi) is a credit card-sized computer that costs around $35. It’s intended to inspire people around the world to learn programming, which I think is a great mission. The possibilities with computers like these are truly endless.
For the technical folks, here’s a diagram of the parts (from the official RasPi website).
I’m not sure exactly what I want to make with it yet. People have made some amazing projects. In fact, Wired just posted an article the other day about some new cool RasPi projects, including a musical instrument (using beets!), a voice-activated coffee maker and a media center, among other things. I’m thinking about making a really awesome mobile hackerbox, using my materials from my PirateBox, and getting a USB monitor and a wireless keyboard/mouse. I’d love to build it all into a cyberpunk book or something just to make it really 1337.
First, I’ll be putting Linux on it (the Raspbian distro seems like a logical first step). I need to make a prototype of my hackerbox before I start putting everything together. I’m looking forward to embarking on a new project!
I can’t stop thinking about Mars. After last night’s Curiosity landing, it’s incredible to me that scientists are able to make things like this happen. I mean, they just landed a robot, on Mars, with a freaking parachute. I just can’t wrap my head around the fact that we’ve been able to get multiple rovers to another planet. I know they’re just robots, but I get a little sad thinking about them all alone up there. Space is lonely.
It just makes day to day life seem so mundane.
This quote from Discover Magazine helps solidify how special this all is, and how amazing science can be in uniting people around the world:
“The news these days is filled with polarization, with hate, with fear, with ignorance. But while these feelings are a part of us, and always will be, they neither dominate nor define us. Not if we don’t let them. When we reach, when we explore, when we’re curious–that’s when we’re at our best. We can learn about the world around us, the Universe around us. It doesn’t divide us, or separate us, or create artificial and wholly made-up barriers between us. As we saw on Twitter, at New York Times Square where hundreds of people watched the landing live, and all over the world: science and exploration bind us together. Science makes the world a better place, and it makes us better people. It’s what we can do, and what we must do.”
I recently saw this excellent short film made by students from the Bezaleal Academy of Arts. It explores a world in which alternative reality is inescapable. The film is visually stunning and a pretty impressive project. I was interested while reading some of the comments in response to the film–that this kind of future is inevitable, but it’s also unwanted by many. As a techie and cyberpunk, I think AR is fascinating, so I’m kind of looking forward to having more options like this in my day to day life. But I suppose progress always comes at a price. Anyway, check out the film!