Cambridge – Raspberry Pi, a small low-cost device designed to teach computer code to children, went on sale last week.
The computer, created by charity the Raspberry Pi Foundation, is a credit card-sized chip that is sold uncased, and without a monitor or keyboard, for £22. An even cheaper model for £16 will go on sale later in the year.
The Raspberry Pi features an Ethernet port for connection to the internet, and other ports to connect a monitor, keyboard and mouse. Demand for the device has been so high that the website that supplies it, Premier Farnell, crashed when the device was launched last week.
‘You can consume online experience in a much more sophisticated way if you understand what is going on,’ says Dr Eben Upton, founder of the Raspberry Pi Foundation. ‘It is about providing the ability not just to be passive consumers. If we want to give people one thing, it’s the ability not to be passive, even when you consume stuff.’
As we become more dependent on technology and smart devices, this is an important step in educating people about the inner workings of the machines they use daily. For more on how demystifying technology will become more important, read our Innovate feature on Technology Will Save Us.