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Thread: Raspberry Pi vs Parallax C3

  1. #61

    Default Re: Raspberry Pi vs Parallax C3

    RS and Farnell have always manufactured some of their own products. For instance, Farnell used to make power supplies and test equipment. Of course, they don't actually make the Raspberry Pi boards themselves, they just get the PCBs made and assembled in China like most manufacturers do, these days.

    What on earth does the ATmega have to do with the Raspberry Pi? It's an AVR device made by Atmel.
    Leon Heller
    G1HSM

  2. #62

    Default Re: Raspberry Pi vs Parallax C3

    Okay, someone claimed I was wrong about the AVR and so I presumed they meant ATmegas. Same party claimed Farnell and RS Solutions were the manufacturers. Seems someone is very loyal to the Raspberry Pi, but not well informed.

    This is all a tempest in a tea pot. If they are fun, use both and LEARN by comparing. Speculative comparison of computer chips in terms of value is really rather useless.
    Hwang Xian Sheng
    Kaohsiung/Gaoxiung
    Taiwan/Formosa
    R.O.C/Province of China, P.R.C.

    "My comments are independent... and at times just plain wrong. At other times, they just might be helpful. So consider the source."

  3. #63

    Default Re: Raspberry Pi vs Parallax C3

    The Pi uses a 700 MHz ARM11 core, embedded in an SOC made by Broadcom:
    The SoC is a Broadcom BCM2835. This contains an ARM1176JZFS, with floating point, running at 700Mhz, and a Videocore 4 GPU. The GPU is capable of BluRay quality playback, using H.264 at 40MBits/s. It has a fast 3D core accessed using the supplied OpenGL ES2.0 and OpenVG libraries.
    It's nothing to do with the AVR.

    RS and Farnell *are* manufacturing the boards:
    Three years later, were just going into mass production through licensed manufacture deals with Elenment 14/Premier Farnell and RS Electronics although its just the beginning of the Raspberry Pi story.
    Looking at the Raspberry Pi web site might be a good idea:

    http://www.raspberrypi.org/
    Last edited by Leon; 05-01-2012 at 11:04 AM.
    Leon Heller
    G1HSM

  4. #64

    Default Re: Raspberry Pi vs Parallax C3

    Strangely enough when Eben Upton first had the idea of a small cheap computer for kids back in 2006 he kicked off with a design based on the Atmega644. Did he move away from the atmega due to the onslaught of the Arduino, or because it's more politic to use a Broadcom chip as he works for them, or because of the historical connection to Acorn and the BBC computer, or because he wanted Linux on there?

    Whilst I agree that comparing Props and ARMs is mostly pointless there is one major area here where they can be compared. Parallax and Raspberry Pi both have education as a primary motivation. So the question might be for example "If you have an 8 year old in the house and you want to get that child interested in computers/programming/electronics/engineering then which device might be the most captivating and easiest entry point, A Pi or a Prop?

    Of course given the price of these things I would hope they are both available.

  5. #65
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    Default Re: Raspberry Pi vs Parallax C3

    Quote Originally Posted by Heater. View Post
    ...or because it's more politic to use a Broadcom chip as he works for them...
    I think I read that they used that since the team were all completely familiar with the broadcomm parts, and could easily make a complete system out of the parts they were familiar with.

    there is one major area here where they can be compared. Parallax and Raspberry Pi both have education as a primary motivation. So the question might be for example "If you have an 8 year old in the house and you want to get that child interested in computers/programming/electronics/engineering then which device might be the most captivating and easiest entry point, A Pi or a Prop?
    This is the key point. Right now, neither stands a chance, as there exists no software that could be interesting to the target market. [the current HARDWARE is interesting to hardware guys of itself].

    The key is the next step: Folks have to come up with software that is interesting to kids so they play with it. Most discussions about education kids miss this important point. People learn by play, and younger the target, the less formalized play must be.

    Video games brought PCs to the masses, driving advances in graphics and processing power. Maybe the same will apply here?

  6. #66

    Default Re: Raspberry Pi vs Parallax C3

    The PI comes with a simple game which young kids can modify. Educational software will become available quite quickly, I would think, just as it did with the BBC computer, many years ago.
    Leon Heller
    G1HSM

  7. #67

    Default Re: Raspberry Pi vs Parallax C3

    Around here, 8 year olds seem to take well to Angry Birds on an iPad or just about any game on a Wii. But trying to get them to comprehend electricity, logic, binary number systems and so on seems a bit premature. They have yet to acquire true typing abilities and even essays in their native languages are rather simple.

    Everyone is proposing the hardware platform. Does anyone have a real curriculum proposal that is appropriate for primary school? Parallax has provide excellent beginner material for both the Basic Stamp and the Propeller and spend thousands of hours visiting schools. They seem to have some knowledge of what are realistic methodologies and economic barriers.

    I am just a bit doubtful that bare board components are going to be successful in introducing computers to such young people unless they have a very special teacher with vast amounts of patience and resources. Just the fact that wires come loose and components get lost is enough to exhaust the patience of most teacher in a set of five or six kids.

    I feel that having them start with a Linux based Netbook and having it integrated with their regular school work is a better entry point. The original EEEpc had the Linux OS set up so that when a child did something unpredictable and disasterous, it could be completely wiped and reset by a few keystrokes at boot. Games, references, and basic functions were all available in a multitude of languages. And the keyboard was appropriate for small hands.
    Hwang Xian Sheng
    Kaohsiung/Gaoxiung
    Taiwan/Formosa
    R.O.C/Province of China, P.R.C.

    "My comments are independent... and at times just plain wrong. At other times, they just might be helpful. So consider the source."

  8. #68

    Default Re: Raspberry Pi vs Parallax C3

    Well sure if you limit those being taught to 8 year old's you're gonna have a problem teaching them no matter what you have and forget about abstract ideas like current, amperage, binary, etc.

    Move it up 4-5 years and its different. Then they can play with the PicAxe(dirt cheap and easy to use) to get the rudiments of hardware and software or a RadioShack Electronics Learning Lab for the electrical side of things. Arduino is another good option once they get some experience or the Raspberry with the appropriate software.

    Of course you won't reach a lot of kids, that's just a given, especially the short attention span duffers destined to be fast food processors and layabouts or the dolts who use the IPAD. But the bright and curious, you will and that's what you want.

  9. #69

    Default Re: Raspberry Pi vs Parallax C3

    @rod1963?
    You are very realistic about what children can learn and at what age. I did start with electronics at 12 (back in 1960). But these days there is quite a bit more of the abstract to learn. A child needs to acquire much more to deal with digitial electronics than communication via Morse Code or telephony.

    I firmly believe that children need to learn early how to do and submit homework via computer. But what is inside and lower levels of DIY assembly and programing should come later and as you pointed out - not for all.

    The Raspberry Pi website claims that 4 out of 5 inquiries are NOT for educational use, and yet they continue to put forth that people should donate a Raspberry Pi by paying double. I get all sorts of mixed messages in terms of what their real mission is from reading their news releases.

    At best, I think the Raspberry Pi might be deployed to play video in department store at the point of sale. Or maybe make a good cash register that plays an advertisement while you wait in line. Several of the ubiquitous game machines have been able to adapt to Linux for several years as a first computer for children. Sony even encouraged it, while M$ has blocked such creativity.
    Last edited by Loopy Byteloose; 05-03-2012 at 09:46 AM.
    Hwang Xian Sheng
    Kaohsiung/Gaoxiung
    Taiwan/Formosa
    R.O.C/Province of China, P.R.C.

    "My comments are independent... and at times just plain wrong. At other times, they just might be helpful. So consider the source."

  10. #70

    Default Re: Raspberry Pi vs Parallax C3

    Loopy,

    If you really want to get a feel for the motivation behind the Pi have a listen to Eben's presentation on video here : http://www.raspberrypi.org/page/2

    A child needs to acquire much more to deal with digitial electrons than communication via Morse Code or telephony.
    I'm not sure I know what you mean there. Electrons are electrons despite the existence of facebook and angry birds. In my mind Morse code and IP packets are conceptually the same.

    I firmly believe that children need to learn early how to do and submit homework via computer.
    I firmly believe that that is probably the worst use of computers in education. What we are aiming at here is imparting into young minds the concepts of computer, computing, programming, control, algorithm etc etc. Using a computer as a substitute for paper and pen does none of that.

  11. #71

    Default Re: Raspberry Pi vs Parallax C3

    I just don't understand all those Loopy comments. Why doesn't he look at the web site before pontificating about the project?

    It doesn't really matter who gets them, initially. Most people who are currently buying them will be parents, and will probably get their kids playing with them, as well as using them themselves, and will get their kids' schools using them.
    Leon Heller
    G1HSM

  12. #72

    Default Re: Raspberry Pi vs Parallax C3

    Well, I'll capitulate and post no more. I find it a bit odd that you presume I haven't visited the Raspberry Pi website. I just take away a different impression from it and it seems to be rapid fire news release campaign and I care not to keep up with such day-to-day changes. In February, the link I provided claimed' (see above) it was being made in Asia; as of May 1st it seems that now Farnell and RS Solution are or will be the manufacturers.

    Since they have been taking orders and promising delivery for quite some time, it is a rather late change in manufacturers. I'm not sure what that entirely infers. But it seems to imply that these businessmen have all along be 'pre-selling' the concept and hoping the money will be adequate. I feel the educational aspect is just verbiage.

    On other fronts, all this talk of small Linux platforms has motivated me to drag out my Asus wl500gp wireless router that has "Oleg the Russian's" Linux firmware installed and to revive playing with that. This is just one of many examples of good small Linux boards at bargain prices. Of course, no video and no keyboard - but other features and aspects.

    I guess part of my being jaded is that I did try to order a PandaBoard from Digikey and they cancelled my order due to my being in Taiwan and not an actual business. I'd really like a small board with wifi for an free roaming robot, possibly with USB video. The Raspberry Pi is probably too limited for that, though a BeageBoard might just do it.

    Regarding educational utility, the Propeller Educational Kit is quite good - as is 'What's a Microcontroller". Just because something plays sophisticate games doesn't mean it has educational value for beginners. In fact, back in 1969, when I took Fortran, the university specified 'no games' as people used vast amounts of time just playing them rather than learning anything.

    I am sure there are some bright people that will figure out a way to use the Raspberry Pi, but I will pass.

    My mention of electrons was a typo, meant to be electronics. By all means, attack petty things rather than establish meaning. I am hard put to see how Morse Code can be equivalent to IP addresses, ASCII or EBDIC would be a more appropriate analogy. But you guys know all that, right ;-)

    Why do I think the PandaBoard and the BeagleBoard originate from the same people? Take a look at the mailing address on the cover page of each's documentation. But it seems the Raspberry Pi as yet has NO techical spec document to compare.


    I've roasted, toasted, and generally pummeled - all in good fun.
    Last edited by Loopy Byteloose; 05-03-2012 at 10:38 AM.
    Hwang Xian Sheng
    Kaohsiung/Gaoxiung
    Taiwan/Formosa
    R.O.C/Province of China, P.R.C.

    "My comments are independent... and at times just plain wrong. At other times, they just might be helpful. So consider the source."

  13. #73

    Default Re: Raspberry Pi vs Parallax C3

    Loopy,


    I will admit there has been a lot of chopping and changing in the Pi story as
    they stumbled into problems and found solutions. But, hey, Eben and the team
    are not business men but rather academics with an idea. Yes, they wanted to
    manufacture in England, yes they switched to Asia due to costs and yes they
    finally gave up tackling the manufacturing and supply chain issues altogether by
    getting RS and Element14 on the job. Sounds like an excellent solution to use
    experts to handle things that you have limited experience of. For sure it ends
    up getting made in Asia anyway, RS and co. just farm the work out to suppliers
    they already work with I bet.


    "these businessmen" as you see are not business men at all but rather founders
    of a charitable organization with a remit to make their educational ideas a
    reality.


    I like the Asus wl500gp router idea. Me, I have been using these
    http://www.isee.biz/products/process...s/igepv2-board No so cheap but damn
    nice boards with a temp spec down to -40C

    I am hard put to see how Morse Code can be equivalent to IP addresses,
    ASCII or EBDIC would be a more appropriate analogy.

    When I said Morse code and IP packets (not addresses) are conceptually the same
    I was simple referring to the idea that they are a means of coding messages
    in a digital form for sending down some communications channel. They have a lot
    of concepts in common: digital, code, signalling, bandwidth, noise, error handling etc etc.


    But it seems the Raspberry Pi as yet has NO techical spec document to compare.

    Sadly like many things now a days, they did publish the schematics recently though.

  14. #74

    Default Re: Raspberry Pi vs Parallax C3

    Raspberry PI hasn't been "taking orders"!. Everyone who registers with RS or Farnell is put on a list. As boards are delivered to them, people who are in the registration queue are told that they can place an order. Customers are dealt with by registration date.
    Leon Heller
    G1HSM

  15. #75

    Default Re: Raspberry Pi vs Parallax C3

    I actually ORDERED mine from Element 14, maybe 6 weeks ago. I was emailed a notice a few days ago to expect mine to be shipped end of May or early June.

  16. #76

    Default Re: Raspberry Pi vs Parallax C3

    So how do I order one? I went to Element14 website and it just asked for email address for further info. Do they let you know when you can actually place an order?

  17. #77

    Default Re: Raspberry Pi vs Parallax C3

    I called their USA sales office and spoke to someone. I then placed my order over the phone. I don't think I was billed yet, but do have an order in.

  18. #78

    Default Re: Raspberry Pi vs Parallax C3

    Quote Originally Posted by Don M View Post
    So how do I order one? I went to Element14 website and it just asked for email address for further info. Do they let you know when you can actually place an order?
    Yes, you will get an email. You should get updates on production etc. by email, also.
    Leon Heller
    G1HSM

  19. #79

    Default Re: Raspberry Pi vs Parallax C3

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Fouch View Post
    I called their USA sales office and spoke to someone. I then placed my order over the phone. I don't think I was billed yet, but do have an order in.
    You have probably just registered. You will get ordering details when they have one available for you - it will be a few weeks if you have just contacted them.
    Leon Heller
    G1HSM

  20. #80

    Default Re: Raspberry Pi vs Parallax C3

    Quake 3 Arena?

    Count me in!! That is one of the greatest games of all time. Use one Pi to play on, and another one to serve up the game, sweet!

    Re: Very young people.

    It's not appropriate yet for the vast majority of them. Older kids can jump right in though. They do with Linux now.

    This first round of adopters will very likely build out easier to learn on things others can use.
    Do not taunt Happy Fun Ball! @opengeekorg ---> Be Excellent To One Another

    Parallax colors simplified: http://forums.parallax.com/showthrea...hics_Demo.spin
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