Skip to main content

Raspberry Pi a Hit at PyCon 2013

With a conference theme of "Change the Future," as seen in the logo and marketing materials for the event, PyCon 2013 made good on its bet on the future by providing all 2,500 attendees with their own Raspberry Pi personal computer. The device, a fully functional computer about the size of a deck of cards, is a popular teaching tool used to get children interested in computers. At the center of it all is Python.
Raspberry Pi Foundation founder and trustee Eben Upton delivered a keynote speech to open the conference, explaining Python's place on the computer, including its use in developing the processor at Broadcom. "The wonderful thing for us about Python as a teaching language is it gives us a story that we can tell children. We can say, learn this language in which 'hello world' is 'print 'hello world,''" said Upton.


"This puts a space program in the budgetary reach of every primary school in the world," said Upton of the $35 computer, shown in an example of photography from a weather balloon.
The conference hosted two days of free tutorials for children in a lab full of monitors, keyboards, mice, and Raspberry Pis. Taught by Katie Cunningham and Barbara Shaurette, children were introduced to basic programming concepts in Python using the tiny computer in a course called "Young Coder: Let's Learn Python." At the end of the day, each child was given their own Raspberry Pi to take home.
The lab, which was stocked with hardware thanks to SparkFun, remained open throughout the weekend for the 2,500 conference attendees to get acquainted with their devices. Each day it was open, people took great advantage of the available hardware and personnel to tinker with their Raspberry Pi.
When it came time for the four days of development sprints that follow the conference talks, the lab rental equipment had to be packed up, but the organizers went out and obtained hardware to create a mini-lab for sprinters. Mathieu Virbel of the Kivy project, a user-interface library with support for multi-touch applications, participated in the development sprints and demoed tilt-sensor support for Kivy on the Raspberry Pi.
"There's so much more we can do to teach, to share -- but there's only so much we can do alone, without all of the community," said conference chairman Jesse Noller. "By doing this, we want your help to inspire the next generation of hackers," he said of the move to give out 2,500 of the devices. The Python Software Foundation purchased the computers for PyCon, and has arranged to donate Raspberry Pis which went unclaimed at the conference, or were explicitly left for donation.
During his opening address, Noller also announced the launch of http://raspberry.io/, a new website created by the Caktus Group to host user-submitted project plans for the device. One of the first projects to be uploaded was a step-by-step tutorial for creating a jukebox that runs off of a USB drive filled with music files. Other projects include integration with the Arduino, reading and writing data via the device's GPIO ports, and creating a lightweight home media server.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

PyCon 2019 close to sell out!

We are all very excited that, once again, PyCon will sell out.  Time is running out so act fast if you are planning to attend, there are 60 tickets left as of April 12th at 11:00am central time.
Things to remember:

Hotels:PyCon Hotel Blocks are sold out, we suggest using online hotel booking sites to search for the best options near the Huntington Convention CenterHotel changes and cancellations should be made by contacting the hotels directly.  Hotel cancellations should be made directly with the individual properties 48 hours prior to arrival to avoid a one night cancellation chargeDietary Restrictions:If you indicated 'dietary allergy' when registering and have not provided specifics, please email pycon-reg@python.org with your dietary restrictions.Registration Cancellation Deadline:April 19th is the final date to submit an email requesting a conference registration cancellation for the $50.00 ($25.00 for students) cancellation fee.April 20th and after there will be no refund…
Introducing our 2019 Keystone Sponsor: Microsoft! Our top sponsors — companies who step forward to make the biggest investment in PyCon and its community — not only use Python for their own development but also offer Python as a crucial tool for their own customers. That is certainly true of PyCon’s Keystone Sponsor this year.

I recently caught up with the Python Team at Microsoft to talk about how they're using Python and was excited to hear what they had to say.

Q: Is your organization using Python in any surprising ways?
Yes, and in many surprising ways! To mention just three examples:

We have large swaths of data scientists whose jobs rely around Jupyter Notebooks. This includes our security analysis team, which is constantly working to identify new security threats and protecting literally billions of users of Windows, Office, and our cloud services for consumers and businesses—every day.Python is an important part of the CI/CD pipelines that are executed thousands of times ev…

PyCon 2020-2021 Location

Now that registration and planning are well underway for PyCon 2019 in Cleveland, the PSF is pleased to announce that the home for PyCon 2020 and 2021 will be Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania!

The conference will be held in the beautiful David L. Lawrence Convention Center on April 15-23, 2020 and May 12-20, 2021.


The Steel City is built around the convergence of the Ohio, Allegheny, and Monongahela rivers and offers an understated mix of arts, culture, and technology. Join the Pittsburgh Python User Group for a meetup, eat dinner in a converted train station at the Grand Concourse, take a century-old cable car up the Duquesne Incline to see stunning views of the city, or visit the Robot Hall of Fame at the Carnegie Science Center's roboworld® exhibit. While you're out and about, see if you can count all 446 bridges in the city (that's more than you'll find in Venice, Italy)!

In Pittsburgh, you'll find that the residents are all neighbors. And with 90 unique neighborhoods tha…