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, 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.


Popular posts from this blog

Updated refund policy for Attendees and Financial Aid recipients traveling to PyCon internationally

International travel to the United States has become a greater risk for many in our community. In light of current conditions, PyCon is providing additional support for international travelers. If you are travelling internationally to PyCon, take note of the following information. Financial Aid applicants should take note of additional information specific to that process in the second section. For All International Travellers to PyCon In order to better assist our international community, we have extended the following clauses from the 2017 refund policy for Financial Aid recipients to our refund policy for all attendees of PyCon:  If despite holding a visa you are denied entry upon arrival to the United States, then after you pursue and receive whatever refund your airline might be able to offer, PyCon wants to send you enough money to cover the rest of the cost of your airfare. You will need to document that you indeed arrived in the United States and were denied entry. If despite…

¡Presentamos el track de PyCon Charlas!

Nos alegra anunciar el primer programa de la "Hatchery" (incubadora) en la historia de la PyCon: “PyCon Charlas”. PyCon Charlas será un día entero con un track de charlas en español abierto a toda la comunidad que tendrá lugar en la PyCon US.

Click here to scroll to English version ¿Por qué estamos tan emocionados? Porque será el primer evento dentro del nuevo programa de "Hatchery"(incubación) que ha sido creado para apoyar y dar un espacio a la comunidad para presentar nuevos eventos dentro de la PyCon. Además será el primer track de charlas de la PyCon US que se dará en un lenguaje diferente al inglés. Un porcentaje significativo de la población estadounidense, más del 12%, habla español y las comunidades hispanohablantes de python en America Latina y Europa están creciendo rápidamente con una gran aceptación en conferencias y reuniones. PyCon Charlas dará visibilidad a los pythonistas hispanohablantes dándoles un espacio en la PyCon más grande del mundo para dar …

PyCon 2018 Registration is Now Open!

We’re thrilled to announce the opening of registration for PyCon 2018 in Cleveland, Ohio! The prior six PyCons have sold out, so prepare for another one and get your tickets early. The first 800 tickets sold are priced at an early bird discount, saving over 20% on corporate tickets and over 12% on individual tickets. Students save $25 if they purchase early!

To get started, create an account and head to to get your tickets!

You get a package that is hard to beat when you register for PyCon. The conference itself is three days worth of our community’s 95 best talks, amazing keynote speakers each morning, and our famed lightning talks to close out each day, but it’s much more than that. It’s having over 3,000 people in one place to learn from and share with. It’s joining a conversation in the hallway with the creators of open source projects. It’s taking yourself from beginner to intermediate, or intermediate to advanced. For some, it’s getting st…