[Edu-sig] Raspberry Pi?

kirby urner kirby.urner at gmail.com
Thu Mar 29 17:49:15 CEST 2012

Lots of buzz on PSF list about Python and Raspberry Pi.

I know from independent sources that Python has attracted
considerable attention in the UK education community.  Also,
the BBC Micro also came out around this time and our
PSF chairman is in the UK to help celebrate its anniversary
(50th? -- getting there).  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BBC_Micro

In having a public charter, unlike private advertiser based
broadcasters such as Fox, the BBC is rather different from
any USA channels, including PBS.  Its forays into public
policy and initiatives, such as the Computer Literacy Project
of the 1980s, out of which the BBC Micro was born, is not
mirrored in the USA.

Raspberry Pi doesn't currently run Python but there is
some thought that it should.

I haven't researched the GNU / Stallman take yet, though I
know he's unhappy about the sell-out of Linux distros to
closed source video drivers, which appear as proprietary
blobs (already compiled binaries) with no source.  The
Raspberry Pi uses secret code to drive its GPU so is
not technically a purely FLOSS project (as of today

Debian has a long history of working with not-free annexes
so this will feel like home to most Debian developers.

I'm glad the BBC has a mandate to serve the public in
the UK with interesting and innovative gadgets.  That's the
kind of R&D we like to see, including with closed source
components (I have access to closed source games
galore).  Even if the UK versions seem obsolete more
quickly, because leading edge (like the XO), the follow-on
products have the BBC to thank for opening world markets
( = the human imagination) to these new concepts.

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