Archive for the 'Editorials' Category

My C.H.I.P’s have been shipped! (FINALLY)

Friday, November 4th, 2016


It “only” took seven months and eight days before they shipped my boards, and I had to “confirm my address” three or four times.

The email said that it should arrive in “around two weeks” – but it does include a tracking number so I can see its progress.

Frankly, C.H.I.P is not as exciting to me as it was seven months ago, but I am still looking forward to playing with it.

I’ll keep y’all updated.

Serving Raspberry Pi #7: Meet Berry Bot

Wednesday, October 26th, 2016

The November 2016 issue of Servo Magazine is out – and I got the cover!!!


It this article I started building Berry – a RoboPi + Raspberry Pi 3 based 4WD robot.

As you can see, Berry has a red 4WD chassis, Patriot USB power bank, RoboPi, Raspberry Pi 3, Sharp IR distance sensor, and a 9g micro servo.

What you can’t see is that Berry also has an L298N motor driver board, HMC5883L used as a compass, and a 4xAA cell battery pack to power the motors.

This article shows how to connect the parts, and presents some simple Python code for the compass.

For the full skinny, read Servo :)

Unpaid plug: if you are into bots, I highly recommend getting a Servo digital edition subscription – which also lets you read all back issues (including my past articles <grin>)

BTW, sorry about the lack of posts & articles, other work kept me busy.

That was a great vacation…

Wednesday, August 10th, 2016

Sorry for the lack of posts, I’ve been crazy busy over the last three months with a few consulting projects that needed to be done by specific dates.

Hobbit @

Wifey also thought I was working too hard took me on a vacation, who would have thought that being away from work and my lab could have been that relaxing?

Serving Raspberry Pi #7 has been delayed until the October issue of Servo, and #8 should be in the November Issue.

ODROID C2 Review, new Python API for RoboPi, updated Python API for PiDroidAlpha, Berry the Robot, and much more coming soon!

Raspberry Pi 3 with RoboPi – works great!

Saturday, March 12th, 2016

It took a bit of fiddling due to changes with the serial port… but

RoboPi on Raspberry Pi 3 @
(click on image for larger version)

RoboPi works great with the new Raspberry Pi 3!

Changes needed to get it running:

  • add ‘force_turbo=1’ to /boot/config.txt as per forum discussions
  • make sure that Serial is set to “Disable” in the Raspberry Pi configurator
  • when initializing RoboPi, use /dev/ttyS0 instead of /dev/AMA0

I must admit that I was concerned about changing the serial port on the GPIO header to the mini Uart, but these changes are relatively painless.

RoboPi is supported on the seven Raspberry Pi’s:

  1. Raspberry Pi 3 Model B (***NEW***)
  2. Raspberry Pi Model A
  3. Raspberry Pi Model B
  4. Raspberry Pi Model A+
  5. Raspberry Pi Model B+
  6. Raspberry Pi 2 Model B
  7. Raspberry Pi Zero

RoboPi is also supported on six other single board computers:

  1. Banana Pi
  2. Banana Pro
  3. LeMaker Guitar
  4. ODROID C1
  5. ODROID XU4 with Shifter Shield
  6. MIPS Creator CI20

You read right – RoboPi is now supported on 13 different SBC’s!

Raspberry Pi 3 Launch & Microsoft Windows 10 IoT for RPi3

Tuesday, March 1st, 2016

While I am eagerly awaiting my Raspberry Pi 3’s (ordered yesterday morning), I have been reading everything I could about it in preparation to using them.

Unfortunately I found out that some sites are shouting that “Microsoft will make Windows 10 for Raspberry Pi” in the headline, and while most clarify in the article that it is an IoT edition, it will leave inexperienced users assuming it will run their favourite x86 app.

True: Microsoft has made a Raspberry Pi version of Windows 10 IoT Edition Insider Preview available.

False: It will run regular Windows apps. Raspberry Pi 2 USB hard drive and adapter tests

Raspberry Pi 3 has Win10IOT only – which is NOT a desktop OS!

For detailed explanation why that means no desktop apps, see the article I wrote when similar sensational articles were written for Raspberry Pi 2.

Eben did state in his interview that he hopes someday there will be a full windows on RPi3, however that is up to Microsoft, who has not stated they will do so.

Please note, even if there was a full desktop Windows 10 for the Raspberry Pi it would not run “regular x86 Windows apps” without an x86 emulator, which would make that software run very slowly.

I think it is great that Windows 10 IoT will be available, but alas, we cannot expect a full Windows 10 that runs x86 apps at a reasonable speed.