Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by Gareth Halfacree, 31 May 2016.
I'm sure Element14/Farnell are nothing to do with "Element 14 Ltd" that was bought by Broadcom.
Huh - I always thought it was, but apparently not. Today is a learning day!
So, it's broken cover at last. Glad I got a Raspberry pi [original from MP here] B to start playing with.
It's now summer term and daughter hasn't had a mention of a micro:bit at school yet.
Price seems OK, but the Pi Zero makes it look a bit expensive
Because 5x5 LEDS? accelerometer? Compass?
All of those things, but more importantly Bluetooth LE. Also: it's ready-to-go with nothing more than a micro-USB cable, which anyone who has bought a phone in the last few years will already have. Hook it up to your laptop or desktop, and you're ready to start playing. Hell, hook it up to a USB power supply and if you've got a BLE-compatible smartphone or tablet you can flash code onto it wireless-style.
The Pi Zero, meanwhile, is £4 plus a USB OTG adapter (£2 ish) plus a USB hub assuming you'd like to connect both a keyboard and a mouse at the same time (£5 ish) plus a mini-HDMI adapter (£2 ish) plus a micro-SD card (£5 ish) plus you'll need to disconnect your keyboard, monitor, and mouse from your current system and plug them into it. Oh, you haven't got HDMI on your monitor? That'll be another adapter (£5 to £10 ish depending on what you need.) Then you'd probably like some networking on there, wouldn't you? That'll be another £2-£5 ish.
Granted, you *can* set a Pi Zero up to act as a USB gadget hanging off your laptop or desktop, but that takes some fiddling and isn't guaranteed not to break with future Raspbian updates. It's all apples to oranges anyway: the micro:bit is a microcontroller, the Pi Zero is a microcomputer.
Bluetooth LE, forgot about that little gem
Yes, agreed - different animals.
I'm sure we'll have an m:b too at some point, just browsing for RPi breakout/breadboard sets to start playing with things connected to it.
Gareth, are you on the micro:bit bandwagon? Writing a book?
I've got one 'ere - it's a lovely thing - but I'm currently putting the finishing touches to the fourth edition of the Raspberry Pi User Guide (much delayed, sadly, due to thankfully resolved shenanigans at Wiley.) Once that's squared away I might pitch the idea, tho'!
It will prob work as educational tool, but for anything else there are better, more powerful and cheaper alternatives - pi zero, CHIP and gazillion Chinese knockoffs or even a plain nRF51822 breakout, which can be had for £4 on ebay.
Gareth, maybe you can answer this:
Any news on actual schematic of the thing?
Will the user be able to use Nordic Gazell stack or is he stuck with plain bluetooth? (I.e. does the user get full access to nordic mcu (without resorting to jtag) or is he only allowed to flash his own "app"?)
Is there any protection for "battery" input - reverse, low voltage, etc (cant see any in the photos). Or did they just tapped into 3V rail and called it a day?
Also, whats with the recent trend to put only marketing **** on the main site? You need to go to 2-3 other sites to get any actual info.
Good stuff, the Rpi has been moving so fast lately you need an update! £££
So, it looks like I could buy a micro:bit sooner than it being rolled out at school - and it's not me that needs the educating
Not sure about that one - I only used the battery connection very briefly.
Huh? What main site? Here? My news pieces are the same as they've always been. What additional information would you have liked, other than cost and availability both of which are clearly detailed?
That was more of a rant, than a question, sorry for not making it more clear. I was talking about www.microbit.co.uk/.
Ah, with you! Yeah, the website's a bit strange - with so many partners involved, I guess the BBC wanted to make sure everyone gets a chunk of traffic. It does make things feel a bit disjointed, that's for sure!
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