Weekend Reading: Raspberry Pi Projects

Raspberry Pi board

The Raspberry Pi has been very popular among hobbyists and educators ever since its launch in 2011. It’s a credit-card-sized single-board computer with a Broadcom BCM 2835 SoC, 256MB to 512MB of RAM, USB ports, GPIO pins, Ethernet, HDMI out, camera header and an SD card slot. The most attractive aspects of the Raspberry Pi are its low cost of $35 and large user community following.

Raspberry Pi: the Perfect Home Server by Brian Trapp: If you've got several different computers in need of a consistent and automated backup strategy, the RPi can do that. If you have music and video you'd like to be able to access from almost any screen in the house, the RPi can make that happen too. Maybe you have a printer or two you'd like to share with everyone easily? The Raspberry Pi can fill all those needs with a minimal investment in hardware and time.

Securi-Pi: Using the Raspberry Pi as a Secure Landing Point by Bill Childers: Set up a Raspberry Pi to act as an OpenVPN endpoint, SSH endpoint and Apache server—with all these services listening on port 443 so networks with restrictive policies aren't an issue.

Real-Time Rogue Wireless Access Point Detection with the Raspberry Pi by Chris Jenks: A couple years ago, I decided to go back to school to get a Bachelor's degree. I needed to find a single credit hour to fill for graduation. That one credit hour became an independent study on using the Raspberry Pi (RPi) to create a passive real-time wireless sensor network. I share my work with you here.

Flash ROMs with a Raspberry Pi by Kyle Rankin: In this article, I describe the steps I performed to turn a regular Raspberry Pi running Raspbian into a BIOS-flashing machine.

Build Your Own Raspberry Pi Camera by Shawn Powers: Since the Raspberry Pi device I'll be setting up is a full-blown Linux computer, the configuration options are endless. It's possible to install Motion on the little beastie and handle motion detection fully on the RPi. I already have Motion installed on my Birdcam server though, so what I want is for the Raspberry Pi simply to serve out a stream that my existing server can use to capture movement like it does with the USB cams locally connected. Also read Shawn’s followup article to this, A Better Raspberry Pi Streaming Solution.

Home Automation with Raspberry Pi by Bharath Lohray: In this article, I briefly describe the requirements of the project that I outlined, and I explain the various tools I decided to use to build it. I then cover the hardware I chose and the way to assemble the parts to realize the system. Next, I continue setting up the development environment on the Raspbian image, and I walk through the code and bring everything together to form the complete system. Finally, I conclude with possible improvements and hacks that would extend the usefulness of a Pi home automation system.

Low Power Wireless: 6LoWPAN, IEEE802.15.4 and the Raspberry Pi by Jan Newmarch: Low power wireless is heading in two directions right now: personal-area networks (LoWPAN) spanning up to 20–30 meters and wide-area networking (LPWAN) of up to 20 or more kilometers. The technologies at the physical layer are completely different and lead to different Linux solutions. This article deals only with LoWPAN.

A Switch for Your RPi by Shawn Powers: In a previous article, I talked about an add-on card for the Raspberry Pi called the ControlBlock. It allows game controllers to be connected as regular joystick devices, but it also has a really incredible power switch feature. The folks at petRockBloghave created an add-on board for the Raspberry Pi that strictly does the power feature for a cheaper price!

My Childhood in a Cigar Box by Shawn Powers: Using a RetroPie I demonstrate how to: Play Nintendo and Super Nintendo games using emulation on a Raspberry Pi; Fit the project into a wooden cigar box (because I already have a cool wooden cigar box); Use original NES and SNES controllers, not USB knockoffs; Boot up, select and play games using nothing more than the controller for navigating menus; Plug controllers into emulation machine using either original connectors or RJ-45 plugs; Have a good way to turn the machine on and off, not just unplug it; Support HDMI, because that's what all televisions and projectors use now; Support game state saves and restores. (Yes, it's cheating, but I'm more than 40 years old, so if I want to save myself 40 hours of play every time I get to a boss level, I'm gonna do it!)

Raspberry Pi Alternatives by Kyle Rankin: A look at some of the many interesting Raspberry Pi competitors.

Carlie Fairchild is Linux Journal’s Publisher and guiding spirit. She’s been actively engaged in the Linux community for two decades and is responsible for setting the magazine’s overall direction. Carlie leads a motley team of geeks and journalists to ensure that Linux Journal stays true to its founding ideologies of personal freedom and open-source technical innovation. You can contact Carlie via e-mail, publisher@linuxjournal.com.

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