Raspberry Pi Roundup - 18th March 2016

Raspberry Pi Roundup - 18th March 2016

MagPi books

The MagPi previously announced the launch of several e-books on various subjects: Python, the command line, the SenseHAT and Sonic Pi. Now, these e-books are available in printed format. They are roughly A5 in size and make for excellent reads. They cost £3.99 each (an absolute bargain!) and are available from The Pi Hut, who recently became their official seller. The MagPi itself is also available from The Pi Hut.


The Foundation has written and published a wonderful resource that uses the SenseHAT and camera module to carry out scientific experiments. These experiments are an ideal cross-curriculum resource for schools that want to introduce computing into science lessons (or vice versa). Assuming people will be able to get hold of the necessary materials, I can also imagine that home users will get an immense amount of enjoyment from the resource.

Directly quoting the introduction to the resource, here is what students will learn:

  • How to collect reaction times to calculate rates of reactions
  • How concentration and temperature affect the rate of chemical reaction
  • That heat can be transfered by hot objects emitting IR radiation
  • That different materials emit IR radiation at different rates
  • How to create cooling curves from CSV data
  • That absorption of IR causes objects to become hot
  • That different materials absorb different amounts of IR radiation
  • That the transfer of heat can be stopped by an insulator
  • That some materials are better at insulating than others
  • That fermentation is the process of converting sugar and water into alcohol
  • That the rate of fermentation is dependent on factors such as the temperature of the yeast
  • That investigations using insects have to be carried out with consideration for the health of the insect
  • How to plan an investigation to find out what colour habitats are preferred by different insects
  • How to interpret results from choice chamber experiments
  • How to measure temperature and humidity data using the Sense HAT
  • What the products of aerobic respiration are
  • How humidity and temperature are affected by aerobic respiration
  • That the stopping distance of a car is affected by both the thinking distance and braking distance
  • What factors affect both the thinking distance and braking distance

That’s quite an educational shopping list if you ask me!

The resource contains lesson plans, student worksheets and a list of material you will need to carry out the full set of lessons.

You can look at the resource by visiting this page.


They say to get advice you should ask an expert. Well, when it comes to crowdfunding Raspberry Pi projects, Alex Eames of RasPi.TV is about as close to an expert as you can get with four campaigns under his belt. At the Big Birthday Weekend, Alex gave a talk on the pros and cons of crowdfunding and told of his experiences using the Kickstarter platform. You can see a video of his talk, with slides, below or you can read a text version of it on his site. It’s fascinating stuff and well worth a listen/read if you’re planning on crowdfunding your own project.

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