Raspberry Pi Roundup - a Pi Wars announcement, a laser-writing weather forecaster and a Raspbian update

Raspberry Pi Roundup - a Pi Wars announcement, a laser-writing weather forecaster and a Raspbian update

Pi Wars Challenges Announced

The Pi Wars team is delighted to announce that details of the challenges set for Pi Wars 2019 are now available on the Pi Wars website. They were pleased to be able to announce this at the Raspberry Fields festival in Cambridge recently during a talk about the origins of Pi Wars. Pi Wars will take place on 30th & 31st March 2019 in Cambridge, UK.

As well as this, they've announced a Space Exploration theme. It will be 50 years since the first Apollo/NASA moon landing! But if you’re not into Space Exploration, and that kind of thing, don’t worry – Pi Wars will still be as much fun as usual, it’s just you’ll see more papier mache landscapes than usual 

Laser Weather

Please note: these types of lasers can damage your eyes – so please, use appropriate eye-protection.

Tucker Shannon has taken a Raspberry Pi Zero and two stepper motor driver boards and then mounted a 5mw, 405nm laser pointer on top. He’s then programmed the Raspberry Pi to receive messages from Google Assistant via IFTTT and Adafruit IO. This means that he can ask his phone to give him a weather report via laser and the Pi will pick up that signal and draw the current temperature and icon out on UV sensitive paper. You can see how he built it here, download the 3D printable files here and see a tutorial on how to build your own below:

Raspbian Update

Simon Long, over at Raspberry Pi, has announced an update to the Raspbian Operating System. The biggest improvement is the addition of a desktop set-up wizard which runs when you first boot up. This lets you set-up Localisation settings (pictured above) and connect to a wi-fi network straight away. It’s been designed to make things easier for first-time users who are often all-at-sea when first booting. There’s also been an attempt at removing some of the lesser-used pieces of software from the main distro and included as a handy app installer so you can install what you want. They haven’t listed what’s been removed, however, so it’s time to download the image and find out for yourself! There are also bug fixes and updates, including a much-needed update to Chromium. Read more here and download the new image 

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