Hello World! on the Raspberry Pi

  • Apr 14, 2014 · 7:00 PM
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Being that the majority of members in the group are brand new to working with the Raspberry Pi, we'll have a hands on session introducing some (very) basic electronics and a bit of Python code to complete the "Hello World" of embedded development. If all goes well, no LEDs will be harmed during this meetup (LEDs will be provided but you are free to bring your own as well if you happen to have a specific favorite color).

You don't have to follow along if you want to just show up and watch, but if you want to participate you will need to bring the following:

-Working Raspberry Pi (Model B) running the Raspbian distro and a way to connect to it, as well as a WiFi adapter or network cable for downloading any software updates you may need
-Prototyping Breadboard  (a half board should be fine, but bigger is better)
-Breadboard jumpers (or short lengths of solid core wires)
-Pi Cobbler (or male to female jumper wires for connecting to the Pi)

Some sources for components will be posted in the comments, as well as software packages that you may want to have pre-installed.

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  • John S.

    I hope everyone had fun tonight - I know I did! So next month we'll turn tonight's topic around and use switches to provide input to a Python program.

    April 14, 2014

    • Ed

      I had a great time and learned a lot--thanks John!

      April 18, 2014

  • Brian B.

    It was a small interactive hands-on session, great for beginning to work with the RaspberryPi!

    April 16, 2014

  • John S.

    I just posted a PDF of the slides I used at tonight's meetup in the file section in case anyone wants them:


    April 14, 2014

  • John S.

    2 packages that will need to be installed for Monday are the Python developers package and the Raspberry PI GPIO package. You can get both of these installed on your RPi with:

    sudo apt-get install python-dev
    sudo apt-get install python-rpi.gpio

    Additionally, it might be helpful to have WebIOPi installed as well which has a little more involved installation process, but instructions can be found here:

    April 13, 2014

  • John S.

    I'll post more details on required software packages when I get a chance, but for starters in preparation for the April meetup, have a working Raspbian distro for your Raspberry Pi and run the following 2 commands on a command line (while connected to the internet) to make sure it is up to date:

    sudo apt-get update
    sudo apt-get upgrade

    If you have any questions on downloading the linux distro or getting it onto the SD card, let us know and we'll do our best to point you in the right direction.

    Here are a couple to start with:

    If anyone else has any other suggestions for those just getting started, please chime in.

    March 11, 2014

    • John S.

      Yep, I definitely prefer RDP over VNC or X11 for remote viewing, it's much smoother.

      March 12, 2014

  • Nathanial R.

    sense we are working with the PI's do we need a screen keyboard etc or are we going over how to run it all through SSH? im still very new to SSH

    March 12, 2014

  • John S.

    Where to buy stuff...

    For Raspberry Pi specific hardware (Raspberry Pi Model B, Pi Face, Pi Cobbler, etc), I would recommend checking out Adafruit or Element14/Newark (the "official" US Raspberry Pi distributor). I've personally had good experiences purchasing from both of them, and for non-commodity electronic components, they tend to have decent prices and a good selection as well.

    For "Getting Started" type kits, in addition to the two mentioned above, you can also check out what Makershed and Sparkfun have to offer. The Raspberry Pi CanaKits available on Amazon also seem to be popular.

    Personally I like to try and support the smaller companies like Adafruit and Sparkfun that cater to hobbyists when I can, as they have been instrumental in promoting and advancing the whole electronics side of the maker movement the past few years.

    March 11, 2014

    • John S.

      Where to buy stuff (continued)...

      For commodity items like ICs, connectors, and discreet components, Newark, Digi-Key, and Mouser are all good sources (they cater more to pros, but are friendly to hobbyists) and ship fast but may have minimum purchase requirements to avoid excessive shipping costs. Ebay is great for getting items directly from china at cheap prices, if you don't mind the wait. For oddball stuff you didn't even know you needed, sign up for the the e-mail list for Jameco and Electronic Goldmine. For shopping locally and immediate electronic needs, go to the Electronics Warehouse in Riverside (2691 Main St.)

      March 11, 2014

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