I had high hopes for this device. By the time these kits are actually released to the general public, its price probably won't even be competitive anymore. chuckula had a few good points..
This is NOT a "handheld device". You still have to attach it to something that's much more expensive to get useful output from it.
When all is said and done, used game consoles have more value. Plus they're more fun anyways.
And if Raspberry PI isn't any more open. There's almost no point.
Raspberry PI is on its way to becoming the Duke Nukem Forever of embedded devices.
I also think, especially because this is a learning device, that kids should have a pure Open Source device. Including the firmware and the drivers.
Or are you saying, kids should learn how to code, but the really gifted kids, who are really interested aren't allowed to touch the graphics stack to hack it to suit their needs, nor touch the firmware, because ... it's a proprietary world?
Personally, I think we'd be sending them the wrong message.
Maybe you should consider the A10 SoC from Allwinner tech: http://www.allwinnertech.com/product/a1x.html
High performance VPU which support 1080p@60Hz decoding
Support double display output
Price is low to $5
The SoC is widely used in Chinese tablet which is usually less than $100.
And the kernel source code is opened.
HOW DO PEOPLE LEARN TO WORK ON PROPRIETARY GRAPHICS HARDWARE TODAY IF KIDS CANT LEARN TO HACK IT!?!?!?!!??!?!?!?!!!~~~!!!!111`11`1`1`2`Or are you saying, kids should learn how to code, but the really gifted kids, who are really interested aren't allowed to touch the graphics stack to hack it to suit their needs, nor touch the firmware, because ... it's a proprietary world?
Oh, right, kids don't fucking do that. They're kids. None of them give two shits about hacking firmware; they're much more interested in learning how to clone Final Fantasy VII because that's actually interesting and firmware hacking is boring crap that developers only end up doing after failing to land a fun job.
Seriously, "kids' needs" do not include changing how the graphics stack works. They include getting triangles of puppies to render. Which the existing graphics stack is more than capable of doing. They'd be 1000x better served by giving them a better documented and more consistent graphics API (read: not OpenGL) than by letting them alter bits of source code for the stack.
Might as well ask this kid how much he was screwed over by Microsoft's closed-source approach.
Seriously, I think FOSS is a great way to go, but "do it for the kiddies" is just idiotic.
If it takes off, there will be other versions of the hardware in future, similar devices from other manufacturers, and - I have no doubt - at least one attempt by the community to create their own open-source firmware for the original Pi. A pure open-source device may come at some point, but right here & now, just isn't feasible. Does that mean the Foundation should just give up, and not create this device at all? Personally, I don't think it does; there is still a hell of a lot that can be taught without getting into device driver development, and hence there is still a lot of value in shipping the device as it currently stands. If nothing else, it will prove to the world that it can be done, and go a long way towards filling the gaping hole left in UK (and worldwide) computer science teaching by the venerable BBC Micro.
Right now, the majority of children are growing up in a world where computers are seen as expensive, and as toys or appliances: they do what they were purchased for. Most children haven't heard of Linux or *BSD, and even if they have, installing it on a shared family computer is a risky prospect for someone who is still learning how these things work. There are free development tools for Windows, but again their existence isn't common knowledge amongst children, and IMHO they hide away so many of the low-level details behind GUIs and automatic code completion that they are in some ways harder to use (for absolute beginners) & less suited for teaching than their command-line equivalents. I believe there are also licensing concerns with the free versions, in terms of how you're allowed to distribute any resulting binaries.
The Pi gives children the chance to have their own computer, with officially supplied development tools and teaching materials, unencumbered by licensing concerns on the development tools themselves. For someone who learnt to program using the built-in BBC Basic on an Acorn Archimedes (a direct descendent of the BBC Micro), using the accompanying printed reference manual, and has watched in horror as computers morphed over the years into toys & appliances (where are the development tools on a fresh Windows install? Where are the reference manuals? Are Apple any better?), this is very much a Good Thing.
A couple of years ago, my younger brother asked me for advice on learning to program, and - because I knew that all he had access to was the family PC, running Windows - I didn't know how to answer. By the time my own daughter is old enough to ask that question, if she ever does, I hope to have a good answer for her - and not just because her daddy happens to know his stuff.
here. Here we do actually try to care about FOSS. If we just want to teach hem to code, then why even bother with linux and OSS. Wait until windows 8 comes out on the arm, let them dabble a bit in visual studio. No need to bother with some 'libre' linux/ubuntu bla bal.
That said, I'm sure at the time of development, this was maybe not known to them? Otherwise, it may have had something to do with one of the leads having work(ed) for broadcom?
All in all, once the GPU driver is open-sourced; this CAN be an interesting device.
I absolutely and positively do NOT AGREE AT ALL on this point. Used power sucking pigs are neither fun nor efficient.When all is said and done, used game consoles have more value. Plus they're more fun anyways.
FOR YOUR EXPECTATIONS.And if Raspberry PI isn't any more open. There's almost no point.
RPi, from MY point of view, is much like a hacked broadband router, but with a video out.
DNF is a game. It has no PURPOSE. I don't see how you can compare.Raspberry PI is on its way to becoming the Duke Nukem Forever of embedded devices.
I see kids working with these inexpensive RPi's for actual interesting and fun purposes. There USED to be this thing called 'imagination'. Kids USED to be inventive -- building machines and electrical devices.
These are interesting and inventive uses for a nice simple device like this.
When in school, years ago, I took a robotics course, and the device they distributed was very much like this RPi, but FAR FAR less advanced. And these things costed something like $100 or $150 each (they were loaners, but that would have been the "if you break it, you will pay" price). And you know what we did with these? Compile a little C program to read and control GPIO's hooked up to sensors and motors. That was probably one of the most FUN courses I ever took, and INFINITELY more interesting than playing stupid games.
You'll note that THIS type of use will NOT require functional graphics.