We hope those of you lucky enough to be 18 or under have been working hard on your entries for our Summer Programming Contest. Just a quick reminder that the deadline for entries is this coming Saturday, 1 September, at 9am BST. Don’t be late!
Six weeks ago, we announced the launch of our Summer Programming Contest for Raspberry Pi users around the world who are 18 and under and in education. There are two age categories; the first prize in both categories is $1000, with five runners-up prizes of $200 in each category. We’re happy to announce that you can now submit your entries. To do so, you should:
- Download and print out a copy of the one-page entry form.
- Fill in your details and those of your school or college.
- E-mail a scanned copy of the form to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Your entry itself should consist of a single .zip or .tgz archive which we can unpack into and run from the home directory of the pi user on a fresh Raspbian “wheezy” install. If your archive is less than 1MB in size, you may attach it to your entry email, otherwise please provide a URL from which we can download it.
Entries close on 1 September 2012, so you still have time to whip something up, even if you’ve not started yet.
Liz and I are taking a couple of days away from the internet while we attend a family funeral. Normal service will recommence on Wednesday.
Update: those of you looking to play with Android on Pi in advance of our source code release might want to check out the community Razdroid project, which last month produced its first non-accelerated port of Gingerbread on top of the publicly released VideoCore binary.
Naren has been working on a port of Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) to Raspberry Pi, and as you can see from the screenshots and video below, he’s been making great progress. Hardware-accelerated graphics and video have been up and running smoothly for some time; AudioFlinger support is the only major missing piece at the moment.
This implementation uses a different kernel and VideoCore binary image from the one available on GitHub, which is why we’ve been keeping quiet about it so far. We’re investigating the feasibility of converging the two code lines to produce a single common platform as soon as we can, at which point we hope to release the sources for you to play with.
We are pleased to announce the release of our first SD card image based on the Raspbian distribution. This is the result of an enormous amount of hard work by Alex and Dom over the past couple of months, and replaces the existing Debian squeeze image as our recommended install. Notably, it is the first official image to take full advantage of the Raspberry Pi’s floating point hardware for, amongst other things, much faster web browsing.
Users who are still using Debian squeeze will definitely want to switch to this, as it contains numerous tweaks and performance improvements to the firmware, kernel and applications. Those who are using the recent Debian wheezy beta will also see a very worthwhile, but somewhat smaller, improvement.
Among many others, we would particularly like to thank:
- Mike Thompson and Peter Green from the Raspbian project
- Simon Hall for his optimised ARMv6 memcpy() and memset() implementations
- Everyone who has contributed to the Raspbian project so far
Special thanks to Edgar (gimli) Hucek, whose omxplayer accelerated media player is preinstalled in this image, and Sergio Conde for his work on packaging it for distribution.
Those interested in the remarkable history of the Raspbian project might like to take a look at this brief timeline. Adam Armstrong has done some benchmarking which demonstrates the benefits of hardware floating point across a range of applications.
As always, the image is available from our downloads page.
Update 18 August: The contest is now open for entries. As we were a little late getting the form up, we’ve tweaked the rules to allow anyone who is 18 or under on 4 August (rather than on the date of submission) to enter.
At Games Britannia in Sheffield today we announced the launch of our first programming contest for children and young people. Eventually, we plan to run contests of this sort on a weekly basis, but this one will run for eight weeks, to coincide with the school summer holidays in the northern hemisphere.
- Two age categories, 13 and under, and 14 to 18.
- A $1,000 first prize and five $200 runner-up prizes in each category.
- The aim is simple: we want you to impress the judges with a piece of software you’ve written for the Raspberry Pi.
The Sponsor is The Raspberry Pi Foundation, Mitchell Wood House, Caldecote, CB23 7NU, UK.
The 2012 Raspberry Pi Foundation Summer Programming Contest begins 7 July 2012 at 9:00:00 a.m. British Summer Time and ends 1 September 2012, 9:00:00 a.m. British Summer Time. By submitting an Entry, each Entrant (or, where appropriate, the Entrant’s parent or legal guardian) agrees to the Official Rules presented here, and warrants that his or her Entry complies with all requirements set out in the Official Rules. This is a skill-based contest and chance plays no part in the determination of winners.
WHO MAY ENTER
The Contest is open only to individuals who are 18 years of age or under on 4 August 2012, and who are in full-time education on that date. Employees of the Sponsor and its distributors, and their immediate family members (spouse, parent, child, sibling and their respective spouses, regardless of where they live) or persons living in the same households of such employees, whether or not related, are not eligible. CONTEST IS VOID WHERE PROHIBITED.
HOW TO ENTER
The aim of the contest is simply to produce a software Application, which runs on the Raspberry Pi computer and which impresses the Judges. Each Entry consists of an Entry Form and an archive file containing all source code, binaries and data for the Application. To enter, visit www.raspberrypi.org on or after 4 August 2012; complete an Entry Form with the required information and submit along with your archive file.
The Categories for Entrants are: (1) age 13 and under, and (2) age 14 to 18. Entrants must specify a Category, and meet the age requirements for that Category on the date of entry. There is no limit on the number of Entries per Entrant.
The Entry, in its entirety, must be a work of original material produced by the Entrant, and must not infringe on the copyrights, trademarks, moral rights, or intellectual property rights of any person or entity.
CONTEST PRIZES AND JUDGING
The Winner in each Category will each receive US$1,000. Up to five Runners Up in each Category will each receive US$200. The Judges will select Winners and Runners Up from the Entrants at their own discretion; the decisions of the Judges are final and binding with respect to all matters relating to the Contest
The Sponsor reserves the right to take such steps as it deems necessary to verify the validity and originality of any Entry and/or Entrant (including an Entrant’s age, identity, address and authorship of the Entry), and to disqualify any Entrant who submits an Entry that is not in accordance with these Official Rules.
By entering the Contest, all Entrants grant an irrevocable, perpetual, royalty-free, worldwide non-exclusive licence to the Sponsor, to reproduce, distribute, and display their Entry.
LIMITATION OF LIABILITY
By entering this Contest, the Entrant (or, where appropriate, the Entrant’s parent or legal guardian) agrees to release, discharge, and hold harmless the Sponsor and its partners, affiliates, subsidiaries, advertising agencies, agents and their employees, officers, directors, and representatives from any claims, losses, and damages arising out of their participation in this Contest.
This Contest shall be subject to and governed by the laws of England and Wales.
If for any reason the Contest is not capable of running as planned for any cause beyond the control of Sponsor, Sponsor reserves the right, at its sole discretion, to cancel, terminate, or suspend the Contest. The Sponsor reserves the right, at its sole discretion, to amend the Official Rules at any time during the Contest.
Alex has produced a new reference image based on the upcoming Debian “wheezy” release. This incorporates Dom’s latest firmware, and numerous kernel patches for performance and stability. Over the next couple of weeks, we will be running a public beta program to identify major bugs, and in particular regressions relative to the existing Debian “squeeze” image.
Although this is a beta release, you will almost definitely find it a worthwhile upgrade. Please give it a try, and report issues here.
|Default login||Username: pi Password: raspberry|
Thanks to everyone on the forums who tested an earlier version of this release, and in particular to lb for investigating SD card performance issues and contributing patches. Notes:
- It will fit on a 2GB SD card, but 4GB will leave you with a more comfortable amount of room; we now include a tool to make it easy to resize the filesystem to use the full SD card.
- Future firmware updates will be delivered via apt-get upgrade.
- The first boot is expected to be slower than subsequent boots.
We’ve just turned on our shiny new forums, which run on phpBB3 instead of Simple:Press. Existing posts, threads and user accounts have been migrated across to the new site, and permalinks to old posts and threads should redirect correctly. Thanks, as always, to Paul Beech for the design and phpBB style-wrangling.
As I mentioned in a previous post, I had trouble finding a tool to migrate data between the two formats, so I had to write my own. You can download the Python script here.
Many thanks to everyone who provided feedback on the previous round of phpBB beta testing. I’ve fixed most of the issues that were identified and applied Paul’s stylish new look and feel, so it’s time for another round of testing. As before, I’ve placed a snapshot of the current forum here; please have a play and report any issues you find under this post.
- Imported topic authors now identified correctly.
- Imported posts are now searchable.
- ReCAPTCHA has been enabled for new users.
Current known issues:
- The top navigation bar is broken under Internet Explorer 8 and earlier.
- I haven’t filled in the board name or forum descriptions yet.
We’ll run with this for a day, and if nothing too serious is identified, we’ll replace the existing forums with this version. Permalinks to old forum posts and topics will continue to work correctly.
Since Christmas, we’ve been using the Simple:Press plugin for WordPress to run our forum. Recently however, the amount of traffic has increased to the point where we need to move to phpBB to keep our server load under control. I’ve ported a snapshot of the current forum across into a phpBB install here; please have a play and report any issues you find under this post. Note:
- You should be able to use your Simple:Press user name and password to log in to phpBB. Luckily both systems use the same password hashing algorithm.
- Posts on the new forum will be lost when we do the final migration. For now, please treat phpBB as a sandpit, and continue to use the Simple:Press forum for “real” posts.
- We will not be migrating private messages to the new forum. Please take this opportunity to take a backup of any messages you wish to keep after the migration.
Bizarrely, there didn’t seem to be any good publicly-available migration scripts, so I had to roll my own. Once we’ve ironed out any bugs, I’ll post the Python source here.