Some great additions, thanks.
I want to add this idea from another thread (mentioned above), which I like very much, because I'm afraid the connection might get lost with the upcoming forum overhaul:
I read the postings under Pi in Space (http://www.raspberrypi.org/for.....i-in-space
) and the idea flashed in my mind that it would really be quite a motivator for me to have “something” of mine in space, even if it was software.
I imagine if the Rasberry Pi Foundation created a platform that could be hoisted to the edge of space under a balloon, then they could have a Raspberry Pi Space Olympics contest for school-age programmers.
The platform would have a Raspberry Pi (obviously), a camera and GPS tracker. It would be housed in a floating container. I think it would be good to have screen that the camera could photograph, perhaps like a Kindle screen, that would not get washed out in sunlight. It might also be useful to interface some sensors for temperature, air pressure, GPS coordinates and etc. Then every person who enters the contest and has software that meets minimum requirements, could have their software loaded onto the Pi, and it would be launched. When each person’s software ran, it would put up a screen of their design, execute their code, and move on to the next person's code. At the end of the flight, each participant would get a copy of the video file that showed their software running on the Raspberry Pi that went to space (the screen showing the software running in the forground and the curvature of the earth in the background)
I imagine that this would be a big day for both the students who’s software was on the Pi and for the folks that launched and recovered it. The foundation could even make the event a regular fund raiser, year after year.
As the programmers become more sophisticated, there could be several levels of software, for beginning, intermediate and advanced programmers. Each launched on its own Pi in space.
And this is a contest that everyone can win. Everyone that is, that completed their project and their project met the minimum requirements. And that is the goal, to get the kids to learn programming skills.