I'm a professional Linux SysAdmin at a large Webhosting company, and heard about the
Pi initially through a coworker. From our perspective, the first thing we checked was the
hardware specs, and realized that it wasn't anywhere near what the hearsay about it was
saying, but, it is still perfectly suitable for my personal needs.
I purchased my Pi primarily to build a "laptop" for coding and SSH purposes, planning to
fabricate a case large enough to hold a 15-20" screen and a full size keyboard, with a carrying
handle. Even including my Windows gaming laptop (which I'm on currently), every computer
in my home runs at least one instance of Linux, as well as having 2 Dedicated servers that I use
for projects that require IP-based software licensing.
To get on to my reason for posting on this thread, I feel that the misrepresentations of the
Pi's capabilities are going to be pretty damaging to the project's goals. Let's start with the
Wikipedia entry on the Raspberry Pi:
This is the first entry on the capabilities of the Raspberry Pi listed in the article. This can easily beIn August 2011, fifty Alpha boards were manufactured. These boards were functionally identical to the planned model B, only larger to accommodate debug headers. Demos of the board showed it running the LXDE desktop on Debian, Quake 3 at 1080p, and Full HD MPEG-4 video over HDMI.
interpreted by people who aren't technically-saavy as the hardware being easily suitable to desktop
replacement, as High Definition gaming and video is typically thought of as being something that
only modern computers are capable of. Most people won't check and find out the original
requirements for Quake 3 were a 233 Mhz Processor and 64 MB of RAM, and that it was released in 1999.
Next, is the "Shipping Now" article from geek.com:
http://www.geek.com/articles/chips/35-r ... -20120416/
Again, a reference to Quake 3 without a reference to the original requirements for the game. ThisThe main board for the Raspberry Pi fits in the hand, and comes equipped with a 700MHz ARM SoC, HDMI-out, two USB ports, an SD card slot, Ethernet, and 256MB of RAM. Clearly you’re not going to run Crysis on this device, but it is a complete package that could encourage people all over the world, and especially in developing countries, to get interested in computer science. The RasPi will also have the juice to run a game like Quake III or output 1080p video over HDMI.
article goes so far as to mention you can't run a modern game, but the game chosen to mention is
Crysis, which was hyped primarily for its hardware requirements at the time.
Starting to improve, is the PCWorld article:
http://www.pcworld.com/businesscenter/a ... _last.html
This article at least addresses the purpose of the Pi, but still goes on to talk about it being used forOriginally designed to encourage kids around the globe to learn programming, the diminutive device can actually be used for a variety of other purposes as well, including spreadsheets, word processing, games, and playing high-definition video.
games and HD Video. The article completely glosses over the hardware specs, aside from
mentioning that it is ARM based and has 256 MB of RAM.
Finally, the best Launch article I was able to find, is that from wired.com:
http://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2012/04/ ... customers/
This article brings up three important points: The goal of the project, the hardware specs, and that it isThe Raspberry Pi is a tiny investment that be used to experiment with Linux and software programing without the fear of destroying family photos. For $35, potential students can hook the tiny computer to a keyboard and display, and get their hands dirty with the Python programming language.
The computer ships with 256MB of on-board of RAM and a 700MHz ARM chip, and boots from an SD card with either the Fedora, Debian or ArchLinux distros installed. It’s definitely not a system designed for speed.
"not [sic] designed for speed." If anything, this is the article that proponents of the project should be
pointing people to in regards to reading material prior to pointing them to the forums. It does a decent
job of setting expectations, and doesn't mention gaming, HD Video, or spreadsheets at all.
As a bonus, an article on 5 things you can do with the Pi:
http://gizmodo.com/5889245/five-things- ... spberry-pi
This is the sort of article that leads toward the assumption that users will be able to just plug in andBy plugging in a Raspberry Pi to your tellybox you get a proper desktop web browser that will actually work with the modern web and a potentially huge library of apps and games.
(I'm not picking on bamboozled, it's just a convenient example) watch BBC videos, or watch
youtube, or play HD games on your television.
For the tl;dr amongst us, we need to be pointing people towards resources that stress the goals of
the project, rather than all the things that we'll be able to do with the Pi once the community has had
time to develop a decent software suite for it.