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The Raspberry Pi foundation is a registered UK charity working for the advancement of computer science in education in the UK and around the world.

They are currently developing a single board ARM based computer capable of running a full ARM linux distro – something a bit like a beagleboard.

Designed with the education market in mind. Raspberry Pi is aiming to produce a cheap, efficient and versatile computer with the aim of teaching programming to children, but expect the device to have many other uses in the developing and developed world

Two models will be available initially – Model A priced at $25 and Model B at $35 see specs below:

– 700MHz ARM11
– 128MB or 256MB of SDRAM
– OpenGL ES 2.0
– 1080p30 H.264 high-profile decode
– Composite and HDMI video output
– USB 2.0
– SD/MMC/SDIO memory card slot
– General-purpose I/O
– Optional integrated 2-port USB hub and 10/100 Ethernet controller
– Open software (Ubuntu, Iceweasel, KOffice, Python)

I can think of a number of uses for such a cheap and capable device and will follow this project with great interest! The device is expected to be available in November this year!

Check out www.raspberrypi.org for more information!

The latest round in the Apple Vs Adobe scwabble has seen a press release published by Apple explaining their position. As they attempt to take a moral high ground, they come off sounding like total hypocrits!

Sure, its easy to take a pop at flash… its bloated, buggy (on linux) and will eat into your system performace like no ones business. But with all that considered, it is responsible for a large amount of the matirial we consume online, and its not going away anytime soon.

But apples opening argument on its press release attempts to slam adobe for its lack of openness. Below I have quoted this section of the PR, as for no excerpts to be taken out of context.

    First, there’s “Open”.

    Adobe’s Flash products are 100% proprietary. They are only available from Adobe, and Adobe has sole authority as to their future enhancement, pricing, etc. While Adobe’s Flash products are widely available, this does not mean they are open, since they are controlled entirely by Adobe and available only from Adobe. By almost any definition, Flash is a closed system.

    Apple has many proprietary products too. Though the operating system for the iPhone, iPod and iPad is proprietary, we strongly believe that all standards pertaining to the web should be open. Rather than use Flash, Apple has adopted HTML5, CSS and JavaScript – all open standards. Apple’s mobile devices all ship with high performance, low power implementations of these open standards. HTML5, the new web standard that has been adopted by Apple, Google and many others, lets web developers create advanced graphics, typography, animations and transitions without relying on third party browser plug-ins (like Flash). HTML5 is completely open and controlled by a standards committee, of which Apple is a member.

    Apple even creates open standards for the web. For example, Apple began with a small open source project and created WebKit, a complete open-source HTML5 rendering engine that is the heart of the Safari web browser used in all our products. WebKit has been widely adopted. Google uses it for Android’s browser, Palm uses it, Nokia uses it, and RIM (Blackberry) has announced they will use it too. Almost every smartphone web browser other than Microsoft’s uses WebKit. By making its WebKit technology open, Apple has set the standard for mobile web browsers.

For Apple to try and take the stand as the ‘good guy’ in an openness and free speech argument is so asburd and hypocrytical that only a fanboy would be sucked in by this garbage.

We all know that the iPhone and iPad are the two most locked down and controlled devices ever brought to market. EVER. Apple control exactly what the hardware is cabable of, through their propriatory OS. Apple control exacly what software is available for the platform, through the app store application process. Apple control exactly how developers make software through their propriatary SDK (mac only) and licence agreement.

By reading the above exerpt, you can see that Apple conveniently ignores all the points i mention, and focuses on web standards, thus conveying Apple as an advocate of openess and free creativity on the web. They believe that web standards should be open, but they don’t believe in openness when it has ramifications to their business model and profits (like in the app store).

Next, Apple gives its self a nice pat on the back for WebKit rendering engine. The wording of this shows Apple in a very positive light to the uniformed.

Apple did not create WebKit. They pillaged the opensource project KHTML, developped by KDE for their Konqueror browser. Apple made a fork of KHTML and named it ‘WebKit’, yet Apple withheld their code, preventing further colaboration with KDE on the project, and violating the initial terms of the licence. Apple eventually open-sourced their code in 2005, but from their behaviour, it is clear that they are not avocates of openness, and will do whatever it takes for their own gain.

So, that beats down every argument put forth by Apple against Adobe in regard to openness. Apple are hypocrits. Steve Jobs is the lead hypocrit. Apple fans are deluded fanboys who follow blindly and accept anything they are told. Apple are denouncing a company for following the same business model as Apple themselves. and that is pure hypocracy.

Please leave a comment if you have an opinion on this.

ISEE, developer of the IGEP single board computer development plaform have announced an expansion board to accompany the IGEPv2, offering a number of new features. The expansion board will include the following:

  • Modem GSM/GPRS based on TELIT GE865 module with SIMCARD connector and external cable Antenna.
  • LCD and touch interface for 7.0 inch SEIKO LCD: 3 connectors (40pin FFC for TFT interface + 4pin FFC for touch + 6pin FFC for LED backlight).
  • LCD and touch interface for 4.3 inch POWERTIP LCD: 40pin FFC for TFT interface, touch and LED backlight).
  • VGA interface on D-SUB15 connector.
  • 2 x video composite inputs on RCA connector. Video Decoder based on TEXAS Video Decoder TVP5150.
  • Camera interface for e-con Systems e-CAM32_OMAP module.
  • CAN bus interface with 3 pin connector. CAN interface based on MICROCHIP MCP2515 CAN controller.
  • Serial port on DB9 connector
  • Size: idem IGEPv2

As you can see, this expansion board adds oodles of new functionality. Currently no word on price, but my guess puts this in a similar ballpark to the IGEPv2 itself pricewise.