RASPBERRY PI 29 PROJECTS
Put the tiny budget PC to good use
There’s a big problem with the Raspberry Pi, and that’s the price. It’s too cheap. $35 might make it accessible to the widest possible audience, but it also makes the Pi a perfect impulse buy—and don’t even get us started on the gumstick-sized, Happy Mealpriced Raspberry Pi Zero. Low cost, tiny size, minimum appreciation—and that’s a crime. There are thousands of perfectly capable Raspberry Pis in drawers and junk boxes across the world doing nothing but collecting dust, because their owners didn’t have a plan. And it’s time to change that.
So, dust off that unloved hardware, put visions of the slightly underwhelming Raspbian desktop experience behind you, and stop worrying about the dark depths of Linux. Achieving everything we’re going to show you here is plausible for just about every user, command-line veteran or not, and every one of these potential projects will put your Pi to work around your home. Maybe it’ll find its niche tucked away next to
your router, silently earning its keep as part of your network lineup. Maybe you’ll be able to make it part of your home entertainment setup, loudly working as a media streaming box. Perhaps you’ll even add hardware to your Pi, taking advantage of its extendable architecture to turn it into something more. Every one of these ideas is the start of a new journey. Each aspect is yours to personalize, to improve, to expand on.
Whatever you decide to do with it, we do have a key recommendation: Ensure you’re supplying power to your Raspberry Pi with an appropriate USB power supply. If you don’t feed it the 2.5 amps it desires, you’re likely to get severely degraded performance, but be careful to buy a quality PSU. We’ve seen (and bought, and safely disposed of) some horrific budget wall warts that look as adept at starting a house fire as they are at juicing a single-board computer. Many of these ideas will see your Pi powered up at all times, so something safe, efficient, and reliable is a must.