The credit card-sized Raspberry Pi PC priced at $35 has been making news since its launch early last year. Soon after the announcement, the company was reported to be selling 700 units per second. In India, this mini PC is being sold by Element14, and the complete educational kit is priced at Rs 4825. Its biggest highlights are the ability to connect to a TV, replacing the need for a monitor, and its price point, making a it a great device for developing nations. In the past one year, the Raspberry Pi has been put to umpteen uses and several tech freaks have shared their unique and useful projects on the Raspberry Pi blog. These projects range from MAME console and supercomputer cluster to cat feeder and torrent server. We have listed four such cool things that you can do if you marry off your Raspberry Pi to your mobile devices.
KindleBerry Wireless PC
If you plan to discard your old Kindle for the new Kindle Paper White, then there’s something interesting you could do to it using the Raspberry Pi. You can transform it into a wireless, ultra low-power display dubbed Kindleberry that can be tagged along with your Raspberry Pi, making it a fully-functional portable PC. Last year, we had seen Ponnuki come up with the hack to turn a Kindle into a Raspberry Pi e-ink display, but it required cables and only worked with the older Kindle 3 version, the one that came with a keyboard. Max Ogden shows an upgraded version of Kindleberry using Kindle Paper White. The Kindle Paper White doesn't have a keyboard and comes with a faster refresh rate. Moreover, it is backlit, which will allow using it even in dark conditions. Max has further worked on this original concept and polished it. Basically, the KindleBerry means the Kindle (logged in as an ssh session) will work as a screen for your Raspberry Pi, along with a wireless keyboard and a router. This means you will have a handy computer system that you can carry around with you. Click here to know the complete process and click here for the software side of things. Using the Kindle has definite advantages due to its week-long battery life and performance in direct sunlight. Also, the whole setup is small enough to carry around in a pouch.
KindleBerry has definite advantages
Siri Proxy – Open the garage door
This is a really cool project for iPhone owners. A debutant project by Dark Therapy lets your iPhone and Raspberry Pi work together to give you control of your garage door. The project shows Siri Proxy running on the Raspberry Pi along with wiringPi to allow access to the Pi's GPIO pins and turn a relay on/off. The relay is attached to the automatic garage door system. In this way, using Siri, it gives users complete control of the door, letting you open or close the door. Tech freaks who would love to try this out can look up for technical codes and instructions here.
Open your garage door using Siri
Here's a video by iDownloadblog showing how to install Siri Proxy:
PiUi – Control Pi with your phone
PiUi allows users to add a mobile phone interface to the Raspberry Pi. You can add a rich mobile UI directly in python code and then access it from your Android smartphones or the iPhone. Moreover, it is powered by ratchet.js, which means there are several components that will allow you to create beautiful interfaces. PiUi will make your Pi behave like a wireless access point and you can easily connect your phone to it. In addition to the Raspberry Pi, you will need a Wi-Fi adaptor. Once the Pi creates a Wi-Fi access point to connect your phone, simply navigate to http://piui/ in a browser to access your app’s UI. Android users can also download this app for connecting easily. David Singleton, the creator of the PiUi, reveals that there are innumerable ways in which you can use this software at your home. He has explained the complete process in his blog.
The video below shows how to add a mobile phone UI to your Raspberry Pi:
The next one is a ROM for your Samsung smartphone, and the developer says that it is being worked upon to add improvements. If you own the Samsung Galaxy S Advance, then you can try PiDroid, a ROM build on the Raspberry Pi. Some features of the PiDroid include Beats Audio, Build.prop tweaks, Zipaligned; it is based on LQ4. Click here to download the ROM.
While we aren't sure when we’d get to lay our hands on Google Glasses, the next Raspberry Pi project will let you use a pair of glasses to build a wearable computer. Zack Freedman has built this wearable Pi computer by replacing the usual display with a pair of glasses. In addition to this, you will obviously need a keyboard. Freedman’s area of expertise is wearable computing and he has ensured that this computer can be worn on the arm. He has used the insides of the MyVu Crystal video glasses (that were originally built for the iPod) and coupled it with a Duracell phone recharger, mini keyboard and trackpad, and video cable. The whole system is wearable and except for the video cable, it is completely wireless.
The wearable Pi
Which of these cool Raspberry Pi projects do you find interesting?