The ledgers of history are littered with the rotting corpses of well intentioned, but ultimately unsuccessful, attempts to put computers in the hands of the young, underprivileged or severely impoverished. Some, like Intel’s Classmate wanted to put cheap, durable Wintel machines in every American classroom, while others, like the OLPC program, focused their efforts on developing nations. Okay, perhaps it’s a bit hyperbolic to compare those initiatives to decomposing bodies, but there’s no denying they haven’t exactly flooded the world with low-cost PCs the way they were envisioned. So, here comes the Raspberry Pi, another effort with lofty goals, both in terms of purpose and price. Of course, the approach is different here — more barebones, with a healthy dose of inspiration from Arduino and the DIY movement. The question is, what has it learned from those that have come before it? And, most importantly, where does the Raspberry Pi go right and where does it go wrong? To find out, keep reading after the break.
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