Low cost computers for 25 $ & self supervised learning for children

David Braben is a very well-known game developer who runs the UK development studio Frontier Developments, but is just as well known for being the co-developer of Elite.

He and his team have produced a super low cost computer Raspberry Pi. It’s a whole computer on a tiny circuit board – not much more than an ARM processor, a USB port, and an HDMI connection.

It is not a joke and they plugged a keyboard into its one end, and hooked the other into a TV.

Estimated cost of Production : $25

Time to market: 12 months

Provisional specification:

  • 700MHz ARM11
  • 128MB 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
  • Open software (Ubuntu, Iceweasel, KOffice, Python)

The Raspberry Pi Foundation is a UK registered charity (Registration Number 1129409) which exists to promote the study of computer science and related topics, especially at school level, and to put the fun back into learning computing.


The HDMI port demonstrates the capability and extensibility of the hardware but it might just be an overkill for such devices. It is better replaced by a cheaper VGA port. A lot of students have televisions at their homes to which they can connect these devices to. Overall a nice innovation in the domain of affordable computing for promoting education in developing countries.

If the above stated Raspberry Pi device and the research discussed in the TED talk shown below can come together then it would be really wonderful to see the fruits of such an alliance.

Indian education scientist Sugata Mitra tackles one of the greatest problems of education — the best teachers and schools don’t exist where they’re needed most. In a series of real-life experiments from New Delhi to South Africa to Italy, he gave kids self-supervised access to the web and saw results that could revolutionize how we think about teaching.


BBC report 

Geek.com Report



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