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Raspberry Pi For Dummies by Mike Cook, Sean McManus

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Getting Familiar with the Raspberry Pi

When your Raspberry Pi arrives, you’ll see it’s a circuit board, about the size of a credit card, with components and sockets stuck on it, as shown in Figure 1-2. In an age when most computing devices are sleek and shiny boxes, the spiky Pi, with tiny codes printed in white all over it, seems alien. It’s a big part of its appeal, though: most of the cases you can buy for the Raspberry Pi are transparent because people love the look of it.

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Figure 1-2: Up close with the Raspberry Pi.

There are two versions of the Raspberry Pi: the Model B (which was released first) and the Model A. The differences between the two are that the Model B has two USB sockets (whereas the Model A only has one), the Model B has an Ethernet socket, and editions of the Model B released after October 2012 contain twice the memory (512MB, compared to 256MB on the Model A and the first batches of the Model B). The Model A sells for $25, whereas the Model B sells for around $35.

technicalstuff.eps The Raspberry Pi was made possible in part by the advances in mobile computer chips that have happened in recent years. At its heart is a Broadcom BCM2835 chip that contains an ARM central processing unit (CPU) and a Videocore 4 graphics processing unit (GPU). The CPU and GPU share the memory between ...

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