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Re: Why does the Raspberry Pi exist?
On Thu, 20 Jun 2013 17:51:30 +0000 (UTC), I R A Darth Aggie

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Around here most schools manage their own money.  There just isn't a
'district' IT budget.
--  
(\__/)  M.
(='.'=) If a man stands in a forest and no woman is around
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Re: Why does the Raspberry Pi exist?
On 2013-06-18, Peter Percival wrote:
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The school computers are generally running Windows, thanks to the
"generosity" of Microsoft, and support departments (short on budget
and scared of "hackers") have generally locked them down so that no
outside software can be run on them. (The cost and delay of reimaging
a Windows machine can be nontrivial, so this is not entirely
unreasonable.)

Also, it's quite hard to build a robot that carries around a typical
desktop PC case.

Re: Why does the Raspberry Pi exist?
Roger Bell_West wrote:
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They can be made to dual boot.  Even I, whose ignorance of these matters  
is great, got an off-the-shelf PC running XP to dual boot Red Hat 6.2  
which was free with (iirc) Edition 4 of the BURKS CDs.

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Good point!

--  
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Behind another Elephant
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Re: Why does the Raspberry Pi exist?
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They can't - and that's the real issue.

They are locked down hard. Some without CD/DVD drives and USBs
disconnected. They are managed like corporate business systems - they
run MS Office and that's about that. They are connected to an Internet
that's heavilly filtered too.

Sadly, in the past 15 years or so teachers have forgotten (or never been
taught!) to teach programming or IT skils more than word processing,
spreadsheets and powerpoint.

There is nothing wrong with that, but it ought to be basic education and
not specialist. Even then it ought to be generic, so the young person
has the choice of "a word processor", and not just MS Word, etc.

Gordon

Re: Why does the Raspberry Pi exist?
Gordon Henderson wrote:
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I used to work for a GEC company that used Dell computers that had CD  
drives.  The company paid Dell 50 pounds each to remove them.  They  
couldn't remove them themselves because that would have nullified the  
guarantee.

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At least one of which should be free (LibreOffice, say).

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--  
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Behind another Elephant
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Re: Why does the Raspberry Pi exist?
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I wonder why the computers weren't ordered _without_ CD drive.



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Re: Why does the Raspberry Pi exist?
Peter Heitzer wrote:
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None of Dell's off the shelf PCs (that had other capabilities: processor  
power, thin Ethernet, etc) were sans CD drive.

--  
I think I am an Elephant,
Behind another Elephant
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Re: Why does the Raspberry Pi exist?
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This has apparently been changed.  For many years, we have ordered
several types of Dell Optiplex desktops and all the time you could
select to omit the floppy- and CD/DVD drive.  It would usually be
a 10 euro price difference per item. We have many desktops without them.

Re: Why does the Raspberry Pi exist?
Rob wrote:
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I think GEC (which had then been renamed as Marconi) disappeared in  
2004, so presumably things were different then.  I am rather sure that I  
heard that EASAMS (the bit of GEC that I work for) paid 50 quid per PC  
to have CD drives removed.

--  
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Re: Why does the Raspberry Pi exist?
Peter Percival wrote:
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Sorry, I think it was 2005.

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Behind another Elephant
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Re: Why does the Raspberry Pi exist?
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I am VERY SURE that in 2004 it was possible to order without drives,
and pay less than with drives.   We bought many systems back then.
We could even opt for a case with cutouts and blind covers (so drives
could later be added), or a case with a completely closed front at the
location where the drives would be.  In those days every Dell was built
to customer order.

Maybe they mistakenly ordered with drives and then later wanted them to
be removed.

Re: Why does the Raspberry Pi exist?
Rob wrote:
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Maybe so.  My apologies if I misunderstood or have misremembered.

--  
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Behind another Elephant
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Re: Why does the Raspberry Pi exist?
On 19 Jun 2013 08:51:36 GMT

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Just pull the power cable?


Re: Why does the Raspberry Pi exist?
On 19/06/13 09:44, Peter Percival wrote:
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It seems GEC and Marconi merged in 1919, the GEC part was rebranded (as  
you said) and later most of it was bought out by Ericsson in 2005.

I remember the old Marconi factory in its heyday, with many hundreds of  
workers all going for lunch breaks at the same time. It has suffered  
since then :(

Re: Why does the Raspberry Pi exist?
On 19/06/2013 09:44, Peter Percival wrote:
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By that point they'd completely lost the plot and systematically  
destroying their empire. Paying extra for no CD drive is very easy to  
imagine. :/

Re: Why does the Raspberry Pi exist?
On 19/06/13 08:33, Peter Heitzer wrote:
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simple: dell computers do not come without CD drives sir! You must pay  
us TO TAKE THEM OUT.


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--  
Ineptocracy

(in-ep-toc?-ra-cy) ? a system of government where the least capable to lead are elected by the least capable of producing, and where the members of society least likely to sustain themselves or succeed, are rewarded with goods and services paid for by the confiscated wealth of a diminishing number of producers.


Re: Why does the Raspberry Pi exist?
On 19 Jun 2013 07:33:01 GMT, "Peter Heitzer"

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    Based on my latest machine -- because that isn't an option <G>

    I recall my earlier Dell buys where practically every component except
the tower chassis was optional: pick a processor speed, pick from two or
three graphics cards, pick from two or three or no optical drive, etc.

    On my latest machine -- I had the choice of how much memory, and maybe
a choice of hard drive capacity. Blu-Ray player, DVD/CD burner was default.
A BD burner was an /additional/ drive option.

    Dell used to separate the order system by personal, SOHO, and
commercial (large orders). The large order systems tended to be a year or
two behind in technology, but came in sturdier chassis.

    Heh... I'm pretty sure no one would want my older machine -- it's over
8years old: WinXP sp3, a mere 400GB drive 1.5Mbps SATA, 2GB Ram, 3.4GHz
P4-HT... DVD/CD burn capability, and 3.5" floppy (the system /that/
replaced had a ZIP drive!) Used to have a pair of 1TB drives added, but I
moved them over to the new machine (which now has a total of 4TB internal,
a 2TB external, AND a 4TB external for back-up-only... shocking... I
remember the summer my college mainframe received a pair of 300MB "washing
machines"! <G>)


    Nice thing -- I was still able to get Win7Pro on the new one.
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Re: Why does the Raspberry Pi exist?
On 6/18/2013 10:34 AM, Peter Percival wrote:
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It's not the size, it is the ease of support.  The rPi just needs an SD  
card with a proper image and it is up.  If the student trashes the card  
it is easy to re-image it.  The same is not so true for a PC.  Or so I  
am told this is a large part of it.  I believe it is also a matter of  
cost.  You need some sort of screen for a display, but the rest of the  
rPi setup can be had for under $100US.  They don't have a PC for every  
student.  It would be easy to have an rPi for each student.

--  

Rick

Re: Why does the Raspberry Pi exist?
On 18/06/13 15:34, Peter Percival wrote:
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They can be made to, yes, but it's beyond what many schools have support  
resources for, and they're often tied into a managment suite that's  
Windows-only from the likes of RM.

  A Pi is self-contained, simple, and cheap.


Re: Why does the Raspberry Pi exist?
On Tue, 18 Jun 2013 15:01:48 +0100, Peter Percival wrote:

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at  
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o  
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There is *much more* to computing than bashing out a few lines of
code to say "Hello World" in twenty differnt fonts.

The Pi possibly gives the childrens inate curiosity a tweak and will
get them interested in how the hardware works and what can be built
and interfaced to it to do somthing else. Maybe count the number of
visits and when the Bluetits nesting in the school nest box make and
how that information ties in with the stages of next building, egg
layin, incubation, feeding and fledging.

Yes one can probably grab all that information off the web but the
kids will get a much better learning experience recording their own
data and making their own discoveries or having to deal with real
world problems. Like a cat getting one of the parents or a sensor
falling off.

It's also cheap so if it get blown up it's not going to be a big
drain on the schools budget. 30 v 200(ish) for a basic PC...

It also exposes them to different operating systems. Much of recent
school "Information & Communication Technology" teaching has been
little more than how to write a letter with MS Word, create a graph
from provided data with MS Excel or do period from history
presentation with MS Powerpoint. Nothing about the technology,
history or science of computing and modern digital communications.

--  
Cheers
Dave.




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