Archive for the ‘Other Products’ Category

In recent months I’ve had issues charging my phone, it became apparent that some chargers were more effective than others, and it seemed that some of my USB cables were better than others.

The setup

To put this to the test I’m going to use a USB Voltage and Current monitor I purchased for measuring the power requirements of the Raspberry Pi.  If you search around this can cost a few dollars (

4.94V being supplied.

4.94V being supplied.


While I have not had time to properly play around with the new Raspberry Pi camera, I did create a quick time lapse video with it.

Raspberry Pi Camera installed in my case (with yet another modification for easy mounting)

Raspberry Pi Camera installed in my case (with yet another modification for easy mounting)

A week or so later during some twitter based Camera discussions with @RasPiTV @RPiSpy, we had @_smstext join in.  His question was how to get a time lapse to start automatically on power up.

What a great idea, I already had to use my “porta-pi” set-up [a portable DVD Player with some internal modifications to connect to the Raspberry Pi] to perform the time-lapse, where it would be MUCH easier to simply place the Raspberry Pi in location, plug-in a standard mobile phone charger power pack and off it goes! Challenge accepted!


Posted: May 11, 2013 in Guides, Other Products, Raspberry Pi

New Guide to…

using the nook Simple Touch as a remote eink Raspberry Pi screen

The nook simple touch...done!

The nook simple touch…done!

What does this achieve?

Hacking the nook Simple Touch provides a low power touch-screen for the Raspberry Pi by using VNC over wifi (USB connection may be possible at some point) as well as SSH terminal access.

VNC and SSH will allow you to control the Raspberry Pi remotely over the network.  VNC will create a new remote session, rather than controlling the local session which may be displaying on the locally connected screen (this is different to when you use VNC on windows for example).

VNC allows control of the desktop.  Such as editing MagPi files using Scribus!

It should also be possible to control XBMC (Raspberry Pi media centre) and  send specific SSH commands via custom Android apps if required.

Essentially, you get a low power screen, with touch input and the flexibility of Android all rolled into one!

Oh, and you can fill up the memory with useful programming books, datasheets and code examples for those times when your Raspberry Pi is offline, but you still need your hacking/geek fix.

See the full guide here:

New Guide to…using the nook Simple Touch as a remote eink Raspberry Pi screen


Thanks for all the votes so far on what you’d like me to post next, I shall certainly get to work on a new GPIO Python lesson and post it as soon as it is ready (I know just the thing to cover!).  Keep voting though, since I shall check back and will pick the next item off the list to follow up with.

There is a lot of great kit available for the Raspberry Pi to experiment and learn from, and they don’t have to cost a lot of money.  Here are 3 great examples!

Adafruit’s 8×8 LED Matrix Backpack:

Adafruit's 8x8 Bi-Colour LED Backpack

Adafruit’s 8×8 Bi-Colour LED Backpack


One of the problem of working on the MagPi Magazine ( (and now developing hardware “stuff”) is that I need to have my Raspberry Pi with me a lot of the time.

The one drawback is my Raspberry Pi gets a rough ride!

End result is a broken SD-Card slot and a quick fix is required.

Clamped Raspberry Pi

My broken Raspberry Pi needed a clamp to boot


Adafruit’s Pi T-Cobbler

I recently received the Pi T-Cobbler, a very convenient way to interface with the Raspberry Pi.  It takes the GPIO header and breaks it nicely out into two neatly labelled rows and plugs directly into a breadboard.

Pi-TCobbler Supplied By AdaFruit

Pi T-Cobbler Supplied By AdaFruit