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Pi?

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Raspberry pi?

 

wasn't sure if this should be in computers or hobbies.

 

Anyone tinkering around with these things?   I'm interested in using it to build an arcade machine now that this thing has popped up on my radar.

 

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLice_sU_6Rfhw7LK-tl8A8u1XYQKeuFri

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Yes, it's a fun little gadget. Not really powerful enough to drive anything heavy duty, but retro game emulation should be fine. The RPi is basically just a small computer, so it's pretty easy to setup an OS for it. Plenty of images out there that you can just download and play.

 

My brother set up an RPi based media player for my mom, sort of like a DIY Apple TV. My son played with it for a while when he was still interested in those things. I'll probably resurrect it sometimes and set up a surveillance system.

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Guest Nickali28

A guy I work with has bought several of them and is actively working them towards a fairly powerful Beowulf cluster. 

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I remember tinkering with an Atari 800 when I was a kid, so when I came across these, I had ideas of introducing my kid to the Pi to get him interested in tinkering with computers -  He's into Minecraft - and there appears to be something Minecraft related that he can change and manipulate the Minecraft world with computer coding on the Pi...

 

So anyways it's probably more nostalgia for me than any real interest from my kid.

 

I also saw the cluster with multiple Pis, and I find that fascinating (from the geek nerd in me.)  as in I want to find out how that works, and put harnessing all the small capabilities of the individual processors together will it be more powerful than the Intel/AMD processors we have running our PCs?

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Guest Nickali28

I remember tinkering with an Atari 800 when I was a kid, so when I came across these, I had ideas of introducing my kid to the Pi to get him interested in tinkering with computers -  He's into Minecraft - and there appears to be something Minecraft related that he can change and manipulate the Minecraft world with computer coding on the Pi...

 

So anyways it's probably more nostalgia for me than any real interest from my kid.

 

I also saw the cluster with multiple Pis, and I find that fascinating (from the geek nerd in me.)  as in I want to find out how that works, and put harnessing all the small capabilities of the individual processors together will it be more powerful than the Intel/AMD processors we have running our PCs?

Any time you cluster devices together, you gain a tremendous amount of "simultaneous" processing, or each little processor doing simultaneous functions just like the other processors.  Essentially that is what a Super Computer is.  It does not however merge all the processors into one giant processor.  It depends on the application.  Most single use processes aren't going to see improvement, but something that sees many of the same simultaneous process requests, will. 

 

A website is a great example.  Large websites like Google, Twitter, Facebook, etc. see millions and millions of requests for essentially the same resources.  You have a head processor, loading these simultaneous requests out to all the other processes, and BAM! instant boost. 

Still cool to make your own super computer though. 

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I remember tinkering with an Atari 800 when I was a kid, so when I came across these, I had ideas of introducing my kid to the Pi to get him interested in tinkering with computers -  He's into Minecraft - and there appears to be something Minecraft related that he can change and manipulate the Minecraft world with computer coding on the Pi...

 

So anyways it's probably more nostalgia for me than any real interest from my kid.

 

I also saw the cluster with multiple Pis, and I find that fascinating (from the geek nerd in me.)  as in I want to find out how that works, and put harnessing all the small capabilities of the individual processors together will it be more powerful than the Intel/AMD processors we have running our PCs?

 

My son tried out Minecraft server on our Pi and it didn't have enough processing power to drive many mods, so just FYI. I think the newer ones have slightly better processors, so that may have changed too.

 

Regarding clusters like Beowulf, you can't just drop, say, Fallout 4 on it. The software needs to know how to utilize the cluster, so typically it's for people with some programming knowledge who wants to tinker with it. Back in the days before the advent of modern GPUs, I worked on a project that did 3D rendering of massive (for the time) data sets, which can run on supercomputers and Beowulf clusters. If you have any tasks that can be well distributed, then yes a cluster can be more powerful than your PC.

 

Here's the Beowulf FAQ for some basic info: http://beowulf.org/overview/faq.html

 

Just to toot my own horn a bit, this is the project I worked on: https://esto.gsfc.nasa.gov/conferences/estc-2002/papers/a6p1(li).pdf. And no, I'm not Peggy. She was my boss at the time.  :smile2

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A guy I work with has bought several of them and is actively working them towards a fairly powerful Beowulf cluster. 

I will have to look and see if the project is still alive but there was a person that did that with 40 of them and set one as the "master" turns out it is now used to do FOLDing at home and does it way better than any chipset out there. I want to build one just for that cause then you can write off a portion of your internet and electric bill lol. I am looking at 32-64 node for not only folding but a few of the things I tend to tinker with at home. sorry about bring a dead thread back to life again.

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Guest Nickali28

I will have to look and see if the project is still alive but there was a person that did that with 40 of them and set one as the "master" turns out it is now used to do FOLDing at home and does it way better than any chipset out there. I want to build one just for that cause then you can write off a portion of your internet and electric bill lol. I am looking at 32-64 node for not only folding but a few of the things I tend to tinker with at home. sorry about bring a dead thread back to life again.

Heck yeah, make a bit of side money while helping some medicine research cause? Yes, please! Good luck with it.

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