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Topic: What can I do with an RPi that I can't do with a laptop + Arduino? (Read 1 time) previous topic - next topic

Robin2

I have, so far, resisted the temptation to buy a Raspberry Pi.

Just now, looking again at the RPi specs got me wondering what I would get that I don't already have with the combination of a laptop and an Arduino.

As far as I can see an RPi is just an under powered PC with accessible I/O pins.

I do appreciate that an RPi is physically smaller than a PC and more energy efficient. But for the purpose of exploration neither of those features matter.

What am I missing - that might persuade me to part with ££

...R
Two or three hours spent thinking and reading documentation solves most programming problems.

pert

Certainly the price is a consideration. RPi Zero is $15 USD or less including shipping, RPi Zero W $20 or less. Of course once you added on all the accessories that your laptop includes it will not save you much if anything but for an embedded application you may not need most of that and you can pick and choose the accessories you do use. I wish they would allow the Zero to be purchased in multiples. The $5 price would be more attractive to me without the extra $10 per unit shipping added on.

I've been messing around with the RPi Zero with the camera module for IP cameras. I got really sick of trying to work with the cheap commercial IP cameras or trying to repurpose smart phones for that use. Even though the RPi doesn't end up cheaper and is more work to assemble it's worth it to me just because it's more hackable and open. For that application the RPi is certainly superior to any Arduino but I don't foresee using them for many other projects.

travis_farmer

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What am I missing - that might persuade me to part with ££
as i have yet to boot mine (just got the flash card for the OS), i can't say specifically.
But here is why i bought mine. first of all, i like learning new things, and Rpi is a new world for me to explore. i may like it, i may not, but at least i can try it and see. I like Linux, and i like electronics. combining the two seemed to point to an Rpi. that, and you can still use Wiring (not yet tested by me yet, so i can't comment on the specifics).

it isn't so much "What am i missing", as what can i make it do for me?

i think i remember that you have said that you do well with Python. Rpi has Python libraries (so i am told) that can directly interface with the GPIO.

of note, the GPIO is 3.3V, not 5V. there is no direct analog inputs, but there are modules to make up for that. (for extra money, of course).

~Travis
Current Obsession: My server rack cooler, and my CNC Router
Check out my website, i have my own under-used forum on my hobby server.

Robin2

i think i remember that you have said that you do well with Python. Rpi has Python libraries (so i am told) that can directly interface with the GPIO.
I can get the same effect with a Python program on this Linux laptop connected to an Arduino.

And it seems to me the higher level functions that an RPI can do (and an Arduino cannot) are easier to do on a laptop as it has has more capability than the RPi.

So, I do think I mean "what am I missing" by not having an RPi.

...R
Two or three hours spent thinking and reading documentation solves most programming problems.

travis_farmer

and the point of my post was "open your mind, and try new things".
obviously, i can't force you... i just thought the exploration may be entertaining. ;)

~Travis
Current Obsession: My server rack cooler, and my CNC Router
Check out my website, i have my own under-used forum on my hobby server.

Robin2

and the point of my post was "open your mind, and try new things".
So... tell me what the new things might be :)

That is why I started this Thread.

...R
Two or three hours spent thinking and reading documentation solves most programming problems.

Qdeathstar

my raspberry pi is sitting in a box.


the benefit of using a raspberry pi instead of a laptop is that you can set the raspberry pi and then do other things with your laptop.. and the raspberry pi is considerably less expensive than a laptop.
A creaking creeping shadow
stiff against the freezing fog
glares at a tickless watch.

Time has failed him -- all things shall pass.

Robin2

the benefit of using a raspberry pi instead of a laptop is that you can set the raspberry pi and then do other things with your laptop.. and the raspberry pi is considerably less expensive than a laptop.
I am aware of that and I thought I had dealt with it in my Original Post. At the moment I don't have any application that needs an RPi and if I had, I reckon I would do all the development work on my laptop and only convert to the RPi for the final version.

And I have a few other laptops gathering dust :)

I just want to make sure that I am not overlooking some capability in an RPi that does not exist in a combination of laptop plus Arduino.

...R
Two or three hours spent thinking and reading documentation solves most programming problems.

AWOL

My laptop won't run off a phone charger, and my wife won't complain if I stick a Pi behind a small TV or speaker.
(Not all my laptop's have HDMI outputs either)
"Pete, it's a fool looks for logic in the chambers of the human heart." Ulysses Everett McGill.
Do not send technical questions via personal messaging - they will be ignored.
I speak for myself, not Arduino.

Robin2

My wife threw me out years ago :)

Why would I want to stick an RPi behind a speaker?  Maybe that is the info I am after?

...R
Two or three hours spent thinking and reading documentation solves most programming problems.

AWOL

Quote
Why would I want to stick an RPi behind a speaker?
To hide it from the missus, of course.
"Pete, it's a fool looks for logic in the chambers of the human heart." Ulysses Everett McGill.
Do not send technical questions via personal messaging - they will be ignored.
I speak for myself, not Arduino.

microcat

I don't have an RPi but I do have a BeagleBone Black, which is essentially the American equivalent (American Pi?  :)  ).  Anyway, the advantages that I see are that it can be embedded, i.e. if you need a dedicated processor for a piece of "smart" equipment that requires more power than the Arduino, and it needs to be there 24/7, and doesn't need a full-blown keyboard and monitor, then the BBB/RPi is useful.  Also the BBB/RPi has a lot more electrical I/O capability for controlling external electrical items than a laptop (although that I/O is crippled by being 3.3V and low current).  Otherwise, you are right.  If these things are not a requirement, you might as well just get a cheap laptop.

Robin2

I remember considering the BeagleBone as an alternative to the RPi a while back. I haven't heard about it for a long time.

...R
Two or three hours spent thinking and reading documentation solves most programming problems.

msssltd

I agree with microcat that the main benefit of an SoC is continual operation.  If I didn't have a need for 24/7, low intervention, network operation I wouldn't know what to do with an RPI either.

For one day only, a glimpse of my latest SoC project.  Running Armbian/Debian 8 on a Banana Pi M2+  Early work in progress but doing useful stuff in a production system none the less.  I could have used a virtual server or a container but using an SoC has the advantage of decoupling the monitoring platform from the platform being monitored.

An old scuba diving buddy I know (Gordon Henderson) wrote the guts of Wiring Pi, the Arduino like programming  interface for the RPI's GPIO.  The electrical interface is not so much crippled, as a characteristic of working with a general purpose CPU at a much higher clock frequency (IMHO).

If you do find an application, I would warn against doing too much on a laptop first.  You could end up in a corner, relying on some functionality which is not available or runs too slowly in the Arm environment.

Robin2

If you do find an application, I would warn against doing too much on a laptop first.  You could end up in a corner, relying on some functionality which is not available or runs too slowly in the Arm environment.
Good point.

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For one day only, a glimpse of my latest SoC project
Out of curiosity, what are you displaying the images on? Are they just visible on a browser or do you have a screen attached to the RPi?

...R
Two or three hours spent thinking and reading documentation solves most programming problems.

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