Nov 162015
How to drive a 7 segment display directly on Raspberry Pi in Python

Last week I bought some 4-digit, 7-segment displays to experiment with. Strangely enough it was something I’d never tried before, so I was interested to see how they work. I googled around looking to see if someone else had done this before. It seems there are several different sorts of 7-segment displays, so you have to find a good match for the one you’ve bought. You can get them in various guises including: i2c backpack; 12 pins; 16 pins; resistors built-in; common anode; common cathode etc. The ones I bought are 12 pin, bare, no […more…]

Oct 292015
RasPiO Duino Videos Complete

Last Thursday I decided I needed to do the “Analog Inputs Video” for RasPiO® Duino. All the other basic functionality was well covered in the previous assembly/setup/tutorial videos. There’s also the 47 page user guide (FREE Download – good intro to Arduino programming) and a GitHub repository with the example sketches in. But I wanted to complete the basic set of videos, so at midday I started planning. I filmed in the afternoon and cut the video in the evening. At about 2230 I was done, so I started uploading it to YouTube (~2.4 Gigabytes […more…]

Oct 222015
RasPiO GPIO Ruler goes on general sale

You may remember I ran a KickStarter campaign in August for the RasPiO® GPIO Ruler. The KickStarter rewards were all sent out in the first week of October. (We finished shipping 3 weeks early.) So now it’s time to launch the product officially and make it available to all on general sale. If you missed out on the KickStarter, now you can buy one. In case you haven’t seen it before, this is what it looks like… What Is The RasPiO® GPIO Ruler? It’s a coding crib-sheet for RPi.GPIO, a port ID guide, a multi-scale […more…]

Jul 142015
RasPiO GPIO Ruler

For some time now I’ve been using the wonderful RPi.GPIO Python library by Ben Croston. It’s great for using the General Purpose Input Output (GPIO) ports on the Raspberry Pi to control things and read inputs. I’ve written at least 14 tutorials on it (listed here) over the last couple of years. But I still find myself needing to look up the exact commands to use. I’ve made a crib-sheet which is really useful, but pieces of paper get lost. What I really want is the most used commands in a portable, accessible form that […more…]

Sep 072014
VGA for Pi Debuts at CamJam, alongside HDMIPi production model No. 1

I went to the Cambridge Jam yesterday and displayed HDMIPi production model #1, met lots of people, including Eben, Liz, and a multitude of Pi enthusiasts and bloggers (quite normal for a #CamJam). There was also a CNBC news crew there to film some Pi action. They shot a brief clip of me doing something like this… Matt Hawkins @RPiSpy kindly took this one for me using my camera. Good job he’s not a monkey, or we might have a copyright dispute. It was really nice to spend some time chatting to Matt. (Thanks for […more…]

Sep 012014
RPi.GPIO - port function checker

A few weeks ago I blogged about RPi.GPIO updates for the model B and updated my RPi.GPIO documentation and quick reference sheets. But there was one feature I held back on because I needed a bit more time to mess about with it. (And then got busy with other things.) So What Was It? gpio_function() Another RPi.GPIO feature that sneaked in while I wasn’t looking is gpio_function() This is a feature that’s been inserted in RPi.GPIO to enable you to query the setup status of a port to see how it’s configured. import RPi.GPIO as […more…]

Aug 132014
New Port ID Board for the Raspberry Pi B+ - RasPiO Portsplus 2

Today I’m launching the RasPiO Portsplus 2. It’s a simple port ID board for the Raspberry Pi model B+. It’s available over at but full information below… RasPiO® Portsplus 2 The RasPiO® Portsplus 2 board is designed for the new Raspberry Pi B+. It labels the ports clearly for you so that you don’t need to count pins. This will help you avoid wiring errors and damage… You can slip it over the B+ GPIO header if you want, or hold it next to the header (many people tell me they do this – and this […more…]

May 262014
Bitscope Micro Logic Analyser Demystifies SPI on the Pi

SPI – Serial Peripheral Interface Demystified I was in need of an interesting signal to check out the logic analyser functionality of the BitScope micro. So, another of my current RasPiO® Beta boards was used as a convenient way to connect an mcp3008 analog to digital converter (ADC) to the Pi and the scope. I don’t claim to be an expert on SPI, but having spent the best part of a day playing with it, the mcp3008 data sheet and the BitScope Micro, I understand it a lot better now. Four pins are used… CEO […more…]

Mar 212014
Launching the RasPiO product range - first three boards

The day has finally arrived for me to launch my first three products in the RasPiO® range. What’s RasPiO®? I hear you ask? It’s a family of add-on boards for the Raspberry Pi®. It’s pronounced “Razz-Pie-Oh” (emphasis on Pi) and is derived from the fact that the boards will mostly be I/O (input-output) boards for the Raspberry Pi. We’re starting small and simple, and will grow in size and complexity with time. I spent most of last summer designing PCBs. It takes a frustratingly long time to bring things to market. But that’s another story, […more…]

Jan 262014
Top Ten Android Apps for use with Raspberry Pi

I regularly use my Nexus 7 or my Android smartphone (was Galaxy S2, now Nexus 5) to help me with my Raspberry Pi activities. Here is a ‘top ten’ roundup of my favourite Android apps that I use with Pi. Sorry iPhone users. I don’t have an iPhone, but I expect many/most of these apps are available for iPhone too. These apps are used for a whole range of activities, so I’ll try to put them in a reasonably logical order. Each app has an icon by its title. Clicking it, takes you to the […more…]