This week is about uploading firware over a serial communication link, and interacting with the uploaded firmware. First a quick recap on how it all works, then a little diagnostic tool, and then a little utility with some new powers.
Morse code used to be widely used around the globe. Before voice transmissions were possible over radio, Morse code was all the rage. Nowadays, it's been replaced with more sophisticated technologies ...
One of my interests is cluster computing – the ability to share computing effort between multiple computers. I am also a fan of the Raspberry Pi credit card sized computer: although it may not be the most cost effective in terms of computing power per dollar, the computers are small, cheap, discrete computers, which makes them useful for learning about cluster computing.
Note, however, that the compute power per watt, and thus the compute power per dollar, on the Raspberry Pi will not be as good as on a desktop machine, so if you want to mine bitcoins or improve your folding@home score, a cluster of Raspberry Pis isn’t for you. However, if you’re curious about this whole high-performance computing thing and want to dip your feet in, by all means buy a few pis and see how it works. Similarly, the Pis are limited by their low memory, use of SD cards as local storage, and 10/100 ethernet port running over USB, which makes them slow.
So you've updated your BeagleBone Black to the latest version of Debian (see my how-to guide for OSX and Windows users) and you're ready to begin prototyping your next project with this embedded Linux board.
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