Not long before Christmas, as part of a new AV system, I installed an Acer Aspire Revo as a frontend for my now well established MythTV setup. This works great, but it did set me back a fair amount.
It demonstrates XBMC – another free media centre software solution – running incredibly well on hardware that costs $25/$35 (depending on model). I am in awe at what the Raspberry project has achieved, and will forgive the annoyance that had I waited a few months I could have saved myself > £150.
This project has drawn the attention of the media – I discovered it care of The Register – for trying to rekindle computer & electronics hacking (in the true sense of the word) as a hobby. I have little doubt that it will accomplish this and spawn a major community much like the Arduino has.
One of the advantages that this has over the Arduino is that with the $35 model there comes ethernet, HDMI and USB onboard, far simplifying things for people who just want to get going. An ethernet connection makes a lot of sense when it’s likely that people will be using these as frontend devices, or setting up networks of them to communicate and do really cool things.
I’m really looking forward to getting my hands on one, but with the initial batch of just 10,000 units likely to sell out quickly, it may be a while before I can. I sit waiting for the store to open anyway.