For my birthday a couple of weeks ago my friend Omar gave me a Raspberry Pi. I’d been aware of them since in 2011, but I never got around to buying one.

ID859 LRG

I’ve been toying with it the past few nights as I have had time. After buying the case above, I had to scrounge up a USB keyboard, then an SD card, then a monitor I could use that took HDMI input. At every turn it was some piece of tech I had discarded or at some point put away in a box. I didn’t even have an extra micro-USB cable so I am using the one that came with my Kindle.

But now that it is running I have fallen in love with this little computer. It is one of those things you think you understand until you actually get one in your hands and powered up.

Now I can play with these little ideas I’ve had, on a computer in my house, that didn’t cost $1,000, and only pennies to keep running 24/7. These are small ideas: a little Spyonit app I’ve been wanting but didn’t feel like paying an EC2 instance for, a big Twitter API idea that I have been toying with that will simply publish static pages to S3, and another idea I had about coordinating backups.

There is something indescribably pleasing about this thing. It feels like the time when I owned computers purely for fun. (And at 512Mb it has even more RAM than those computers.)