Saturday, 16 February 2013

Exclusive: First Look at Raspberry Pi's Minecraft

I take a first look at Minecraft for the Raspberry Pi and I believe that I have the first actual video of the program in action. You will be impressed at how speedily it works and for an alpha version it is remarkably stable. A very impressive piece of coding.  You will also be pleased to hear that once the file is downloaded you do not need an Internet connection to run it. 

How to install Minecraft

1. To download Raspberry Pi for Minecraft go to:
2. decompress it: tar -zxvf minecraft-pi-0.1.1.tar.gz
3. Change directory to mcpi (Should be cd mcpi)
4. Either type in: ./minecraft-pi or use the file manager and click on it.

Minecraft controls:
=== KEYBOARD ===
W,A,S,D - Move (navigate inventory)
SPACE - Jump, double tap to start/stop flying, hold to fly higher
SHIFT - Sneak, hold to fly lower
E - Open inventory
1-8 - Select inventory slot item to use
ESC - Show/hide menu
TAB - Release mouse without showing menu
ENTER - Confirm menu selection

=== Mouse ===
Steer - Look/turn around
Left mouse button - Remove block (hold)
Right mouse button - Place block, hit block with sword
Mouse wheel - Select inventory slot item to use

Raspberry Pi is a trademark of the Raspberry Pi Foundation
More details at:

Friday, 8 February 2013

Teachers Guide to the Raspberry Pi

The Raspberry Pi is a tiny little computer that costs about £30. It can do most things that a computer can do, but its size and the fact that it is very cheap makes it ideal for electronics projects. It was originally designed to be for the education market, but pretty quickly a lot of hobbyists have seen its potential and used it for everything from a small-scale web servers to brewery controllers. This guide is intended for teachers to help get the most from the device and find all the relevant resources.  There will be plenty more educational resources available as people release them.

Getting Your Pi

The Three official supplier are:

You can buy your Pi from a number of outlets and some come with necessary accessories.  If you buy a plain Pi you will need:
1. an HDMI cable and TV or DVI cable to suitable monitor
2. USB Keyboard and mouse
3. 2GB or larger SD Card. (To set up a card, see:

Teaching your first lesson with the Pi

Here are the 10 lesson ideas that you might wish to use with a vanilla Raspberry Pi

Programming with Pi

For educational purposes two languages stand out:

There are several books available if you would like something in print:
Enter: RPi for a 40% discount.

Hello World! is another nice book for Python.

Electronics Projects with Pi

This is really where the Pi comes into its own and people have been doing amazing things with the Pi. I wholeheartedly recommend that you have a look at the official Website and forums for examples:

There are two projects that are really interesting:

  • Pi-Face - By the university of Manchester, simple to use interface
  • Gert Board - Bit more complex, but can get more out of it. Now available assembled. Good tutorial over at Tech Fruits

Other Useful Links