What a fantastic day at the User Group yesterday, the event held at The Rose Centre was packed with technology old and new and was attend by some young and some not so young!
On the new technology front we have demonstrations of XMBC running on the Raspberry Pi with Daniel Vieira showing off streaming live TV on the Pi and even DLNA music streaming from Garry’s JRiver Media Center demonstration. Garry was showing off multi-zone music playback from a single PC to some great sounding Orbit Sound Bars.
Jason Barnett had a great setup, a Raspberry Pi built into a Cyberbot driving it around the room remotely via a web browser and if you wanted a case for your Pi John Alexander had some of his laser cut Pi cases on display and a fantastic LED rocket controlled by an Arduino.
Simon Walters had a great setup of a Raspberry Pi running Scratch controlling LED traffic lights as part of a setup that will be used to introduce kids into programming.
We also had tablets, the Google Nexus 7 alongside a new iPad and even my old tablet PC running Windows 8
As well as the new technology there was a great selection of vintage kit and not just computers. There was a selection of vintage plotters on show setup playing hangman, many people especially the younger ones had never seen a plotter before never mind the punch tape printer.
From The Centre for Computing History there was a brilliant range of classic computers and games consoles. Pong was a big draw as was the ZX Spectrum, ZX 81, Atari 2600 and retro consoles. The Centre also setup a LAN for multi-player death matches of Doom and Quake which got very competitive!
I brought my Sinclair QL along to show people what a real computer looks like (for some reason not everybody agreed!) plus I had my Apple Newton along side my Raspberry Pi.
One of the best things about events like that is meeting up with like minded enthusiast and there was lots of discussion going on around the room with topics like Windows Media Center, XBMC, Linux and Android. It was also great to see Blackpool’s Tower Linux User Group and the other enthusiast that traveled from around the UK.
As I said yesterday I am so grateful to everybody that attended yesterday and to Rose Leisure for the use of the venue , we had a great day but my highlight has to be young Matthew winning a Raspberry Pi.
I will have a special podcast from the event later this week plus lots of videos coming soon. Here are some of the pictures I took along with pictures from John Hoole.
Setup and ready to start.
My kids loved the retro consoles.
Doom ready for a death match.
Even the young kids where getting in on the act.
Yong and old playing the consoles.
Everybody loves robots, here is a Raspberry Pi robot controlled via a browser.
Deep discussion going on about XBMC.
The Chromebook drew a crowd.
Serious gaming going on. Death match with the winner getting tickets for Grand Pro Wrestling.
The death match winner!
Streaming music to an Orbit Sound Bar and to a Raspberry Pi via DLNA
I had some of my classic computers (don’t tell my wife I have more at home): ZX81,ZX Spectrum, Sinclair QL and Apple Newton
Raspberry Pi case maker John Alexander’s Rocket Tower
Raspberry Pi traffic lights controlled from Scratch.
Hight level programming on the Sinclair QL
Raffle time. We gave out books, Raspberry Pi cases and software plus a Raspberry Pi
One very happy new Raspberry Pi owner