Life of Pi

A group of colleagues, Robin Davis, Allie Verbovetskaya, Stephen Zweibel, and myself presented on the Raspberry Pi (RPi) today at the 12th Annual CUNY IT Conference.

If you were unable to attend, you can view our presentation online here. Additionally, Allie created a great handout that’s chock full of resources. We talked about what a Pi can do in aspects of pedagogy, research, and digital literacy.

For the presentation we created individual projects using Raspberry Pis, including a photo-sensor using Python, a “librarybox,” and a dropbox clone. I also demonstrated the use of a RPi as a webserver. I used Cherokee as the server software and created a citation machine using the Open Library API. You enter an ISBN number and it will pull book data from Open Library. It will then try its best to create a citation in MLA, APA, and Chicago style formats. You can try a demonstration here.

Lastly, here is our description in the conference program:

Life with Pi: Microcomputing in Academia
The Raspberry Pi and Arduino – inexpensive and versatile credit-card-sized computers – have been embraced by the open-source and DIY communities. The size, affordability and versatility of microcomputers make it easy to develop, deploy and replicate projects. This presentation will describe and illustrate how these powerful microcomputers are now finding an expanding range of applications in academic and library settings. The presenters will also demonstrate original, interactive applications for research and instruction.
Robin Davis, Emerging Technologies & Distance Services Librarian, John Jay Library
Junior Tidal, Web Services & Multimedia Librarian, City Tech Library
Alevtina Verbovetskaya, Web & Mobile Systems Librarian, CUNY Office of Library Services
Stephen Zweibel, Visiting Lecturer, Hunter College Library

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