Raspberry Pi for Beginners


...While this ebook does what it describes, this requires more technical knowledge than a beginner may possess and the odd english, typos, and broken code lines, make it a confusing read....

I knew nothing about Raspberry Pi except the name, but alarm bells start ringing when a book refers the reader to the internet for information on the second page- not a specific website, just “be aware of the internet”. Sadly this sets the level for the book.

The english is not good and sometimes hilarious – the confusion of use and sue, for example. More crucially, the typos aren’t just in the text. Some of the code samples are broken, including a php line with no closing bracket. While a programmer might spot this, a beginner would be left adrift. Some sentences are repeated, for example you will get used to the phrase “requires existing infrastructure”.

The book starts with an interesting if short background of Raspberry Pi, but it has a few factual inaccuracies – as the owner of a (¬£30) linux tablet I have to disagree that no other mobile device uses open source software. From there on, the chapter orders are a little strange: the chapters that tell you how to program the Pi and add a camera to it come before the chapter that tells you how to set it up. There’s a chapter that tells you how to load software and games onto the Pi through the command line – which comes before the one that tells you how to set it up so you can actually do that. There is an entire chapter devoted to the commands needed to install specific software and games. It doesn’t cover what to do when these commands go wrong, or common error messages, which means that a degree of technical knowledge is needed.

This book is suitable for a very narrow range of people: those already technical enough to be comfortable with command-line programming, but who have never used Raspberry Pi. Someone who is a beginner with computers will be lost early on. The other thing it fails to explain is why users might want to buy a Raspberry Pi. As a cheap computer you can get an old phone with similar specs for the same price, and your average child wants to browser the web, not configure a web server. If this was titled, Raspberry Pi for Sysadmins who are beginenrs with Raspberry Pi, it might have a higher rating.

It’s a two at best. While this ebook does what it describes, this requires more technical knowledge than a beginner may possess and the odd english,¬†typos, and broken code lines, make it a confusing read.

Rating: 1
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Discussion

rz3300 (2 October 2016)
I am not sure I have came across another ebook here on the site, but I am glad that I found this one, and the platform alone gets me excited. It does sound a little more confusing though, but I can just take that as a challenge.

djbook (4 October 2016)
Lol! "Be Aware of the internet". Well, that really does set a low bar for the rest of the book. For the record I love raspberry PIs. You can automate almost anything in your home using those. I have this box that detects when I am near it and it opens up. Raspberry pis are great for the hobbyists. However, when a book says it's for the beginner and then doesn't really teach anything well, it feels bad. One can probably find many "instructables" articles on raspberry pis that would be better than this book.

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