What Would You Make With The Worlds First $9 Computer_

What Would You Make With The Worlds First $9 Computer?

I bought a new computer today.

A tiny $9 computer.

It is being funded using Kickstarter. In order for Next Thing Co. to get down to the $9 price point they needed to order in bulk. At the point this post is written they have over 1.7 million dollars and 33,000 backers. Unfortunately they are not projecting the first shipment until December 2016.

In the tradition of Volume Labs I want to document the experiments we build with it. It is called CHIP and has features similar to the Raspberry Pi 2 but its cost is $9 verses Pi’s $35. It has a 1 GHz processor, 512 MB RAM and 4 GB storage. It comes with WiFi and Bluetooth built in with a display port, audio, microphone and USB port.

It will run mainline Linux which means we can get some code working on it right away.

CHIP is OpenSource hardware which should allow folks to build new attachments much like the Raspberry Pi has. It has a series of pins that allow for attachment of extra features like HDMI, VGA or LCD touch screens. There is support for camera sensors which would be needed for some of our experiments.

Small form factor with many interfaces

Now since we have so much time to wait for CHIP to come we are making a list of ideas. Here are a couple of ideas we are thinking about pursuing? What would you make?

  • An artwork display system that will display art, animated gifs and videos on a large screen.
  • A twitter art bot that will create artwork based on instructions from @artassignbot. It will parse the words, perform entity resolution, search the internet for images, sounds, videos and mix them into art of the genre the Art Assign Bot commands. The art will be posted to twitter.
  • Connect a camera that is programmed to take pictures when a face is detected and display it on a large screen.
  • Monitor activity on the network it is attached to.
  • Scan the network it is attached to and catalog the results.
  • Implement a VPN with it
  • Continuous integration system that will display software build and test status on a TV
  • An installation artwork titled “Still Haven’t Found It.” that randomly follows links on the internet and displays them on an old television. As it finds video content it will play it for a random amount of time.
    Early next year I will begin writing posts about my experience with CHIP and show off what we are making.

Check out more of our work at Volume Integration and follow us on Twitter.

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