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10 Tech Gifts to Buy Your Engineer for Christmas
12/19/2012

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Fear not, OQO and Toshiba Libretto fans. There's a downsized computer for the 21st  century. It's called Raspberry Pi, and if you haven't heard of it, you have to turn in your tenured engineers' pass.

The diff this time is that Raspberry Pi isn't a Wintel PC jammed beneath a  Chiclet-sized keyboard. It's a tech teaching tool, propelled by the Raspberrypi.org Foundation, whose mantra is 'to see cheap, accessible, programmable computers everywhere.'

The Pi will set you back $35. Think you can afford it?

Fear not, OQO and Toshiba Libretto fans. There's a downsized computer for the 21st century. It's called Raspberry Pi, and if you haven't heard of it, you have to turn in your tenured engineers' pass.

The diff this time is that Raspberry Pi isn't a Wintel PC jammed beneath a Chiclet-sized keyboard. It's a tech teaching tool, propelled by the Raspberrypi.org Foundation, whose mantra is "to see cheap, accessible, programmable computers everywhere."

The Pi will set you back $35. Think you can afford it?

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3drob
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Re: Can you spell eclectic?
3drob   12/20/2012 10:33:01 AM
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Nice article Alex.

Rich, I also was nostalgic when I saw the Lafayette catalog.  If they come back maybe I can get that Quadraphonic 8-track with the headphones that had two channels in each earpiece I dreamt of getting in my youth.

I liked the inclusion of "The Beauty of Fractals" (I have a few other similar book's sitting next to it, including "The Fractal Geometry of Nature").

As an Engineer, I don't believe in the superiority of vacuum tubes (any more than low oxygen copper speaker wires).  But I do have a collection of old tubes I'm thinking of mounting as art (some are quite beautiful).

Finally, why include superglue and duct tape?  Every good Engineer worth his or her salt already has these in their tool box.  Should've been something that many Engineer's don't already have at home, like that nice small mixed signal scope (hint hint Santa).

Cabe Atwell
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Blogger
Re: Can you spell eclectic?
Cabe Atwell   12/20/2012 1:25:06 AM
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These are some unique choices. The only one I should have put on my list, the Terrafugia Transition. It would make for fun weekend trips. Though I am sure people would vandalize it out of jealousy. The burden of being ostentatiously wealthy... A burden I have to carry, woe is me.

I already have the Raspberry Pi. Finding a use for it escapes me at the moment. Suggestions welcome.

C

richnass
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Re: Can you spell eclectic?
richnass   12/19/2012 1:16:23 PM
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Wow, this is an emotional piece. Three of your items really resonate with me. First, the Lafayette catalog, although I was more of a Heathkit guy. Second, I'm a HUGE fan of duct tape. It can solve most of the world's problems. Finally, The Big Bang Theory is a must have.

naperlou
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Can you spell eclectic?
naperlou   12/19/2012 10:52:40 AM
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Alex, this is truly an eclectic list.  You have outdone yourself.  Although I would argue with some of your descriptions, it was a fun read.

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