This is my review of the book Programming the Raspberry Pi by Simon Monk, which I was given for my birthday a few weeks ago, and I have been reading, dipping into, over the last few weeks. I have had a Pi for a few months now and “play” when I have time.
It is a book that one one hand is simple and easy to understand on the other gives glimpses of possibilities that make one want to go off and investigate. In my case I am interested in the automation and robotic possibilities of the Pi and Simon provides plenty of links to such things.
Anyway I am digressing from the review. The subheading for the book is getting started with Python and the book goes through all the majority of basic areas of Python very briefly. He also introduces the Pygame library, and as with several of the concepts he mentions immediately recommends another book. This is good and bad. Good in so much as having wet ones appetite he gives guidance as to where to go next. Bad in so much this can be very frustrating.
So the book is essentially a sign post pointing the direction to various things that can be done with a Raspberry Pi and saying that to follow up the majority of things mentioned there will probably be further reading, expense, and components required. This is probably obvious to anyone who knows anything about a Pi but not so to someone who does not and just wants to give a gift to a Pi owner.
If one wants to read a Python Tutorial which goes into a bit more depth then
Hands on Python Tutorial by Dr Andrew Harrington this is my review of one I read a couple of months ago and is more detailed than Simon's.
So as the saying goes it does what it says on the tin, but this might not be understood, as to what this actually is. That being said I would recommended it to any budding Pi owner as it is not that expensive and does cover all the basic concepts.
This was 14 week 11 fiction 12 (2 on audio) non fiction 2
I am not very good at recording non fiction in this book list. They tend to be books, or ebooks in this case, that I have open and read alongside other fiction books, but I thought I would record this book in my list as I have been reading it over the last few months.
I worked out the other day that I have been computer programming for almost 39 years, and as such in some respects feel a bit like a grandmother being told how to suck eggs, when I read some programming books.
This was not the case with this book. For whatever reason Python seemed to have passed me by until earlier on in the year, when I got my Raspberry Pi. Having got that the next challenge was to run my usb robotic arm from the Raspberry Pi, and I decided to do that in Python.
Rather than just did in there and get it working I thought it would be good to spend a bit of time learning some basics about the language. I looked/tried several tutorials and got very frustrated as either are so condescending, or simple as to not to be worth their time. I nearly gave up, but saw this tutorial mentioned on the Raspberry Pi forum http://www.raspberrypi.org/phpBB3/index.php
The book is well structured and easy to follow, allowing one to skip through bits that you already know. The examples are reasonably interesting, and the challenges are not immediately answerable, in so much as they make one think.
It is a book that is well worth spending time on if one wants to learn about Python and object oriented programming, though other may disagree as it does not immediately tell you how to program a game but takes one through the fundamentals of the language first.
Of course the real question is – how did I get on with programming the robotic arm. Well friends you will have to wait for another post for that.
This was this was book 49 week 33 fiction 45 (13 on audio) non fiction 4
Dyslexic doodles on photography, food (growing, cooking & of course eating), faith and other fascinating things. This is a personal blog expressing my views.