Raspberry Pi

After speaking to Rob today about potentially setting up a server on a Raspberry Pi, he decided to lend me one to play around with. I thought that this would be a good idea to do in preparation for reading week when I won’t be on campus and won’t have access to the dakar server. By using a Raspberry Pi that has Apache installed, I will be able to work on my code and view it online by creating my own server space .

The Raspberry Pi is a low cost, credit-card sized computer that plugs into a computer monitor or TV, and uses a standard keyboard and mouse. It is a capable little device that enables people of all ages to explore computing, and to learn how to program in languages like Scratch and Python. It’s capable of doing everything you’d expect a desktop computer to do, from browsing the internet and playing high-definition video, to making spreadsheets, word-processing, and playing games.

To start me off, Rob let me borrow a Raspberry Pi (Model B), a blank SD card and a mini usb power cable. The first thing that I needed to do was download and install the Raspbian operating system onto the SD card, so I took a trip to the Raspberry Pi Downloads page.


Screenshot of The Raspberry Pi Website

Once the operating system had been installed onto the SD card, I gathered everything that I would need to set up the Raspberry Pi. As the Pi can output to HDMI, I used my TV as a screen. I connected the Pi to the internet via an Ethernet cable and I used my wireless mouse and keyboard from my desktop PC.

The next step required me to head off to the Documentation section of the Raspberry Pi site. On there I found a tutorial on how to install all of the relevant things to turn the Raspberry Pi into a server.

The Raspberry Pi is most commonly controlled via a command line (unless you use xstart to boot it in desktop mode). The first command I used was “sudo apt-get install apache2 -y”. This installed apache. To confirm that this had worked, I went to http:// which is the IP address of the Raspberry Pi.


Screenshot of my server page

The next step was to install PHP, by typing “sudo apt-get install php5 libapache2-mod-php5 -y”. This made it so that I could upload php files to the Raspberry Pi. After doing this, I decided to have a go at uploading files to the Raspberry Pi. Having already installed the client side of FileZilla, I connected to the Pi. However, upon trying to upload a file, I was denied access to the server space. I looked into the issue online and found the command “sudo chmod 777 -R /var/www” which changed the restrictions of the file location. I was then able to upload files without a problem.


Braben, D. Lang, J. Lomas, P. Mycroft, A. Mullins, R. and Upton, E., 2008. What is a Raspberry Pi? [online]. Available from: http://www.raspberrypi.org/help/what-is-a-raspberry-pi/ [3/1/2015].



As I do not have access to a decent film camera, I have decided to use footage from a ‘Game of Thrones’ episode to create my first Cinemagraph. I followed a tutorial that I found here http://blog.spoongraphics.co.uk/tutorials/how-to-make-a-cool-cinemagraph-image-in-photoshop

For a first attempt I think that I did a good job with the animation looping to make it look smooth and continuous.


The video clip used was taken from the TV show ‘Game of Thrones’ Season Three, episode Two at 4:15 in.

Personal Project (Practicing HTML/CSS)

After completing the Codecademy course for HTML/CSS, I decided to start making my own code using ‘Brackets’. I have known about ‘Brackets’ for a while and think it is a good place to start, as it is easy to link in CSS stylesheets and JS scripts.


I decided to use a monochrome colour scheme for my first try, as it is much easier to make the CSS look ‘nice’ if everything works harmoniously (as opposed to ugly hues). I found a basic pattern background on a website called ‘Color Lovers’, which is a nice site to find colour schemes on.


The ‘Nav’ bar on the side is functional and links to a separate page for each list item link (For example, the picture above is the page that ‘LINK ONE’ directs to).




Thiess, P., (Adobe Systems), Unknown date. Brackets [online]. Available from http://brackets.io/ [4th October 2014]