Raspberry Pi Foundation
|Headquarters||Caldecote, Cambridgeshire, United Kingdom|
The Raspberry Pi Foundation is a charitable organization registered with the Charity Commission for England and Wales. The board of trustees was assembled by 2008 and the Raspberry Pi Foundation was founded as a registered charity in May 2009 in Caldecote, Cambridgeshire, UK. The Foundation is supported by the University of Cambridge Computer Laboratory and Broadcom. Its aim is to "promote the study of computer science and related topics, especially at school level, and to put the fun back into learning computing." Project co-founder Eben Upton is a former academic, currently employed by Broadcom as a system-on-chip architect and associate technical director. Relatively small numbers of components were able to be sourced from suppliers, due to the charitable status of the organization.
When the declining of numbers and skills of students applying for Computer Science became a concern for a team that includes Eben Upton, Rob Mullins, Jack Lang and Alan Mycroft at the University of Cambridge’s Computer Laboratory in 2006, a need for a tiny and affordable computer came to their minds. Several versions of the early Raspberry Pi prototypes were designed but were very limited by the high cost and low power processors for mobile devices at that time.
In 2008, the team started a collaboration with Pete Lomas, MD of Norcott Technologies and David Braben, the co-author of the seminal BBC micro game Elite, and formed the Raspberry Pi Foundation. Three years later, the Raspberry Pi Model B was born and it had sold over two million units within in two years of mass production.
Founders and current leadership
The original founders of the organization includes
- Eben Upton
- Rob Mullins: a Senior Lecture in the Computer Laboratory at the University of Cambridge
- Jack Lang: an affiliated Lecturer at the Computer Laboratory and the founder of Electronic Share Information Ltd
- Alan Mycroft: professor of Computing in the Computer Laboratory and co-founded the European Association for Programming Languages and Systems
- Pete Lomas: director of Engineering at Norcott Technologies
- David Braben: CEO of Frontier Developments and co-writer of the seminal Elite
The organization is made of two parts. The engineering and trading activities are overseen by Raspberry Pi (Trading) Ltd and its founder and CEO Eben Upton. Lance Howarth took over the charitable and educational part from Eben and became the Foundation CEO in 2013.
The Foundation expected that children would program using Scratch and that the input/output functionality would be used to control external devices. Additionally, the low power requirement facilitates battery-powered usage in robots, while the video capabilities have led to interest in use as a home media centre.
In April 2014, the foundation announced a £1 million education fund to support projects that enhance the understanding of computing and to promote the use of technology in other subjects, particularly STEM and creative arts for children. They offer to provide up to 50% of the total projected costs to successful applicants.
In October 2011, the logo was selected from a number submitted from open competition. A shortlist of six was drawn up, with the final judging taking several days. The chosen design was based on a buckyball.
In 2011, the Raspberry Pi Foundation developed a single-board computer named the Raspberry Pi. The Foundation's goal was to offer two versions, priced at US$25 and $35 (plus local taxes). The Foundation started accepting orders for the higher priced model on 29 February 2012. The Raspberry Pi is intended to stimulate the teaching of computer science in schools.
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