Our CTO, Jeff Kowalski, got his hands on 8 Raspberry Pi units. He decided to have some fun with them by sponsoring an internal-Autodesk contest. Since Jeff had 8 of the devices, there would be 8 winners.
|WHO:||Autodesk employees were eligible - not family members of employees. (We wanted to avoid employees pawning the whole thing off on their children to build.)|
|HARDWARE:||The Raspberry Pi is a credit-card sized computer that plugs into a TV and a keyboard. It’s a capable little PC which can be used for many of the things that your desktop PC does, like spreadsheets, word-processing, and games. It also plays high-definition video. By default, it runs the Debian OS, but it can also run other flavors of Linux. Those interested can learn all about it at http://www.raspberrypi.org/. There is even a quick start guide for those who are brand new to the concept as well as the device. Jeff has the Model B which features 2 USB ports and an Ethernet controller.|
|WHAT:||Each entrant described what he/she would do if given one of these Raspberry Pi computers. What problem would he/she solve? How would he/she use the Raspberry Pi to solve it?|
|WHEN:||The contest ran through July 31. Only the ideas needed to be submitted by the deadline. The timing of the actual implementations by the 8 winners was negotiated as prospective winners were contacted. Desired time frames are around 3 months.|
|WINNERS:||Winners were selected based on the uniqueness of the idea (the more novel, the better), ability to leverage the capabilities of the device (it is small), and the benefits from the idea's implementation (does some good for the world, makes a great blog article). The winners were selected by a committee from the Office of the CTO. In exchange for the Raspberry Pi that is theirs to keep, each winner will implement the solution and create a two and a half to three minute video demonstrating how the Raspberry Pi addresses the submitted idea and document the steps on Instructables.com.|
This contest was very popular. There were 90 entries from among the many Autodesk offices around the world. Without any further adieu:
Thanks to everyone who entered. I look forward to blogging about these solutions as they are developed. These devices are very powerful but only cost between $25 to $35.
Winning is alive in the lab.