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Summary:

Google has joined forces with Raspberry Pi to create an open-source educational programming platform, Coder.

Raspberry Pi low cost computer built on ARM and Linux

Over the last few years, interest in coding (especially for the web) has led to a blossoming of resources that help average people learn how to program from scratch. Google has decided to join the fun with a new tool called Coder — along with the help of the low-cost Raspberry Pi PC.

With Coder, users can develop their own apps for the web and then host them on a miniature server located directly on the Raspberry Pi. The overall cost for the DIY programming project, using Google’s recommended materials, is under $50 — and all of the educational materials are free. After procuring a Raspberry Pi, eager students simply download information onto an SD card, plug it into the tiny computer, connect to a shared Wi-Fi and access Coder through Chrome. The whole process, according to the developers, takes just 10 minutes.

Check out the video below:

Coder is a completely open-source project, with its code library available for editing on GitHub, and comes with a few simple projects for novices to get their feet wet. Coder is also designed to work alongside instruction from other programming websites like Codecademy and Khan Academy. When projects are complete, users can host their own websites via Raspberry Pi or zip them to share with friends.

The Raspberry Pi has become a tool for amateur programmers, makers and hobbyists to tackle more complex projects without sinking in a lot of money, so it’s no surprise that Google capitalized on it to create Coder. With Google’s support and open source transparency, Coder has the opportunity to widen accessibility for not only DIY hobbyists, but for classrooms and community courses as well. With a large room for growth (with the aid of contributing programmers) and the ability to play well with existing programming tutorials, this small project could turn into a big resource for education.

  1. It’s ironic that Google is encouraging people to develop their own mini servers, when the ToS of their fiber service does not allow their subscribers to operate servers like them so they are accessible from the Internet. So what’s going to happen when somebody builds a web server from this project, and hosts it at their home, using their Google Fiber service? Is Google going to send a cease and desist letter? Will they ask the federal government to prosecute their user under the Computer Fraud and Abuse act?

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    1. So clearly you don’t like the ToS on Google Fiber and their peers – but it’s huge leap from the topic at hand to your ranting comment.

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      1. rant? What rant? What leap? You don’t see the connection? Google is encouraging people to create their own servers, yet they don’t allow them to be accessed over their network?

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        1. Google Fibre covers about 0.05% of the world. I’m sure they can find somewhere else to run their play-servers.

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          1. They are adding service in many cities, and plan to expand to cover as big of an area as possible. And if you’re one of their customers in Kansas City or Austin or Salt Lake City who builds a mini server like this, is Google going to say “Oh, we didn’t mean, we meant only people with other Internet service providers”.?

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        2. TOS conditions like that are not actively enforced on their own 99% of the time. It’s so they don’t have to support someone’s “BUSINESS CRITICAL!!!” servers on a residential line or in case the creepy guy down the street starts a weird porn site that gets a billion hits per week. Then they can just point to the TOS and say “Stop it or we cut you off.”

          VOIP servers, educational projects, personal media streaming and small dedicated servers for gaming aren’t going to get anyone banned unless an admin decides to play BOFH.

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    2. Martin Cataldi-Rogers Saturday, September 14, 2013

      you can create intranet servers all you like

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      1. This isn’t just for intranet servers, they’re encouraging people to build their own web servers.

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  2. specialistwebsite Friday, September 13, 2013

    I think it is great that Google is embracing code, I think learning code logic is a must for young children and I will always encourage my children to understand the basic principles of code.

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  3. This is awesome. The best part is that Coder can be worked on this small computer.

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  4. They are adding service in many cities, and plan to expand to cover as big of an area as possible. And if you’re one of their customers in Kansas City or Austin or Salt Lake City who builds a mini server like this, is Google going to say “Oh, we didn’t mean, we meant only people with other Internet service providers”.?

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  5. Absolutely superb idea. Is the actual programming language easy to learn though or is it another exercise in blinding the kids with science?

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