All Things Raspberry, Jam & Tech

Announcing the next major event in our Raspberry Jam adventures on May 19th, 2015 at Wilson Elementary School in Cache Valley. Join our Raspberry Pi expert, Cody Erekson, as he discusses all things Raspberry.
Northern Utah has an historic tradition of producing delicious raspberry products, not the least of which is the famous raspberry jam. Raspberry jams, jellies, chocolates, ice cream, and treats of all varieties are exported from Utah all around the world.
Berries are not the only Utah products that the rest of the world enjoys though. Another rich aspect of Utah culture is that of innovation and creative problem solving. As such, there are a number of devices that would not exist had it not been for people from Utah, and which have literally changed the world in amazing ways!

  • Hearing AidHarvey Fletcher from Provo, Utah
  • Artificial Heart William Devries at University of Utah
  • Traffic LightLester Wire in Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Pong & Atari Nolan Bushnell from Clearfield, Utah
  • TelevisionPhilo T. Farnsworth from Beaver, Utah

It is obvious that some great things have come out of Utah! Inventors on the cutting edge of technology, pushing the boundaries of how machines and technology can improve our lives, make us safer and help us live longer and more fun-filled, entertaining lives. So what happens when you combine these two things?
Some would say you get this: The Amazing Raspberry Harvester! (Incidentally, that is being used to harvest at a Bear Lake Raspberry patch).

While the harvester is actually really awesome (I had no idea such a thing existed; when I was a kid I knew a lot of kids who were paid a piece rate to pick raspberries during the summer) personally, I think of something far more exciting and amazing than a fruit picker. I think of the almighty Raspberry Pi!
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To be more specific, I think of the Cache Valley Raspberry Jam, an event which features Raspberry Pi enthusiasts from all over Cache Valley and Northern Utah who come together to share their knowledge and ideas. As the official Raspberry Pi website says:
Raspberry Jams are events organised by the community to share knowledge, learn new things, and meet other Pi enthusiasts. They’re a great way to find out more about the Raspberry Pi and what you can do with it, and to find like-minded people.”
The key word in that description is “community”. It is because of our community that we hold these Jams; it is entirely in an effort to help others learn and enjoy the knowledge that we have. To use the oft-quoted phrase “knowledge is power”. Imagine the power that can be wielded by an entire community! An additional aspect of the Pi fellowship that we appreciate immensely, are those who have contributed to make these Jams even possible: Cache Valley Print, ModMyPi, PiBorg, and, of course, the veritable Midphase, who have all given in one way (or several) to help us give the Cache Valley Raspberry Jam to our community.
In the month and a half since we last Jammed many exciting things have happened in the world of Pi. A mere two days after the Jam, the Raspberry Pi Foundation dropped the well-hidden bombshell of the brand new Raspberry Pi 2, a successor to the throne of single-board-computers. The Pi 2 benchmarks at 6 times the overall processing speed and double the RAM! The best part? It still costs only $35!
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A few days later they announced that since the inception of the Pi, 5 million (yeah, that’s 6 zeros) had been sold! Think about how many gadgets that is out in the world! How many inexpensive computers that an under-privileged or third-world child may now be using to gain a first-world grade education,. how many elementary students have had their first taste of programming and realized it is something they actually may want to pursue? Imagine how many relationships have been fostered between parents and their children or between siblings as they work together on building various “super awesome projects”! There is no doubt in my mind that 5,000,000 Raspberry Pis floating around out in the world are an absolute force for positive change.
Speaking of floating, very soon a couple of Pis are going up into space! First the world, then the galaxy, right? Although, if we are going to take over the entire world and then dominate the universe (I changed my mind about the galaxy, think BIG!) it is critical that we begin training the next generation to be able to continue this effort when they are in charge.
Now when anybody asks you what comes to mind when you hear the words “Cache Valley” or “Raspberry Jam”, I hope you envision something involving the education of children in all things technological.
And by the way, if you are in Utah this May 19th, come on by Wilson Elementary School in Logan at 4pm to join in the next Cache Valley Raspberry Jam!