Midphase’s Raspberry Jam

How do you like your jam? On toast? In a classic peanut butter and jelly sandwich? Or Elvis style with bacon and bananas?
At Midphase, it’s all about raspberry. At the start of this month the Midphase brand, in conjunction with our in-house tech stars, sponsored a live Raspberry Jam.
If you have no idea what we’re going on about, a Raspberry Jam is a community meet-up for anyone who wants to play around with the Raspberry Pi computer. They’re open up to anyone, from developers to teachers and parents to kids. The event that Midphase sponsored was held in Cache Valley.
The idea for the event came from our Yoda-techie Cody Erekson.
Raspberry Jam 1“Back in August, Ben Nuttall, a member of the Raspberry Pi Foundation’s Education Team, gave a presentation at USU on the history, purpose, and usefulness of the Raspberry Pi. During this presentation he mentioned that he had encouraged everyone across his speaking tour to organize Raspberry Jams. As he described various Jams he had organized or attended and the results of those events, I began to visualize what such an event held in Cache Valley would be like and the benefits to our community,” explains Cody.
“I have long considered myself to be a “maker” or a “hobbyist inventor,” and, with the exception of various online communities, it has mostly been a solo endeavor. At Ben’s presentation there were quite a few people in attendance, all of whom were obviously interested in the same things as I.  Suddenly I was able to imagine being able to share ideas and information in person with people working on the same sorts of projects that I enjoyed… not to mention tools and other resources.”
The eventual event, organised by Cody and John Pope, was successful in introducing the concept of the Raspberry Pi and the field of development to an entire cross section of the community, including Logan School District and Wilson Elementary in particular, who Cody is now working with to support their S.T.E.A.M. (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, Mathematics) initiative by creating and supervising a Raspberry Pi centered club!
“From the event,  I learned how excited and passionate people get about this sort of thing. There are so many negative images and stereotypes about the crass consumer culture we live in and how people have just become mindless sheep that want to do nothing more than post on social media with “stupid-proof” devices; it can get really easy to succumb to that sort of thinking and believe that there is no hope for future generations.Raspberry Jam 2
However, I gave a seven year old girl a Raspberry Pi who wanted to figure out how she can combine it with her iPod and Nintendo DS in some radical way that she was still crafting in her imagination. I also spent an hour with a six year old boy and his five year old sister, neither of whom had any sort of programming experience, and watched them each animate a character of their choice in an entirely different fashion.
And I have seen entire departments of professional business people become giddy at the idea of using a Raspberry Pi and a few other pieces to turn a stuffed octopus into a talking robot!”
Check out our Pinterest album for more pictures from Raspberry Jam.