Is Raspberry Pi Worth Learning? (Code, Apps & Strategies)


Raspberry Pi is the world’s credit-card-sized computer that can teach people of all ages how to code. It can also function as a regular computer when paired with a keyboard, mouse, monitor, or other display. Is Raspberry Pi worth learning?

Raspberry Pi is worth learning since it teaches the increasingly valuable skill of coding and different programming languages. It lets you experiment with Python, Java, JavaScript, and various applications. The official website features many educational materials to get you started. 

So, what exactly can you learn from the Raspberry Pi? And how do you learn from it and about it? Read on to find out. We’ll also give you extra resources that can help you get the most out of your educational, pocket-sized device.

What Is Raspberry Pi?


If like me, you always mix the languages syntax, download my cheat sheet for Python here!

Raspberry Pi is a small, credit card-sized computer that can be used pretty much anywhere. The computer itself is tiny, and a phone charger powers it.

Once you plug it in, you need to connect a keyboard, a mouse, and a display such as a computer screen or TV, and it is on! However, you should know that Raspberry Pis have no internal storage. You need to insert a memory card to act as the equivalent of a hard drive in your PC. 

Raspberry Pi helps people of all ages learn how to code, it’s the main goal of the Raspberry Pi Fundation, that created it for this specific purpose.

Scratch, a visual language for young students

You can also use it as a standard computer. You can browse the internet, play video games, and use applications like a word processor and spreadsheets. Furthermore, you can even use it as the central piece in homemade electronic devices that will enhance your creativity.

To use Raspberry Pi, you need to purchase one at a very reasonable price relative to other computers (check the current price here). A Raspberry Pi comes with Wi-Fi connectivity, so you can use the internet and connect to other devices.

Some kits cost over one hundred dollars, and they come with everything you need to operate your computer, including the keyboard, the mouse, power cables, a case, and external storage (my recommended kit is this one on Amazon). The only thing not included in the kit is a display. The kits also include cables to hook up to any modern displays like computers, TVs, and any other screens with an HDMI port.

For a simple explanation of Raspberry Pi and everything it can do, watch this short, animated video from the official channel on YouTube:

What Languages Can I Learn on Raspberry Pi?

Raspberry Pi focuses on three popular programming languages: Python, Java, and JavaScript. Python is arguably one of the most popular and widely used programming languages at the moment. Raspberry Pi features an app that will teach beginners how to code with Python.

The creators of Raspberry Pi wanted to teach new generations how to code. Coding can improve your marketability when searching for a job, it can improve your critical thinking skills, and you can find new jobs that you may not have known about before learning to code.

Java is another popular programming language that beginners can learn before moving on to more challenging languages. Schools often teach students Java since it’s simple and there are many outside resources available to accompany the application on Raspberry Pi.

conditions with python
Thonny, the default Python editor on Raspberry Pi

The final language you can quickly learn with Raspberry is Javascript. It’s a highly versatile language that lets you create everything from server-side programs and websites to mobile apps. There are also tons of Javascript libraries and code repositories out there. So, you don’t have to code everything from the beginning. All you need to do is find the right library and build from there. 

All three of these languages are great for adding to your resume or finding freelance work with your new skills. You can use your Raspberry Pi to run and write different languages, but it’ll take more effort, and you’ll need additional resources and tools to run your programs. 

What Other Applications Does Raspberry Pi Have?

In addition to learning programming on Raspberry Pi, you can use the device the same way you’d use a standalone computer. Although you can’t expect a Raspberry Pi to be as powerful as a full-fledged PC, you’ll be impressed by its abilities. 

These programs are all preloaded onto Raspberry Pi, so you can play and learn with them right away. Notice that many have coding elements, so you can continue to learn code as you use them.

  • Sonic Pi – This is the music application that allows you to use code to make music.
  • MinecraftYou can play the popular Minecraft game on your Raspberry Pi. You can also use an added programming element to interact with the game. 
  • WordPressWordPress is the most popular platform for creating blogs and websites. Although it is not necessary, knowing code can greatly enhance your website development, so learning code and coding your website is excellent with your Raspberry Pi.
  • Camera ModuleIf your display has a camera, you can easily use it with this application. The module allows you to take pictures and videos and play them on your display.
play minecraft
Minecraft

In addition to the applications above, you can use your Raspberry Pi to play sounds, videos, view images, and access documents like any standard computer.
Click on the link in this list to learn more about each item. You can also read this article if you are interested in using a Raspberry Pi as your main computer.

How Can I Learn Raspberry Pi?

So, you want to learn Raspberry Pi, but how do you do that? Well, it depends on what you want to learn. With Raspberry Pi, you can learn many things, from coding to the physical breakdown of your Raspberry Pi to how the internet works.

You can start by looking for tutorials on this website, as we have almost 200 different step-by-step guides to do everything on Raspberry Pi (use the search engine in the top right of your screen).
You can also check these specific posts to get many ideas in one place:

Also, the official website has many online training modules. Here’s an overview of their courses, and you can see the complete list on the Raspberry Pi Training site:

  • Programming with Python
  • Physical Computing
  • Inside Computers
  • Data
  • Computing in the Modern World
  • Networks and the Web
  • Practicing Design

Each course has between three and five sections, and each section takes a few weeks to complete depending on your pace. The courses are online, so you go through each one at your pace. You can do the courses above on any computer, but you must access the applications that teach coding through a physical Raspberry Pi.

But maybe you need something more general, like a step-by-step guide to discover this new world? I have something for you!
I created a complete course for beginners on Raspberry Pi. It will help you to understand what is a Raspberry Pi, what you can do with it, which one to choose and how to get started. You’ll also do your first 5 projects with me to make sure you understand everything. Interested? You can find all the details here!

Books To Learn About the Raspberry Pi


Grab your free PDF file with all the commands you need to know on Raspberry Pi!

A final great way to learn about the Raspberry Pi is to read books. Some books help you get started with Raspberry Pi, and others give you ideas and projects to practice.

I have created a step-by-step e-book to guide you from the beginning to an expert level on Raspberry Pi.
It’s a 30-day challenge where you’ll discover the secrets of the Raspberry Pi, from the hardware, the operating systems and multiples projects you can do with it. You’ll find all the details on this page.

Want something more specific? You can check my current recommendations for the best books about Raspberry Pi in this article.

Learning Raspberry Pi is important for anyone since the skills that you learn will make you more marketable and successful in your life and career.

If you have any comment, suggestion or just want to chat with us about this tutorial,
you can post your messages in the community on Patreon. See you there!

Conclusion

The Raspberry Pi is something that everyone should learn if given the opportunity. The creators made the Raspberry Pi teach anyone and everyone how to code. Knowing popular programming languages like Python and Java are good skills to have, especially if you’re trying to market yourself for a new job or find a new hobby.

A Raspberry Pi can teach you to code and function as a standard computer with the ability to play games, create music, and design websites. Everyone should learn Raspberry Pi because it teaches you essential skills like coding, critical thinking, and electronic creativity.


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Patrick Fromaget

I'm the lead author and owner of RaspberryTips.com. My goal is to help you with your Raspberry Pi problems using detailed guides and tutorials. In real life, I'm a Linux system administrator with a web developer experience.

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