A bit of a silly hobby, this page is about tinkering with Banana & Raspberry Pi computers.
The picture below is a Raspberry Pi 4 Model B ~ which, incidentally, is serving up THIS page ~
The Pi 4 replaced the Raspberry Pi B2 below ~ which had 1 Gigabyte of RAM, the Pi 4
has 4 Gigabytes of RAM. ~
Back in the day, RAM was core memory. Here is a picture of how "core" memory has evolved.
The big frame is "real core memory" with tiny ferrite cores in a 4 4 10 10 array, so 1,600
cores with three small guage copper wires running through each one. This array provides
200 Bytes of core memory thatcan store and retrieve data at a rate approaching 1 million
bytes/second. Beside the 200 bytes of core, is a 64 Megabyte compact flash memory which
is 320,000 times as much storage as the core memory and it can transfer data approaching
10 megabytes/second. The flash drive beside the U.S. dime coin is a 128 Gigabyte storage,
i.e. 640 million times as much storage as the core array, and transfer rates up to
The 200 byte core array probably cost several hundred (1960) dollars.
The 128 Gigabyte memory cost $28...
The change in cost and capacity of computing over the past 50 years is quite astonishing.
I got started down this path of looking at and using these new cheap processors because of
a birthday present from my oldest daughter who was delighted that she bought me a
computer that I had never heard of. Here are pictures of that party and the machine
involved. At the end of this page are some links comparing these devices to
a 1985 mainframe installation.
Me preparing to blow out candles, big endian binary of course, on my BD dessert
which was the hint for my gift below.
The above Banana Pi (the computer, not the birthday pie) ~ which was the first small computer used to serve up THIS page ~
has more memory, computing power and storage than the -