The Raspberry Pi inspired a whole generation of people who grew up with 1980s home computing. “Those devices were a ladder that put you on a slippery slope to Computer Science,” said Eben Upton, founder and CEO, Raspberry Pi.
David Pride is one of those who was inspired by the original Raspberry Pi. He had a tough time at school and left formal education in 1986 with an O’Level in economics, but recently completed a PhD and now works as a research associate at the Knowledge Management Institute, Open University.
On a visit to Bletchley Park, home of the World War 2 codebreakers, Pride and his wife visited The National Museum of Computing (TNMOC), which hosts Colossus, the cipher decoding computer designed by genius Post Office engineer, Tommy Flowers. But it was a poster advertising a Raspberry Pi Jam, an event running a few days later, that grabbed his imagination.
Pride had bought a Raspberry Pi. He said he was among the first in the queue to buy one. But it took the Jam at Tnmoc, to kick off his Raspberry Pi adventure. “An entire bunch of 40 year old geeks like me from the 8-bit generation discovered this new little thing and had a real renaissance around it,” he said. He took a foundational course to learn Python, which led to an MSc and then a PhD.