Snippet: Little Computers Everywhere ☇

Shared on April 14, 2020

Ivan Mehta for The Next Web:

Ventilators are in high demand as hospitals are looking to provide treatment to coronavirus patients in critical condition. Companies such as Tesla, Ford, and Foxconn are using their manufacturing facilities to produce these machines.

To make these newly designed ventilators, a lot of manufacturers are using the Raspberry Pi Zero, a $5 computer developed for small scale projects. While a single-core 1GHz processor with 512MB RAM might not sound too powerful, it’s enough to power a ventilator.

I was running Pi-hole on one of these for awhile, and it really isn’t a powerful device, but seems perfect for this application. It also further reinforces a conversation I was having a friend just yesterday that in 2005, we were mostly thinking of the future as a more powerful single computer per person. Instead, at any given time, we’re surrounded by multiple powerful-enough computers doing all sorts of general or purpose-built tasks (phones, tablets, streaming devices, any sort of IoT things).

Since we’ve switched to a work-from-home setup at my day job, my desk has sort of taken over double-duty and has both my personal and work devices working in tandem for the tasks they’re best-suited for and even some (like my iPhone) doing one or two trivial tasks throughout the day just because it’s there.

Snippets are posts that share a linked item with a bit of commentary.