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What you need

To build your own digital assistant you will need:

A Raspberry Pi 3 (along with all the normal bits and pieces like a microSD card, a mouse, keyboard etc)

A speaker with a 3.5 mm connector

A USB microphone

A simple switch and cables that can be connected to the GPIO pins of the Raspberry Pi

The basics

In a nutshell what we are going to do is take the Voice Kit software and modify it to work with the Pi’s internal sound card and a USB microphone. We are then going to make a switch (for activating the voice input) and put it all together in a cardboard box!

The first thing to do is download the Voice Kit microSD card image for the Raspberry Pi. You can download it directly from Google’s AIY Project site. Once the chúng tôi file has been downloaded you need to write it to the microSD card using a card writing utility. The tool is a good choice for this as it is available for Windows, macOS and Linux. You don’t need to uncompress the image file, Etcher will take care of that for you.

Raspberry Pi 3 review


When the microSD card is ready then you need to connect your Raspberry Pi 3 to a TV/monitor and hook up a mouse and keyboard. Once set up then boot your Raspberry Pi with the Voice Kit microSD card.

After booting you will see the standard Pixel desktop, however the background has been changed to feature the  AIY Projects logo. There are a number of tasks that need doing and then you need to reboot.

dtparam=audio=on #dtoverlay=i2s-mmap #dtoverlay=googlevoicehat-soundcard


The next step is to get the audio working. You are going to need a speaker with a 3.5 mm connector and a USB microphone. I didn’t have a dedicated USB microphone at hand so I plugged in a spare webcam that I had and the Pi was able to use the microphone from the webcam as a standalone mic! If you need a USB microphone then try this one. Plug in the speaker into the 3.5 mm jack on the board and connect the USB microphone to one of the USB ports.

In the terminal type:


sudo leafpad /etc/asound.conf

Delete all the contents of the file and replace it with:


pcm.!default { type asym chúng tôi "mic" chúng tôi "speaker" } pcm.mic { type plug slave { pcm "hw:1,0" } } pcm.speaker { type plug slave { pcm "hw:0,0" }

The cloud

In order for the Google Assistant to work your Pi needs to be configured to work with Google’s cloud services. Full details of how you do this can be found on the Voice Kit website, but here is a quick summary:

On the Raspberry Pi open up an internet browser and go to the Cloud Console.

Create a new project

In the Cloud Console, enable the “Google Assistant API”.

Find the JSON file you just downloaded (client_secrets_XXXX.json) and rename it to assistant.json. Then move it to /home/pi/assistant.json

In the dev terminal type: systemctl stop voice-recognizer

Go to the Activity Controls panel and switch on the following: Web and app activity, Location history, Device information, Voice and audio activity

The switch

Test it

You should now have everything you need to test Google Assistant on your Raspberry Pi. All you need to do is run the following command from the dev terminal:

Who is the queen of England?

What year was Henry the 8th born?

When did the Mayflower leave Plymouth?

Making a case

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How To Build Go From Source On A Raspberry Pi

Since its beginning, Google’s Go programming language has supported multiple operating systems and processor architectures. As well as supporting the x86 32-bit and 64-bit CPUs on Windows, Mac OS X, Linux and FreeBSD, the project has always supported ARM’s microprocessor range including the ARMv5, ARMv6 and ARMv7 system architectures. The Raspberry Pi uses a System-on-a-Chip (SoC) by Broadcom that is based on the ARMv6 architecture. Since the Raspberry Pi can run Linux and FreeBSD, it can also use the Go language.

Google doesn’t yet offer any pre-built binary packages for the Raspberry Pi. While there is a golang package for Raspbian, at the time of writing, it is for an older version of Go. Therefore the best way to install Go on a Raspberry Pi is to build it from source. This may sound a bit daunting but it is actually quite easy.

The first step is to install Mercurial, the revision control system used by Google to manage the Go source code.


apt-get install



The principle command line interface to the Mercurial system is hg and with it, you can download the source code to Go. The following command will download the source necessary to build Go into /usr/local/go:





There will be lots of output during the build, mainly informational messages. The build will take somewhere between 90 minutes and two hours. Once completed, the final output will look like this:

The build process has prompted us to add the directory containing the Go binary to the PATH. To do this you need to edit .profile which the Bash processes whenever you create a new shell. Change directory back to your home directory by using cd without any parameters and then edit .profile using the nano editor:



At the end of the file, add the following line:

export PATH=$PATH:/usr/local/go/bin

Press CTRL + X to leave the nano editor and type Y to confirm that the file should be saved. Press ENTER to keep the current filename (i.e. .profile).

You will need to exit the terminal and restart another (if you are using a desktop environment) or log out and log back in again (if you are using the command line).

To check that Go is functioning correctly create a file called hello.go with the following lines:













"Hello Make Tech Easier!





And then run it using:

Things to try

Go is a very powerful programming language and it is designed for writing programs which work with multiple tasks at once. Known as concurrency, you can write a program to execute lots of tasks simultaneously but also allow these separate tasks to communicate and interact.

Look at our Writing Your First Concurrent Go Program article and try the code examples and see the power of a concurrent programming language on a multitasking operating system, all running on your Raspberry Pi!

Gary Sims

Gary has been a technical writer, author and blogger since 2003. He is an expert in open source systems (including Linux), system administration, system security and networking protocols. He also knows several programming languages, as he was previously a software engineer for 10 years. He has a Bachelor of Science in business information systems from a UK University.

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How To Program An Arduino With A Raspberry Pi

Running a program on an Arduino is easy, but have you tried doing it with a Pi? The Raspberry Pi is powerful enough to be a standalone computer and is also good enough to program a microcontroller.

Here, we use a Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ to make an Arduino Uno blink an LED!

We’ll cut this up into two parts: how to install the Arduino IDE and how to use the IDE on the Raspberry Pi. While it’s possible to program the Arduino through Platformio, doing it this way should be much simpler for someone new.

Why You Want to Use a Raspberry Pi to Program Arduino

Typically, you would want to do it because:

You can’t use a normal PC.

You’re in it for the learning experience.

But there’s more to it than that. In fact, there’s a good tradeoff between using a standalone PC and using your Raspberry Pi!


The Raspberry Pi uses way less power than even a laptop.

You can run it off a power bank when you don’t have electricity.

Saves time when you’re already using it as an IoT terminal.


Overheating might become an issue for the Raspberry Pi if you don’t have ventilation.

As it is, the Raspberry Pi is good enough if you’re making a quick, do-it-in-a-weekend IoT project. Just plug in your sensors, peripherals, and Arduino, then type in your code to see it work along with the rest of your system.

But if you’re still in the “have to figure out how this circuit works” stage, then please use a proper desktop PC. It’s gonna help with the headaches.

The Things You’ll Need

A Raspberry Pi with Raspberrry Pi OS and USB ports

An Arduino

One USB Type-A to USB Type-B connector

Computer peripherals (monitor, keyboard, and mouse)

250Ω resistor (optional)

Small LED bulb (any color, optional)

Breadboard and jumper wires (optional)

Installing the Arduino IDE

Pick “Linux ARM 32 bits.”

This should open a new window. You can change the file name at the top and the download location at the left. The “Save” button is at the bottom-right corner.

Archiver will open your file, but it’ll take a little while to finish reading it. There’s a circle down toward the lower left that blinks red and green. Wait for it to finish before doing anything else. You may as well grab a glass of water at this point.

Programming with the Arduino IDE

Run the Arduino IDE from the Pi logo. You’ll find a green window where you can write your code.

The Arduino IDE looks the same way on the Raspberry Pi as it does on a regular Windows PC.

Copy and paste the following code:

void setup





put your setup code here, to run once: Serial.begin




; pinMode






void loop





put your main code here, to run repeatedly: digitalWrite




; delay




; Serial.println


"LED on"


; digitalWrite




; delay




; Serial.println


"LED off"




The code makes the LED turn on and print “LED on” on the Serial Monitor for 0.5 seconds, then does the opposite, turning the LED off and printing “LED off” for the same amount of time.

Connect the cables. The Arduino Uno uses a USB Type-A to USB Type-B connector. The square-ish side goes to the Arduino, while the rectangle side goes to the Raspberry Pi.

Left to right: USB Type-A and USB Type-B

Upon uploading, the TX and RX LEDs will blink rapidly, then run your program, which makes the L LED turn on or off every 0.5 seconds.

To make things a little easier to see, you can try connecting an LED bulb and a 250Ω resistor between D13 and GND. Do this on a breadboard to make it easier and make sure to disconnect the Arduino from the Raspberry Pi before doing anything with the pins.

If you did it right, the LED bulb should light up and dim at regular 0.5-second intervals.

After 0.5 seconds, the LED turns from being lit up to dimming.

Arduino Etiquette

With that done, you should be able to start making anything with the Raspberry Pi and Arduino. To backtrack a bit, if you’re going to do this often, you need to learn a bit about making things easier with the Arduino.

Always remember the phrase: pins off, code up, power out.

Pins Off

Let’s start by taking all the wires off the pins. If you take along time on a new project, chances are you mat have already forgotten your pin designations. You might, for instance, wire up an output pin on “HIGH” together with another output pin on “LOW.” That’s one easy way to break a GPIO pin on a microcontroller chip!

Code Up

Code up is simple: upload your code. Always keep in mind that the Arduino is always powered up while it’s connected to the USB port.

Power Out

Lastly, when you’re going to update your circuits, always turn off the power by removing the Arduino from all power sources. The last thing you’d want to happen is putting the wrong wire in the wrong place at the worst moment to make smoke pop out of whatever you’re doing. Remember, short circuits can ruin your project instantly.

Frequently Asked Questions Can you also program the Arduino Uno on Raspberry Pi?

Any board, as long as it’s supported by the Arduino IDE, would work with Raspberry Pi. It’s basically the same as coding on a normal PC with a Linux distribution.

Which Raspberry Pi boards will this method work with?

The ability to program Arduino should work with all of the Raspberry Pi microprocessor boards except the Zero, which doesn’t have built-in USB ports. This also won’t work on the Nano, which can’t run Raspberry Pi OS.

Can I run multiple Arduino boards on the Raspberry Pi at the same time?

Yes, you can, but there’s a catch: the Raspberry Pi’s USB output is limited to about 1.2A of current. If you’re using multiple servos, then having them all move around at the same time may cause some boards to restart after experiencing a sudden power dip.

Terenz Jomar Dela Cruz

Terenz is a hobbyist roboticist trying to build the most awesome robot the world has ever seen. He could have done that already if he wasn’t so busy burning through LEDs as a second hobby.

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No Code Raspberry Pi With Scratch 3.0

Hello learners, Welcome to MAKERDEMY’s “No Code Raspberry Pi with Scratch 3.0.” course. This is an introductory course on Physical Computing using Raspberry Pi & Scratch 3.0.

If you are a student or teacher who is a beginner at coding and is new to Raspberry Pi and physical computing and is interested in learning how to do fun and useful projects, this course is right for you.

This is a beginner level course, so to get the maximum value out of this course, you only will need a curious and creative mind with an interest in coding.

This course will teach you the basic concepts of Raspberry Pi using Scratch 3 like what is coding, what is Scratch, how to use the features of Scratch 3, how to do physical computation on Raspberry Pi using Scratch programming, and how to make animations, games, and projects using Scratch and Raspberry Pi. We will learn by implementing handpicked projects using the Raspberry Pi and the Scratch 3.0 Platform. Few of these projects include Musical Keyboard, Music Band, A game of Dice, Safe locker, Airbrush, Air guitar, Home automation, and we will even learn how to create an animation based on a storyline. For building these projects we have used peripherals like LED, Beeper, Pushbuttons, Touch sensor, PIR sensor, Relay module, 7-segment display, etc. We have also created projects using a very popular add-on board for Raspberry Pi known as the Sense HAT. We will also cover in-depth the features offered by Scratch 3.0 blocks. Throughout the course, we have provided a curated collection of resources. These resources include links to documents for in-depth learning, code, circuit diagrams, and more. Furthermore, our Instructor team has an excellent track record of answering your queries and clearing your doubts. Thus, they will be ready to answer any of your course-related questions.

By the end of the course, you will understand the basics of coding and how to control Raspberry Pi using Scratch. Once you have completed all the sections in the course and the course assignments, you will gain the knowledge and confidence to do your own projects using Raspberry Pi and make great animations using Scratch.

So, what are you waiting for?! Come, join me in this course. I’m looking forward to being your instructor and to make you step into the world of physical computing and coding.

Who this course is for:

Any student or teacher who is a beginner at coding and using Scratch programming to make amazing, fun, and exciting projects.

Someone who is new to the world of Raspberry Pi and coding and is interested to learn how to do real time projects.


Learn the basic concepts of coding.

What is Scratch and how to use the features offered by Scratch 3.

How to do the physical computation on Pi using Scratch programming.

How to make animations, games, and projects using Scratch and Raspberry Pi.

Learn Scratch by implementing cool and fun projects on Raspberry Pi.

Learn in-depth all the features and blocks of Scratch 3.0.


To get the maximum value out of this course, you should have a curious and creative mind.

Should have a good interest in learning to code.

Raspberry Pi 2 Is Six Times Faster Than Pi 1, Supports Windows 10

The Raspberry Pi 2 is now shipping, and you can buy it for the same price as the previous model. And get this: For the first time the mini-computer will support Microsoft’s Windows—specifically, Windows 10 for the development of smart devices and appliances.

Raspberry Pi 2—which will ship on Monday—is an uncased computer that could be held in one hand, with all the important components on one board. The new computer is the same size as its predecessor, which spawned the development of robots, electronics, gadgets and even a Bitcoin ATM.

The Raspberry Pi 2 has a faster CPU and more memory than its predecessor. This could make it a true PC replacement, said Eben Upton, founder of Raspberry Pi Foundation.

“This is obviously fantastic news for Raspberry Pi—in terms of performance it takes us over the line into being a ‘real’ PC you could use for web browsing and productivity applications,” Upton said.

The faster performance will also bring new applications like computer vision to robots, smart devices, drones and other electronics. For example, the extra horsepower will allow the Pi 2 to comprehend images from attached 3D cameras, which was not possible on Pi 1.

The Raspberry Pi 2 could also improve the agility of robots and drones through faster calculations. The computer will also be faster at processing sensor data.

Raspberry Pi 2 will support Linux-based Raspian OS, but Raspberry Pi also worked with Microsoft to bring Windows for the first time to the computer, Upton said. Raspberry Pi 2 will support a customized version of Windows 10 for embedded devices.

Raspberry Pi 2 won’t run a full edition of Windows 10, or allow access to applications like Internet Explorer or Office. Instead, developers can use the command-line interface to develop and prototype IOT devices.

Windows wasn’t an option for the original Raspberry Pi in 2012 because the computer was too slow, Upton said.

The speed boost made it feasible to put Windows on Raspberry Pi 2, and Microsoft quickly whipped up a version of Windows 10 for the device, Upton said.

“We’ve always had a good relationship,” Upton said. “Obviously with Pi 1, there was no way we could work together.”

Microsoft has talked about a version of Windows 10 code-named Athens for power-, cost- and size-constrained devices. The OS will be developed for both ARM and x86 processors.

The original Raspberry Pi, which started shipping in 2012 and was priced from $25 to $35, became popular for its sheer versatility. One of its most popular uses was as a home media server with XBMC, with the computer serving movies and shows to TVs. It was also used by programmers to test Linux applications and by students to learn programming.

But Pi’s popularity ended up hurting it the most. Many users clamored for an upgrade to its aging CPU and components. Some users moved over to faster boards with better graphics.

The biggest upgrade in the Raspberry Pi 2 is the CPU, which provides much faster processing power. It has a quad-core ARM Cortex A7 CPU, which is used in many smartphones today. At 900MHz, the CPU speed isn’t blistering, but it will capably run a Linux distribution with a browser and a productivity application like LibreOffice, Upton said.

It has a Broadcom VideoCore IV graphics processor, which will be able to render 1080p video. It will be also possible to play basic 3D games with support for OpenGL ES 2.0. The computer has 1GB of RAM, which is double that of the original Raspberry Pi.

The new computer is also backward compatible with the original Raspberry Pi, which was important to Upton in developing the board. That will ensure electronics made for the original Raspberry Pi will work with the new computer. Applications will also be cross-compatible.

Raspberry Pi Foundation will retain the original models that shipped in 2012, including the $35 Model B+ and Model A+, which is now to be priced at around $20.

5 Of The Best Linux Distros For Raspberry Pi

The Raspberry Pi debuted in 2012, and since then the tiny computer and its successors have powered countless projects. While you can install regular Ubuntu on a Raspberry Pi, there are plenty of more specialized Linux distributions available. This list includes options that can handle everything from general computing to creating a tiny portable arcade.

1. Raspbian

If you’re looking for a good place to start, Raspbian is it. It’s the Raspberry Pi Foundation’s official supported operating system, so you’ll find plenty of documentation. It also has a lot of software installed so you can get started right away.

Raspbian, as the name implies, is based on Debian, but with a few modifications. It uses the PIXEL as its main desktop, which is lightweight, so it runs faster on the Raspberry Pi. Most of the software installed is for general computing, education, and programming. Python, Scratch, Sonic Pi, Java, and more are included, making it a great system for tinkerers.

2. RecalBox

There are multiple Linux distros aimed at turning the Raspberry Pi into a retro gaming machine, but RecalBox is one of the easiest to use. It supports a wide range of arcade machines and game consoles from the days of 8-bit and onwards. Depending on the hardware you have, you might not be able to run some games. That said, there are still plenty that will work.

To help you get started, we have a guide to installing and configuring RecalBox.

3. RuneAudio

While RecalBox aims to turn your Raspberry Pi into a tiny arcade, RuneAudio turns it into a Jukebox. That’s actually selling RuneAudio short, as this distro’s focus on high-resolution audio makes it much more than a jukebox.

RuneAudio can play your entire digital music library, whether it’s from a USB drive plugged into your Raspberry Pi or a NAS accessed over your network. Even better, its web-based interface means you can control it wirelessly throughout your home. This includes Windows and Linux computers as well as Android-powered mobile devices.

Common audio formats like FLAC, WAVE, MP3, and ALAC are supported. You also get Native DSD playback with DSD-over-PCM. For a list of all the features, see the RuneAudio website. For a quick start, take a look at our guide to setting up RuneAudio.

4. LibreELEC

If you’re looking to use a Raspberry Pi to replace your Roku or Apple TV, LibreELEC may be just what you’re looking for. The LibreELEC website describes the distro as “just enough OS for Kodi,” and that’s exactly what it is.

If you’re not familiar, Kodi is popular media center software. After a simple setup process,  you can stream everything from South Park episodes to sports. LibreELEC is a lightweight distribution meant to provide everything needed to run Kodi and nothing else. This is a plus for media center use unless you’re looking for a distro to use for general computing.

5. OpenMediaVault

So far, most of the distros we’ve covered are aimed at making your Raspberry Pi fun to use. In the case of OpenMediaVault, it’s time for your Raspberry Pi to get to work.

Aimed at use in small business or home office settings, OpenMediaVault helps you put together your own Network Attached Storage (NAS). Based on Debian, this distribution features services like SSH, (S)FTP, SMB/CIFS, RSync, and more. Simply attach your storage and connect to your network, then use the web-based administration to set it up just how you want.

Raspberry Pi isn’t your only option

You’ll find great options on the above list, but not all of them are limited to the Raspberry Pi. Some, like RecalBox and LibreELEC, support other hardware as well. If you’re wondering what some of these other options are, we have a list of five Raspberry Pi alternatives you might want to check out.

Kris Wouk

Kris Wouk is a writer, musician, and whatever it’s called when someone makes videos for the web.

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