Physical Computing with Python

One of the reasons I want you to learn about physical computing is because small computers doing physical activities are all around you. And we mean everywhere. Go up to your kitchen. Look around you. Your refrigerator has a computer, maybe two or three if it has a screen. Your mixer has a computer. In this article, I will explain how we can use the power of python for physical computing.

Your oven is equipped with a computer. Your microwave is equipped with a computer. If you use Phillips Hue lights in your home, your bulbs come with a computer. Your car will have more than 20 computers in the vehicle.

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One more example. What about the small toaster? If you have a Bagel button or a screen on your toaster, you’ve got a computer in there. Why? Because it is much cheaper to build all your gadgets using a computer than to design special hardware. Do you know that you can buy computers for around $ 0.15? Computers are everywhere.

Computers are therefore everywhere. But the interesting thing is that all these little computers are doing physical computation. They feel and interact with the environment.

The refrigerator’s computer checks to see if it’s at the right temperature, and if it’s not, it turns on the cooling machines, being careful what it does to minimize the amount of electricity it uses. he uses.

The stove updates your display on the front panel, monitors knobs and dials, and controls the temperature so you get a great lasagna for dinner.

Physical Computing with Raspberry Pi in Python

A Raspberry Pi is a popular single-board computer that has been around since around 2012. It has proven to be extremely popular and has sold over 19 million computers worldwide.

To demystify some of the technologies we work with daily, let’s have a look at the major hardware blocks of Raspberry Pi for Physical Computing. Remember that your smartphone contains computers that are very similar in structure to the Raspberry Pi. The image below shows the main components of this computer:

Physical Computing with Raspberry Pi in Python

For our computer to do and detect things outside of the computer screen and keyboard, we need a computer and one of the other two things, a sensor or an actuator. A sensor is a small electronic element that can sense something about the environment, and an actuator is a fancy word for a motor or cable that does things in the real world.

You can buy your Raspberry Pi starter kit from here (which comes with the power supply, OS, and case) and set it up to boot with physical computing with python. I recommend taking a mouse, keyboard, and monitor to do the setup for beginners, but more advanced users may want to use SSH (Secure Shell) to do a headless setup. And the best place to start with physical computing with python is

I hope you now know how you can learn the power of physical computing with python. I hope you liked this article on Physical computing with Python. Feel free to ask your valuable questions in the comments section below.

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Aman Kharwal
Aman Kharwal

I'm a writer and data scientist on a mission to educate others about the incredible power of data📈.

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