Sniff is a "Scratch-like" programming language that's designed to help Scratchers move gently from Scratch to more conventional languages. They can start writing programs, without having to learn a new language because Sniff is based on Scratch. They learn a little more about variables, compiling, syntax errors (!), and they can have fun controlling real hardware while they're doing it.

Monday, 10 March 2014

Beta 4 gives full support to the Pi

Raspberry Pi support first appeared in Beta 3, but only as a generic Unix platform.  Beta4 which has just been released takes this a step further, and makes the Pi a fully capable Sniff platform, comparable to the Arduino. If you install WiringPi before compiling your Sniff program it will be detected, allowing you to write Sniff code which access the GPIO (including SPI and I2C). It's written in such a way that most of the existing "devices" which were supported on Arduino, now work on Pi too.

In addition to the existing devices, we've added a bunch of new devices especially for Pi. While you can still hang an sdcard reader on the GPIO port, and access files that way, the new nativeFile device behaves just like the old fileSystem device but accesses the regular Pi files. Simlarly framebuffer behaves like the old Arduino's tft device, but uses the Pi's built in graphics. Finally taking a leaf from the Galeleo there's the "system" device, which lets you run a regular Pi command from inside Sniff.

I'm planning on using a Syndrome from Disney Infiniti/Incredibles to trigger an RFID reader to shut down my Pi by running "poweroff"! (as soon as I've debugged the RFID reader).

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