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Raspberry Pi Home Automation with Arduino Paperback – February 5, 2013

3.6 out of 5 stars 24 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Andrew K. Dennis

Andrew K. Dennis is an R&D software developer at Prometheus Research. Prometheus Research is a leading provider of integrated data management for research and is the home of HTSQL, an open source navigational query language for RDMS.

Andrew has a Diploma in Computing, a BS in Software Engineering, and is currently studying for a second BS in Creative Computing in his spare time.

He has over 10 years experience working in the software industry in the UK, Canada, and the USA. This experience includes e-learning courseware development, custom CMS and LMS development, SCORM consultancy, web development in a variety of languages, open source application development, blogging about the integration of web technologies with electronics for home automation, and punching lots of Cat5 cables.

His interests include web development, e-learning, 3D printing, Linux, the Raspberry Pi and Arduino, open source projects, home automation and the use of web technology in this sphere, amateur electronics, home networking, and software engineering.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Packt Publishing (February 5, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1849695865
  • ISBN-13: 978-1849695862
  • Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 0.4 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,257,765 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
What the title really means is that the author will walk you through using a Raspberry Pi in place of an Arduino to control things, but by still programming it like an Arduino. While the information presented is definitely useful, the end result is a bit of a platform identity crisis, as no Arduino is ever actually being used. The Home Automation part of the title is somewhat loosely coupled, but it does serve as a convenient context for the examples presented and is a nonetheless a prime candidate for Raspberry Pi/Arduino projects.

Chapter 1 is a good introduction to the topics presented in the book. It provides context and history at a level that is appropriate for the audience of the book. Overall - nicely done.

Chapter 2 goes through using BerryBoot to get the Raspbian linux distro onto the Raspberry Pi's SD card. To me, this particular method is overkill for the context of the book, however at the same time it was nice to see a variation on the typical SD setup routine for the Raspberry Pi. Again, the system setup chapter was just enough to let the user understand what the OS context will be for the purposes of the book, without going into setup details that are best left for a different text.

Chapter 3 starts getting into the hardware. Using an Arduino in conjunction with the Raspberry Pi, while somewhat redundant, is not unusual. The Arduino gets around some of the I/O limitations of the Raspberry Pi without having to get too involved with discreet external electronics. In this case, the author chooses the novel approach of using an adapter that allows the Raspberry Pi to use hardware shields designed for an Arduino, without actually using an Arduino.
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Format: Paperback
On one hand its got quite a specific audience, maybe you're interested in home automation, and maybe you've previously experimented with the Arduino platform and you now have a Raspberry Pi or want to use one for some reason (maybe that the power/size ratio has greater possibilities than the Arduino), and maybe you don't mind buying an expensive interface so that you can plug Arduino shields into your Pi, and maybe you don't mind writing Arduino-fashion code in C++ in a text editor and building it from the command line with makefiles). That's a lot of 'maybe'. If you are all of these, the book should serve you well enough to get you on your way, but the value of the book diminishes the more of these maybe's you eliminate.
On the other hand, it tries to touch a lot of subjects and covers the basics of installing software on the Pi, installing and using a free IDE (Geany), electronics, it mentions wiringPi, ... It doesn't go into any topic particularly deeply. Just enough to get started, or to confuse you, depending on where your experience level is.

Where you actually get to see the value of using the Pi, as opposed to just keeping it simple and sticking with an Arduino plus shield, is in the latter part of the book where the author shows and explains how to set up an SQL database for recording sensor information, how to set up a web server (why the author chose Apache and not a smaller faster web server like lighttpd?), and how to make them all play together to do something useful.

The book has Arduino in its title. Arduino was designed for people who don't necessarily want to use text editors, makefiles, or confusing IDEs with millions of features. Most Arduino people just want to create stuff and they have enough on their plate already just learning to code.
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Format: Paperback
Andrew Dennis has written the first application-oriented hardware/software guidebook for using the extremely popular Raspberry Pi ($35 Linux Board) in real applications. The focus of this book is what can be accomplished with Home Automation as well as Sensor and Actuator Devices with the Pi and with Internet of Things Sensor Databases locally on the Pi as well as in the Cloud/Web. Three unique features of this handbook include:

1. Use of Berryboot a tool which allows easy installation of multiple operating systems on the Raspberry Pi

2. Very Importantly the use of a Raspberry Pi to Arduino Shield Adapter from Cooking-Hacks--Libelium
This hardware shield and the accompanying Open Source Library "arduPI" permit a range of input/output functions on the software-strong Pi that until now has been impossible with primitive manipulation of GPIO pins and allows important (16-bit) analog functionality for recording and manipulating data
from analog sensors. This analog. and i/o functionality is in addition to the powerful multi-language (and shell) programming capabilities of the Pi as a Linux system and is efficiently accomplished through the arduPi library which permits easy manipulation of the i/o functions for many users farmiliar with the Arduino and which otherwise is quite accesible to Linux users of the C and C++ languages.

3. Use of LAMP/Sql and HtSql Servers which permit sensor database users to host a Sql compatbile server directly on the Raspberry Pi and accesss databases of sensor values either hosted locally or in the cloud with full web and web service (JSON/XML) integration. Further information on the HtSql Database platform can be found on the HTSQL (dot) org website.
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