Chicago has become a hub for many interesting technologies like 3D printing and rapid protoyping technology, as well as new, cheap, modifiable circuit boards and processors like the Rasberry Pi, a self-contained computer that sells for around $30 at places like Microcenter. Designed to be a cheap processor that children and adults can learn to program on like the Commodore 64 and Amiga users of old, hobbyists everywhere have embraced this match-box of a computer, using it as a PC, a component in science and engineering projects, and more.
It's not the most intuitive computer. It doesn't come with a complementary keyboard, monitor, battery supply, OS, or power cord. It's just a circuit board with a large amount of plugs and ports attached. It can take time for programing novices to learn how to set it up, get the right accesories, and even choose the right software. Thankfully, the Rasberry Pi website has a useful quick-start guide for programming novices, as well as a 'New Out Of Box Software' zip-file that contains an installer of several free, open source operating systems. Here are some additional tips for new Chicago-based Rasberry Pi users, that hopefully will stream-line things: