Raspberry Pi co-founder to give a CoderDojo master class at Cork BIC next week

5 Oct 2012

Raspberry Pi

Celebrated UK entrepreneur and computing pioneer Jack Lang, who co-founded the foundation behind the Raspberry Pi computer revolutionising computer education, will hold a master class at a CoderDojo to be held at the CorkBIC Going International Conference next week.

On 11 October, CorkBIC will host a range of international speakers at its Going International Conference. Speakers include Gilles Bouchard, vice-president of Harvard Business Angels France; Dr Phil O’Donovan, co-founder CSR plc and chairman, Twelve Winds, and Dr Johnny Walker, CEO and founder of Global Diagnostics. CoderDojo co-founder Bill Liao will also provide insights into the movement’s success while Soundwave founder Brendan O’Driscoll will offer insights into ‘Life in the Fast Lane.’

Lang, who is a serial entrepreneur, business angel and entrepreneur in residence at the University of Cambridge, co-founded Topexpress, which went on to design the software for the BBC Microcomputer. After that he set up Netchannel, which created the first interactive television and which NTL acquired in 1998.

In 2006, Lang and his colleagues co-founded Raspberry Pi as a reaction to the year-on-year decline in the numbers and skill levels of A-Level students applying to study computer science at university.

The Raspberry Pi is a single board computer that costs just stg£22 to buy and was created for educators, programmers, developers and tech enthusiasts.

It comes in two models. Model A runs a 700MHz ARM processor with 256MB of RAM, HMDI and RCA video outputs and an SD card slot. Model B, which is being sold first, has an additional two USB ports and an ethernet port.

The Raspberry Pi Foundation is a charity made to promote the development of IT skills in education across the world. It aims to offer people looking to learn how to code with a base platform to exploit the full power of computing on the Linux platform on a low-cost device.

‘Big companies don’t like to innovate’

Lang, who is author of The High Tech Entrepreneurs Handbook, is a promoter of innovation and helps to produce and grow new businesses every year, either through his angel investing or through membership of the University of Cambridge Entrepreneurship Centre, where he gives a business studies course.

Lang believes innovation is a burden that most great small companies must carry in order to compete in a world where the large corporations can be the biggest barrier to success.

“Big companies don’t like to innovate,” Lang said. “They wait until they absolutely have to.”

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years