We were all planning what we could do to hack some electronics with our Raspberry Pi’s even before they arrived, and a little help in accessing and using those pins on the GPIO connector makes life a bit easier.
In this review, I look at the relative merits of three prototyping boards for the Rasspberry Pi. I use the term ‘Prototyping’ to distinguish them from expansion boards like the Gertboard and Pi Face that have buffers, level converters LEDs and other electronics attached to them. What I am talking about here is the Raspberry Pi equivalents to the Arduino ProtoShield. I.e. something that we can solder our own electronics to, in order to make something.
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, or even use Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for MakeCode, CircuitPython, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.