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Oak Ridge National Laboratory is most famously home to the Titan supercomputer, capable of performing more than 20 quadrillion calculations every second. But the lab also houses the lesser known “Tiny Titan,” whose nine processing units, or “cores,” are made from Raspberry Pis. Making a small-scale supercomputer is relatively simple—just yoke together microelectronics to run in parallel. The hard part, explains Titan support specialist Adam Simpson, is writing the code for it.
“There really is no adequate platform for do-it-yourself super-computing,” Simpson says. So he and two colleagues decided to create a set of software tutorials. By working together, parallel cores can solve complex problems, and the tutorials aim to demystify that process. For example, one lesson will show how to add two lists of numbers together, by dividing the problem into components that individual cores can attack simultaneously. The tutorials are available for free online. Start your journey to supercomputing stardom at github.com/TinyTitan.
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, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, 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.