Raspberry Pi, the modern day Sinclair ZX81
It was 1981, the year the term Internet was first mentioned, and I remember seeing an advert for a £99 computer, the Sinclair ZX81. I didn't really know what this actually was at the time, but I instinctively knew I had to have one. Little did I know at the time that this moment would shape the rest of my life - a technology geek was born. In 1981 there was no world wide web and being interested in computing was distinctly uncool.
A few weeks late, on my birthday. I opened my brand new futuristic Sinclair ZX81, programmed my first bit of code and never looked back.
The Raspberry Pi has all the makings of inspiring a whole new generation of programmers in much the same way as the ZX81 did in the 80s. It's affordable and the makers have already sold the first batch of 10,000. It runs a cut down version of Linux a programming language called Pi and all you have to add is a keyboard, mouse and monitor, the rest is up to your imagination.
That's where the similarities end - the Raspberry Pi has 256,000 times more memory, a process that is infinitely faster and an SD Card slot for fast storage. Storing and retrieving your programs on the ZX81 was more akin to torture, using a standard audio cassette tape, this could take hours.
I have purchased one of the first 10,000 for my kids and I'm looking forward to see what they will do with it. Will it end up being just another games console? What ever it becomes, one thing is for certain, your workplace needs to cater for a technology savvy workforce today and in the future.