The Raspberry PI Sucks.

It sucks be­cause it’s ex­pen­sive. Or at least it’s ex­pen­sive for how lame the hard­ware pro­vid­ed is.

The oth­er day I got a Mele a1000 box for which I will do a full re­view soon, I hope. But I re­al­ly need to get the word out: this thing ­kicks Rasp­ber­ry PI in the ass so hard it’s not even fun­ny.

For starter­s, it costs twice as much. Which may seem bad, but trust me, even at twice the ­cost, it’s cheap­er. Be­cause if you are the kind of per­son for whom the $35 makes a dif­fer­ence, then you are al­so prob­a­bly some­one who does­n’t have a HD­MI-­ca­pable TV or mon­i­tor. And the Mele works with HD­MI, but al­so with RCA con­nec­tors and VGA, which means pret­ty much any TV or mon­i­tor man­u­fac­tured in the last 20 years will work in a pinch. You can re­pur­pose an­cient mon­i­tors (1024x768 CRTs from 1996? WORKS FINE) that are avail­able ev­ery­where.

Al­so, it comes with Wifi, wi­hch the Pi does­n’t. And of course Eth­er­net, too.

It comes with 4GB of in­ter­nal stor­age and 512MB of RAM. The Pi? None and 256m­b. See a pat­tern here? Y­ou pay twice as much and it comes with more than twice as much hard­ware in it.

Al­so, it has two USB con­nec­tors (1 in the Pi mod­el A, 2 in the Pi mod­el B).

One im­por­tant fea­ture: it comes in a box. A nice, stur­dy, small box, that can be nice­ly placed ­so that it does­n’t break apart.

The CPU is sev­er­al times faster and sev­er­al gen­er­a­tions more mod­ern. The GPU is slight­ly less pow­er­ful, but you won’t no­tice, the on­ly thing the Pi can do with that GPU is de­code video re­al­ly quick, for any­thing re­mote­ly in­ter­est­ing the CPU is a bot­tle­neck.

And both are pro­pri­etary, but at least some­one is work­ing on open Mal­i400 driv­ers.

The Mele is use­ful out of the box, you can just in­stall Ubun­tu on it, or use An­droid, which is open source. It’s ful­ly root­ed, you don’t need to do any­thing strange to in­stall oth­er ­op­er­at­ing sys­tems in it (just like the Pi!) ex­cept that since the CPU is so much bet­ter, it ­can just do stuff eas­i­er.

Did I men­tion that while the Pi has on­ly a SD card for stor­age while the Mele has 4GB of flash, and a SD slot, and an eSa­ta slot? And that us­ing that it could be a nice small file server?

And the kick­er: it’s not a char­i­ty. It’s $70 be­cause you are pay­ing a busi­ness to cre­ate the things, and does­n’t de­pend on get­ting se­vere­ly dis­count­ed chips from Broad­com, it just is a ­good prod­uct at a good price. And that’s just awe­some be­cause it means in 2 years we will have some­thing about as pow­er­ful as the Mele at the Pi’s pri­ce­point, and some­thing much ­more pow­er­ful at the Mele’s price, and that’s sus­tain­able, be­cause the peo­ple who are build­ing it and de­sign­ing it, and sell­ing it, and ship­ping it, are mak­ing a liv­ing out­ of it, while kick­ing the ass of the char­i­ty. And that’s good. And if you want 100000 of the­se, you or­der them, and you get them, in­stead of hav­ing to pre-buy, and wait month­s, and see them ship in tiny batch­es.

So, buy this, or some­thing like it.

Al­so: $92.60 with free ship­ping

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