A Raspberry Pi is a single-board computer module that can be used for a variety of things, from small home automation projects to robotic. As the description suggests it can be also used as an actual computer. Setting it up is as easy as downloading the latest version of their OS from their official website, flashing it in
to an SD card and that's it, now you just have to hook the Raspberry Pi board to a monitor, keyboard and a mouse, and now you are ready to use it as a normal computer, you can use it for editing text documents, you can watch videos and a lot of other things, in this post we will look at 5 of the coolest thing you can do with it.
5 of the coolest projects
1) Setup Pi-Hole and use it as a network-wide ad blocker
Pi-Hole is a Linux network-level advertisement and internet tracking blocking application, you can setup Pi-Hole on a Raspberry Pi and connect it to your home network and it will block Ads on all the devices connected to that network it will also block tracking websites and can potentially block malware. You can add a specific site in the blacklist of the terminal and use it as a parental control device. It has multiple features including a web-based GUI to track traffic and blocked sites.
2) Make a DIY NAS(Network Attached Storage) and use it to stream data on all your devices at once
You can set a samba FTP server on a Raspberry Pi and use it as your personal NAS, setting up samba is really simple and it's a one-time setup you can just set it up once and use it seamlessly forever. You can connect an external HDD for storage. And the most prominent advantage of setting this up is that you can stream all the content of your hard-drive on all your devices at once.
You have to note one thing though if you are planning to copy data at high speed this probably won't work. You can still copy data but it won't be as fast as connecting to drive directly to your pc.
There are commercially available NAS available but those can't compare to the Raspberry Pi when it comes to cost. Most commercial NAS starts from $150-$300, but the Raspberry Pi will cost you just around $35.
3) Install OSMC and use it as a chrome cast alternative
You can install OSMC(a. k. a Kodi) on your Raspberry Pi and hook it to your TV set and potentially turn any TV into a smart TV. You can watch Youtube, Amazon Prime videos, and even set it up to play your favourite Netflix content without having to spend those extra bucks on a smart TV. If your TV supports HDMI-CEC, you can also use your TV remote to control the Raspberry Pi without having to use an external keyboard and mouse.
Setting it up is as simple as downloading the image from the official OSMC download page and flashing it on an SD card.
4) Install google assistant and use it as DIY google home
You can install google assistant on the Raspberry Pi and use it as a google home alternative.
After setting up google assistant the Raspberry Pi's GPIO pins can be configured to do various work. Also, you can use all the basic functionalities of google assistant, like setting reminders, playing music, and a lot more.
5) Use it as a computer OR Build a DIY Laptop
The most basic thing you can do is to use the Raspberry Pi likes a normal computer, you can also find parts online and make a DIY laptop/Tablet using a touchscreen with the Raspberry Pi. To set it up all you have to do is download the official Raspbian OS from their website and flash it into an SD card.
As it is a Linux OS which is based on Debian it comes with various pre-installed applications and you can also install any supported application with a simple apt-get command.