Watch a brief video: http://www.microchip.com/get/598S
The Raspberry Pi is widely viewed as one of the easiest and most affordable computers on which to program, and recently shipped more than one million units in less than a year on the market. element14's chipKIT Pi Expansion Board is the world's first to enable the development of 3.3V Arduino compatible applications for the Raspberry Pi using a 32-bit, high-performance MCU in a prototyping-friendly package. Because the Raspberry Pi's processor is a 3.3V chip, its digital I/O and communications (I^2C™, UART, SPI) pins require 3.3V. Meaning that existing prototyping-friendly Arduino boards, which are all based on 5V 8-bit MCUs, require users to create or purchase additional components to translate the voltages. The chipKIT Pi can interface directly to the Raspberry Pi I/O Expansion header without any additional components, reducing both cost and design complexity.
In addition to being 3.3V compatible, the chipKIT Pi is also the only Arduino compatible board that brings a 32-bit MCU in a prototyping-friendly package to Raspberry Pi users. Previously, hobbyists, academics, makers and professionals who wanted to develop Arduino applications for the Raspberry Pi using prototyping-friendly, through-hole packages were forced to use boards based on 8-bit MCUs. The chipKIT Pi's 32-bit PIC32 MCU is in an SPDIP package, so even non-experienced users can easily swap out the pre-populated PIC32 with a new one—without having to replace the entire board.
The PIC32's high level of performance, memory and integrated peripherals allows users to create applications with greater functionality, including touch sensing, audio processing and advanced control. Additionally, users can take advantage of the PIC32's Peripheral Pin Select feature, which provides the flexibility to re-map certain peripheral I/O pins to suit their applications. The chipKIT Pi board and the Raspberry Pi compatible version of the MPIDE software further enable users to tap into the large repository of available Arduino tutorials, reference materials, curriculum and more, to create a diverse array of designs.
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