Raspberry Pi Competition – The Results

Last night at Potteries Hackspace was the Raspberry Pi Competition.

The judges were:

  • Carl Plant (bITjAM)
  • Richard Smedley (Founder & Programme Manager at Cuprium c.i.c.)
  • Paul Simmons (Curriculum Leader for Level 1 and 2 Vocational Computing at Newcastle-under-Lyme College)

The scoring system was (similar to Robot Wars):

  • INNOVATION. (Weight of 4) 1-5 points x 4 = Score for Innovation.
  • FUN. (Weight of 2) 1-5 points x 2 = Score for Fun.
  • PRACTICALITY. (Weight of 2) 1-5 points x 2 = Score for Practicality.
  • STYLE. (Weight of 1) 1-5 points x 1 = Score for Style.

The deadline was:

  • Tuesday 29th October
  • 9PM

All entries will be displayed and demonstrated at the Newcastle-under-Lyme Raspberry Jam event on November 7th. (PS. If you’ve not already signed up, sign up now).

We all had Pizza and soft drinks.

Thanks for everyone who attended and made it a fantastic evening!

The Projects

In 4th place, we had Dave’s greenhouse system. Dave wasn’t able to attend and we struggled to get it working initially.

The idea was to automate a greenhouse, turning on or off various switches for water, light, opening vents and such depending on the input of temperature and water saturation sensors.

Unfortunately the screen wouldn’t turn on and we struggled to get the relay to switch on or off until after the demo.


In third place was the “MusicBox”. A system that booted up to load the Music Player Daemon (MPD), stream the playlist over Icecast and download new tracks released under the Creative Commons License, for commercial use from ccmixter using a scraper written in Python. The MPD allows you to remotely control it from your mobile phone or PC too.

The idea of the project is to circumvent license fees charged by companies such as PRS or PPL, which could potentially save a business thousands of pounds each year.

Given more time the project would have a voting system allowing you to easily drop the tracks you don’t like and replay the tracks you do more often. Giving you more control over what is played.


In second place, John had decommissioned his ferret web server to replace it with something a little more entertaining.

A Raspberry Pi based Arcade machine, running MAME and a Wii arcade controller with a USB converter.

It was hooked up over HDMI to a neat little display he’d managed to acquire for next to nothing which displayed the games beautifully.

All in all, it was lots of fun and probably because it was overclocked slightly more than is recommended, it ran the games very smoothly.



In first place was “The Beast”.

As it’s almost Halloween, this was definitely the most seasonal of the projects.

It comprises of a coffin, a former robot project, a Raspberry Pi and a speaker.

Once booted, you can SSH into the Raspberry Pi to control direction using the “old skool” W,A,S,D configuration and for theĀ piece de la resistance, certain digits will play our various Halloween related sounds or tracks.

For effort alone, this thing wins hands down, but the fun factor really gave it the edge.

Well done guys!


Thanks again!

Thanks again to everyone that came down, especially the judges who took the time out of their business schedules and called in favours to make it down to our first ever competition.


Before the evening was over, we even managed to get Dave’s relay system up and running.


Next time: Robots


Oh and don’t forget we’ll be displaying and demonstrating all of these projects at theĀ Newcastle-under-Lyme Raspberry Jam event on November 7th, so get signed up!