convert ypur television to personal computer using raspberry pi

Raspberry Pi: How To Turn Your Television into a Personal Computer for Kids

If you consider the number of time children spend in front of the television watching cartoons or movies, then it will be of great benefit if you convert the television into a personal computer for them. This might help to divert their interest to gain some technological skill. Having computer skills is now a necessity in our world today. Digitalization has taken over a lot of things. Therefore, it is never a bad idea to introduce your children to tech skills early enough. In this article, I will share some cost-effective tools you can use to introduce your children to computer programming, automation, electronics, or software application usage skills.

If you consider the amount of time children spend in front of the television watching cartoons or movies, then it will be of great benefit if you use the Raspberry Pi to convert the television into a personal computer for them. This might help to divert their interest in gaining some technological skills.

Having computer skills is now a necessity in our world. Digitalization has taken over a lot of things. Therefore, it is never a bad idea to introduce your children to tech skills early enough.

In this article, I will share some cost-effective tools you can use to introduce your children to computer programming, automation, electronics, or software application usage skills.

Tools You Need to Convert Your Television Into a Personal Computer

To make your television work as a personal computer for your children, you need these three devices:

1. A Television With HDMI Ports

HDMI (High-Definition Media Input) is a video/audio port or interface for transmitting video and audio. Below is an image of an HDMI port.

HDMI television ports
HDMI Ports For Television

If your television doesn’t have an HDMI port, you can get an HDMI to other ports converter to achieve the same goal.

2. A Raspberry Pi

The Raspberry Pi is a tiny and affordable single-board computer developed in the United Kingdom by the Raspberry Pi Foundation.

The Raspberry Pi was designed for education in computer-related skills. People use the Raspberry Pi for various purposes. One of them is to learn computer coding or programming. So, that is why the Raspberry Pi comes with inbuilt applications like scratch and IDEs for coding.

The Raspberry Pi also comes with GPIO (general-purpose input/output) pins, which are needed to control hardware electronic components for physical computing and IOTs. The Pi can also be used to do some household automation.

Therefore, the Pi has a lot in stock for your child’s computer and technological education.

The latest version of the Raspberry Pi is the Pi 4000, which comes equipped with a default keyboard.

The price of a Raspberry Pi ranges from $35 upwards, which is approximately 35,000 naira plus, depending on the exchange rate. You can buy raspberry pi from most online shops or from Canakits resellers.

raspberry pi image
Raspberry Pi Image

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3. A Computer Keyboard and Mouse

In order to communicate with your personal computer, you will need an input device. That is why a mouse and keyboard are needed.

So, with a budget of 3000 naira, you can get a durable mouse and keyboard for your Raspberry Pi. Remember, if you bought the latest version of Pi 400, you do not have to buy a keyboard again. You will only need a mouse.

You can also add the Freenove Super Starter Kit for Raspberry Pi to the list of things to buy. It is among the things your children can use for their electronics projects.

Steps To Convert Your Television To A Personal Computer

Step 1. You need to make sure your television has an HDMI port. If your television doesn’t have it, then you will need to buy an HMDI port converter to convert to the port your television has.

Step 2: Make sure you have fixed the components of your Raspberry Pi, like the heat sink and fan.

Step 3. Connect the necessary cable to the Raspberry Pi. These include the power cable, the USB cable for the mouse and keyboard, and the HDMI cable to their respective ports.

Step 4: Insert the NOOBS-loaded memory or SD card into the Raspberry Pi, if provided. This is what you will use to set up the Raspbian OS (operating system) or an Ubuntu OS for the Pi.

If you are confused about the NOOBs and the operating system installation, read the manual for the Raspberry Pi and its documentation online for further understanding.

Make sure you have connected the HDMI cable to the television and inserted the NOOBS pre-installed SD card before you power on or boot the Pi.

Step 5. Boot the Pi, follow the operating system’s initial installation process, and set up. You can also connect the Pi to WiFi. The computer is now ready to be used by your kids to learn after the settings.

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Why Parents Should Convert Their Television to Personal Computer For Their Children

The number one reason why you should convert your television to a personal computer as a parent is to help your children explore the field of technology. Raspberry Pi has many benefits other than coding, which your children will harness through learning.

The Pi can be used as a server to host websites and applications. It can also be used for machine learning and computer vision projects. There are a lot of things one can do with the Pi. Our imagination is our only limitation.

Another reason is that the Raspberry Pi is not fragile, and the OS can be easily restored once broken. Therefore, it is a good tool for children’s exploration.

This will also protect your personal computer from being damaged by your children, as they will now have their own to play with.

It will also save you from some cybersecurity loopholes your children could have created if they were using your personal computer as their parent.

Another important reason is that Raspberry Pi operating systems are all open source, and you will not have to pay to use them. There are also tons of free PDF books and documentation on Raspberry Pi and projects online that will aid in your children’s learning.

Remember, gaining tech knowledge is now a necessity for all. So, making a computer available in your home for your children is a step in the right direction.

5 Comments

  1. God bless you for the wonderful write-ups.
    I am speechless for your thoughtful reasoning for children and parents.

  2. God bless you for the wonderful write-ups.
    I am speechless for your thoughtful reasoning for children.
    and parents.
    Thanks for the good work

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