Micro: bit gets speaker and microphone and Doctor Who computing board appears

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The delivery of a new version of the micro: bit has started, the British computing board that should introduce students to programming. In addition, a RISC-V based Doctor Who themed board has come out, serving the same purpose.

The addition of the microphone and speaker make it possible for students, among other things, to have the LEDs and the audio playback on the micro: bit respond to sound. In addition to the additions, the Micro: bit Educational Foundation has given the hardware a minor upgrade. The processor is the Arm-based Nordic nRF52833, which runs at 64MHz. The 2016 predecessor had a Nordic nRF51822 operating at up to 16MHz. The new board also features 512kB of flash storage, doubling the previous micro: bit. There is now also 128kB of RAM, where the previous version had to do with 16KB. The price is 13.50 pounds, which is equivalent to 15.20 euros.

The micro: bit is a computing board intended for educational purposes to introduce children to programming. The project stems from the Make It Digital campaign announced by the BBC in 2015 and partners such as Arm, NXP, Microsoft and Samsung are contributing to it. In 2016, the delivery of the first micro: bit to schools started. The micro: bit editors for programming the board work on both the old and the updated version.

Last week, the BBC and SiFive also announced a RISC-V-based computer, the BBC HiFive Inventor board, which is also intended for schools and is themed around Doctor Who. The computer has sensors, a matrix of colored LED lights, a battery and support for WiFi and Bluetooth thanks to the presence of an ESP32 module. The soc is the RV32IMAFC from SiFive, a 32bit RISC-V chip at 150MHz with 64KB sram. and 512 KB of flash storage. Programming works based on the Tynker platform. The sign is currently only available at BBC Shop, which delivers in the US and Canada. The price is $ 75.

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