One of the coolest little developer boards that has become the heart of many DIY projects is the Raspberry Pi. The little device offers modest computing power, but also has modest power needs and can be used for just about anything you can dream up. Recently a geek over at Make built his dream tablet using the Raspberry Pi and some other hardware.
The builder said his goals were to build a tablet with a touchscreen that runs Linux, was usable and portable. It also had to look good and not scare the TSA or the old lady next to him on commercial flights since that is where he planned to use it. It doesn’t exactly look store bought in finished form, but the tablet does look nice enough.
The tablet uses a 10-inch LCD LVDS bundle with capacitive touch and an ambient light sensor. It was particularly well suited to the task because it could run off a 5V power source. The display has a native resolution of 1280 x 800 and supports 256k colors. The color support does leave some to be desired. The builder says that the screen worked perfectly with his Raspberry Pi.
The case for the machine was cut from a 1/2-inch sheet of birch plywood using a CNC machine. The back of the tablet is covered with some carbon fiber. The finished product uses a 10,000 mAh battery and has six hours of runtime per charge. Things the builder wishes he had used a battery that can provide power to the tablet while plugged in. He also notes it can be hard to double-click icons reliably.