What I learnt from racing hamsters

Measure Hamster Wheel Activity — Raspberry Pi
  1. gaiandb works incredibly well on a Raspberry Pi. The light-weight database, based on Apache Derby, has a small footprint (< 4MB). It is designed for use on IoT devices and was easy to deploy on the entry-level specification of a Pi. The technology removed the need to have a centrally hosted, always on server to collect the individual’s information and host the leaderboard. Instead the features in the distributed database configuration allows participants to form groups to share their data with those they trust — so as an example a school can create a group of its participating students to only share the data between them.
  2. rabbitmq provided a light-weight message bus for the Pi external interfaces to publish their events to, and for the microservices to consume and act upon (eg. writing the data to gaiandb, triggering the camera to take an action shot, updating the leaderboard). Event driven architecture on a Pi !.
  3. Hosting the personal information of the trainer (pet owner) in the MySQL database, and the competitors’ (hamsters’) race information for sharing (distance, avg. speed, competitorID) in the gaiandb provided an easy to implement clear separation of the data to be distributed and that to remain locally on the Pi. This introduced the concepts of GDPR to an interested (at times) set of children.
  4. php, html and python are all simple entry level languages for my 9 and 11 year old daughters to understand and become adept at writing their first code. There are lots of examples on Google for them to follow, before progressing to tackling some of the more complex elements.

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IBM Distinguished Engineer. Experienced hands-on Chief Architect with over 20 years experience in the design of large complex systems and leading agile delivery

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Mark Argent

Mark Argent

IBM Distinguished Engineer. Experienced hands-on Chief Architect with over 20 years experience in the design of large complex systems and leading agile delivery

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