01/26/2017 at 01:58 •
After working with Pixel for PC and Mac on an old laptop, I realized it would be the ideal way to remote control a Pi. Why not write code on the laptop instead of on an actual Pi? Because I primarily write kernel modules and otherwise abuse the BCM2835 peripherals.
Why do I need this? I spend a lot of time on public transit, so some way to use that time to write code would be nice. And I don't have funds to buy an actual Pi laptop. But I DO have a collection of several old laptops, including a really cute HP Mini netbook. Which happens to work really well with Pixel.
I don't want to use USB Gadget mode to attach the Pi to the laptop since it would be rather cumbersome and delicate. So, I've decided to make a portable wireless Pi. I'll stick a lithium battery to the back of a Pi Zero along with a power switch. On the top of the Zero I'll attach an 8266 based WiFi adapter like I've done in one of my other projects. A lithium charging module will also attach to the top, completing the build.
Where's the step-up power supply you ask? It's not needed - I can power the Pi directly from the lithium cell. The Pi and WiFi both work down to 3.3V, which is not quite a dead battery, but it's still about 80% of the capacity. That's good enough for what I want to do. This combo should give me about 2 hours run-time, about the same as the laptop. A perfect match, and the assembly will take up hardly any space.
The Pi will be configured as an access point. Once powered up, I'll connect to it from the laptop, ssh in, and I can write code!