Instead of connecting your Raspberry Pi to your TV or connecting via SSH (or via remote desktop via VNC or RDP) you can choose Raspberry Pi touch display.

Easy Setup Customize Customize the touch display has so many possibilities. But if you left your dust in the drawer, you won’t be able to fully experience the benefits of such a useful kit.

Raspberry Pi Boot

The alternative is to take it out of the drawer, connect the touch display to the Raspberry Pi, and reformat the microSD card. It’s time to work on a new project — one of these ideas should interest you.

1. Raspberry Pi Photo Frame

Let’s start with perhaps the most obvious option. The official Raspberry Pi touch display measures 7 inches, making it the perfect size for a photo frame. For best results, you’ll need a wireless connection (Ethernet cables look unsightly on a mantelpiece) as well as a Raspberry Pi-compatible battery pack

There are several options for creating a Raspberry Pi photo frame, mostly using Python code. You can write your own script by pulling images from a pre-populated directory. Also, take a look at our guide to creating your own photo frame with beautiful images and inspirational quotes. It pulls content from two Reddit feeds — images from /r/EarthPorn and quotes from /r/ShowerThoughts — and mixes them together.

The results are always amazing!

2. Star Trek style control panel

Instead of waiting for the 24th century, why not offer your Raspberry Pi today a stylish user interface from Star Trek: The Next Generation ? Even though you won’t be able to control it, you can control your smart home.

In the example above, the Belkin WeMo switches and Nest thermostat are controlled by a Raspberry Pi, touch display, and InControlHA system using Wemo and Nest plugins. ST: magic TNG originates from the introduction of the Library Computer Access System (LCARS) seen in the 1980s/1990s star trek . Coder Toby Curien designed the LCARS user interface for the Pi, which is used outside of home automation.

3.Raspberry Pi Carputer

Building a carputer has long been the holy grail for tech developers, and the Raspberry Pi is making it far more achievable than ever before. But for the carputer to really take shape, it needs a display — and what’s better than a touchscreen interface?

Ideal for entertainment, as a satellite monitor, to monitor your car’s performance via OBD-II interface. and even for reverse parking, the computer can greatly improve your driving experience. Often, however, the focus is on entertainment.

(The developer of this project has made a disk image available for download.)

Setting up a Raspberry Pi computer also requires a user interface, a suitable power supply, and working connections to any additional hardware you use. (This may include a mobile key and GPS for satellite communications, for example.)

4. Your own desktop computer

Now here’s a unique use for the Pi and its touch display. A compact tool to control the equipment on your bench (or kitchen or tabletop) is a multi-purpose build. It’s designed to help you get started on home automation projects, but it also includes webcam support to help you record your progress.

The Raspberry Pi desktop computer can be assembled by following a five-part series of YouTube videos from Tech Explorations. Here is the introductory video:

The code can be downloaded from Github.

5. Touch screen photo booth with Google Drive downloads

The idea here is simple. With just a Raspberry Pi, a webcam and a touch screen — plus a thermal printer — you can create an all-in-one photo booth!

Various projects of this kind have sprung up. Although the versions shown above use a low-resolution thermal printer, you can use a standard color photo printer. The wait will be longer, but the results are better!

Projects in this direction can also benefit from better use of the touch screen. Perhaps you could improve this and introduce some cool photo effects that can be adjusted using the touchscreen before printing?

6. Smart Mirror

How about a smart mirror for your Raspberry Pi touch display project? It’s basically a mirror that shows not only your reflection but also useful information. For example, the latest news and weather updates.

Naturally, a larger display will give the best results, but if you’re looking to start with a smart mirror project or design your own from scratch, a Raspberry Pi paired with a touchscreen display is a great place to start.

Many existing projects are underway and we have taken the time to compile six of them into a single list for you to read. Use this as inspiration, a starting point, or simply use someone else’s code to create your own smart mirror.

After all, what could be better—and more effective—than checking the news while you style your hair?

7. Touch Internet radio

Want to pump some cartoons out of your Raspberry Pi? We’ve looked at some Internet radio projects in the past, but the addition of a touchscreen makes a big difference. For starters, it’s much easier to find the station you want to listen to!

This example uses the much smaller Adafruit Raspberry Pi touch display. However, you can get suitable results from any compatible touch screen.

Alternatively, you may prefer to integrate your Raspberry Pi with your home audio system. The build below uses RuneAudio, a Bluetooth speaker, and your preferred audio helmet or shield.

Lots of ways to enjoy quality sound with your Raspberry Pi right now!

8. Portable patient monitor

Requiring a ProtoCentral HealthyPi HAT (HAT is an add-on board for the Raspberry Pi) and Atmel’s Windows-only software, this project results in a portable device to measure your (or a patient’s) health.

With sensors and electrodes connected, you can observe and record, thanks to the visualization software on the Pi. Whether this will be a system that can be adopted by the medical profession remains to be seen. We suspect that this could be very useful in developing countries or at the center of infectious outbreaks.

We were impressed with this project on Hackster.io, but note that there are many alternatives. Often they are based on compact LCD displays rather than touch screens.

9. OpenHAB Command Center Center

Many home automation systems have been developed or ported to the Raspberry Pi — enough for their own list. However, not all of them are equipped with a touch screen.

One is the Makezine project below, which connects a Raspberry Pi running OpenHAB, an open source home automation system that can interface with hundreds of smart home products. Our own guide shows you how you can use it to control some smart lighting. OpenHAB comes with several user interfaces. However, if this is not your cup of tea, the LCARS UI theme is available.

The result here is clear: a unified touchscreen smart home solution powered by Raspberry Pi!

10. Create a Raspberry Pi Tablet

Another great build we’re finishing up with is a Raspberry Pi powered tablet computer. The idea is simple: put the Pi, touchscreen and battery in a suitable case (most likely 3D printed). You can change the operating system; Raspbian Jessie with PIXEL (nor the previous desktop) is not very comfortable as a touch interface. Luckily, there are versions of Android for the Raspberry Pi.

This is one of those projects where the electronics and user interface are simple. This is really the case when you don’t have a 3D printer.

Which one will you start first? Or do you know the best Raspberry Pi touchscreen project? Write to us in the comments!

Photo Credit: Mihai Simonia via Shutterstock.com

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