All of the examples that I've seen for reading GPIO in Mathematica use polling loops of the form:

While[ True,
  If[DeviceRead["GPIO", pin] ... (*meets some criterion*)
    (*do something*)

Instead of this, has anybody tried writing doing event-driven GPIO on Raspberry Pi?

For example, in the popular GPIOzero library in python, it is common to write things like:

from gpiozero import Button, LED
from signal import pause

button = Button(22)

def buttonAction1():
    print("Button is pressed")

def buttonAction2():
    print("Button is released")

button.when_pressed = buttonAction1
button.when_released = buttonAction2


where the functions get called when an event occurs (in this case, a button being pressed or released)

Are there any examples of event-driven GPIO in Mathematica?

I suppose this would be analogous to the notebook-related function EventHandler but for GPIO.

I suspect it has something to do with SessionSubmit and ContinuousTask but DeviceRead is a blocking function.

On the other hand, I suppose it might be possible to take advantage of Dynamic functionality (and more specifically DynamicModule) to implement something like this.

  • $\begingroup$ How the event (like voltage changes) on GPIO is defined on hardware level of Rapsberry? Do it has any pre-defined interrupts? I guess, there are not. The when_pressed method is realized as regular asking of the GPIO interface. $\endgroup$
    – Rom38
    Feb 18, 2020 at 5:23

1 Answer 1


My best attempt to "fake" a program style that looks like this using Dynamic:

isPressed[pin_Integer] := (# == 1) &@ First@DeviceRead["GPIO", pin] 

buttonAction[True] := With[{},
  DeviceWrite["GPIO", 17 -> 1];
  "Button is pressed"]

buttonAction[False] := With[{},
  DeviceWrite["GPIO", 17 -> 0];
  "Button is released"]


In reality, I suspect it is doing polling behind the scenes....

  • $\begingroup$ Do we know at what rate the device is consulted? $\endgroup$ Jan 9, 2021 at 21:10

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