MAKE Asks: is a weekly column where we ask you, our readers, for responses to maker-related questions. We hope the column sparks interesting conversation and is a way for us to get to know more about each other.

This week’s question: Between Arduino, Raspberry Pi, Beaglebone, and a whole host of other products that are used to marry computer programming and electronics, there’s often confusion about what to call them. Should they be kept in their own categories: computer-on-a-chip, microcontroller, embedded system? What do all these terms mean, anyway? Or should we just keep a catch-all phrase for them all?

To reduce confusion, I am for calling them all “prototyping boards.” It describes what they all do fairly accurately, it’s just that they all do them differently and/or better or worse. It also eliminates any debate over naming, when really we should be focusing on the hardware itself.

Post your responses in the comments section.