All change: meet the new MagPi!

Some of you may have sniffed this in the wind: there have been some changes at The MagPi, the community Raspberry Pi magazine. The MagPi has been run by volunteers, with no input from the Foundation, for the last three years. Ash Stone, Will Bell, Ian McAlpine and Aaron Shaw, who formed the core editorial team, approached us a few months ago to ask if we could help with what had become a massive monthly task; especially given that half the team has recently changed jobs or moved overseas.

We had a series of discussions, which have resulted in the relaunch of the MagPi you see today. Over the last few months we’ve been working on moving the magazine in-house here at the Foundation. There’s a lot that’s not changing: The MagPi is still your community magazine; it’s still (and always) going to be available as a free PDF download (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0); it’s still going to be full of content written by you, the community.

We don’t make any money out of doing this. Even if in the future we make physical copies available in shops, we don’t expect to break even on the magazine; but we think that offline resources like this are incredibly important for the community and aid learning, so we’re very happy to be investing in it.

Russell Barnes, who has ten years of experience editing technology magazines, has joined us as Managing Editor, and is heading up the magazine. He’s done an incredible job over the last couple of months, and I’m loving working with him. Russell says:

I’m really excited to be part of The MagPi magazine.

Like all great Raspberry Pi projects, The MagPi was created by a band of enthusiasts that met on the Raspberry Pi forum. They wanted to make a magazine for fellow geeks, and they well and truly succeeded. 

It might look a bit different, but the new MagPi is still very much a magazine for and by the Raspberry Pi community. It’s also still freely available under a Creative Commons license, so you can download the PDF edition free every issue to share and remix.

The MagPi is now a whopping 70 pages and includes a mix of news, reviews, features and tutorials for enthusiasts of all ages. Issue 31 is just a taste of what we’ve got in store. Over the coming months we’ll be showing you how the Raspberry Pi can power robots, fly to the edge of space and even cross the Atlantic!

The biggest thanks, of course, has to go to Ash, Will, Ian, Aaron and everybody else – there are dozens of you – who has worked on The MagPi since the beginning. You’ve made something absolutely remarkable, and we promise to look after The MagPi just as well as you have done.

So – want to see the new issue? Here it is! Click to find a download page.

31

 

106 comments

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The magazine looks amazing folks, congratulations to all involved!
Loving the four page Astro Pi write up too! :)

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and well done Ben for getting the new website ready to go :)

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If I click through to the download page, and then click on the “About Us” menu link, it does work but I also get a message: A username and password are being requested by http://staging.raspberrypi.org. The site says: “staging”

Probably an unimportant resource somewhere that got missed. Over to you Ben!

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Yup – we spotted that. Ben’s out at a conference today, but we’ve mailed him already. Thank you for the spot!

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Fixed

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Ben is never where he is supposed to be ;-)

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The important question – is it still made on Raspberry Pis? :-)

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Not all of it. But I’m sure that was always the case :)

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You are right there. Although only out of necessity (i.e. forgetting your RasPi and doing some last minute work on a linux vm)

Probably about 90% or more of the Scribus production was done on Pi.

But anyway – the benefit of the new look magazine far outweighs the “nice to have” of all/most production being on the Pi (IMO).

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I can quite truthfully say that all the articles I laid out, the graphics I created and the articles I wrote for The MagPi were all 100% created using my Raspberry Pi with Scribus, GIMP and LibreOffice. It was tough generating some of the PDFs in the early issues with only 256MB RAM, but the Raspberry Pi 2 made creating Issue 30 a lot easier!
Congratulations and good luck with The MagPi.

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Wow, just wow. The MagPi has always been great and now it’s even better. So many exciting announcements. =o)

Well done to the old and the new.
Amitiés,
Alan.

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I should probably stop reading everyone’s nice comments and get on with some work…

A mixture of the fun I have had on The MagPi over the last 2.5 years and the sheer awesomeness of the new look magazine* means I am holding back tears.

Thanks for taking this on guys. I will be reading this every month with a huge amount of pride. The Raspberry Pi community is the best I have ever seen/known!

*(and a little bit of relief to not have any more MagPi work to do – good luck Russell!)

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We’ll see you tomorrow, Aaron!

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Yes indeed…super excited!

(And busy confusing everyone about what the hell PiJuice might be)

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I was assuming PiJuice tastes of… well, raspberries ;)

Well done on the new-look magazine Russell, Ben, et al.

It’s been great working on The MagPi for the last couple of years. Hope to contribute to the new magazine in the future.

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Or Pie’s. Mmm Pie juice.

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To be honest, I would not recommend eating (or drinking) PiJuice.

You might end up with, at best, a sore tummy. I am not sure I want to know what the worst case scenario would be :-)

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Fantastic! Congratulations MagPi!

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Up to now I have printed out the download PDF as an A5 booklet but as the Magpi PDF is issued as a landscape double page this is not now possible. While the new format is better for on screen viewing it makes printing off problematic.

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+1
Please go back to single page setup as per all previous editions

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+1

Great content in the new look magazine, but do please at least offer the download as a single page pdf format. The new format can’t be printed as an A5 booklet which was a perfect size, and it is pretty hard to read as a pdf on an iPad or other tablet without scrolling around the whole time. Thanks

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I second that – Looks great but single page format please. I read this on a tablet.

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I also prefer one page per page format. So I searched for some help. And I found http://superuser.com/questions/235074/how-can-i-split-a-pdfs-pages-down-the-middle/235401#235401 that tells me how to split the pdf file into separate pages. The resulting script is:

MagPi=MagPi31.pdf
PAGECOUNT=35
PAGESIZE=5953×8419
PAGEOFFSET=595.3
gs \
-o left-sections.pdf \
-sDEVICE=pdfwrite \
-g$PAGESIZE \
-c “<> setpagedevice” \
-f $MagPi

gs \
-o right-sections.pdf \
-sDEVICE=pdfwrite \
-g$PAGESIZE \
-c “<> setpagedevice” \
-f $MagPi

pdftk \
A=left-sections.pdf \
B=right-sections.pdf \
shuffle A1 A2-end B2-$PAGECOUNT \
output The-$MagPi \
compress verbose

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The issue is now available as a single page PDF: http://www.raspberrypi.org/magpi-issues/MagPi31.pdf

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Thanks Ben

That’s great. Can read it on my tablet now.

Leo

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Thanke you vert much foe the singelpage format
jan

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Thanks so much for the quick response. You folks are great!

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THANK YOU! Sorry for shouting; I was just so excited. The MagPi is always always entertaining and informative.

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Another thanks. Such a quick response.

Keith

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Hi,

Thanks a lot.

But it seems as the link doesn’t work (anymore).
Hope you can fix it.

Best regards,
Iver.

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Hi again,

Sorry, I was to fast with the broken link – it seems as the main download now is pointing to the one page per page version.

That’s great – thank you very much.

Best regards,
Iver.

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Congratulations to everyone who’s worked on the old and new versions of The MagPi. It’s a great magazine, a real return to hands-on practical computing mags packed with ideas, and it perfectly encapsulates what the Raspberry Pi community is all about.

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Absolutely. It was the practical and fun “try this code out” atmosphere of The MagPi that drew me in from day one.

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Same here. I used it to get my first pi set up.

:-)

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The new MagPi looks great BUT it’d be more practical for users like me to have the PDF set up as single pages rather than as facing pages. I like to download MagPi and put it on my iPad for reference. The two facing pages, however, are much too small for my aging eyes. Please reconsider.
Thanks.

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I wholeheartedly agree, the scrolling single page is ideal for on screen access. Presumably the double page spread works for printing hard copy, but not for e-reading.

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Well done to everyone involved. This really is 10/10 in terms of presentation and layout. Its very readable, and will be going on my Nexus so I can read on the train!

Thank you.

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Wow, miles better guys. The old one was fine but this one is great. It reminds me of my old Spectrum mags. Good work!

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It’s probably because I am a very old person, but I don’t like the new pdf layout.

A lot of the text is too small, so with suitable zoom applied, I have to read down an even number page, slide across to an odd page, then scroll up to find the top of that page, and read down the odd page, then scroll across for next even number page. Repeat pageNo/2 times.

So, I would much prefer one page after another, where text can be read without zooming beyond ‘Fit to Page Width’.

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I would be very happy to pay for a postal subscription if it eventually scales up to printing.

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Hiya,

Is there a printable version for those of use with duplex printers?

I wanted to give my Offspring something to read on the 1.5 hours drive to Cambridge on Sunday :-)

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No magpie logo on the front cover anymore? Or is that all part of the “rebranding”?

http://www.raspberrypi.org/community/ still links to the “old” MagPi website.

Only had a quick skim through it, but it all looks very slick :-)

Will the “source articles” still be available https://github.com/themagpimag/ or only the final output PDF?

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We’re going to give the MagPi a bigger profile on that page soon.

The source won’t be on GitHub due to changes in the editing process but we’ll still use it for code and things for tutorials.

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I kind of liked the source being available, it made it much easier to create a single resouce out of a series of articles that spanned multiple issues. It was also handy having a copy of just the article with the example code as well.

If it is not possible to provide the source files for the articles on github, could we find another way to cover some of the same use cases. Maybe pdf files of just the article, could cover some of the uses of the source files?

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Hi, I am a big fan of the magazine and I am happy to see it is now backed up by Raspberry PI Foundation.

It is hard to criticize something made “out of love” like this magazine, but I have one complain though. I am disappointed with issue #31 layout. Please, don’t layout the PDF with 2-pages like the issue #31. This is not suitable for tablets, which I believe a lot of people use as reading device. Or at least, if you think this new layout should stay, make a 2nd version with 1-page layout as well.

Thanks!

Paulo

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For PDF is it possible to do single pages. Best screen viewing and also means content can be reused like the following link where I took the first 15 issues of The MagPi and extracted the Scratch columns only to ale a dedicated resource. https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B23BvTk93HRYV0JEZE5yeWo5MEE/edit?usp=docslist_api

With this new layout remixing like this mean having to get the original files and building it all again from scratch.
Not as by-nc-sa/3.0 friendly as it could be

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Really like the polish of the new MagPi. It was always a great magazine, but the spit shine just took it up a noch.

However, not thrilled with the side-by-side layout of the PDF. Makes it a lot harder to read.

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Just to clarify, I am not suggesting two different layouts, one with two-page backgrounds and a second for single-page backgrounds. Just a single file PDF for browsers and tablets. I really like the two-page backgrounds.

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I second this one page at a time please. BAD decision.

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Fantastic news that the MagPi’s future has been assured. The new cover looks great too. Congratulations to all involved in this development!

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Sorry to gripe, but I have to agree with others the format of two facing pages, makes it very difficult to view on a tablet.
Please can we have an alternative format.

Leo

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Will there be a tablet friendly version?

Unlike the previous issues there is a lot of scrolling and zooming to view this.

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I have to howl with the others requesting the one page per page format back – it’s difficult to read the new layout on ordinary screens and with tablets it’s almost impossible or at least very cumbersome.
Please, let us have the old format back again.

Thank you.

Iver.

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Am I the only person who loves the foundation, yet thinks the old look of the MagPi was more appealing? From my point of view, the gigantic photos, spread over more than one page, add nothing to the appeal of the magazine and make it much more difficult to read on my tablet. I know all the “real” magazines like that sort of thing. I guess I’m not “A Dedicated Follower of Fashion,” but maybe I’m not alone?

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Oooooo! I am in it! Great stuff all round!

Matt

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I would like to thank the original Magpi team for the huge amount of work they conducted to produce 30 issues of the magazine. Definitely, Magpi has been a significant factor in attracting people to the Raspberry Pi and almost every single issue was produced on time – absolutely amazing activity by a volunteer team. You all deserve awards from the Raspberry Pi Foundation.

deaf-llama

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Yet another plea for the old single page format. I use Adobe reader on a PC and select “two page view”. This works just fine. The new format I find much more difficult to read despite it being two pages wide.

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I support the comments about make the new Magpi single A4 pages. I have just printed it out and it is really hard to read with A5 pages – particularly lines of programming. My vision is normal.

deaf-llama

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*SHAMELESS PLUG* To celebrate the new MagPi, the old MagPi team are going to print Issue 30 (the last “classic” issue) and give it for free to all backers of our Volume 3 Kickstarter as a thank you to all our many friends and fans.

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Great job! I have a question though: Who do potential contributors now contact? Still articles@themagpi.com or…?
Thanks!

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I believe it is magpi@raspberrypi.org or alternatively use the contact form at http://www.raspberrypi.org/magpi/contact/

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Great news! Is there any chance for e-book format? Like in Linux Voice?
MagPi in the new format is a little challenging to read, I think I need better glasses now ;)

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Hi,
Magazine looks amazing!!!
Congratulations to the MagPi Team !!!!

Warmest Regards
Ioannis

http://www.pimodules.com

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The new issue looks very well done and I’m sure it would look great in print. It is at least readable on a 15-inch laptop screen; having a single-page PDF option would be great also.

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Great job, but i also would love to see the old single page format return. so much easier to read

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Great news, I have always been very impressed at the quality of the mag from the get go.
Has always had the ‘Sinclair User’ feel to it. Love it. :)

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Sorry, to hard to read on my laptop screen. Single-page PDF please, this is a nice looking proof of your design skills but it’s not readable.

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Please, one page a time!
It’s very difficult to view on a tablet.

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I love everything Raspberry Pi. Most of all, the revitalization of interest in computer programming. I bought my very first computer in 1983 and it was the Timex/Sinclair 1000 (Z81 for US Market) and IMHO was the very best home computer ever! Along with the home computers were the monthly magazines we would purchase at the drug store (same place I purchased my Z81!). The Raspberry Pi and The MagPi Magazine are just about as equivalent to what I, and countless others like Eben, experienced in the 1980’s as it could be.

It is with my dedication and love that I too must offer constructive criticism regarding the new layout for the magazine. I have surpassed the double nickel stage in life (55) and I am having a hard time reading Issue 31, even with my readers on.

A very big thank you from my heart to all who have provided the Raspberry Pi and The MagPi Magazine! You may have possibly turned the world in a more positive direction.

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It’s so beautiful! Well done, Raspberry Pi team!

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Not yet available via the iPad newsstand?
I hope this gets done, but without seeing it. I fear the two-page format will not work on an iPad mini.

Russell Barnes

Unfortunately Apple take up to 20 days to approve the ‘first’ issue of a magazine (but it will hopefully be available by next weekend).

Newsstand editions need to be presented to a particular format and spec, so if you’re already a happy reader of other Newsstand magazines on the iPad Mini, you should be happy with our one.

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Does this mean that there won’t be any more episodes of the raspi.today podcast?

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You might want to put a redirect in place on the old website.

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Please also maintain the old RSS feed [1] or at least have a separate feed only for TheMagPi announcements. There is only an empty comments feed [2] on the new TheMagPi website.

[1] http://feeds.feedburner.com/themagpi
[2] http://www.raspberrypi.org/magpi/feed/

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what’s happened with ash Stone, i found nothing about him in the new mag.
he was/is the friendly face i liked if i open the mag, hope he was not fired

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Hi Alex,

Definitely not fired, thanks for your concern!

My ‘real job’ has meant I have had to step back from The MagPi, trusting it in the safe hands of the Foundation. I hope to still be around in the capacity of writing articles.

Thanks for all your support in making The MagPi great.

BW

Ash

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We are *DEFINITELY* going to be twisting the arms of all of the old guard into writing articles now they’re not editing any more. Ash: I believe we made a date to meet on another beach soon. I’ll nobble you if we’re in your part of the world soon.

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Looks amazing, guys. Very professional.

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I’m a little bummed at not receiving the memo but i am glad to see the magpi be given its official status!

(I’d better change my job status on fb to not get into any legal niggles)

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Latest edition has a fresh look and feel to it.

One thought though, the new PDF format (double page spread) is unreadable on an iPad. The old Single page view was very readable on a portable device.

Regards,
Mark

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Fantastic work! Love the design. The article about me is great xD

Let me know if you want me to help by writing articles, compiling and proof-reading!

So when can we get our print copies and where? Is it going to be in WHSmiths?

Awesome work! Very exciting! Well done all ;-)

Russell Barnes

Thanks Zach!

Have a think about what you’re like to do and give me a shout!

Anyone who’d like to contribute to The MagPi can get in touch via http://www.raspberrypi.org/magpi/contact.

Ps. We’re sticking with digital for now, but you never know ;)

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See you tomorrow Zach!

The print version won’t be coming out for a couple more issues; there are a number of elusive ducks that need putting in a row first, but we’ll definitely be there by the summer.

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The number of comments that posts receive isn’t always an indication of their importance, but 70 posts as i write this is deservedly congratulating to the team and the foundation for supporting it

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Don’t like the new layout – single page layout please!!!

Russell Barnes

In case you missed the message from Ben earlier on, issue 31 of the new-look MagPi is now available in single page layout!

http://www.raspberrypi.org/magpi-issues/MagPi31.pdf

The Newsstand editions for iOS and Android will also be single page layout too (as is the way), or at least it will when Apple press their shiny ‘go’ button!

Hope you enjoy the magazine!

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nice cover and very retro style ;-)

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Thank you all so much for providing MagPi thus far and in the future! There are many good hints, tips and project examples. I look forward a the new issue every month! Thanks again for all the hard word and to those that have made it possible.

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The RaspberryPi Foundation never ceases to amaze!

Congratulations! Thank you for continuing this tradition.

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Sorry to add a negative note, but why change the format? Which world do the Foundation live in? Many magazines are abandoning their print versons. Most books are now sold in epub or similar formats for reading on a tablet, yet the Magpi is produced in a format suitable only for printing. It is unreadable on an iPad mini. (I note that there is now a single page format, but this still leaves a lot to be desired.) Adopt a more modern format designed for different size devices. PS The Magpi page needs an update to describe the changes.

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Looking good. The team have done a great job over the last three (three? really? where has the time gone?) years. Does this mean there is no longer a requirement for my index?

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Meh…made a mess of the link :( try this one!

Russell Barnes

It’s a great index of all the original MagPi content (and it helped immensely when I was doing my research). It would be a shame to see it disappear!

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Stylistically I think the design team lost the plot somewhat. The raspberry pi is directed towards the young and computer naive, as well as the techie enthusiasts. The charm of the old Magpi magazine was its almost Beano and Dandy style of comic which drew in young and old alike with its familiar and almost laughable simplicity. It was light, friendly and inviting. A good read or something to flick through.

This new offering has an international clinical feel of many high street magazines and has most of the their rigid cold charm. I don’t warm to the new layout, which seems to be an exercise in DTP skills rather than attracting more young or silver haired users.

Give it some thought and don’t forget the roots of the pi movement.

tin hat on and waiting …

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Hi,
the magazine is brilliant, however I preferred the single page layout as well. (I printed some pages for my son from time to time. I tried to download the one page version from the link below:

http://www.raspberrypi.org/magpi-issues/MagPi31-single.pdf

but I got a 404 error when I try. Can you please check and send the correct link.

Best regards

Stephan

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Hi Stephan

Just use the regular download link. The original 2 page format has now been replaced with the single page format (bravo!).

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Great new look and twice the size.
I’m also delighted to see that there are more articles aimed at the beginner and intermediate levels and that code can now be downloaded. This should improve the initial success rate and remove the need to search for typos.

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PDF glitch?

URLs don’t work.

Websites/links seem to have been highlighted (bold) but are not active (clickable). This should be possible, as it was in previous issues. I note there that the links were shown as full URLs; this is not necessary for format purposes: the text shown (bold) need only be descriptive of the underlying URL. This is so in HTML, and translates into PDF too.

Hoping for better in next issue(s)…

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Great issue, love the new look. Can we assume that future issues are no longer going to be free as page 5 shows an advert for a subscription coming soon with a 45% saving?

I am usually against digital subscriptions as I would rather have a physical magazine in my hands. I would consider buying a hard copy of this magazine, is that on the cards too?

Keep up the good work!

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No, future issues are going to be free.

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PDF downloads will be free. It’ll be available to buy from the Android and Apple app stores, and in hard print too (with subscription options).

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Great! Just viewed single-page version, and it’s a much more pleasant experience (Desktop Kubuntu,Okular reader).
Paths must have crossed; see my previous post, URLs still not working.

Hopefully…

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Dear Raspberry Pi Foundation,

the new design and layout of the magazine looks very professional – congratulations.

Will the source of the design / template be available? My idea is to *remake* the older issues with the new design.

Best regards

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Great to see MagPi entering a new phase-I’ve read it since #1 and I’ve even understood some of it. It looks really smart in its new guise. A couple of slight gripes: contents spread over 3 pages may look pretty but doesn’t help old gits like me see what’s what at a glance, and some of the reviews read more like ads. Also large areas of colour with white print waste my ink (guess who’s a mean old git then).

Adobe reader App on a hudl2 handles 1 or 2 page formats a treat so just take your pick!

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