MagPi 67: back to the future with retro computing on your Pi

Hey folks, Rob from The MagPi here! While we do love modern computers here at The MagPi, we also have a soft spot for the classic machines of yesteryear, which is why we have a huge feature on emulating and upcycling retro computers in The MagPi issue 67, out right now.

The MagPi 67 Retro Gaming Privacy Security

Retro computing and security in the latest issue of The MagPi

Retro computing

Noted retro computing enthusiast K.G. Orphanides takes you through using the Raspberry Pi to emulate these classic machines, listing the best emulators out there and some of the homebrew software people have created for them. There’s even a guide on how to put a Pi in a Speccy!

The MagPi 67 Retro Gaming Privacy Security

Retro fun for all

While I’m a bit too young to have had a Commodore 64 or a Spectrum, there are plenty of folks who read the mag with nostalgia for that age of computing. And it’s also important for us young’uns to know the history of our hobby. So get ready to dive in!

Security and more

We also have an in-depth article about improving your security and privacy online and on your Raspberry Pi, and about using your Pi to increase your network security. It’s an important topic, and one that I’m pretty passionate about, so hopefully you’ll find the piece useful!

The new issue also includes our usual selection of inspiring projects, informative guides, and definitive reviews, as well as a free DVD with the latest version of the Raspberry Pi Desktop for Windows and Apple PCs!

Get The MagPi 67

Issue 67 is available today from WHSmith, Tesco, Sainsbury’s, and Asda. If you live in the US, head over to your local Barnes & Noble or Micro Center in the next few days for a print copy. You can also get the new issue online from our store, or digitally via our Android and iOS apps. And don’t forget, there’s always the free PDF as well.

New subscription offer!

Want to support the Raspberry Pi Foundation and the magazine? We’ve launched a new way to subscribe to the print version of The MagPi: you can now take out a monthly £4 subscription to the magazine, effectively creating a rolling pre-order system that saves you money on each issue.

You can also take out a twelve-month print subscription and get a Pi Zero W, Pi Zero case, and adapter cables absolutely free! This offer does not currently have an end date.

We hope you enjoy this issue! See you next time…

8 comments

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I love the idea, and have long wanted to do a retropie – but … Years back I ran Sinclair QLs, and managed to get the game “Stellaris”, a strategy game, keyed in (laboriously, QL SuperBASIC). This was at a time when storage was by tape, basically a cassette recording of the tones of the ‘phone-line modems of the day (perhaps 9600 bits/second – a generous estimate, and yes, BITS!), and before that degraded too far I got it over to a 720k floppy disk. The keyboards failed and I abandoned them. Meanwhile I had already progressed through IBMs: PC (180k 5″ floppy), extender board, XT (360k floppy), extended to 640k, 286sx (a rarity – basically an XT with a 286 processor), 286, 386 (720k floppy, but couldn’t read the QL disks :( ), a brief fling with Acorn Electron, 486 (1.44MB floppy!), Pentium, discovered Linux (Slackware!) and onward… meanwhile the QLs (and monitors and floppies) sat in storage. Now running a Core i3 with Kubuntu and a pi3, with a Pi sitting unused, I thought “why not a Retropie?” I dug out the QL magazine (QL World, June 1987) and OCRed the Stellaris program (MUCH easier than typing it all!) ending up with a 36kB text file that includes the author’s player instructions ….
and then tried to find a QL emulator. Retropie doesn’t have one. I think there’s one in windows’ ‘DOS box’ system, but IIRC (it was long ago) I gave up trying to get it to run.
Long and short: is there a QL emulator for the Pi (or other Linux), or is there someone adept at translation that could/would translate the QL SuperBASIC into something that could run on the Pi? As I read it, it’s rife with text boxes spread around the screen, and of course the screen geometry is all sorts of strange …
Hopefully…

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It’s not something I’ve ever looked at before, but https://duckduckgo.com/?q=linux+sinclair+ql+emulator seems to throw up a number of different options?

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This is more of a query really, but is there a way to buy the older issue, specifically the January 2018 one? I would like to buy it in 12 month subscription rather then a individually copy. I remember seeing the option to do that before but now it only gives the option to select current and next issue only.

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Sorry what I meant was I didn’t want to buy the back issues individually. Instead I am thinking of subscribing for 12 months, which will be from March this year. I was hopping to get this years Jan and Feb issues instead of the 2019 Jan and Feb issues. Thanks for taking the time to read and on replying.

Rob Zwetsloot

Hi, unfortunately we don’t offer that! We can only do current or next issue subs with our system. Sorry!

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Incidentally, the Acorn Electron (a 6502 machine) was an excellent teaching tool – I’d assess it as a forerunner of the Pi operationally (though certainly not at the price point). It had an expansion slot that could access (at least some of) the buses, and ran a version of BASIC that included Assembly Language (the Industrial microprocessor language) so you could create blindingly-fast (for the day) routines within the interpreted (pretty much ‘standard’) BASIC. I managed to create a plug-in module with a modem chip to interface with my (2-metre band) Ham Radio rig and program a routine that could keep up with and send the 1200bps (yes, BITS per second!) data of the ‘state-of-the-art’ digital (pre-‘Packet’) ASCII AFSK (Audio frequency-shift-keying) data to access the ‘ORAC’ bulletin board.
If you can find one I’d recommend you investigate – and if you can get one running, have a play – there may even be some games still floating around!
Cheers

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Gee… I got some tears here (again). This “retro” issue remembered me about my good times with my father and our MSX. All the time that we spent togheter and how good that was.
Now, I’m experimenting something equal but different with my daughter: we are messing with RaspberryPi as me and my father messed with our MSX.
As I said in other opportunity – The MagPi and Hello World Magazine remeber me about the old 80s magazines (specially the INPUT Magazine that were published in UK and here in Brazil also). If you search a little bit in the web, you’ll be able to find that old magazines (some good souls worked to digitalize a lot of them).
My best wishes to you all. Long life to RaspberryPi!!! Long life to all the team!!!

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