It’s the first of the month again. What better on a cold December evening than settling down on the hearthrug with a paper copy of the MagPi and a glass of mulled wine, and building a Santa-trap with a Raspberry Pi?
Our friends at The MagPi do an incredible job. They’re now working on the ninth issue of the magazine: it’s the only magazine in the world that’s dedicated to our little computer and what you can do with it. It’s produced entirely by volunteers – if you want to get involved, there are details in each issue telling you how to join in. The magazine is published under a Creative Commons licence: every issue is completely free to read online. It’s an amazing educational resource, and for us it’s a monthly reminder of just how totally incredible the community that’s been building up over the last 18 months or so around the Pi is.
Many people have been asking for a printed version of The MagPi. Last month, the MagPi team started to explore print. Many individuals prefer a paper magazine, and schools and colleges in particular find them a very useful way to consume The MagPi. The paper version of last month’s issue was a great success, but there have been a huge number of requests for the whole back catalogue to be made available in print too. Printing a magazine is an expensive undertaking, and volumes bought need to be significant if doing so is to be affordable for the publishers. So the team at The MagPi have launched a Kickstarter, aimed at bringing out the whole back catalogue as a bumper pack, with a swanky binder; the Kickstarter is there partly to raise the necessary funds, and partly so they can assure themselves that the demand is there for printed copies in the future and look into some other plans, like translating the existing magazines into other languages, and exploring new kinds of content and new kinds of distribution.
There’s some valuable content in there, and I challenge you not to be inspired: hardware projects galore, enormous lists of games and other software you can download onto your Pi, along with courses in Scratch, Python and C: with only the MagPi and no other Pi experience, you can go from knowing nothing about computing to building a robot or automating your house if you work through all the exercises and articles.
Please pledge something to the project via their Kickstarter – and if you can’t afford to do that, please think about volunteering for The MagPi. They’re always looking not only for content creators, but also for designers, educators, administrative support, typesetting and editorial help, and help with all the other less glamorous bits that come with making a magazine.
We at the Raspberry Pi Foundation couldn’t be more grateful to the guys at The MagPi, who have dedicated huge amounts of personal time and effort to making this community what it is. We hope you, like us, will support them in making The MagPi even bigger and better in 2013.