Amiga Emulation on the Raspberry Pi

Amiga Emulation on the Raspberry Pi

We love the Commodore Amiga. We’re also delighted with this video that shows how to turn a Raspberry Pi into an retro Amiga computer. Dan Wood is a radio presenter and host of The Retro Hour gaming podcast. Dan spends his spare time finding new uses for old technology.

If you don’t remember the Commodore Amiga, it was a computer from the late 1980s and early 1990s. It was incredibly popular among gamers and hackers, thanks to its powerful graphics chip. It was also used in many television stations to create title sequences. It was one of the first systems to do video editing. Commodore computers can be quite expensive on Ebay. But don’t worry, you can use a Raspberry Pi 3 to emulate Amigas, including the best-selling 500 and the impressive 1200. How to emulate a Commodore Amiga on the Raspberry Pi The emulation software used by Dan is called Ambian. You should use a Raspberry Pi 3, which has enough power to run emulated Amiga software. You can also use RetroPie to install Amiga software. Emulating an Amiga is a little more complex than other systems. You need a Kickstart ROM alongside the Ambian software. You will need the following Ambian Win32DiskImager SD Card Formatter Kickstart ROMs The Kickstart ROMs can be found online, but it’s safer to buy them as part of an emulated package. Dan suggests using Amiga Forever, which you can pick up on the Google Play store for 69p. You’ll have to resort to finding ROMs yourself (or turn old floppy disks into image files). There are hundreds of truly great games for Commodore’s classic system. These come with the .ADF file format. Dan does a great job of walking you through the process, and he even has a nifty 3D-printed case for his Pi that looks like a squished Commodore Vic-20 computer. The post Amiga Emulation on the Raspberry Pi appeared first on The MagPi Magazine.
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Get Dropbox on Raspberry Pi

Get Dropbox on Raspberry Pi

Dropbox’s relationship with Linux has always been slightly weird, and as Raspbian is a version of Linux, that too means it’s not so straightforward to get the file-syncing behaviour of Dropbox to work. There are definitely ways around this, though, and with a little bit of hacking and tweaking, we can get automatic uploads (and downloads!) of items to Dropbox. This method was created by Alex Eames of RasPi.TV and is perfect for many types of Raspberry Pi project, especially those where you’re taking pictures and want to view them remotely or free up some space on the Raspberry Pi after they’ve been taken. The full article can be found in The MagPi 48 and was written by Rob Zwetsloot STEP-01 Get a Dropbox account If you don’t already have one, sign up for a Dropbox account at dropbox.com. It offers a couple of GB for free, but you can pay a small amount a month for a whopping 1TB of space. There are some other cloud services around, such as Google Drive, but they have even less Linux support than Dropbox. As with most cloud storage services, you can view, download, and upload files from the browser. So if you want to download anything to the Raspberry Pi, it can be quick and easy to go through there. STEP-02 Get Dropbox uploader Now we need to grab Dropbox Uploader on the Raspberry Pi. Boot into Raspbian if you’re not already using it, and either open a Terminal or SSH into the Raspberry Pi if you prefer. From there, you’ll need to download the install files with:github.com/andreafabrizi/Dropbox-Uploader.gitOnce that’s downloaded, you’ll need to move to the folder (cd Dropbox-Uploader) to begin installing. You can start this off with:./dropbox_uploader.shIt will ask for your API key, which is our cue to move onto to the next step. STEP-03 Find your API key You need to head to the developers’ section of Dropbox so you can create a new app and get a unique API key to use on the Raspberry Pi. Click on Create App to start. As we’re working towards a personal use application, the first option we’ll chose is Dropbox API rather than business. The next two options don’t really matter: if you want to access full Dropbox, you can, but it may be better for privacy and security reasons if you’re just able to use a specific folder on your…
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SailBot: Raspberry Pi boat crossing the Atlantic

SailBot: Raspberry Pi boat crossing the Atlantic

Ahoy me hearties. Say ‘Aye’, for Captain Pi, who has taken the helm of the good boat Ada, now skirmishing across the Atlantic ocean. This swashbuckling adventure comes courtesy of the crew at UBC (University of British Columbia). The students grew weary of winning the International Robotic Sailing Regatta (three years in a row) and decided their ship needed a bigger adventure. The result is Ada (officially named “UBC SailBot ADA”). This fully-autonomous boat, controlled by Raspberry Pis, is sailing from America to Ireland.

Building a robotic boat Joshua Baker, Control Team, explains how it all works on the UBC SailBot blog. “There are two identical control boxes on either side of the boat below deck, one on the port side and one on the starboard side,” says Joshua. “Each control box contains a microcomputer (Raspberry Pi and a microcontroller (Arduino Mega), among other components. Above deck on the tripod, there is another Raspberry Pi, endearingly referred to as the “OA Pi” [Obstacle Avoidance]. This translates and sends data from our infrared cameras” The Raspberry Pi devices captain the boat “The goal of the Raspberry Pi devices below deck is to take information from the OA hardware, weather data from the internet, and current GPS coordinates from the Arduino, and use all that information to produce a series of waypoints,” explains Joshua. This data is then used to plot a course, and Arduino Megas are used to navigate from one waypoint to the next. In essence, the Raspberry Pi is the captain, the Arduino Mega is the crew. The sailboat is aiming for West Ireland (the map’s pointing to the shores of Brandon Bay). You can track Ada’s progress on the UBC Website. Ada’s ETA for arrival is 13 days (13 September). Just in time for International Talk Like a Pirate Day. Yaaar The post SailBot: Raspberry Pi boat crossing the Atlantic appeared first on The MagPi Magazine.
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ZeroBorg review

ZeroBorg review

Raspberry Pi robotics specialists PiBorg have turned their attention to the Pi Zero and the possibilities of using it to make very small robots. The result is the ZeroBorg, a diminutive motor controller board that’s only marginally wider than the Zero itself. When mounted to the rear of the Pi Zero, the whole setup (including optional 9V battery) weighs a mere 65g. It’s so lightweight and nifty that PiBorg are using it to control the YetiBorg racing robots in their upcoming Formula Pi series: see this issue’s news section for more details. The inclusion of four H-bridges means that the ZeroBorg can control four standard DC motors independently. Add some special Mecanum wheels and you can get your robot to scuttle sideways like a crab! Even when using standard wheels, the ZeroBorg offers extra control since the bidirectional PWM (pulse-width modulation) signal sent to each of the four wheels can be varied precisely. Each H-bridge can deliver 2A peak or 1.5A RMS current, so it should work with most small motors. Alternatively, the board can be used to run two four-, five-, or six‑wire stepper motors. The ZeroBorg uses the same form factor as the Pi Zero Stacks of fun One curious aspect of the ZeroBorg is that it’s designed to be connected to a Pi Zero that has an unpopulated GPIO header. Instead, it’s supplied with a small female header to fit to the rear of the Zero, at the 3V3 end of the GPIO header; into this you slot the ZeroBorg’s six pins, two of which connect to SDA and SCL for I2C communication. Now, while it’s possible to do this without soldering the small header to the Pi Zero, and instead simply holding the two units together firmly using the supplied standoff screws, we were unable to get this method to provide a reliable enough connection. Once we’d soldered the header to the Pi Zero, however, everything worked absolutely fine, so we’d strongly advise doing this. Alternatively, if your Zero already has a full GPIO male header attached, you could always use two 3-pin female-to-female connectors to connect it; this method would also enable you to use the ZeroBorg with any other Raspberry Pi model. It’s important to note that the ZeroBorg comes in three main versions. While the basic KS1 model comes pre-assembled, the KS2 adds a DC/DC regulator and battery clip (supplied loose or pre-soldered)…
Source: ZeroBorg review

Water-Cooled Raspberry Pi Zero

Water-Cooled Raspberry Pi Zero

The Pi Zero is the hottest micro computer around, but this Water-Cooled Pi Zero is the coolest too . Scott Wood hooked up his Pi Zero to a water cooling system for the ultimate in micro overclocking. “I had a system I put together for my Raspberry Pi over a year and a half ago,” says Scott. “But by the time I had all the parts that I wanted, two other people had already posted,” he tell us. Scott was determined to be the first to water-cool his Pi Zero. “Well the parts have been sitting around,” says Scott. “I just got my Pi Z so I figured ‘what the hell’!”

Building a Water-Cooled Pi Zero “I was originally trying to find a radiator/fan combo, but I specifically wanted a small one,” says Scott, going over his system. “Then I saw this little aluminum fluid overflow reservoir used for small mini-bike and scooter braking systems. I looked around and found a clip on cooling ring for RC helicopter motors that would fit around it.” “I have a fan that can be mounted to it in a pinch, but as an aluminum reservoir with an aluminum heat sync it should do just fine,” explains Scott. “Initially, I was trying to talk a company in Great Britain to give me a discount on a  pump actually used for full sized PCs,” he says. “I ended up finding this one Stateside instead. It is used for RC submarines.” The cooling system has a wonderful MacGyver quality to it. “The hose lines are medical tubing from the guy next door to where I work,” says Scott. “The tubing is used on medical cart systems they build.” The post Water-Cooled Raspberry Pi Zero appeared first on The MagPi Magazine.
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Motorised Skateboard

Motorised Skateboard

By now we’re sure you’re aware that e-boards have officially become a ‘thing’. From knee-driven mini-Segways and two-wheeled ‘hoverboards’ to standard motorised decks, the streets are filled with wheeled commuters. And while Marty McFly may have failed to deliver on the true hoverboard of our dreams, search online for an electric skateboard and you’ll find the next best thing, albeit with a hefty price tag. So when Queensland University of Technology student Tim Maier was assigned with the task of ‘building something with a Raspberry Pi’, he already knew what he planned to create. A Pi-powered skateboard “Building an electric skateboard had been something on my mind for some time, as buying one was not a viable option,” Tim explains, when we ask him if he had considered any other directions for his project. “So when we were told about the task, it all kind of linked up and I started to do my research on what to buy.” With a few requirements in mind, Tim started researching the perfect motor. He wanted to achieve an average speed of 30km/h to aid his commute, and knew the motor would easily be one of the most expensive components of the build. Finally, he decided upon a Turnigy Aerodrive SK3, matching it with two 2200mAh lithium polymer (LiPo) batteries and a basic electronic speed control (ESC). Despite having to rely on YouTube and assorted literature to educate him on how to utilise Python, the biggest hurdle for Tim turned out to be the drive system. “Finding a way to attach the motor mount to the skateboard truck was a huge fiddle.” He ended up creating a makeshift U-bolt system, though he plans to upgrade the mounting layout when attaching a new ESC. An electric motor powers the wheels The motor itself is controlled by a Pi and Wii Remote (a Wiimote to those in the know). Holding the ‘1’ and ‘2’ buttons will connect the Wiimote to the Pi. The ‘B’ button activates the motor, while ‘up’ and ‘down’ on the D-pad control speed. Upon completing the build, Tim has been met with thousands of YouTube views and calls for how-to guides and board sales. Spurred by the positive response, he’s provided the code and kit list on GitHub, and plans to also create an instructional video of an upgraded design for anyone wanting to make their own. The Pi Skate 2.0 will…
Source: Motorised Skateboard

Tweet-o-meter

Tweet-o-meter

Keeping up to date with Twitter can be very time-consuming, especially if there are lots of tweets. What if you could see at a glance what the Twittersphere thinks about a certain topic? In this tutorial we’re going to build a simple RGB LED circuit, and program it to change colour to indicate whether the tweets that include a given hashtag or keyword are using positive, negative or generally neutral language. You’ll need RGB LED Breadboard Jumper wires 3× 100 ohm resistors Twitter developer account TextBlob Python library Twython Python library STEP-01 Install Python libraries Update your Pi to the latest version of Raspbian and download and install the additional software you’ll need.sudo pip3 install twython textblobThere are two libraries that make our project really easy. Twython allows you to contact Twitter using Python and collect tweets (you’ll need to register for a Python developer account – see step 5). Then, to read the tweets in the code, we’re going to use TextBlob; there are other libraries available, but this is one of the simplest. STEP-02 Do you like sausages? Let’s take a look at a simple example. Open a Python 3 interpreter (either use the command line or IDLE) and type:>>> from textblob import TextBlob >>> sentence = TextBlob(‘I really like sausages, they are great’) >>> sentence.sentiment.polarity 0.5Any value for polarity greater than 1 indicates a positive sentiment (like); a value less than 1 suggests negative sentiment (dislike). Try changing the sentence and see how a different phrase will give a different result. Results will be more accurate if you have more text, although a 140-character tweet is normally good enough. STEP-03 Select your RGB LED Light-emitting diodes (LEDs) are cool. Literally. Unlike a normal incandescent bulb which has a hot filament, LEDs produce light solely by the movement of electrons in a semiconductor material. An RGB LED has three single-colour LEDs combined in one package. By varying the brightness of each component, you can produce a range of colours, just like mixing paint. There are two main types of RGB LEDs: common anode and common cathode. We’re going to use common cathode. STEP-04 Connect up the RGB LED LEDs need to be connected the correct way round. For a common cathode RGB LED, you have a single ground wire and three anodes, one for each colour. To drive these from a Raspberry Pi, connect each anode to a GPIO…
Source: Tweet-o-meter

Zero4U review

Zero4U review

While the Raspberry Pi Zero’s compact nature makes it ideal for many projects, the downside is that it only offers a single micro USB port for connecting peripherals. So, to use it with a keyboard and mouse, for instance, you’ll need a USB adapter and a standard USB hub. Well, not any more… The full article can be found in The MagPi 49 and was written by Phil King Designed by UUGear in the Czech Republic, the Zero4U is a four-port USB hub that’s mounted on the rear of the Pi Zero. Its four pogo pins connect to the tiny PP1 (+5V), PP6 (GND), PP22 (USB D+), and PP23 (USB D-) testing pads on the Pi Zero. This enables it to take its power from the latter, in which case it can output up to 2A current to all four USB ports. Since the pogo pins are only in surface contact with the pads, they need to be kept firmly in place by securing the Zero4U to the Pi Zero using the plastic standoff screws and spacers supplied. We were slightly concerned about the pins maintaining a reliable contact, but didn’t experience any problems. One detail to note is that since the testing pad positions are slightly different on the two Pi Zero models – the original v1.2 and new v1.3 with camera connector – there are two versions of the Zero4U to suit, so you need to ensure you order the correct one. Either way, the Zero4U can also be used with any other Raspberry Pi model via its mini USB input, although the power output is reduced in this case unless you power it independently via its JST XH2.54 port. Once the Zero4U is piggybacking the Pi Zero and powered on, a blue LED lights up to show that it’s operating. In addition, each port has a white status LED that’s lit whenever a device is connected to it, which is a nice touch. All four ports operate at standard USB 2.0 speed (480Mbps). The only caveat is that if you insert a USB 1.1 device, they’ll all be slowed down to 12Mbps, since the hub has a single transaction translator, but it’s not a major problem. The Zero4U is extremely small Last word 4/5 The Zero4U is an ingenious solution to the lack of standard USB ports on the Pi Zero. There’s no soldering required and it’s…
Source: Zero4U review

The Internet of LEGO

The Internet of LEGO

We love LEGO and the internet, so what could be finer than this ‘Internet of LEGO’ project? Well, discovering the Raspberry Pi serving as its brain, and catching up with its maker to learn all about this amazing connected city. “The Internet of LEGO is a living project where I set out to learn everything about the Internet of Things,” says Cory Guynn. Packed with sensors, the city reports to a Raspberry Pi that acts as its brain. Cory has used this to create the Internet of LEGO blog. The full article can be found in The MagPi 48 and was written by Lucy Hattersley “I grew up playing with LEGO bricks and model trains, which taught me about construction and electronics, and allowed me to be creative. The use of LEGO also allows me to represent a city or build prototype systems easily. Plus, it gives me an excuse to buy a bunch of LEGO bricks in my thirties,” laughs Cory. “A Raspberry Pi Model B+ is the heart of my city,” he reveals, “and that was the starting point of the project.” The Raspberry Pi is attached to Arduino boards that control most of the GPIO operations. Cory also uses Cactus Micro Rev2, BlueDuino, WeMos and NodeMCU boards, along with a Wio Link and BeagleBone Green. Be careful of the roadworks in the LEGO city The city itself is complex, with many structures and buildings hooked up to a huge range of sensors: RFID, ultrasonic proximity, infrared, and magnetic reed switches are used to keep track of the city environment. The train system is Cory’s favourite part of the city. “I love seeing things in motion,” he reveals. “There are several things that I’ve been able to do that make for a dynamic environment.” Cory has built a train scheduling system using the Transport for London API. This system displays the schedule on an OLED screen and switches to the train track to match the destination. The trains are controlled by WiFi and an infrared transmitter attached to a tower. Infrared sensors are used to detect incoming trains and trigger a crossing signal (with a servo controlling the arm, and LEDs for lights). “Everything is connected to an Arduino Mega, which is then USB‑tethered to the Raspberry Pi,” explains Cory. The full city is an IoT metropolis He has developed a huge amount of software to control all the…
Source: The Internet of LEGO

Begin your journey with Raspberry Pi in issue 49 of The MagPi

Begin your journey with Raspberry Pi in issue 49 of The MagPi

We’ve all seen the numbers. The Raspberry Pi is selling faster and faster every year, which means there are new people getting Raspberry Pis every day. With this in mind we decided to make a brand new beginner’s guide in issue 49 of The MagPi, out now. The Raspberry Pi beginners guide takes you from selecting your Raspberry Pi all the way through setting it up and getting to know the Raspbian OS that powers it. We’re also using it to jump start a beginners tutorial series that will be a monthly feature in The MagPi from now on. Set up your Pi so it can take you to the moon! (Moon rocket not included) As well as the cover feature, we also have a feature on the recently released Apollo 11 source code and how you can emulate a virtual Apollo computer on your Raspberry Pi (along with some historical factoids about making and programming a computer to take people to the moon). There’s also our usual range of amazing tutorials, projects, and product reviews for you to read about as well! You can grab the latest issue of The MagPi in stores today from WH Smith, Tesco, Asda, and Sainsburys. It’s also available in print online from our store, and digitally on our Android and iOS app. Don’t forget – we’re running a poll to find out what you, the community, thinks are the top 20 Raspberry Pi projects to be included in our 50th issue spectacular. Get voting! The post Begin your journey with Raspberry Pi in issue 49 of The MagPi appeared first on The MagPi Magazine.
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