Raspberry Pi Roundup - a new magazine from Raspberry Pi and an old Claw machine brought back to life

HackSpace Magazine

Raspberry Pi Press (an arm of Raspberry Pi Trading) has just announced the launch of their new monthly magazine: HackSpace. In summary:

HackSpace is the new monthly magazine for people who love to make things and those who want to learn.

HackSpace is to be filled with projects for makers of all skill levels and the first issue includes articles on giving food a smokey flavour, make-it-yourself handheld consoles, a DIY trebuchet project and a feature on popular maker Becky Stern.

The first issue will be available from 23rd November and, excitingly, it is available for free on pre-order until 17th November. Go to the HackSpace website to order your free copy, or to order a box of copies for your local… umm… Hackspace.

On RaspberryPi.org, they’ve said that subscriptions are available “from £4” which makes me guess at an on-sale price of £5.99, but that’s just a guess. Apparently, it’s even cheaper if you already subscribe to The MagPi, which is cool.

The Claw! The Claw!!!!

Ryan Walmsley has taken an old claw machine and retro-fitted a Raspberry Pi to control it. A custom controller board (pictured below) gives him 2 dual H-bridges to drive the three motors on the X, Y and Z axis and some Darlington transistors allow him to control the electromagnet inside the claw as well as the front panel light bulbs. The machine has a complicated power system which utilises 12V, 24V and 48V so there are power rails on there, too. Video streaming and code execution is done on an old computer running Ubuntu. Thanks to some very clever use of the GPIO Zero remoting functions, Ryan runs the code on the PC which then triggers the robotic behaviour on the Pi. You can play The Pi Claw over on this custom website which uses Twitch to stream video from the game. The game is only available when Ryan is, normally between 11am and 9pm, UK time.

For Jams and other events, Ryan has made it so that it is controllable via the front panel controls, keeping the original gameplaying action. You can read more about the project on Ryan’s blog.