Tag Archives: Minecraft

Mashup Minecraft with The MagPi #41

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The New Year 2016 edition of the official Raspberry Pi magazine is out now!

Click to find out what else is happening this month!

Click the pic to be magically transported to the pixelated world of The MagPi!

For many of our new readers this marks the magazine’s ‘difficult second album’, which begs the question: how do you top the first magazine in history to to give away a free computer on its cover?

Obviously, we can’t, but what we can do is delivery on one of the promises we made on last month’s cover – learning to code while you play Minecraft. We’ve collected some of our favourite Minecraft ideas and experiments for this month’s cover feature, some of which cross the void between Minecraft’s virtual world and own own. It’s not to be missed!

Elsewhere this issue we celebrate ESA Astronaut Tim Peake’s successful arrival on the International Space Station with some more of our favourite Astro Pi-inspired Sense HAT projects, and we’re helping you get the best possible start to 2016 with 10 New Year’s resolutions made possible with the help of the Raspberry Pi.

Subscriber copies of #41 will be dropping through letterboxes all over the world between Christmas and New Year.

Highlights from #41:

  • Minecraft Mashups
    Stunning Raspberry Pi projects that bring Minecraft’s virtual world to life
  • Your #PiZero projects
    Some of your best ideas and creations made with the $5 computer
  • Sense HAT special
    We celebrate Tim’s successful launch with more games and guides
  • New Year, new you!
    Awesome projects to help keep you honest in 2016
  • And much, much more!
#41 Minecraft Mashups #41 Review #41 Magic 8Ball #41 Project Focus

FREE CREATIVE COMMONS DOWNLOAD
As always, you can download your copy of The MagPi completely free. Grab it straight from the front page of The MagPi’s website.

Don’t forget though, that like sales of the Raspberry Pi itself, all proceeds from the print and digital editions of the magazine go to help the Foundation achieve its charitable goals. Help us democratise computing!

BUY IN-STORE
If you want something more tangible to play with, you’ll be glad to hear you can get the print edition in more stores than ever:

WHSmith
Tesco
Sainsbury’s
Asda
And all good newsagents

US readers will be able to buy the fabled #40 with its free #PiZero covermount from either Barnes & Noble or Micro Center from around the 16th January 2016.

ORDER ONLINE
Rather shop online? The Raspberry Pi Swag Store has copies that can be delivered practically anywhere in the world.

SUBSCRIPTIONS UPDATE
If you still want to start a new subscription with #40, with a free #PiZero and a free cable bundle, you can! Just make sure you select the right option when you sign-up online or over the phone.

#41 will be arriving with readers between Christmas and New Year!

MAKE GAMES WITH PYTHON – new e-book out now!
Finally this month we’ve released the second in a new The MagPi Essentials e-book range. This time we’re showing you how to make games with Python on your Raspberry Pi.

Download the e-book for free or help raise funds for The Raspberry Pi Foundation by buying it on Apple & Android devices

It’s available as a free PDF download or as a digital edition on The MagPi app for Android and Apple devices. We’d love to learn about the games and interactive applications you make!

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Astro Pi on the BBC

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Friday was an exciting day for the Astro Pi mission, which will see British ESA astronaut Tim Peake operate two Astro Pi flight units, each one containing a Raspberry Pi and a Sense HAT, on board the International Space Station! Tim will use the Astro Pis to run experiments and applications designed by UK school students as part of the Astro Pi competition, which ran earlier this year.

We were all absolutely thrilled when we discovered that competition winner Hannah Belshaw would be appearing on BBC One’s very popular live magazine programme, The One Show, along with Tim Peake, who will fly to the ISS to begin his six-month mission, Principia, in December.

The One Show, 06/11/2015

David Walliams and British astronaut Tim Peake join Alex Jones and Adil Ray.

Tim features throughout the first half of the show, and you can find Hannah and hear Tim talk about the Astro Pi mission from 9 minutes 15 seconds. The programme on iPlayer is only made available within the UK, but no matter where you are in the world, you can see from our screenshots that both Hannah and Tim are very happy to be on the show!

Astro Pi competition winner Hannah Belshaw, wearing an actual space suit British ESA astronaut Tim Peake

Tim explained to a peak-time audience that,

[T]his Astro Pi is going to be in various different modules running an experiment each week, and I’m going to send down the data so that during the mission [the schoolchildren] can see the data, see what they’ve managed to achieve, and if they need to modify the code they can send it back up to me and we’ll just keep that going throughout the mission.

We’re enormously excited that school students will be able to communicate with Tim while he’s on the International Space Station!

Hannah, who made her TV appearance wearing a real space suit, entered the Astro Pi competition with her design for a program that captures data from the Astro Pi’s many sensors for visualisation later in a Minecraft world. She entered at the primary-school level, so the code for her entry was written, under her guidance, by Minecraft expert Martin O’Hanlon. Columns of blocks represent environmental measurements such as pressure and humidity, and a giant, blocky model of the Space Station itself represents its movement and orientation, so that it will be possible to play back everything the Astro Pi detects while Tim Peake is running the program in space.

An Astro PI flight unit in its flight case, displaying the icon for Hannah's Astro Pi competition entry, "SpaceCRAFT".

An Astro PI flight unit in its flight case, displaying the icon for Hannah’s Astro Pi competition entry, SpaceCRAFT.

Read more about Hannah’s idea, and find out about the fantastic applications designed and coded by all the other Astro Pi competition winners, on the newly relaunched Astro Pi website! And you can get involved: all the hardware (except for the specially designed, space-grade aluminium flight cases) is available to buy, so that while Tim Peake is operating the Astro Pis in space, you can use exactly the same equipment on Earth.

Also on Friday, Raspberry Pi attended what will be Tim’s final UK press conference before flying to the International Space Station.

Mission Principia media launch

Tim spoke about Astro Pi during the conference, too – you’ll hear him talk about it starting 25 minutes in, with slightly more detail than was possible within The One Show’s format, but we strongly encourage you to listen to as much of the recording as you can, because it’s all tremendously interesting!

Tim will launch on a Soyuz spacecraft from the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan at 11:02 GMT on 15 December 2015, along with NASA astronaut Tim Kopra and Russian cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko. They are expected to rendezvous with the ISS later the same day, at 16:58 GMT. Our Astro Pi flight units should already be there when they arrive, since they’re scheduled for an earlier flight with a planned launch date of 3 December. With both launches just weeks away, we’re immensely excited, not only about the Astro Pi mission, but also about Mission Principia as a whole. We’ll have more to say before launch and during the mission: watch this space!

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MozFest YouthZone Workshops

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This year Mozilla Festival is taking place at Ravensbourne College in London (next to the O2 arena) on 6-8 November. Map here.

Kids' activities at MozFest 2014

Kids’ activities at MozFest 2014 | Original photo by Mozilla in Europe / CC BY 2.0

This is Mozilla’s annual hands-on festival (affectionately known as MozFest) and is dedicated to forging the future of the open Web. It’s where passionate technologists, educators and creators unite to hack on innovative solutions for the Web’s most pressing issues. And this year, it’s packed with a wide variety of excellent Raspberry Pi workshops for young people, not to mention a whole host of other activities, from virtual reality to sumobots to algorithms with crayons!

mozfest

The festival is divided up into spaces, with each space running different sessions that you can sign up for in advance. Read more about them here.

The MozFest YouthZone is a space dedicated to reconciling the conflicts that occur between adults and young people online. In previous years this was only a few rooms, but this year, it’s going to be an entire floor with 30 sessions! Thanks to the efforts of Raspberry Pi Creative Technologist Andrew Mulholland there will be a significant Raspberry Pi presence along with a dedicated Raspberry Pi Zone.

Andrew Mulholland

Andrew at the BBC Blackstaff studios in Belfast

Of the 30 sessions, 17 are being run by Andrew and the Raspberry Pi Foundation education team. These include:

  • Astro Pi: Your Code in Space (by our own Carrie Anne)
  • Musical fruit with the Explorer HAT (by Jim Darby)
  • Hacking Minecraft Pi with Python (by Yasmin Bey)
  • Scratch-ing the Surface with GPIO (by Cat Lamin)

All of the workshops are aimed at complete beginners, perfect if you know nothing about programming or even what a Raspberry Pi is!

A full list of the YouthZone workshops can be found online here.

astropi

An Astro Pi at ESA EAC in Germany – Image credit: ESA

Official leak: there will be an Astro Pi flight unit at the event. If you want to see it (or test your code on it) then make sure you go to Carrie Anne’s workshop!

On top of the 17 workshops in the main Raspberry Pi Zone, there will also be two other satellite Raspberry Pi programming zones. One will be in the music zone with a focus on making music with code (specifically using Sonic Pi), and the other will involve the Raspberry Pi Foundation’s DOTS boards, add-on boards for Raspberry Pi that allow you to make circuits using conductive paint.

Okay, I want to go!

Tickets are only £3 for young people. For adults, tickets are £45; these are full weekend passes and include lunch for both days.

Buy tickets here.

Join us for MozFest 2015

MozFest is an annual celebration of the world’s most valuable public resource: the open Web. Participants are diverse — there are engineers and artists, activists and educators. But everyone shares a common belief: the Web can make lives better. Learn more at: www.mozillafestival.org

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Raspberry Pi projects for Halloween 2015

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It’s Halloween this Saturday, and people have been showing off their spooky Raspberry Pi projects as they prepare to startle the heck out of friends, neighbours and fellow party-goers. We thought we’d share a few of our favourites so far. We’ve also got some great suggestions for you if you don’t yet have a petrifying project planned!

Anyone visiting David Pride‘s house on Saturday will at least get a warning, laden with menace, before this horrible pumpkin comes to cackling, glaring life:

Pumpkin Pi – complete

Proximity sensor, led flip flop circuit – and of course a Raspberry Pi

Robert Wiltshire is involved with the Code Club at Perranporth School in Cornwall, where children prepared this ghastly creation for their Halloween Disco:

Spooky Halloween skull by Perranporth Code Club

A teacher at Nicholas Chamberlaine School, a secondary school in Warwickshire, showed off a Minecraft pumpkin with flashing features. It’s sweet rather than scary, but still superb.

ncscomputing on Twitter

@TheMagP1 pic.twitter.com/lTcg6BJlZU

Of course, the October 2015 issue of The MagPi magazine is full of Pi-powered ideas for scaring your friends. Mike’s Pi Bakery this month brings you a tutorial for Mulder, a glowing, moving skull, and Mike has kindly prepared a video of this incredibly creepy build.

Meet Mulder

A Mike’s Pi Bakery Project from the MagPi Number 38 – October 2015, build in in time for Halloween.

If it’s more ideas than instructions you’re after, look in the Features pages for a haunting selection of Halloween projects. For spine-tingling sound effects, you could give the ultrasonic theremin a go.

Our free online resources include plenty of beginner-friendly projects, and some that mightn’t seem particularly timely can easily be adapted to suit the season. Our Santa Detector resource, for example, shows you how to use a low-cost infra-red sensor with a Scratch program to catch Santa delivering your presents and sound an alarm, but you could install it in your porch to startle trick-or-treaters with scary sounds when they approach your door. And instead of using our Spinning Flower Wheel worksheet to make a summery garden with flowers and bees, you could choose spiders, ghouls, bats and beasties.

Spooky pipe-cleaner bugs and beasties

Spinning flower wheel? Try spinning bugs and beasties | Photo by Wendy Piersall / CC BY 2.0

Lighting up a pumpkin lantern (or, if you’re having trouble getting hold of a pumpkin, a swede or turnip) must be one of the quickest, simplest Halloween Raspberry Pi projects. Fourteen-year-old Yasmin Bey has just published an excellent, short, tutorial explaining how to control an LED connected to your Pi’s GPIO pins; apart from your Raspberry Pi, you just need an LED, a breadboard, a resistor and a couple of jumper leads. It’s an ideal project for beginners. Yasmin’s code for controlling the LED is only a few lines long, and uses GPIO Zero, a new Python library designed by Raspberry Pi’s Ben Nuttall to make it as easy as possible for beginners to get started with controlling things connected to the GPIO pins.

LED-lit pumpkin

LED-lit pumpkin | From a photo by Shannon Ramos / CC BY-SA 2.0

Most UK schools have their half-term holiday this week, and Yasmin is taking advantage of this to work on a Pi-powered haunted house. She’s only just starting her build, but she gave us a sneak peek of her preparations, after she returned from buying “everything in the Halloween section of Poundland”. We’re looking forward to seeing more of her project on Twitter this week.

An appropriately headless Yasmin Bey with the raw ingredients of her Halloween project; we expect the Pi will end up headless as well

An appropriately headless Yasmin Bey with some of the raw ingredients of her Halloween project; we expect the Pi will end up headless as well

What are you planning for your Raspberry Pi this 31 October? Link to your projects in the comments or tweet @Raspberry_Pi – we’ll be sharing our favourites!

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PatternCraft

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Carrie Anne looked over my shoulder when I was researching this post. “I love kids with tools.”

These particular kids with tools are using traditional wooden mallets and punches to make a very special set of punchcards, which they’re reading with a Raspberry Pi that creates a CSV file of 0s and 1s, and then interprets that data in the Minecraft universe.

tumblr_nr63907fhJ1sayvfdo3_r2_500

This workshop project is the work of Gemma May Latham, a collaborative maker, and David Whale, who, with Martin O’Hanlon, wrote the most excellent Adventures in Minecraft. Gemma has a particular interest in the Jacquard loom and punchcard technology, and worked with David to make a Pi-based card reader for kids to import data from a piece of paper into the Minecraft world.

Gemma says:

Housed in a laser cut plywood box, and built using a Pro Micro Arduino, IR LEDs and Phototransistors, the reader is set up to read rows of holes with an additional registration hole at the end for patterns where a row has no punched hole. The reader is then attached to a Raspberry Pi via the USB port allowing for the input of designs into Minecraft Pi via Python.

You can build your own reader; Gemma will be putting instructions online soon (we’ll update this post when she does), and all the code you’ll need is available at David’s GitHub.

There are no words for how much we approve of programming that involves hammers.

The project was a big hit at Liverpool MakeFest – Gemma and David will be running the workshop again on a bigger scale at MOSI MakeFest in Manchester in August, so head along if you’d like to have a play yourself.

 

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