I can make a time machine

 

I used to love playing Computer games in the 80s – many an hour was wasted playing Super Mario, Sonic, Space Invaders etc etc. I was pleased as punch then, when I discovered that the world of Retro gaming is alive and well. There’s more than one way to make your own Retro Gaming machine – today I will talk briefly about using a Raspberry Pi, but I’ve also had some success using a Sony PSP, but that’s for another day!

The great thing about this project is that the hardware is relatively cheap. Any Pi will do, including the £4 Zero! You then need a power supply, but again an old Nokia phone charger will fit the bill, an SD card – you’ve probably got a spare lying around – an HDMI lead – a case – and a knock off usb game pad – less than £20?

If you are really ambitious you can even install the Zero in an NES cartridge – I’ve made 2 with a couple of cable adaptors, a cheap USB hub, and a glue gun.

The key to all this though is the software. The nice people at retropie.org have produced a disc image with all the menus and emulators you need. It’s very easy to set up.

The last part then centres around the games themselves. These are available as ROMs – direct copies of the original chip coding that was found in arcade machines or on cartridges. Just google and you will find 100s of sights of questionable quality. I always head off to emuparadise.com. Everything is there!

please have a go – if you need help or have a question please drop me a comment below.

Getting to the Router of all evil

 

i like my router.

its a Netgear NIGHTHAWK D7800

but it’s a little bit inconsistent. Not faulty, it works well delivering decent speed fibre internet to the 33, yes 33 devices that are connected to it, but it teases me, it laughs at me, it says “F*** You”, every now and again.

It’s latest jape is to not let me watch the half dozen channels or so that I pay for as an extra on my TalkTalk TV box. It worked last week, but it doesn’t work today. I thought digital devices were logical. I tell you they’re not. A previous router decided one day not to let any wired Ethernet devices work. After much swearing and unplugging, and reconfiguring, it decided that they could visit internet land again.

The TV problem is caused by TalkTalks reluctance to let you use your own router. BUT I like my router, not their brown boxed Poundland equivalent. It’s all to do with IGMP – or a multicast setting. I can’t help it but I always read that as GIMP – I think they do that on purpose. I switch it on and it no longer lets me experience the delights of SKY 1.

bastard router

Maybe I don’t like my router – lets have a look at Amazon later!

 

 

Breathing life into a OLD iMac

I don’t know why, but in the space of a week I bought 3 G3 iMacs. After a severe telling off from the wife, I convinced her that I would sell 2 and then get the 3rd one I paid for free!

So, I picked up a Blueberry 350mhz, and strawberry 400mhz, and finally an Indigo 450mhz.

All three switch on, but the Blueberry CD Drive eats discs, and makes a horrible whistling noise. The Strawberry one seems Ok, and the Indigo one – the best of the three is filthy, but appears to be the best spec. No keyboards or mice with any of them.

I cannot find a replacement CD drive on eBay, so I have cannibalised the Strawberry one for the Blueberry G3. I bought a 40gb HDD (the original was only 6gb!), and have put that to one side for later. I managed to get a matching blueberry keyboard and mouse but discovered today that half the keys don’t work – so that’s going back.

 

I plucked up courage during the united spurs match – we were a goal down after 6 minutes to CRACK open the Blueberry and put in the DVD Drive and HDD (10gb) from the Strawberry. After a nail biting hour or so, I had done it!

…and yes it works.

 

On eBay as we speak – wish me luck.

 

Ramblings of a Geek….

I recently purchased a Synology DS916+ NAS, and one of the features is the ability to host a WordPress blog. That means no hosting costs!

Hurrah!!

 

You may see the odd post appear here from time to time – PLUS an archive of all the old podcasts!

 

You never know – I might even pick up the mic again…

 

We shall see,