No matter how much tech improves; there will always be members of the community determined to revive and emulate the old-school specifications of vintage machines. So instead of using the pixel density of their modern display panels to the fullest extent; they’re doubling up pixels to get that retro feel. This seems to be the case with Dan Aldred’s Raspberry Pi-powered fake terminal project known as the Ferminal.
Aldred is the mastermind behind TeCoEd (Teaching Computing Education); which provides resources for teachers, students and makers who want to expand their knowledge in different areas of microelectronics. He’s even been a guest on our Raspberry Pi-themed podcast, The Pi Cast, highlighting his work.
According to Aldred, the Ferminal project was created using recycled components from his retro video player project. This system featured a small I2C OLED display housed inside an Argus PreViewer slide viewer shell. You can get a closer look at the retro video player project over at his YouTube channel. Wanting to explore further use cases for the old Argus PreViewer; he refashioned it into the Ferminal system.
The Ferminal project uses the same housing and screen but is much more interactive. It’s powered by a Raspberry Pi 4; which has a keyboard attached via USB. The video outputs to the recycled display; housed behind the Argos PreViewer shell. Once powered up; users are met with a familiar black background and an image-free; text-based interface.