Raspberry Pi Hacking Like It’s 1995

Hackers, a 1990s movie that has gained cult status since its release, is well-loved in the hacker and maker communities. Sure its depiction of hacking is a little farcical, but that just adds to its charm (“Rabbit,” “flu shot,” etc.). The titular hero team of hackers, led by Johnny Lee Miller (Zero Cool) and Angelina Jolie (Acid Burn), communicated via pagers, and modern-day hacker PanicAcid is resurrecting the retro tech with the help of a Raspberry Pi 4.

Yeah boi! Got the programming software working and successfully flashed the Advisor, sent myself a test page from the HackRF. This is gonna be fun! Time to learn more about POCSAG. pic.twitter.com/7Ih5h1U0oBJanuary 20, 2023

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Some of the best Raspberry Pi projects use retro-tech, and PanicAcid’s project is based upon what eBay calls a “Vintage Pager Motorola Advisor.” Initially, PanicAcid used a mix of a CH340G USB to serial adapter and DOSBox to run “vintage” software to flash the pager ready for use. After a little more work, PanicAcid could send a page using a HackRF device, but the fun didn’t stop there.

Sending a test page to my Motorola Advisor using the #RaspberryPi and rpitx to encode and transmit PCSAG using a bit of wire on GPIO4 #hacktheplanet pic.twitter.com/yY56EsVTtQJanuary 22, 2023

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Using a combination of a Raspberry Pi 4, software called rpitx, and the Raspberry Pi’s GPIO (as well as, crucially, a happy dog), PanicAcid sent

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