Nowadays people use the Arduino and the Raspverry Pi to control all sorts of motors and other things. but also older computers can do the same thing with the parallel port. In fact, you can add several parallel port cards to even make a cnc machine, http://www.machinegrid.com/2008/12/parallel-port-tutorial-part-1/ is a good article about using the l293d chip as what is known as a h bridge with the parallel port.
Note: In Qbasic you can control the parallel port with
out 888, 0
as used by the C language.