July 12, 2012

More Teeny-Tiny Linux PCs are Arriving

When it comes to top open source stories of 2012, it's clear that one of the biggest is the proliferation of tiny, inexpensive Linux-based computers at some of the smallest form factors ever seen. The  $25 Linux computer dubbed Raspberry Pi (shown here) has grabbed many headlines on this front, and Google Chairman Eric Schmidt recently pledged to give some of the units to U.K. schools along with training for teachers who can pass on Linux knowledge to kids. But the Raspberry Pi is only one of many tiny LInux computers being heralded as part of a new "Linux punk ethic." Now others are showing up? Have you heard of the Oval Elephant?

The Oval Elephant is a $72 system described by its developers as:

"...a fast mini pc similar to the MK802.  It comes with Android [4.0] but can support special versions of Linux as well.  Linaro Linux will be ported to this and one of the first devices this size to support it.  We have plans to run XBMC shortly.  (More information to come regarding Linaro and XBMC).  These can be installed using the microSD card slot that supports up to 64GB.  Also has full HDMI port (not mini) for direct connection to TV or monitor.  It also has built-in MIC and external port for MIC for audio.  Power is by miniUSB port.  No A/C plug required."

Like the Raspberry Pi, The Oval Elephant sounds like it packs a fair amount of power into a tiny form factor.

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