Introducing the Chumby
My first thought about seeing this was something akin to “what the heck is it?” And, after reading this bit from CNet, I still have that question. I can answer the basic question, that it’s a linux based internet appliance, one part clock radio and mp3 player (an mp3 player that has no battery , though it has the ability to add one if you can splice and solder your own – no portability cripples this thing), another part widget player (Flickr photo viewer, etc) that you can’t edit from the device – you need to go to a internet connected computer and adjust the setting through the company’s website.
This is, still, an important device. First, a mainstream device with a customized linux interface is important (Palm can’t have all the fun). Also, since this thing is built on open standards (not just linux, but also Adobe’s Flash Lite), the possibility of someone crafting the perfect app for this is immense. That just depends on gathering enough geek attention for someone to craft something useful. I’m not going to drop $179 for this, but I might be willing to play around with something like this were the price to drop lower.