, BitFlipper wrote

*snip*

Yes, for routers maybe. But absolutely very relevant for a wannabe gaming console that is trying to break into a market where Windows has by far the most and best games. Not sure how you can't see this. Do you really think enough AAA games are going to be written for Linux overnight that it would become more popular than Windows? Really?

*snip*

Routers, phone, set top boxes, top boxes...and guess what? None of them use the command line. Like any operating system kernel, Linux can be skinned to do anything. 

What I did say was that for those kinds of devices, no-one gives a crap what OS is on them because end-users don't need to interact with the actual OS. Which part of that confused you?

Riiighhht. So s you're saying that it won't be successful because it runs Linux, and you're also saying at no one cares that it runs Linux. Glad we cleared that up. 

No one knows if the Steam box will be a success  because the folk behind it haven't explained the marketing plan. 

I don't imagine for a minute that they believe it will take over the world, but I imagine they believe they can make a profit from Steam.  I imagine that the first thing they did was look at the losses on the xBox and PS3 and say, 'Er...let's not do that.'

And I also imagine that for folk who want to play their Windows games, then there will be a way to install Windows. It is a PC after all. 

And I imagine that the folk at Valve looked at the state of the PC market and realised that it might be wise to separate their fortunes from those of Microsoft. If Dell had thought this far ahead then they probably wouldn't be considering giving the money back to the shareholders (oh the irony). 

But on the subject of porting games, it seems that work has already started:

Steam on Linux would be nothing more than a curiosity without a library of games to back it up, but Valve has been hard at work here too, porting some of its own games and helping other developers make their games run on the free OS. At the time of writing there are around fifty games available to play via the beta of Steam for Linux with more being added.

Note how they said Steam, not the Steam box. 

Importantly, this isn't another company using Linux as an embedded system - various flavours of the open source operating system can be found all over the consumer electronics space in everything from PVRs to sniper rifles and is the OS that underpins Android - what Valve is proposing is running Linux on a line of PCs that differ from the one on your desk or your lap only in size and the number of video out ports. Steam for Linux can already be installed on a commodity PC with a suitable graphics processor and Valve aren't going to care if you buy games on your laptop or on a purpose-built set top box. Your money is still good.

Nice touch. 

http://www.trustedreviews.com/opinions/will-the-steam-box-be-the-final-push-linux-needs

Waitasecond! Did someone say sniper rifle??

Why yes, they did!

http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2013/01/17000-linux-powered-rifle-brings-auto-aim-to-the-real-world/

And look a that. No Command line or gnome interface In sight. Could that mean it is possible for Valve to build a Linux box that doesn't look like Linux? 

Who'd a thunk it.