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Ok, I bought one of these and thought I would pass it on as a cool hack toy. Boundless Virgin WebPlayer (Ethernet) 200MHZ Internet Appliance...$149.00


More info at...
http://www.ubid.com/actn/opn/getpage...ionId=25785929


More or less it runs Linux and is no longer being made (they were for another company to use as a promotion tool.) Have been told that even hard drives have been added to them even though they are sent out with a small RAM Drive.


Anyway's...10" screen and wireless keyboard and mouse with a build in Eithernet card. So, thought you all might want to play with this. They only have 5 on auction at Ubid...but they put more up each time an auction is over. Was told they have a few hundred. ALL NEW.


More hacking info on these at the following URL's...(Even how to make it a Windows machine. Gulp)

http://www.i-hacked.com

http://k-ray.netbox.be/?&jq=11000

http://www.larwe.com/technical/webplayer_main.html

http://virgin-linux.sourceforge.net


Hope you enjoy.



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David Bott
It's A World Of Entertainment...Experience It!

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http://www.avscience.com
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The Nate Home Theater
 

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I've had a couple of these for a couple of months. It's possible to see them go for right around $99 at UBID with the built in modem instead of Ethernet. For $99 these things are really cool, but don't expect to play DIVX movies on these things. 200 Mhz Media-GX processor is equivalent to about a 133-150 Mhz Pentium. MP3's will do OK, but you'll need to turn off most of the extra plug-ins to have seamless playback.


I've used mine with a USB Ethernet adapter with some success. The USB drivers can give you some problems, but for general web surfing and MP3 playback across the net it works fine. The ones that come with built in Ethernet go for around $150 as David has indicated, and these may be worth the $$$ if you really want built in Ethernet.


You can add a hard disk internally, but there isn't a lot of space inside. The mainboard does support a hard disk, CR-ROM and even a floppy drive, but you'll have to be handy with a soldering iron to get all that stuff to work.


From the factory the device comes with a flavor of QNX realtime OS that was modified for the Webplayer. These devices come with a 48MB Disk-on-Chip that acts as the boot hard disk. Retail for the 48MB DOC is close to the cost you're paying for the entire device, so be careful when playing around with the DOC as many webplayers have been broken by screwing up the DOC. There is a version of Windows98 that has be stripped down to the bare min that will fit on this DOC with a little room to spare. This requires that you have a laptop hard disk and hard disk cable that can be connected to the webplayer. The drive is not hard to find, but the cable is a special order item. There is guy named Jack that runs a company called badflash that can set you up with the proper hard disk cables. His service is highly recommended.


Side Note: There is some indication that there are some webplayers that came with Linux, but this has never been stated officially since Boundless has never released any of thier code under GPL which would be required if they used Linux.


Overall, a neat little package that can be used as a web terminal, terminal server client, or MP3 player without too much difficulty.
 

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What's the DSTN LCD display resolution?


What's the range on the IR keyboard?


Is there any advantage to the internal ethernet over an external USB-to-ethernet converter?


Got it running your HTPC yet?


Thanks,

-yogaman
 

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They are another good hackable (and subsidized) toy but I would still rather go for an Epod as the Epod comes with a touch screen so command and control applications can be a little more professional looking....


What I am dying to see is an Epod like device (touchscreen / battery life etc) that I can fit a cut down Win install on for Talisman applications....


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The webplayer has a 800x600 DSTN. The screen if pretty good as far as passive LCD screens go. Very bright and with good wide viewing angels. It's now where near as good as the modern TFT screens, but for ~$100 what do you expect. http://www.avsforum.com/ubb/wink.gif The range of the keyboard is somewhere between 5 and 15 feet depending on the angle. From directly in front of the IR sensor you will get the best range of course. It's possible to add a USB keyboard and mouse to this machine. The Intel Wireless package comes to mind...


Using a USB Ethernet adapter was the common method of networking the Webplayers up until boundless started releasing the versions with built in Ethernet. The Ethernet cards are MiniPCI cards similar to those found in some laptops. The modem versions have the MiniPCI slot free, but have an internal 56K modem connected to the one of the pseudo serial ports. It takes a little extra hardware to complete the serial port driver, but there is documentation on how to accomplish this. The K-Ray link David provided above is about the best you can find.


As for tablet based computers, there is a guy selling Fujitsu Stylistic 1200 Pen based computers that will run Windows 96/98/Me. These are going for anywhere between $120 - $150+ depending on who you talk to. These have internal 2 GB harddisk, 130 Mhz Pentium processor, 2 PC card slots, mouse, keyboard , parallel inputs, and Video output. A nice little package. The only real drawback of this device is that is uses an active pen that requires a battery. So, it's not a touch screen. The battery in the pen will last about a year, so that's not the big concern. It's just easier to have a true touch screen for a remote application.


I have one of the Stylistic 1200 and they are well worth the $150. These are used computers that originally sold for close to $3500 back in 1997. It's a good bit bigger than an Epod and much heavier. Screen is nice. 640x480 DSTN. Battery life varies based on what you use it for. With a wireless Ethernet card, it's possible to get two full hours of use from this computer while surfing the web.
http://reldridg.tripod.com/stylistic1200/index.html


[This message has been edited by JoeFloyd (edited 06-26-2001).]
 

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Well, I won an auction for one of the $99 ethernet-less WebPlayers at ubid.com. With shipping and handling, it's really $113. The least wonderful part is that it may be 3 weeks before it arrives because it comes from a "partner" not directly from ubid.


I almost didn't post this information because the interest level seems low. But maybe there are legions who just overlooked it originally.


What am I going to do with it, you ask?


It'll at least become my program listings ("TV Guide") display.


If anyone has written an application to suck down a week or more's worth of program listings from Dish Network, TVGuide.com, tv.yahoo.com, etc., then eliminate the channels that I'm not interested in, then add in my local channels, please let me know. And if it can show me more than 2 hours of listings at a time, and initiate recording events on my AIW or HiPix based on one-clicking a program listing, well, that'd be even sweeter.


(If you haven't named that product yet, how about, "PVGuide?")


I may try hooking up an IRMan to use it to do PON/OFF, volume, etc.


If everything works out, I'd like the WebPlayer to be the virtual console for the real HTPC in the next room, too. Any suggestions for how to make that work would be appreciated, too.


Note that these applications would be suitable for any PC, not just the WebPlayer. But the WebPlayer is a pretty nice, inexpensive unit for a HT, I think.


-yogaman
 
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