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Game Console Ideas #3

So, still writing down my ideas to get them out of my head. These 5 km walks for lunch are great for a lot of things, but since I can't think about Flight, it wanders towards things like this.

Operating system is one of those critical things in a console. Wii, PS3, and Xbox 360 all have a custom operating system, one that has limited inputs to provide consistency. For something like OGC, I think a more accessible operation system would be good.

For those who know me, the surprising thing is that I considered Microsoft Windows first. It has two graphics systems (DirectX and OpenGL) and probably the best supported development studio I know (I love Visual Studio with ReSharper). It is also where the bulk of the games are already written, so it would have a lower threshold to implementation.

There are a few drawbacks. First, Windows does cost money to license and I'm trying to keep the costs down. I prefer everyone keep things legal. Two, on three occasions I had a Windows machine decide that it wasn't genuine and I had to go through the process of re-registering it. In the limited functionality of a game console, I don't know if I want that to show up. Finally, it would be harder to strip out things from the operating system to get a nice base system. Finally, Microsoft already has a game console; it's called Xbox 360.

I considered Mac OS X for about ten seconds. Sorry, I really don't like Apple's development methodology, their ecosystem, and generally the company. I'm biased, but I'm going to be up front with my dislike for them. That doesn't mean I complain about Fluffy's iPod or Mac laptop (much), I just don't want to work with their hardware and operating system.

Linux is my favourite OS, but it is one of those operating systems that is not used by 99% of the population. Very few, high quality games are written for it. However, it is easy to strip down. It also doesn't have a licensing cost. It also has a good, dependency packaging system (apt-get is my preferred), though Nuget is pretty awesome on Windows. I think I could create a controlled system using Linux.

Given that (there's a bit more), I'd go with a custom distribution. I'm comfortable with apt-get, so I'd probably use that for the distribution method for installation and upgrade. It also lets game producers create a repository and have a well tested mechanism for allowing developers to have control over the distribution of their games.