Stuff & Nonsense

Steam Box: Moving Linux to the mainstream?

So, many of you have probably heard the rumours that Valve is going to launch some kind of hardware reference platform for the PC based mostly on this interview that Gabe Newell gave to penny-arcade in which he stated:

“Well, if we have to sell hardware we will. We have no reason to believe we’re any good at it, it’s more we think that we need to continue to have innovation and if the only way to get these kind of projects started is by us going and developing and selling the hardware directly then that’s what we’ll do.”

Ars-technica has a report on the rumours here

However, if you go back and read the PA interview again, you’ll notice one of the things Gabe talks about repeatedly is producing an open platform.  Which got me thinking…

What if Valve is planning to release a Steam box that runs Linux?

Now, the immediate response is why?  What games would run on it.  Then you find this recent job posting for a software engineer over at Valve.  Notice one of the responsibilities is:

“Port Windows-based games to the Linux platform.”

And suddenly it doesn’t seem that far fetched.  Imagine what a game changer someone like valve launching a linux based, reference hardware platform would be?  Suddenly game studios have a reaosn to develop games on linux.  The stable state of the reference platfoirm means there’s no messing around with drivers or any of the other complexities that Linux tends to be plagued with, and Linux becomes a valid gaming platform overnight.

Remember, you read it here first!



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