There was a time when the HTPC was thriving. Building a PC decked out with all the features suited to back an awesome Home Theater setup a fulfilling project. For many, slapping the Hauppauge PCI Video Card into your machine was an integral step.
Seriously. Why? Granted, this purchase was made several years ago. The Belkin Nostromo n45 was a bit of a let down for me. At the time I was pretty comfortable with the PS2 controller setup. This game controller was supposed to let me play Gothic 3 without having to get used to the keyboard/mouse combo like most PC gamers. It didn't succeed.
For a while there I thought I could make it with just a cell phone. Once our baby arrived, we started considering a land line in case of emergency or as at least a backup to our cell phones in case the battery dies or its left somewhere. We looked at a few of our alternatives and decide to try out the MagicJack USB Voip solution.
The magicJack is a USB device that you connect a phone line into so that you can make calls using VOIP technologies. Its a small device and setup was quite simple. Unfortunately, the magic jack was a purchase that I should have passed on.
I've had a hankering for a miniPC for a while now. So when the wife started complaining her XP box was running a little slow (8yrs old), I took it as the perfect opportunity to try a miniPC.