Andre LaMothe, a programmer and systems designer who's a bit of a superstar in the homebrew and DIY worlds (largely for his XGameStation, a user-programmable game console) has added another, more sophisticated model to his XGS stable, the Hydra. Where the previous system had been based on a simple, 8-bit SX52 processor, the new Hydra is centered around the more sophisticated, multi-core, 32-bit Propeller Chip, which is similar in concept to the PS3 processor (though not remotely in the same ballpark, if you go by the demo screens). The console comes with a mouse, keyboard, controller, 128K game card, and a blank "experimenter" card (which can be used to solder together your own custom add-ons). The system allows you to develop games on your PC -- though if you're any kind of real programmer, you'll do things the old-fashioned way and use the built-in BASIC to code right on your television while chugging Jolt and eating pizza.

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