With all these nettops, netbooks and plain ole motherboards flying every which-away, it's hard to say if Portwell's Atom-based nano-ITX board really is the first, but it's close enough to count in our book. Utilizing all sorts of legerdemain and black magic, the engineers at Portwell were able to craft a Linux-friendly mobo that measures just 4.72- x 4.72- x 0.65-inches and supports Intel's Silverthorne Atom
while including six USB 2.0 ports, embedded audio and a gigabit Ethernet jack. The Nano-8044 can be ordered in two flavors -- the Z530, which packs a 1.6GHz CPU, or the Z510, which clocks in at 1.1GHz. As you could likely guess, this one's aimed primarily at point-of-sale machines, digital signage devices and other commercial applications, and the sub-10-watt power draw should keep energy costs to a minimum. Oh, and it should totally play Doom in a pinch.