Sony's booth at GDC showcased today Linux for Playstation 2, to be released late May. This ported version of the popular operating system is aimed at the amateur game programmer and Linux enthusiast, and can also be used by small, independent developers to create working prototypes of future games. Additionally, users of Linux for PS2 get access to PS2GL, an OpenGL-like library that implements most of OpenGL's core features. This way access to the console hardware can be done in a relatively intuitive manner.
The complete product consists of a 40 GB hard drive, a 10/100 Base-T Ethernet network adaptor, a VGA monitor cable, a USB keyboard and mice, and 2 DVD-ROM discs containing the operating system & required utilities. Once installed, developers can use their PS2 as a fully functional desktop computer.
As a sampler, Sony was showcasing several applications running on this new platform, from a web browser to complete games. The kit will ship in May, and Sony is already accepting pre-orders. The estimated retail price will be $199.