Ok I'm thinking of running a carputer in the truck

Can I just run a touch screen in the dash, and just put a tower/pc in the back of the truck and just run long cables to the front of the truck?

Is that feasible at all? Or just a ghetto way to do it? lol
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It isn't that easy... but I think you have a workable basic idea.

but with some mods, it could work. The last time I checked, the touchscreen-based OS's that run on full-sized computers weren't ready yet. However, there are GUI programs that work well for certain applications (mostly for playing/displaying media). XBMC is one good example, and so is Elisa. I prefer Elisa, but that's me. From what I understand, these require very little work to work well with touchscreens (basically installing a touchscreen and the drivers for the screen). Then you have a media player. But for more open, general purpose stuff, I don't know.

The mechanical issues would be space and durability. You would need a Solid State Drive, and you'd almost certainly be best off with a laptop-based system (it would just make things a billion times easier, and less time/space consuming). Plus, the fewer (modded) parts in a given system, the lower the chance of you screwing something up.

Also, normal computers (laptops/pc's) might not be very good for anything other than a media player, or something simple like that. They weren't made for vehicles, and might not work like you imagine. It's hard to explain, but I have an example of a similar problem. On an episode of Top Gear (if you don't know what it is, look it up. you'll be hooked), one of the guys (Jeremy) was fed up with the interiors of cars. So he designed an interior like the interior of his home (complete with chairs, a book case, chandelier, working fireplace, etc.). It has many downsides, of course (it is mostly a comedy show), and didn't work well at all. But I think the situation might apply to you as well. The needs and wants of houses and cars are different... for interior design, and for computers. It might work, and it might not. You'll just have to think about it.

Also check the laws. There are many laws out in various states now about electronics that could distract the driver or obscure the driver's vision.

You could also add some USB controllers (I like the USB xbox 360 controllers) and install some emulators and have a sweet gaming rig. OR add some games to two screens and a LAN hub and have dual-screen multiplayer action (it would actually be pretty easy).

ok, I'm rambling... but I have toyed with the idea in the past. I probably would have done it already if I had a back seat
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What I'm actually talking about is just putting a touch screen monitor in the dash. Like you can buy for your PC at home

Then since I have a cut out truck just putting a bundled PC in the back of the truck behind a panel and running the wires to the monitor lol
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yeah, but not with a standard hard drive or standard operating system.

you need a Solid State hard drive, because there are no moving parts to break.

And you need either a special operating system (that may not be available yet for full computer use), or a program that is capable of it (which are available).

But I suppose it is possible that some of that may be tied in with the driver software for the touchscreen. In any case, you'll probably be working with Linux.

If you have both of those things, then you should be fine.

Before too long you might not need a touchscreen at all. I know of some people making a program for Linux (of course) that uses motion-tracking technology to track head movements. They are going to integrate "meanings" to those movements or other tracking for motion gestures. It looks pretty sweet, but it isn't in alpha stages yet.
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A lot of the in-dash touchscreen dvd players already run with windows ce as the core and just need to be unlocked with something like Miopocket. You can install miopocket on the internal flash memory and buy a wifi card (SD) so you can get online from inside the car.

Do a search for Miopocket 3.0 and you can see the screen shots of what it looks like. That's what I use and it's great.
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One of my friends did a Linux computer in his truck a while back. I can ask him the details.
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