Continental In-Flight Entertainment Runs Linux

Watching any system spontaneously reboot is a slightly unnerving experience, especially when it’s on a Boeing 757 during take-off. This happened to me last night on a Continental flight back to the UK after Linked Data Planet, and luckily (at least as far as I know) it was only the in-flight entertainment system that restarted, and presumably at the hands of one of the cabin crew.

I’m guessing the cabin crew aren’t geeks, but I was mildly entertained to see that the system runs on Linux, with the penguin there for all to see. I couldn’t get any photos of the startup messages, as turning on my phone at that point seemed like a bad idea, for so many reasons, but watching the whole process was mildly more entertaining than a game of TuxRacer. The only disappointment came when I got back to Bristol airport and saw that the machine running the baggage carousel screens was behind with its Windows updates. Sigh.

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