Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Wii Fun Wrap Up - Part 1 - Setting the Stage


Our family got a wii fit this Christmas. It was primarily bought for others in the family as I am not much of a game player. However, I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised by the Wii. It was easy to setup, ran flawlessly and the games were fun and physically interactive.

I was especially impressed with technical capabilities of the wiimote and the balance board and also the games that had been designed around them.

While setting up the Wii I had come across the Internet channel. As there was much to explore it took me about a month and a half to get around to activating it. My interest in it was to see how I could use the Wii connected to my television set as an easy way to access media, pictures and movie clips, resident on my home network.

On an off over since then I have tried with little success to realize that goal.

To Hack or not to Hack

I started, as I do most projects, by spending time on Google to see what other folks were doing. My initial searches were turned up a number of options. The options fell into one of two categories:

  • Web Based Media Servers
  • Console Hacks

The web based media servers were more inline with my goals as they utilized the built in Opera web browser to access content from the media server which was installed on a computer connected to the home network.

The Console Hacks are a series of steps that allow you to load your own code to run on natively on the Wii. These hacks appear to provide more flexibility but require a more technical knowledge and some risk of "bricking" the Wii resulting in an device that no longer functions.

Armed with this information and not interested in experiencing the wrath of other family members if I damaged the Wii my go forward plan was to look at web based media server options.