The office that Tim and I work out of in Bend, Oregon is fairly new. We only moved in here a few months ago and we’re still settling in and decorating and all that. The classic interior design problem: loads of white walls! We’re still finding the right artwork and shelving and plants and whatnot to spruce up the space. But we had one good idea right away!
That URL has actually been around forever. The whole idea is just for fun. Perhaps you wanna do some hardware hacking and make a little photo frame that uses this or something. At one point we released a mac screensaver with it.
We thought we’d get an actual TV in the office and blast CodePen TV on it 24-7. Have y’all seen TV prices recently?! My gosh, this is a 65″ TV for $650. I think we went with a Sony though? I feel like it doesn’t even matter. They are all huge and awesome and cheap.
I should back up for a second.
The reason we went down this road at all is because Tim had a little device sitting around. Windows on a stick! An Intel Compute Stick, more accurately.
Tim paid like 100 bucks for it a bunch of months back when we were moving into this office. I think the dream was to have a cheapo monitor we plug it into so that we have a dedicated station for the zillion video calls we do every week. That dream didn’t pan out, because we set up a way fancier thing for that (we’ll have to save that for another time) so the stick was just sitting around.
We popped it onto another TV in the office to try it out. Fire up Edge. Full screened it (Windows-Shift-Enter (we always forget)). Typed in https://codepen.io/tv – and away we go, worked great!
We had to tell both Windows and the TV to not be in any sort of power-saving mode, but that was just a matter of clicking around settings and preferences until we found them.
Our biggest concern that an entire computer on a stick wouldn’t have the computing power to run the animation stuff that is so common in picked Pens. But – it ain’t half bad. Edge is a pretty darn good browser, apparently even with 2GB RAM. They sell a more high-powered version we might upgrade to one day.
I know those cables hanging down from the TV look awful. We ordered one of these CableClear things for that.
I also bought an Apple TV to slug behind the thing, because then anybody on the network can AirPlay to it, meaning we can use it for presentations and stuff. We’ve already done a BendJS here and it worked out great!
The TV happens to have Android software running on it so Chrome browsers can broadcast to it somehow as well. Haven’t tried that, but it’s good to know, as that isn’t mac-only.