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Linux-powered ice cream

If there was any doubt that Linux is catching on in embedded computing devices, a company called MooBella can put it to rest.

The Taunton, Mass.-based company is using the open-source operating system to control its vending machines that whip up customized ice cream, according to embedded Linux site The systems dispense 12 flavors of ice cream that can be mixed with extras such as peanut butter cups or walnuts. According to the company's Web site, "The MooBella team has created a multi-patented, fully automated ice cream process that will change ice cream forever!"

LinuxDevices reports that each system uses a 1.3GHz AMD 2600 processor, 512MB of memory and a 40GB hard drive. One proprietary wireless network monitors internal systems such as thermometers, while a second communicates via satellite so remote operators can monitor ingredient inventory and system health. The systems use Linux technology a few years old: the 2.4 kernel and the file system of Red Hat Linux version 9.