Linux VM images for in-browser WASM x86 emulator

unfortunate is a system to build and deploy Linux ISO images for use with the v86 in-browser (client side!) x86 emulator.

Here’s a screenshot:

Screenshot of Unfortunate running in a browser

But we can do better than that! You can use it right on this page (it may take a few seconds to boot):

Obviously, the best reason to do this is that it’s fucking hilarious. More immediately though, I wrote some fortune databases that I thought were pretty good. I wanted to share the experience with others, and I thought that screenshots were fairly low fidelity.

Also, in my opinion, fortunes, especially weird microfiction fortunes, are well suited to being displayed in technicolor. I wanted to show this in action as well. I started with lolcatjs on my own workstations, although on a very space-constrained browser VM rainbow is much nicer as it can be statically compiled to an x86 binary; trying to include nodejs and all of the dependency goop for lolcatjs is basically not tenable.

In the future, I’ll probably use this for other things (but I probably won’t change the name, it’s just too good). For instance, I’d love to show interactively how my psyops project works.

Aside from learning how to use the buildroot system, I also came away with a much better understanding of GNU Make.