My goal is to make my windows 7 mce htpc to use linux instead, I would like to use Mythtv and Xbmc to use my tv tuner and others sources. (tube sites, tv channels sites and others ...)
My HTPC has the following specs.
It's not the best and fastest computer in the world, but I have 10 second boots and able to use the remote for everything. It's easy to use (wife is not tech savvy). Redundancy on the video archives and switching applications and boots are a dream with the SSD.
Before my dog ate the wireless dongle, I did have an ASUS Media Center Keyboard that had a trackball built in which was extremely nice. Had the feel of an iPad when holding but a full physical keyboard. Came stock with my HTPC predecessor ASUS CS5110. When I met my wife, it was determined that I needed to move to just one remote and we keep the wireless mouse handy if something funky happens with the remote communication.
We are using integrated graphics via HDMI, but works great for streaming/tv/video playback.
If your're using XBMC as frontend and you already have a tablet you could use it as a controller. Applications like Yatse work great
I'm even using it on my phone.