I finally broke down and did it, with a little help from my pops from Christmas; I bought the Sheeva Plug (100 bucks). I can't wait to get it as I have so many ideas. I've got an old camera that I can use with the USB plugin to take anonymous pictures when needed... There are so many more applications. Arduino extensions, python scripts, and on and on...
I've been exploring the difficulties and easiness on the web. Here are a few links that I have found so far: