I picked up this $10 dumbterminal at Re-PC, thinking it would be fun and possibly useful to have one. (There have been times when three seperate people in my apartment were using net connection before. Not for anything useful, of course.) Unfortunately, it needed a special keyboard which I still can't find. It still worked on its own, however, meaning I could send text to it, I just could get text from it.
(BTW, I choose the name Metatron because I had just finished Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett's _Good Omens_, in which it was the name for the voice of God.)

Seeing a good excuse to learn ncurses, I ordered the O'Reilly book and started programming. (The book is, sadly, a veryvery old O'Reilly and poorly organized.) I ended up with metatron.cc, stripchars.c, sysmeter.cc and up.c and a fairly useful display. I admit it is an motely collection, but I only wrote metatron.cc myself. The others I found freely available (yay GNU copyleft) and modified to fit my exact needs.

The screen shot isn't the best, but then again, it really is a screenshot. On the left is the CPU usage bar. It shows the percentage of CPU usage in user, low-priority, system and idle states. When this pic was taken almost all of the processing power was going to Seti@Home, a low-priority background task. The CPU stats are provided by the sysmeter.cc package.
The text on the display is a summary of recent webbed news, provided by a friend's server. I just connect to a certain port and read it out.
Below the news is my current uptime. I'm kicking myself for not taking this picture about an hour earlier, when I had 10 weeks 3 hours and 10 minutes uptime -- much more impressive. But I had to take Hesse down to install a new UPS. This string is created inside of up.c and does nifty things like break uptime in weeks, months, years and even decades. (Which is pretty silly, since the internal kernel jiffies counter rolls over after about 4 years uptime, putting you back to 0. At least nothing crashes when this happens, as compared to Win95 crashing after 49 days uptime for similiar reasons.)
On the right is memory and swap usage. These also come from sysmeter.cc (though I had to add them).