As for saving the network setup, there isn't really any standard in Linux from the command line. Well, there sort of is, in that cnetworkmanager drives NetworkManager which drives wpa_supplicant which associates with the network. For a number of reasons, chumby has chosen to directly communicate with wpa_supplicant.
When you boot, a script called start_network reads the file /psp/network_config, and configures the network. Here, for example, is my network_config (passwords and all!):
<configuration allocation="dhcp" key="duplification" encoding="ascii"
encryption="WPA2" auth="WPAPSK" hwaddr="00:22:55:F2:FA:A1"
ssid="Semisucculent" type="wlan" />
Valid encodings are "ascii" or "hex". They determine what form the key is in. If you really want to specify your 128-bit PSK, you can set this to "hex"
Valid allocations are "dhcp" and "static".
If you set allocation to "static", you'll need to add keys for ip, netmask, gateway, nameserver1, and nameserver2.
Encryption should be WPA, WPA2, WEP, or NONE. I think WPA and WPA2 are interchangeable in our current setup.
Auth should be WPAPSK, WPA2PSK, WPAEAP, WPA2EAP, WEPAUTO, or OPEN.
If you set auth to WPAEAP or WPA2EAP, add a key "username" with your EAP username. Set the "key" to your EAP password.
hwaddr is ignored.
Type can be wlan, lan, or for the adventurous, 3G.
As for the slowness of the C compiler -- The memory bus is 131 MHz. That's about as fast as an early Pentium, but without the out-of-order execution. And it has 64 megs of RAM. Poor little thing, trying to run a modern compiler. I've seem g++ eat up all 64-megabytes of RAM just compiling a single file! If you compile with all optimizations turned off, that might speed it up. Aside from that, I've got nothing.