QUOTE(Jeremy_ @ Aug 20 2010, 08:09 PM)
My first question is, the author of a book I'm reading says the 'initial' kernel is stored in this ROM chip. My question is what does he mean when he uses the word initial? Is there more than one kernel?
You're talking about the one stored in the TSOP, yes? When the console boots, it copies that to RAM, then uses that new copy for the duration of the session. This is what makes softmods possible - they can't alter the version stored in the TSOP itself, so instead they mess with the one in RAM (which is actually being used anyways).
Though for some reason, the TSOP gets checked again every time a new XBE gets launched. Not sure why. But while just idling (or playing a game or something), that chip will be left alone by the system.