As promised, there is a (nearly) proper Python library (link in the links section, go have a gander) by elektro-potkan, a guy who's got quite a bit more Python/RPi skills than me. He asked me to clean up his English in the documentation, so that's gonna be my commit. The library does just what you need to turn it on/off, change the volume, sound source and tune to a frequency in MHz.
Then I'll get to work on the human interface itself - I'll probably go for an alphanumeric backlit LCD, two rotary encoders, two buttons (enter and back) and a bunch of programmable station buttons.
Oh, and by the way, we're gonna use a heatsink/tuner noise shielding combo that we'll anodize, dye and probably laser engrave with stuff. I've started to populate my PCB and soldering tiny SMD resistors with my fat-tipped soldering iron is really frustrating.
See you around!