I have a chromebook with a Precise Ubuntu chroot on it.
I can't figure out how to install the current node.js from the tarball, because
./install make sudo make install
You don't need to compile NodeJS by yourself. The easiest way to install NodeJS is using the official PPA (which contains the latest version — 4.2.4 as of today).
Open a terminal (Ctrl+Alt+T) and :
sudo apt-get install curl
Install NodeJS :
curl -sL https://deb.nodesource.com/setup_4.x | sudo bash - sudo apt-get install -y nodejs