I made that post the other day in a hurry, hence not going into detail about what I'm looking for and how I'm using my laptop right now. But in a way, that made it more interesting; I got a broad array of answers. Thank you all!
So now comes the detail, and if you have other advice to offer, please do.
First of all, I have a desktop computer, which is where I do 95% of my writing work -- maybe more. Also a lot of e-mail, websurfing, listening to music, and most of my game-playing. That's still working fine.
My laptop mostly gets used in front of the TV, where I deal with e-mail and surf the web while watching TV. Sometimes I write blog posts. It also gets taken along when I travel, and that's where its deficiency really starts to show: it's too large, too heavy, too inconvenient. It takes too long to wake up and reacquire a wireless signal, which is partly a function of its slow degeneration from age -- but not entirely.
Ergo, I want something that is smaller, lighter, and more responsive, as well as something that can function as a better ebook reader than the tiny screen of my phone. Netbooks are generally too small; I don't have large hands, but it's still a bad ergonomic idea for me to try and type a lot on such a small keyboard. I think I'd be better off with a Bluetooth keyboard for a tablet, which will be about the size of the one on my current laptop. An ultrabook is a possibility . . . but I'm not sure I really need something on that scale, for the use I make of it.
On the other hand, I'm not a fan of the restricted environment of an app market, whether Android or iOS, which is a point against tablets. (The Surface would be a compromise on that front, but it has other things against it -- price for one, and apparently it's a nightmare to repair.)
Anyway, I'm likely to go test-drive some prospects soon, as this laptop is having an increasing amount of trouble finding our wireless network and maintaining a connection to it. Without that, it's nothing more than a very hot brick. So if you have advice to offer, get it in fast, 'cause time is running out!
This entry was also posted at http://swan-tower.dreamwidth.org/575793.h