My gizzled old Thinkpad T61 has been showing its age of late, so I decided to spring for a replacement. I plan to keep the T61 in service for messing around with distros and operating systems until it outright dies.
There was really no question that I would get another Thinkpad. Nothing else even comes close in the areas I care about. The GNU/Linux compatibility is first-rate, many Thinkpads are even Ubuntu Certified. The build quality and industrial design are also unmatched (Apple arguably has better build quality, but the compatibility sucks and I hate Mac OS).
I decided to go with a T430s. The battery life isn't quite as good as the T430, but the reduced size and weight are worth it. I considered a W530 to get a quad core CPU and 32gb max RAM (T series caps out at 16gb) but the added size, weight, and expense weren't worthwhile for me.
The verdict? I absolutely love this thing! I was worried about the new keyboard, but it's a joy to type on. The travel is more significant than most chiclet-style keyboards I have used, so I don't accidentally hit keys. I am also impressed at how solid the machine feels and how cool it runs.
Now back to work.