I too am just about due to sell/upgrade my laptop as I did 3 years ago when my 12" iBook G3/600MHz was 3 years old. Now my 12" iBook G4/1.33GHz is again 3 years old (AppleCare limit just ran out) and I had planned on taking it in for inspection right before since I had never utilized the $250 warranty I purchased with it. Unfortunately, I forgot I bought in August and it was too late in September when I noticed. It is making a loud creaking sound or loud buzzing, (esp. when lifted up off a service), about 50% of the time. The other times it makes no unusual noise and in either case, it always functions properly (may be the drive? fan? ...dunno).
Anyway, I was so excited about the new aluminum MacBooks (would be my first Intel Mac), and the timing seemed right. To get the 2.4GHz upgrade as desired it would cost me about $2000.00 total after AppleCare, etc. But when you upgrade you always give up small things (no more Classic mode, no modem, screen lacks height of iBook, though wider overall) even though you gain much more. After reading this and other threads as well as articles and reports, I too can't see spending all that money for the "latest-and-greatest" to give up FireWire. I like the convenience of Target Disk Mode, the smooth choice for camcorder video importing, overall more capable and intelligent interface than USB (regardless of speed), and it is Apple's very own implementation, that I remember marveling at with the first iPod I bought back in 2001! I have a few large external drives (all both USB and FireWire), and my last iPod 60GB was from 2005, so still uses FireWire or USB (new iPod Touch only USB). My cam is only FireWire, but cam comes built-in on MacBooks now so that's no big deal.
I just think it's weird to know the older model you are upgrading, as well as the cheapest new ones, have that interface, as well as the MacBook Pros, skipping over the middle. I want the latest design ("future-proof" as they say, computers get outdated soon enough), especially with the innovations and complete overhaul (plus the entry level looks just like my old iBook, pretty much). I even considered upgrading to MacBook Pro, but to be honest, it would easily be $600 more after the price increase since even the AppleCare is $100 more, and to be honest, it is too pricey for me, especially in today's economy. Besides, I actually like
the weight and convenient size of the 13" letting you zip around the house or carry with ease. The 15" feels too cumbersome and significantly heavier (I held one in each hand at the store), and I already have that behemoth 21" PowerMac CRT in my office w/my PowerMac for a large display. So to pay $600 more and
get the size I don't need or want, or else get something that is on its way out and isn't the complete new redesign, both seem like poor alternatives.
I guess I can wait until the next revision. Do you think about six months or so? What I'm thinking is there will be enough complaints that either Apple will reintroduce FireWire (in which case I'd be pissed if I bought one now without it) or
eliminate it all together. Then I won't wait because if still missing from the next line up by then (after all the time an despite the uproar) I can pretty must rest assured it isn't coming back. Something just tells me though they may do a 180º with the next revision (maybe even FireWire 800?). I can just see Steve Jobs' keynote: "...and guess what. We brought back FireWire!" (cheers & applause from the audience).