Dude, firewire is not the only gateway for pro apps. Earlier today I didn't have a chance to get home to do any colour correction on my mac pro so I fired up colour on my macbook for the first time and had no problems, obviously not as good as my mac pro but fine. Remember this is the same card that is in the macbook pro if you don't boot into the 9600 and a guarantee a lot of users are either too lazy or too dumb to boot into it. This makes the macbooks like 500mhz slower than the pros. Big deal.
The only legitimate case anyone has made against the firewire 800 on the macbook is space. To that I say, drop the kensington lock slot (it's worthless I've seen the metal or plastic left around the lock after they've snapped it off the computer) and move everything but ethernet down to fit it. If push comes to shove drop ethernet and throw in the dongle.
Dude, I understand what you mean, but check this out, although it's not discussed that much except a few times from BAREFEATS.com.
The first several generations of Macbooks had on-board GPU, Intel, they were benchmarked at
70%, 110%, all the way up to 171% when Leopard came out, this was OPENGL only, however, the benchmark is misleading as while it was fast, it was still unacceptable to play games, yet BAREFEATS reported that it RAN Motion and Aperuture very well. So what did Apple do? The next revision Apple released a slower GMA X300 (I think that was the model) and the bench mark went from 171% DOWN to 70%, affecting NOTHING except the use of PRO APPS that ran the OPEN GL.
FFW to present day, now we have Macbooks with dedicated GPU however, NO firewire, so in the PRO forums, many of us, especially MUSICIANS, were pretty fumed with the lack of firewire and many saw the ommision of firewire as a slap in the face to a market base less than 1%. Apple went out of their way to release a re-fresh that went from 171% down to 70% affecting nothing except the PRO apps as it didn't save battery life or offer any performane enhancements, in fact, it was slower.
Just the fact that Apple went out of their way to affect <1% and then to affirm this with the lack of firewire on the present macbooks, was not surprising - this is why if the NEW MINI has both FIREWIRE and DEDICATED GPU, this would be a huge departure from Apple's marketing as they made sure if you wanted to use a PRO APP, you needed both FIREWIRE and DEDICATED GPU, ala iMac, Macbook Pro, Mac Pro, and if the MINI has it, then Apple finally realizes that the fast growing segment is laptops and they won't lose to much money (again, less than 1%) with Pro's using these machines as a second or third machine. Honestly, Apple should make MORE money, not less as PRO uses will always have a HIGH END machine.
If the mini has GPU (dedicated) and firewire, you will see these in edit and audio bays all over California, NYC, Boston, Nashville.
The hardest hit (lack of firewire) on the macbook were the a) Musicians that depended on firewire for PRO AUDIO devices and b) All the mom and pop cam cord users that Apple One to One trainers taught (Down big time from Pro Apps to iLife, not many One to One users can tell you about Logic, let alone Shake, Final Cut, Motion), it's all iLife which makes sense as Apple's bread and butter are the EMAIL, iLife, iPhoto barking puppy dog, stroller bearing moms and dads, nothing wrong with that, but a far cry from what it used to be when PRO CARE and ONE TO ONE was one program.
Still, if there is 1394 and dedicated GPU, it will be interesting to see if there is a SNAFU or is it just that Apple realized laptops = largest sales and non risk. Desktops slid almost 40% last quarter - so expect to see mini, imacs, then the mac pros, only to see the new OS to come out for your OTHER $129 LOL