The paving slab laptop doesn't sound too bad. Build quality and serviceablity we'll never see again in the name of shaving a few more microns off the thickness.
On other fronts - I was looking for a box to build a new MythTV system. Oh, look here's one in $PopularVendor's list on Black Friday offer. It's the one that takes a full height* optical drive. The options for slim-line and slot-loading are full price. Are they trying to shift old stock.
*For pedants - yes I too remember when that size was called half height. If I put my mind to it I can probably find an original full height, i.e. the same as and 8" drive, 5 3/4" floppy drive in the garage.