The Core 2 Duo on the Centrino Duo mobile platform is slightly better than the AMD platform. It has a better battery life and heats less.

1 GB of RAM is correct for our programs. But take the 1x1024 MB option instead of the 2x512MB. You'll have a free RAM slot for a future upgrade.

If you want the best battery life, choose an integrated IGP. If you want to have the best future with 3D applications, choose a dedicated GPU. You could also play games better with a dedicated graphics solution.

A TrueLife, brightview or high-end screen with a glossy finish and a big resolution would be nice for you ( if you have good eyes ). A glossy screen will have a sharper image with better contrasts.

Sure, a big hard-drive is good. But look also at the rotation speed. A 120 GB hard-drive worths nothing if it has a 4200 RPM. A minimum of 60 GB 5400 RPM SATA Hard-drive disk is required today.

Good luck !