SSD is The New RAM
The old adage used to be the more memory, the better. But with even the cheapest laptops today shipping with 3-6GB of RAM, that’s hardly a bottleneck for all but power users, who certainly don’t need me to tell them how to improve their machine. Nope, these days the bottlenecks are battery life and your hard drive. SSDs deliver on both fronts.
While you could go buy a fancy new Macbook Retina, Air, or even an ultrabook, SSD’s themselves have come down radically in price and can be easily retrofitted and for not nearly as much as you’d think. My upgrade was a 90gb drive for $65, and the deals are only getting sweeter. The only trade-off is sheer space for now, until the SSD size/price balance catches up with magnetic drives.
Simply undo one screw and swap it in. The result? My 5 year old laptop (Thinkpad X60 Tablet- yes, an IMSA tablet) feeling more spry than should be even be possible. And my battery life? Up roughly 2 hours, to 7+ hours under light use. Doesn’t hurt that the machine sleeps and resumes instantly, either.
tl;dr: Buy an SSD as soon as you can. You won’t regret it.