What many thought was impossible, unfathomable, and only come to be once hell hath frozen over... Well then, button-up your parka on the way down, because Apple hath created a netbook.
Netbooks are generally considered netbooks under a screen size of 12 inches, are comprised of cheaper, slower components, and are held together by cheap plastic in a questionable design. But that's how Dell, HP, Acer, and friends can sell them cheap (as if I couldn't use the word "cheap" again) -- by making compromises. Apple's new MacBook Airs, which come in 11.6 and 13.3 inch flavors, have both the industrial design elements that make them visually striking while still being powerful enough to accomplish more traditional and advanced PC tasks -- traditional and advanced in the sense that they run a desktop operating system.
Of course, great stuff has a price.
In the end, however, the netbook market is all about budget. Although I believe the new 11 inch MacBook Air is more a netbook physically than anything to have come from Cupertino, in terms of the market, they do more damage to netbook sales with the release of the iPad. The iPad is priced just low enough to grab the attention of a few potential netbook customers and herd them in to Apple-town. So, in that sense, because the new MacBook Air starts at $999, it will do nothing to substantially affect the general netbook customer.
But look at it!! Ever since the media caught wind of the growing popularity and sales of netbook PCs, everyone poked Apple over and over again to eventually make one. If you dreamt about something tiny and shiny and appley, then your wish has come true.