Then again I guess we could just hold our pens different.
Full employment, with a living wage is just not possible anymore.
The more i think of it, I think you're mostly right. Win8 x86 (and future versions) as tablets with things like the touch cover, will fully replace laptops for good, and the desktop market will probably shrink a little bit more to the people who only use a laptop (or tablet if it goes that way).
Honestly, I think a full function, completely backwards comparable OS, with a made for touch interface on top of it. Is going to be the first real 'Killer App' (or in this case, killer function) of tablets. Theres not a QUESTION in my mind that this is where apple wants to head, and probably already has a road map to unify for years now.
So yeah, I think RT will flop, but i think microsoft, being the first to truly integrate a full complete desktop experience without limitations, and a very useable touchscreen experience, will swoop in, at least by windows 9 and capture the lions share of the tablet market. Is that such a stretch? They're already getting started leveraging that 90% stake on the desktop that everyone and their grandmother is used to, to the tablet market.
Heck I know how fucking shilly towards microsoft all that sounds, but if i had to put money down, thats what I can see happening. It just makes sense.