Small netbook with power for long term as you are hinting.
I'd look at ASUS with an Intel or a more reputable company then upgrade when you are ready.
Here a the benchmark table to review processors.
The dual core ATOM would be the best mobile CPU to look at, N550 is the starting point if you really want to research and review what these can be priced for.
The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing - Edmund Burke