An interesting article on laptop battery benchmarking.
Nothing most techies didn't know (appart from perhaps Intel created the tests).
As someone who only uses laptops I find that there are a number of things I can do to exten my battery life. However, at the end of the day I really do not want to have to squint to see the screen because I have the brightness turned down to 20% so I can get another 10 mins out of the battery.
I really find it no problem to be plugged in 80% of the time. In saying that when I ordered my main work laptop I ensured I upgraded the battery to the largest I could get and I can survive running XP and compiling and testing ASP.Net code using Visual Studio for between 2.5 and 3.5 hours unplugged.
Laptops have become very "trendy" and remarkably cheap but I think people have to really consider that to get the best out of using one they should be considering running it on the mains as ofter as possible and see the ability to work unpplugged as a bonus rather than the norm.