Using/getting a Pismo esp certain 3rd party parts may take a little research to work out (like combo - tons out there, just have to ask which ones work), but for the most part, you will be pleased. Pismo has a bunch of upgradEs paths including the chip, and most recently a couple high mhz G3 chips (800 & 900). The G4 is still there and has worked quite well over the years. Just make sure that you get one with a decent batt and screen. The batt that around here is more costly than a TiBook batt (bummer).
The differences are:
iBook -Max ram on 1 slot 640MB, 12.1 screen, 2-USB, 1 firewire, 256k L2 cache @ 1:1 on chip
Pismo - 2 slot 1 GB max, 14.1 screen, S-Video out, 2- USB, 2 firewire, PCMCIA Type I and II card slot, infrared, 1 MB L2 cache @ 5:2 backside (about half slower but 4 times the cache)
Other than that they're pretty close. If it was my choice, Pismo because of the extra Firewire port, 1 gig of ram, bigger screen, expansion bays that you can have and extra battery, combo drive, HD, Zip drives etc.
What do you need it for? If you are on the road a lot the iBook is lighter and easier to pack, the Pismo, while lighter than a 14" iBook, is a little bit large.
Also, the extra firewire port is great and all, but the iBook has a newer firewire controller and it's single port can sustain more data transfer than the Pismo's 2 combined. Also, a lot of devices (such as FW hard drives) have two firewire ports on them and can be daisy chained together.
Really though, when you are talking about the first rev. of the ice iBooks vs the Pismo, it is a tougher choice than if the iBook was newer.
dolawren, type pink in the search field of the discussions folder under apples support page.
Most say that as the pb warms up, it fades a bit, but it can also grow and cover more of the screen as time goes by. It is due to faulty lcd panels used. A problem that worsens, by many accounts, and one to look for when getting a pismo.
Other than that and the squishy keyboard, loved typing on a wallstreet, the pismo is one of the best pb's apple ever made.