I used my netbook. Price was right, three years old now and still very little issues. I'm a big guy so it looked funny typing on a 10" laptop. A bunch of the girls I know called me BMTL because I apparently looked contorted using it. (Not unlike Chris Farley, fat guy little coat)
Screen can be too small at times, and a little underpowered. I only used it for basic searching and typing/excel. Nice for how easy it can be carried around, actually fit in my cargo shorts' side pockets.
In the long run I wish I would have just went with a 13" laptop, and paid a little more. It was a gift though... so nbd.
Beating a dead horse
Tablets are not for note taking. I've only seen one person be able to pull off using it for school without getting side tracked. Never knew anybody that hooked keyboards up to it either.
Get a laptop, more universal.
Get a wireless or Bluetooth mouse if you don't like the keypad.
If you plan on slacking/wasting time a lot with it, consider the tablet
I don't have any experience with Windows 8, but have used Linux based on my netbook for quick booting.
Asus. Check that brand out. You won't be disappointed for the quality.