Said to be the first laptop computer, The GRiD compass was designed in 1979 by Bill Moggridge. In its day, the 320x200 display, bubble RAM and integrated 1200 bps modem made it the province of only the most spendy outfits: Nasa and the U.S. Military, and not so much you or I.
It's one of several fascinating items at Royal Pingdom's gallery of vintage computer hardware. I would like an ugly netbook just like it, with a miniature but clacky IBM-style keyboard.
Gallery of Historical PC Hardware [Royal Pingdom via Wired: Gadget Lab]