Why did I pick Gentoo? Well, mostly 'cos it seems up and coming. The packages are very up to date (and it uses a port-style system). The base install is quite minimal (it's a laptop, disk space is important). The fact that it compiles everything specifically for the processor you have (it's a laptop, speed is important). Oh, and it's fairly hardcore, so I get to learn more about Linux.
The installation was a bit tricky. You download a small ISO, burn it to a CD, boot up on it, do all sorts of tricky commands (I had to use fdisk!) and then it downloads and compiles the bootstrap system, and then downloads and compiles the base system. As you can imagine, compiling everything takes a while (I left it going overnight). Oh, and once you have everything set up, you have to download and install you favourite desktop environment and X server. This also takes a while.
But I'm hooked. The resulting system is great. Gnome flies like it never flew before on the laptop. I still have lots of diskspace left. It's very stable and adding software such as Galeon is a simple matter of typing "emerge galeon".
So far I'm very happy. Happy enough that I've decided to try Gentoo on my work box as well. Let's see how that goes.
No more searching the Net for RPMs for me...