He recently got this computer [...]
That's a strange looking computer... I don't think it's a good one
I just bought an upgraded MacBook Pro with Retina Display*, and with its solid state drive, 16 GB DDR3 RAM, and quad-core i7, I can officially say it was totally overkill. It's important to get something you like (because you spend a lot of time with it), yes, but programming isn't the most intensive stuff you can do on a computer, so you really don't need a super machine to do that. However, if you plan on doing more than programming, it's worth deciding exactly what it is you plan on doing on your laptop and finding a good one that will let you do everything you plan on doing. This is where I'd link to Tom Sloper's article on decision grids, if I had it handy.
*I had to get a Mac to make iOS apps on, otherwise I would've gotten a Windows or Linux based laptop.