So, it turns out it was just a giant iPhone after all.
Well, not quite. It's more like a giant tarted up iPod touch (since you can't call anyone on it) that can have 3G data support (from AT&T, for a bunch of $ every month), if you cough up extra up front for 3G support that is. The maxed out iPad is US$830, although a geek might get by with a 32 GB $730 version. It has no real functional USB port (and the camera adapter doesn't count), it doesn't support Flash (which isn't completely surprising given its Apple-owned PA Semi SoC heritage, plus the fact that Apple despises Flash), and it doesn't even have a front-facing camera (or any other camera for that matter).
On the plus side, it can run iWork. I like Keynote and use it all the time, because I create Keynote presentations myself for own use on my own Macs when I need to present them, so the iPad would work there. However, as any enterprise employee will tell you, iWork's Pages just doesn't cut it for a world based on Word. At least the iPad's external keyboard support is nice.
Up until the launch, I just couldn't figure out what amazing features and/or content Apple could have added to the iPad to make it stand out in the established iPhone & laptop (or even netbook) world. It looks like Apple hasn't quite figured it out yet either. Maybe more will come with time, but so far I'm just not that interested.
If anything, I'm more interested in what the iPad experiment will mean for my current and future iPhones. I'd like to see iPhone computing and media capabilities expand sooner rather than later, and external keyboard support would be very nice too.