The bag closes with a front flap that drapes over the top and is held closed by a clasp. There are no zippers so you can open and close the bag pretty quickly. This can be a good or bad thing depending on who you talk to.
Personally, I like the single clasp design. The bag was evidently designed so that even if you forget to close it, the chances of your notebook dropping out of the bag are pretty slim. Unless you do a cartwheel, that is. :P
On the flap is a pocket that runs along the whole length of the flap. I won't call it a big pocket, because it cannot expand sideways much. But it is a nice fit for stuff like USB and 1394 cables, RCA jacks, etc, etc. I have a gripe with this though because the older Saddlebag had a bigger pocket. And I LIKE my pockets big!
The bag's handle looks pretty sturdy and designed for proper weight distribution. It should hold pretty well although I don't think you are expected to use this handle to carry the bag for long durations.