Update 30 May 2013: frippery extensions are out now for gnome 3.8. Phew! http://intgat.tigress.co.uk/rmy/extensions/index.html
After an initial bout of swearing, and the odd persistent nuisance, I took to gnome 3/gnome-shell pretty well -- I use it every day and it works well for me. It hasn't changed the way I work and it's prettier than gnome 2, so it's alright.
In other words: whenever I've read posts about how awful gnome 3 is and how the poster is going to switch to KDE/XFCE/LXDE/Xmonad I've considered it as whiny hyperbole. After all, even I had got used to gnome 3.
Sure, things like
* people like Allan Day and Jon McCann saying things like this and this
* feature deprecation in everything from gnome-screenshot to nautilus -- gnome-screenshot is now unusable without patching.
* incessant renaming* of 'gnome' applications
all sure don't help in convincing anyone that using gnome is a sane long-term strategy. But gnome 3 has worked ok for me.
*[open Image Viewer in gnome. Click on About in Help. Any indication that the program is called eye-of-gnome and that the package is called eog? Epiphany is now web. Palimpsest brings up disk utility but there's no package with that name anymore]
Or so I thought. What I had forgotten about was all the gnome shell extensions that I had installed to make gnome 3 usable.
This was driven home to me when Arch linux upgraded to gnome 3.8 -- facing the usual unusable default interface of gnome 3 I quickly set to rectify it by going to http://intgat.tigress.co.uk/rmy/extensions/index.html and downlo...wait...no extensions for gnome 3.8? http://extensions.gnome.org didn't yield much either. There were a handful of extensions, but it was missing one of the most important ones -- the bottom panel.
For the moment I'm stuck with vanilla gnome 3 -- and I don't like it a bit.
I haven't actually used gnome 3 -- I've been using gnome 2 with a gnome-shell engine. And that's why I've been happy...