I have been using Gnome 3 on FC16 for about a year now. There are a couple things that I see as missing and I think what some of the "ire" has been about. The first most annoying thing is the lack of the power off option in the menu. This is addressed with an extension, but it really shouldn't have to be - this just seems nonsensical. Another issue that I believe has annoyed people is that the desktop is not a desktop - it's a "window" or put more bluntly just a pretty picture. You can't do anything with it, and it seems to be just wasted space. You can of course change this behavior with another extension (I have not done so). I will admit I have slowly gotten used to that and it doesn't bother me as much anymore.
I do like the hot corner and hot key (windows key). The search is great once you get used to it - for example, I needed to call up the calculator: I hit the windows key, started typing calculator (got to "calc") and had it narrowed down to two options: libre office calc and the calculator. Press the arrow key down to switch to and select calculator and launch it.
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