Somebody at Microsoft clearly thought Gnome 3 was a well recieved success.
Having tried Windows 8 Consumer Preview there is a few good features, and lots of bad features.
Very quick boot (even on fairly old spinning rust).
The "Fix My Shit" facility. Now when people's computers get too slow they can click a button to basically do a re-install all by themselves. (However I've not really had to do this with Win 7, unlike very 2 months with XP).
Microsoft Security Essentials anti-virus installed by default. It's pretty decent and I install it on all Windows computers that I set up for individuals.
The start screen is not very good for well... Starting. When you first get on Windows 8 you flail the mouse around and click wildly trying to get *something* (ANYTHING) to happen. There are no visual cues on how anything works.
Shutting down/Restarting - why can't we have an obvious button that doesn't involve 30 seconds of fucking around to do a 2 second job.
Default power profile puts your desktop into suspend. If your hardware does not take well to suspending you will find that once you leave your computer alone for 30 minutes you cannot start your computer! You have to turn off mains power to the computer to get it to start afresh. If you're busy downloading something large like Skyrim then stiff shit, it'll suspend anyway. Did I mention this was a desktop?
Dozens of spy features. Microsoft wants to put everything about you into an online profile. You can have just a local profile but it seems to be a red-haired stepchild option.
Beginning a new task is slow and clunky. Shit I just wanted to open a fucking browser not go on a safari.
Soon as you install an application it wants to clog up your Start screen with a bunch of icons.
All of the bad points are definitely ones which would cause a lot of distress to less confident and tolerant users. This is obviously a huge problem and I cannot believe that anybody could fuck up a desktop better than Gnome 3 did.
Microsoft should have just made the Start screen an option that people on tablets could enable. Microsoft should have just included the GOOD points into a $30 upgrade package and left it at that.
I don't understand the fixation that people have with shoehorning tablet interfaces onto desktops. I really don't. At all.