Here are my impressions:
- The community is very alive and active! There are many companies and individuals working on improving GNOME.
- The GNOME foundation is well organised and financially sound. Donations are a big part of this success. If you contribute to GNOME in any way then become member (it's easy to join!).
- Really impressed with the quality of PiTiVi — it's now a very capable basic video editing program. One thing the PiTiVi developers want though is a media manager...
- ...which may be getting closer. Banshee is splitting it's backend out into Banshee Core which will be a database of music, video and photos on your computer. Hopefully there will be some convergence between this and tracker, zeitgeist and akonadi to provide a seamless user experience to your media.
- GNOME Shell is still young but is showing some interesting breaks from the traditional desktop.
- Project Mallard is going to make the GNOME documentation much better.
- Testing initiatives like Mago and LDTP should see an increase in the quality of software.
The future looks really good!