For example, when I click on the "Applications" button from the launcher, I'm presented with apps that are installed and other random apps that aren't. If I had needed more applications, I'd likely head over to the Ubuntu Software Center to install them. That is also a place that makes suggestions for software to try, but does so in an "appropriate location" kind of way.
Solution? This is really easy stop spamming me with software suggestions outside of the software center. It's not clever, it's tacky and freakishly annoying.
I'd like you to consider the menu button at the upper left part of the screen, shaped like a foot. I have no problem with this menu placement at all. Yet I find it annoying that when I click it, because I'm then presented with even more redundancy. Browse the Web, Check my email and Listen to Music. All of these options are clearly going to be covered on the launch bar.
In itself, this snafu would be a minor issue if I had a clean way to remove this redundant list. But based on what I was able to find, there isn't a setting for adjusting the app list.
But wait, there's more! After clicking the menu once again, I must then click on "More Apps" to find the rest of my applications. Then I realize that I must click yet again to see all of them.
After all this, it hits me that I should have sorted the software list based on category. After all, I'm merely looking for an app that I forgot the name of. So once again, I must go to the upper right to select the section I think it's in and then, again, click "show all x number of applications" to see everything in that section. After scrolling for a bit I finally locate the mystery application.
Apparently this is progress?
Hey, I have a radical idea! Let's instead try Applications>Section>click>done. Yes, I fully realize that this is the concept that Unity "improved upon." Apparently spending 15 minutes looking for something in a menu that is more attractive provides more value than getting things done in less than 5 seconds. Did I mention in both examples that I was looking for an application that was previously name-unknown?
Solution? Keep the existing menu layout, but give me a "human-usable" application layout within said menu so I can get things done efficiently.
About the progress of the Ubuntu desktop
Starting and stopping at the launcher bar, Unity is great. It even looks nice, too. But for the sake of usability, the items listed above are not me cherry picking at random personal dislikes with Ubuntu. Most of these issues are all out show-stoppers for anyone who does more than just use a web browser.
About the only thing from above that I would label as optional to fix is my complaint about dual monitors. It technically works and isn't really that big of a deal. But to be completely honest, the applets, folder searching and folder/application handling within the menu system is nothing short of hideous.
Should Canonical opt to follow the advice above in future releases of Ubuntu, I firmly believe that both existing and new Ubuntu users will find the desktop experience to be a positive one. In the meantime, we still have "Classic GNOME" to work with. Perfect it's not, but I can work within it at a greater speed than I can with Unity.