This is GNOME Shell running without any other application running except GNOME System Monitor. The CPU usage is always around 60%, which makes the system unusable after a few minutes. I guess it’s actually an issue of the nvidia drivers, but the fact is that I can’t use GNOME Shell.
And this is GNOME Panel. Maybe I’m too used to it, but I really like the old panel approach, and my applets, specially the workspace switcher. I have never seen a better way to change between workspaces than the current workspace switcher applet, it’s fast and intuitive.
By the way, the screenshot shows a special GNOME Panel, it’s bonobo-free! A few years ago I already tried to port libpanel-panel from bonobo to D-Bus, but at that time breaking compatibility with bonobo applets was not accetable. Now we really want to get rid of bonobo in GNOME 3, and I’m not the only one who can’t use GNOME Shell, so GNOME Panel is not going to die in a near future. I’ve already proposed an updated patch for gnome-panel, the challenge now is porting all the applets which might be a new GNOME Goal.