I'm very impressed. Linux Mint, based on the technology of Ubuntu, the third most popular operating system in the world, Linux Mint replaces the slightly buggy Gnome 3 desktop in version 12 with a new, streamlined interface. Here's a picture of the new desktop after I added a new panel to the top of the screen and changed the default desktop image:
One thing I love about Linux is your ability to customize where everything is. Oh, sure, in Windows and OS X you go get a certain amount of customization, but Linux, being owned by no one and for the world to share, caters to whatever you like. Want the widgets on the top, like they are in OS X? I'll move the clock, just to demonstrate:
And this is just the Gnome desktop. You can install others, like KDE (an alternative to Gnome) and Xfce (a small, lightweight desktop) to name a few, from packages available once Linux Mint is installed.
Linux Mint can be the sole operating system on a computer, or partitioned to play along with Windows and OS X. In fact, the CD version (containing less applications so it can fit on a standard CD-ROM), contains a Windows installer so the Linux Mint can be tried and then removed from Add and Remove Programs if it doesn't suit your needs. No partitioning necessary.
Linux Mint is available in the form of an ISO image file at its official website. Linux Mint 13, the one reviewed here, can be found here, this is a direct download link to the version I used.