Beginning Ubuntu Linux
I like the idea of PC-BSD as you mentioned. Placing a layer of abstraction between the OS and the applications that run on an OS seem like a good idea. That is somewhat the beauty of Linux with its GUI, apps, clients all running as non-OS integrated programs. I don't know enough to comment on that, but being able to change your GUI between KDE and Gnome itself is a selling point for me when it comes to Linux.
Another major problem I am running into as a new user of Linux is finding replacment for the hundreds of programs that I use regularly and infrequently on my current Win2KPro machine. I read in the heading of this thread that the new Ubuntu book lists the differenet software options availables for Windows upgraders, but why isn't this information more easily dessimenated? What Linux guys need to realize that aside from the early adopter/nerd types, Linux does not provide that much of an incentive to switch. It's not like a Mac where switching will be viewed as easier.
Until this hurdle is passed, I still see Windows dominating the OS sphere. When MS Word replaced Wordperfect 5.1, I still remember Word providing so many ways to make it easier for Wordperfect (with all of its keyboard macros) users to switch. There was a clear and definite incentive. I hope Linux provides that in the future.