I only very recently moved over to Linux from Windows. I read your words, but I am confused by them.
I mean, I am not some Linux enthusiast that has used Linux all my life and have little experience with Windows. Admittedly, I do not know much about Windows 10. Because everytime I look at it, I find it overwhelming. But prior to Zorin OS, I had never used any Linux Distro in my life.
Even so, using Windows is still fresh in my mind and memory.
And my memories of Windows are very different from what you describe.
I find Windows GUI to be clunky, lacking, inefficient. I often struggled to find settings, how to change things, where to find options and so on. I was constantly looking up "How-To's".
More importantly, troubleshooting on Windows is a tooth-pulling nightmare.
Vague, unhelpful error messages and vague unhelpful tech support.
I often felt just as lost on Windows- but without any knowledge or help with the command prompt, I didn't solve the problems.
I gave up. I either went another way or wiped and reloaded... I spent far more time on Windows giving up on a solution than ever finding one.
At least on Linux, I had phenomenal help with learning the Terminal.
I think you make some strong points, though not necessarily in the same vein that I am taking them.
I firmly believe that Gnome, etc. is headed in the wrong direction.
Let me give you an example: eBay.
eBay was first in the market. Because of this, it is the Dominant online auction. Hands down. The reason for this is very clear and has nothing to do with Brand Loyalty... It is simply because - that is where all the buyers and sellers are.
Attempts to create an alternative competitor to eBay run aground of this problem. It's exceptionally difficult to take a chunk of the market because... Sellers run into too few buyers elsewhere to make enough money to support the effort. Buyers therefore, find too few reliable sellers on those alternative auctions.
Another example: Windows Phone. Microsoft wanted to get in on Androids lucrative market. And let's be honest... MS should have known better... But they tried. And failed.
Because all the apps are on Android. No one wanted to make apps for Windows phone - the audience was too small. The audience was small because there were too few apps.
Gnome is now making that same exact mistake. They wish to emulate the Windows Style Mobile Android Market. They think it is successful, so they should do it, too.
That market is already taken.
Worse still, you cannot run a desktop like a Mobile App Machine.
For Linux to succeed, it must be different. Different from Windows. Different from Mac. And especially, different from Android.
What you suggest is Linux failure - that it's different... I say is its only salvation.
One final point: Gnomes other failing is that it has this "Vision." Fine. The problem is is that its vision is not an Option. Gnome is removing choice and options, forcing all users to align with Gnomes vision, like it or not. The Current Linux Set up includes XFCE, Enlightenment, KDE... It includes OPTIONS and Choices... Gnome wants to do away with all that. Desperately. And that difference of Linux is being threatened, now.
Which means Linux is being threatened because without those things, Linux has no appeal.