I believe the techie/tinkerer types among us are going to be pushed out of the Windows arena as MS seemingly, inexorably moves toward the apple model. MS, Apple, and Google will battle over the consumer market while niche needs - and perhaps not so niche - will be increasingly be met by... Open Source? Linux? Time will tell. I wonder too whether any significant user base will follow as some other platform(s) facilitate non-consumer innovation.

What are your needs that aren't possible with Windows 8?

Make a list and share it with us.

 

I mean, seriously, have you noticed how much you can do from the command-line these days in Windows?  Open up a Powershell prompt (yes, Powershell..... never, ever use cmd.exe again directly -- get out of this habit for the rest of your life) and type.... oh, I don't know, let's say Get-DnsClientCache.  There, one simple command and you've learned what DNS hostnames have been looked up recently on your machine.  Could be very useful in diagnosing problems.

If you like that and want to learn more, open an elevated Powershell prompt, type "Update-Help" and watch as the full helpfiles for all the thousands of console commands get installed on your machine.  (Only basic ones are installed by default with Windows 8)  Then you can type "help dns" and see every command available to you that works with DNS.  or "help smb" for working with SMB file shares. 

You won't find that on Linux.

...... Of course, if your definition of "tinkering" doesn't go beyond wanting it to look pretty, then wait a couple more months for WindowBlinds for Windows 8 to come out and customize to your little heart's content.  Windows has never been very good at offering a wide range of UI customization, so should not be a new concern.