It's totally superfluous, completely distracting, and annoying.
That's what I was expecting it to be like. That's what my opinion was based on what I'd seen in the DP and CP.
But after actually using Windows 8 for an extended period of time, I can say it's really not. Superfluous you can argue about (though I actually really like some of the live tiles; my one wish for Windows "Blue" is to have the ability for desktop apps to have live tiles, as Outlook really needs one), but I don't actually find it distracting or annoying, even though I went in with the expectation that I would.