@AndyC: And there's where you and Microsoft are wrong: it's not a bunch or people resistant to change. It's Microsoft "solving" a problem that doesn't need to be solved. The start menu is proven and works. The metro overlay has problems on the desktop.
I put the Start8 app on my desktop PC solely for the inclusion on the start orb. It can be configured just to be a launcher for the start screen and works way better than the metro overlay. The funny thing is that even with the metro overlay in place everything works -- you get the best of both worlds. The only people that would complain about such an implementation would be the academics like you who whine about the loss of a few pixels on the task bar. Great; make it configurable just like you can hide/show the taskbar.
Too bad that'll probably never happen because it's pretty clear that W8 is going to be "no chrome even if it hurts".