I've been using suckless' dwm for the last 1.5 years but I felt like switching back to gnome, here are my findings.
Even though gnome 40 released shortly before I switched back, it looks pretty much the same since I last used it, so everything was rather familiar. After remapping all the keyboard shortcuts to mimic the dwm bindings, it was usable in an efficient way, with virtual desktops and fast switching between them using keyboard shortcuts.
One of the aspects I most appreciate now is that things just work out-of-the-box, I don't need to manually edit connman files anymore to connect to new wifi networks and can replace my hacked-together bash script collection with either native gnome functionality or extensions.
Yes, in a deep corner in my brain, a package count of over 1000 (
$ yay -Ps) annoys me. But it's a freaking number and storage is cheap. Well, each to their own I guess...
It looks pretty and clean and from my experience it's the most polished DE out there. All the other ones either seem like obnoxious Mac OS clones or look like Windows (Windows=ugly).
Also KDE has too many personalization options for me. And XFCE is great for low-end hardware but I mean look at it, the 90s want their GUIs back. I can't even remember the other DEs :/
Gnome with good tiling support (like dwm does it) would be amazing, but let's be honest that's never going to happen. Luckily I still have the dotfiles so I can go back to my dwm setup, if I want to.
end note: computing is terrible and we should have never used sand in this way.
update november 2021
i have since switched back to using dwm.