So my primary computer at work is a Macbook Pro (which I viewed, upon receipt, as a sign that life was looking up) and my computer at home is a custom build PC running Windows.
Both cygwin-X on the PC and X11.app on the mac are designed to be rootless and fairly ambivalent about desktop environments. So I'll invariably end up needing a easy-to-deal-with terminal window to do shell scripting and that usually ends up being rxvt, which I've been using ever since I was using X.
What I've discovered since is that, no matter how advanced KDE and GNOME claim to be, whenever I try to use them, there's some glaring hole in functionality that causes me to get ticked off and turn off any desktop environment.
I think this boils down to the inability of the Linux desktop developers to make the really really hard choices. Your desktop environment can be built in the very model of Unix, where you make Unix-centric tasks very easy. Or your desktop environment can be built on the model of the Mac.
Either way, since none of the crap they've put together for their desktop environment makes my life easier as a developer of sophisticated backend daemons, I end up needing to get to shell windows fairly quickly so I can get work done. And then, invariably something doesn't work the way I expect it to with the built-in "integrated" terminal emulator. Like requiring me to have the entire desktop system running when I want to run rootless. Or some totally messed up keyboard mapping issues that make certain keys not register in konsole. And I'll want rxvt because I know that it works well and never crashes.
And then I discover, like I did today, that when I don't want to use the built-in console stuff, I suddenly have to delve deep into nasty technical crap. Did the rxvt that came with the distro have resources support built in or do I have to figure out how the heck KDE stores the command lines used to launch rxvt?
Meanwhile, yet again, it is EASIER to configure the command line used to launch an application in user-unfriendly Windows as well as command-line-free MacOS X.
And I'd really love to know why Konsole won't let me type an asterix (That's the * symbol) when it works just fine everywhere else.