I have Ubuntu running on my laptop, and (especially since my laptop specs are a tad bit higher than budget machines) I need to optimize Ubuntu as much as possible to maximize my battery life.
I've seen a couple of battery life oriented desktop environments, but they seem to be on the visual scale of Windows 98 or something. I'm not asking for high-quality 3D effects and graphics, but I would strongly prefer transparent panels and launchers (or hideable launchers). I don't mind the Window-and-Start-Menu style of some desktop environments. I actually sort of like Cinnamon's approach, but the lack of transparency and a couple of other quirks turned me away from it. And to be quite honest, if I could change the icon size and enable a transparent panel in Unity2D I would just stick with that.
In summation, I want a desktop environment that offers the following
- panel transparency and launcher hiding
- optimized for battery performance
- minimalistic, non-intrusive icons
edit; would also prefer an upper panel option, like in Unity, that can switch between transparency on the desktop and matching Chromium's upper edge when it is maximized. Chromium is pretty much the only window I maximize and the disconnect in some environments like gnome classic isn't pretty.