As far as I understand, both Unity and the new Gnome Shell are both running on new Gnome code base. There's some name confusion because talking about Gnome seems to refer to both the code underneath and the shell. Just to be clear, I'll use Gnome3-Code and Gnome3-Shell to separate out the code from the UI.
Now, if I have that straight, the new Gnome3-Code is a serious improvement over the old Gnome2-Code. I can actually tell that it is significantly more responsive and I presume more stable and rational. So that's good.
And, if I'm right about all this, Unity and Gnome-Desktop are both just shells on top of the new Gnome3-Code. It's on the shell layer that (questionable) decisions, like having a "launcher" that can only be on the left side, are made.
So my question is this: Would it not be possible to use the new Gnome3-Code and make a new shell that is basically the same UI as the Gnome2-Shell?
Aren't all the UI level decisions essentially arbitrary? Is there some reason why you couldn't have panels and Compiz effects and all that jazz?
I notice that Gnome3-shell is not compatible with Compiz, but Unity is. So, surely it would be possible to make a shell that recreated Gnome2-shell.
Of course, I have absolutely no coding expertise in this area whatsoever. But is there a place or a way I can plant the seed of suggesting that someone fork a Gnome2-shell for Gnome3-code?
From what I have seen, while Gnome3-Shell and Unity have their supports, it seems to me the base of that support comes mainly from people close to the project, and the dislike for Unity and Gnome3-shell is pretty significant. I bet if someone went in the direction of a new Gnome2-like-shell, it would soon become a de-facto standard.