Even with the latest version of GNOME 3 looking a whole lot better than earlier versions, I still find that it is not suitable for my daily desktop computing. But thanks to a couple of extensions, I can customize my GNOME 3 desktop to suite me, in a manner that makes for a more productive time in front of the monitor.
The two extensions are the Taskbar (by zpydr), which displays icons of running applications on the top panel, showing thumbnails of those applications on hover, and Workspaces to Dock (by passingthru67), which transforms the workspaces of the overview mode into an intellihide dock.
Both extensions ship with their own configuration options. This article shows screen shots of the extensions in use on a test installation of Fedora 19 beta. For reference, if you are new to GNOME 3, this screen shot shows the default GNOME Shell. Notice that Activities is the sole entry on the left side of the top panel.
And here’s the desktop with applications icons on the top panel and a thumbnail of an open window showing.
With Workspaces to Dock installed and enabled, the workspace dock now behaves like the Favorites dock on the left edge of the desktop.
For me, these two extensions are what I need for now. To install them, head on over to https://extensions.gnome.org