I was going throughout life using Windows, (from Windows 95!!) thinking that all was well, got through Win95, then 98, then 2000, then Vista Me....up until XP. I loved XP!....loved everything about it, thought it was the greatest OS on the planet.
That is up until I received a BSOD that was unrecoverable. I LOST EVERYTHING. Baby pictures of my son, pics and documents that were of immense sentimental value. After the "Zero Extinction" event, I swore on the grave of my very first pet, that I would never use Windows again! (Was thinking I'd just have to play the Apple-thing, and pay through the nose all my life. In the process of researching the various models of the Apple company, I noticed a word in the description listing, it said "Linux".
My first thought was some sort of product named after a form of FOOD?...(I naively thought the "Nux" part was a reference to some kind of nut, peanut, hazelnut etc.) After doing more research and SO not believing what I was reading...(a FREE operating system?.....IMPOSSIBLE!) but reading more and more I was getting amazed, excited, and even a little bit scared, because I thought this was some form of hacking software ! The more I read, the more I just HAD to try this stuff out.
To make a long story short? I decided on Fedora, and even though they too have left the old Gnome for the new Gnome I still love it! I jumped in feet first when it was still on Version 13...(Goddard?...I think?) And I've not looked back since.