If you are using Windows XP and are ready for a new look, envious of your Mac-owning yuppy friends who have neat graphics and superior rendering, here are two tips for you.
One, don't be. The Mac is cool for those who want something that looks cool. But all those animations (when you start a program, you actually have the icon bounce!) and other gizmos exact a cost on performance.
Two, having said that, you can get a Vista-like feel to your desktop using the Vista Transformation Pack. Below are four plates showing the boot sequence, the login interface, and two screenshots. I personally don't care for the sidebar, and will do a post some other time reviewing different sidebar options available, but for now, here's to a cleaner UI (that's user interface, for you non-geeks)