I agree, 2008 seems more friendly than 8.5.., but one cant always count on first impressions
I see no benefit to 8.5 over 2008, Id dump 8.5 but its got a shave and shampoo plugin I put in it (or what ever you call it) plus blast code, and thats very handy for fur, and blowing things up (if I could use it) ect. but the 2008 seems to have some great hair and fur tools anyway, havent checked 'shatter' yet)
Actually Im very happy with 2008, even if I cant use all the tools in it (who can??) Im so happy with it Im thinking of asking it out on a date with me.., it will probably tell me to go get nurbed. but Ill impress it with my dual core thingy.., err, processor. I might even try and network all processors, then I'll have 5 times the staying power.
take it easy and life will be easy