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has gnome finally relinquished ?
It sounds similar, and I'm still guessing it has to do with the video drivers. Otherwise try reinstalling your intel onboard drivers and reboot and see what happens. Or check via lspci in the terminal first if the intel onboard video shows up.
This isn't particularly helpful, but I didn't really get on with Fedora's very frequent updates and changes to functionality either. CentOS is ideal, in my opinion, if stability is your focus. There are always virtual machines for playing with the latest and greatest... :)
i'm not mad with fedora, just with gnome for forcing us to have to use the new interface and not allow a decent fallback, i have used it for a year or so now and honestly i prefer the original, why on earth do we need a big title bar on the top of every window when display space is limited on my little notebook
Mmm... I'm in the process of updating some course notes to the newer Ubuntu/Fedora releases... and I'm not looking forward to it!
Your notes on the DE/GUI of linux are still fine, only thing you may need to add is gnome3 being the new gnome(default) used for most distros. And you mentioned all the other ones too which can be used as a DE. Outside of what DE you use the working of ubuntu(.deb) and fedora(.rpm) is still the same. So I wouldn't worry too much about that :)

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