actually in unity is faster to switch between open apps or open new ones.

all you have to do is take your mouse pointer to the left side and click whatever app you want

in gnome you have to take it to the upper left corner and wait and then depending if the app is already open or not you can either click the middle of the screen or click the menu to find it

a dock or launcher or whatever you want to call it makes sense...

gnome3 had some major design flaws, unity tried to fix those flaws but made some other major ones.

That said:

Minimizing windows must be a must... opening multiple instances of an app or nautilus SHOULDN'T be complicated

switching between open windows should be effortless