What struck me as I watched was how all the "new" features in Vista were things that Linux had been doing for years. For example, Vista allows you disable USB ports. Now, besides being able to do that in the BIOS of most systems anyway, the hot plug system under Linux as been able to do it for years with a simple line added to one config file.
Microsoft then showed off it 3D desktop features. Again I found myself thinking that Linux, and OSX for that matter, had been doing what it was doing for some time, and what's more, they were doing it better, and the demos didn't crash.
Thus I come to the compare and contrast between Microsoft Vista and Linux. The contrast between an expensive clunky proprietary operating system and a free, open source community driven operating system. Linux remains way ahead of the curve when it comes to eye candy (and incidentally I call it eye candy because that is all it is. No one is actually likely to use the features on either desktop for any functional reason).
Here is Vista.
Here is Linux