At first glance, the new Mac Pro seems like a finger in the eye for demanding creative professionals. But after actually using the system, I am convinced that this is a very successful workstation design that can be a great template for future versions. As novel as the tube design is on the surface, it is simply a solution to a design problem for workstations. How do you keep a high-performance machine with two powerful compute GPUs cool? You make it small, you make it a wind tunnel, you put all the devices along the walls of a giant heatsink, and you make the case metal to assist with cooling. James Dyson couldn't have done it better.
Girad's initial review is an extremely thorough breakdown of the new Mac Pro (see also his followup article updating the Maya/Open CL issue here). As the computer begins to trickle out to users I'm sure it'll become more accepted. Once the third-party manufactures have a few months with the new Mac Pro they'll be able to craft solutions for it's perceived "pro" shortcomings. My hunch: in a year or two we'll wonder why we ever had such big computers on our desk or in our machine rooms in the first place.