Last week, Adam Pash at LifeHacker posted a list of "Top 10 Ubuntu apps" that actually very closely matches the list of stuff that I install right after initial setup on my own Ubuntu box. As you might expect, these apps also work on any other Linux distro.

Ubuntu, in my opinion, already has the best out-of-the-box experience compared to every major Linux distribution that I've tried during the last several years (and my roommate, who was previously using Fedora will agree), but installing some of these apps will almost certainly make your life easier. VLC, for example, plays pretty much any video file you throw at it, and Beagleworks pretty well as a desktop search tool. I had XGL running on my old laptop a few months ago, and while it's very cool stuff, it still isn't quite done yet, so be prepared for occasional crashes and other oddities should you choose to install it.

So yeah, go ahead...check out the list, and play with the apps that you haven't tried out yet.