The word plasma was never mentioned in my comment.
A better "run command" dialog, a much improved window manager with amazing compositing, better screen management, bluetooth support, network management that didn't suck, hotplug device support, a more configurable taskbar that also includes launchers ('pinned' apps), pervasive search, shells for small-screen devices .. I could go on and on .. and that's only Plasma. The libraries also delivered huge improvements all over the place.
Sorry, I had most of this stuff in KDE 3.5? Yes, it was under different apps, some of them not part of KDE, but worked fine for me. And if all of this is so much better, why does it work so much worse?
Of course, for people who have made up their minds to rag on the 4.x series will make ridiculous claims like "rotating widgets were the only new thing". Get with reality, even if it .. no, ESPECIALLY if .. it runs counter to your pet ideas.
Ah yes, the user is wrong. Well, do as you see fit anyway, this discussion would have been useful a couple of years ago. Your side with the 'user is always wrong, lets change it anyway' has won, and now KDE (and also Gnome, with the exact same reasoning) has become irrelevant for all but a handful of users (actually, I am one of these users that still uses KDE 4 daily, mostly because kioslaves is great). Hope you enjoy your victory!
However, one thing I want to make clear, I have been using KDE4 for years exclusively (right up to this day), I have liked it a lot despite all the shortcomings. I went to the conferences, I contributed to KDE Look (remember that? That actually had good content back when there were still users), etc. And only now that I've been back to KDE 3.5 for a bit, I realized just how shitty KDE has become compared to what it was.