i started using mate about a week ago, and i think imma stay with mate.... for now.
before, i was using i3 all the time for the last 4/5 months, and it was great.
but sometimes change can be nice... but you don't wanna leave what you were using before. so i found this blog post: MATE and i3: chocolate and peanut butter
this post is a guide on how to combine the power of i3 with the tools mate provides.
it took me 5 mins to configure it, it works... but looks pretty ugly.
but that's because i just installed it and didn't take the time to configure it, but i'm sure with some tweaking, it could be a kickass custom desktop environment!
imma stick to mate, i dont have the time to configure it properly the way i want it. cool project though!