AtEase was a simplified version of the Finder developed by Apple in the early 90s. Its purpose was equivalent to Launchpad of Mac OS X Lion: Make it easy for beginners to start applications without causing any damage.
But Mac OS X offers beginners help with one more potential source of trouble: it makes it simpler to install and update applications via its app store. The Linux analog of the app store is called package management: It tightly manages installation and also handles updates and removals. I’ve always considered it one of Linux’s killer features. Package management has been around for a long time and it is time that this kind of innovation spreads to other desktop operating systems. While experts could not care less about Launchpad for their own use, it will make their lives easier, because beginners will understand their systems better and cause less damage. On the other hand, the app store will be directly useful to them. I love that Apple keeps track of what you own and lets you install it in one go on new computers.