Enable PPA

sudo apt update
sudo apt install software-properties-common

Install apt-fast

sudo add-apt-repository -y ppa:apt-fast/stable
sudo apt -y install apt-fast
echo "alias apt='apt-fast'" >> ~/.bashrc 
source ~/.bashrc

Update OS

apt update && apt upgrade

Install git

apt install git

Uninstall Apps

If you do not like epiphany browser - like me, just run this command.

apt purge epiphany-browser epiphany-browser-data

If you don’t use the pantheon mail app - like me, just run this command to uninstall it.

apt purge pantheon-mail

Again, if you don’t use the music app shipped with elementary OS which is called noise, just uninstall it like that.

apt purge noise

Again and again, if you don’t like the Audience app (video player) in elementary OS, just uninstall it like me.

apt purge audience

Clean Up OS

apt autoremove -y
apt autoclean -y

Tweaking the UI

Add minimize button

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:philip.scott/elementary-tweaks
apt install elementary-tweaks

then go to System Settings > Tweaks > Layout > Windows.

Bring back Tray icons

apt install gobject-introspection libglib2.0-dev libgranite-dev libindicator3-dev libwingpanel-2.0-dev valac
git clone https://github.com/donadigo/wingpanel-indicator-namarupa
cd wingpanel-indicator-namarupa
meson build --prefix=/usr && cd build
ninja
sudo ninja install
apt install -f
wget https://github.com/mdh34/elementary-indicators/releases/download/0.1/indicator-application-patched.deb
sudo dpkg -i indicator-application-patched.deb
sudo apt-mark hold indicator-application
sudo reboot

Icon Pack La Capitaine by @keeferrourke

cd $HOME/.icons
git clone https://github.com/keeferrourke/la-capitaine-icon-theme.git
cd la-capitaine-icon-theme && ./configure

Cursors La Capitaine by [https://github.com/keeferrourke/capitaine-cursors]

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:dyatlov-igor/la-capitaine
apt install la-capitaine-cursor-theme

Smaller titlebar height for non-GTK apps by @sprite-1

Here: [https://github.com/sprite-1/elementary-patches/tree/master/design/smaller_titlebar_for_non-gtk_applications]

Proper Plank (Dock)

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ricotz/docky
apt update
apt install --reinstall plank
killall plank
plank --preferences

Plank Themes by @KenHarkey

Clone and copy the contents of the Plank Themes repo to ~/.local/share/plank/themes or to /usr/share/plank/themes for system-wide use.

APPS TO DOWNLOAD & INSTALL

APPS TO INSTALL & CONFIGURE VIA TERMINAL

Restricted extras and MM Codec

apt install ubuntu-restricted-extras
apt install libavcodec-extra
apt install libdvd-pkg
sudo dpkg-reconfigure libdvd-pkg

archive formats

apt install unace rar unrar p7zip-rar p7zip sharutils uudeview mpack arj cabextract lzip lunzip

Preload

apt install preload

ancient fonts

apt install ttf-ancient-fonts

Other tweaks and fixes

Oh My ZSH

Reduce Overheating & Improve Battery Life

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:linrunner/tlp
apt install tlp tlp-rdw
tlp start

WPS Fonts Fix by @IamDH4

cd /tmp
git clone https://github.com/iamdh4/ttf-wps-fonts.git
cd ttf-wps-fonts
bash install.sh
rm -rf /tmp/ttf-wps-fonts

Fix Lag on Login/Restart by @Jason Waddington

sudo mv /etc/xdg/autostart/at-spi-dbus-bus.desktop /etc/xdg/autostart/at-spi-dbus-bus.disabled
sudo mv /usr/share/upstart/xdg/autostart/at-spi-dbus-bus.desktop /usr/share/upstart/xdg/autostart/at-spi-dbus-bus.disabled

Display Hidden Startup Applications

sudo sed -i 's/NoDisplay=true/NoDisplay=false/g' /etc/xdg/autostart/*.desktop

Fix Desktop entries not executing by @user170

I hope you felt good about these options. Linux is great and its glory is customization and optimizing to the individual taste.