I was very fond of this site. There were excellent essays, and the discussion structure suited me very well. I'm more of a short form writer. Also, the way it was easy to find old material and conveniently add to old threads is a feature that ssc doesn't have.
The big block of unchanging recommendations at the top of LW2 gets on my nerves.
This being said, the resident troll squeezed a lot of the fun out of LW1, and getting to be moderator-- and then discovering I didn't have adequate moderation tools-- gave me something of an ugh field about the place. And now it's over. It was good when it was good.
The new place has its annoyances, but I'm having fun there. The discussion quality is similar to LW1, I received some great comments already. Instead of a main/discussion split, they let you post to the front page or to your "personal blog", so the barrier to posting is lower. The developers are reasonable, e.g. I complained to Oliver about comment links and he fixed them. Though I agree that they are too fond of the front page and it gets on my nerves too, so I just go to /daily instead.
Might as well go with a bang.