Gentoo has an impressive popularity. I've tried it before, and I decided to check it out again today.
They still haven't updated their documentation to make it usable. So it seems they intentionally make the installation experience difficult if not impossible for regular humans. This is a pretty good idea! By making the barrier for entry extra-thick, it means that anyone who survives a basic install has to be extremely committed.
The documentation is full of extra stuff you really don't want to read. Entire pages of text can be replaced by a single commandline. That commandline can be replaced by a script. Honestly, with my totally standard installation, there was no thinking to be done. Just a lot of reading and re-reading because I kept trying to skip past all the extra explanation and instructions that didn't apply to me.
I'm glad that this time around I knew about shift-click-dragging to highlight and paste text between consoles. It was also pretty fun to compile a kernel again.
When all is said and done, I got a "proc is already mounted" message. Bah, why even bother.
If I went back to a user-unfriendly distribution, I think Gentoo would be a serious contender for Slackware. It would force me to learn or die.
But these days, I want the developers to do all the work for me, and save their userbase n-1 hours of effort.