I'm an intermediate to lower-advanced level user --- I work in IT, do a bit of programming, etc. One of the things I'm a real stickler for in programming is "best" practices, or going out of the way to do things in good form, rather than just duct tape over problems to get them solved. I recently came to the realization that I like my code as clean and as best practice-y as possible, yet I don't even remotely handle my own personal PC (Windows 7 Ultimate) with care or do anything even remotely "right" at home. I am Administrator, 24/7, period. I just hit "Yes, okay Unknown publisher, please annihilate my PC, thanks" on every single popup I get because I can't be bothered. So I thought it's time to format this baby, and start clean, and do this right.
That being said, the all around best advice and starting point, period, is to simply not use Administrator. Fair enough. I'm totally fine with creating a separate "true" Administrator account, and then using a Standard User account...except that in my experience, there are always unforeseen consequences to decisions like this, especially when encountering poorly designed software.
Particularly, to offer an example of why this makes me cautious, I live and work in Japan, so my PC locale is set to Japan, as is my OS language. A seemingly innocent choice when installing Windows 7, right? If I had a nickel for every time I've run into unforeseen consequences of this (i.e. software that freaks if your locale doesn't fit what they designed it for, garbled menus, etc.)...I'd still be very poor with this exchange rate, but I'd have a ton of nickels. One game that actually costs money (Dungeon Defenders, ahem), has a "known issue" being "worked on" (of course you don't find that small print until after you've paid for it), which will cause the game to crash if your PC is not set to a locale the game likes, Japan being one of them.
That being said, along the same lines of "unforeseen consequences," am I setting myself, as an intermediate'ish user, for frustration, or perhaps even some pieces of software that simply will not work? Particularly what I'm worried about is the more advanced stuff I do, like my local SQL server, Visual Studio, using open source software and plugins that like to hound me for permissions, etc. I don't mind being asked for permission every 5 seconds, or logging in as Administrator to install stuff, that really doesn't bother me, what bothers me is if I start running into stuff that I just have to run as Administrator anyway, and it can't be properly configured to run as a Standard User.
(I've found tons of stuff on this topic for setting PCs up for parents and grandparents, but not so much well documented stuff for purposely limiting yourself as a somewhat literate user).