I've tested this tip with Ubuntu 20.04.1 LTS.
You can use a tool called Tweaks to remove Home and Trash from the desktop.
First, install Tweaks:
$ sudo apt install gnome-tweaks
Next, launch Tweaks and navigate to Extensions. Click the gear icon within Desktop icons. Then turn off personal folder and trash:
When you right-click the desktop, there is a function called "Show Desktop in Files". You can add a similar function to the dock.
First, create a new application:
$ sudo nano /usr/share/applications/show-desktop-in-files.desktop
With the following contents:
[Desktop Entry] Type=Application Encoding=UTF-8 Name=Show Desktop in Files Exec=sh -c "nautilus --new-window ~/Desktop" Icon=user-desktop Terminal=false
The application you created is called "Show Desktop in Files".
Next, find "Show Desktop in Files" in Applications. Then right-click and choose Add to Favorites:
"Show Desktop in Files" is available in the dock:
By default, downloaded files are stored in
~/Downloads. You can use the desktop instead.
To use the desktop to store downloaded files:
$ rmdir ~/Downloads $ ln -s ~/Desktop ~/Downloads
You can do a similar thing for other default directories, including