The way I see it, the biggest fear for manual transmission drivers are hills. It takes practice to do a perfect start without roasting the clutch, rolling backwards (or forwards) and/or stalling the vehicle. What better way to eliminate a large fear, improve safety, and make manual transmissions more "loveable" in a market that typically doesn't favor them. GM did a very good thing here.
I've been driving manual trans cars for years and while I don't really NEED a parking brake or hill assist program to help me, I've fallen in love with this feature. Especially in a Jeep, it keeps it from rocking or rolling back into objects/rocks when wheeling.
In a way I wish my 2011 SS had this. I made posts about it a long time ago...maybe GM saw them and listened, or finally caught on to the competition, who knows. But, I guess my SS will just keep me in good practice for the "do-it-yourself" hill starts