Do the release notes really ever contain anything that can help you with your deployment of a product? Well in the case of SQL Server 2008, the answer is YES. Here are the following benefits for using the Releases Notes which can be found at the following direct link:
or by simply performing a Live Search of "SQL Server 2008 Release Notes":
1) Details about the dependency on Visual Studio 2008 SP1 in a nice table format.
2) A list of "top" KB articles that can be of interest to you concerning possible problems you may encounter as part of installation or upgrade.
3) A set of hyperlinks to find "Known Issues". There are a class of known problems you may encounter with the product as part of installation or deployment. Get ahead of the game by reading these KB articles. What articles should you read? We provided some hyperlinks in the release notes to help. The hyperlinks are pre-canned queries to find articles by topics. Search to the bottom of the release notes in the section titled How to Find More Known Issues.
For example, if you click the link titled Replication it will launch a browser window with a search already submitted via http://support.microsoft.com for articles related to SQL Server 2008 and Replication.
I highly recommend you browse your topics of interest as part of your planning efforts to deploy SQL Server 2008.