It has been interesting learning the differences between both programs. The workflow is different and the tools are often named different. I have put together a comparison of tools that are often used. Seeing as Blender is more hotkey oriented alot of the tools are accessible with a hotkeys.I have been learning 3ds Max 2011 with the Graphite Modeling Tools, so some things here may have changed from older versions of Max.
Quick Tips: "Toolbar" (T) and "3D View Properties" (N) are both activated in the 3D View with the hotkeys or by going to the View Menu at the bottom.
There are also "Properties Panels" that are on the right, these "Properties Panels" are different than the "3D View Properties".
RMB (Right Mouse Button), LMB (Left Mouse Button), MMB (Middle Mouse Button).
Here is a Comparison Chart that should give you some clues to the different naming and functions of the tools that are similar between both applications.
Blender has some tools that give you a completely different workflow from Max. The 3D Cursor and the way object settings are modified during object creation are both done differently in Blender.
- The 3D Cursor
It is an integral part of the workflow in Blender and is used to control the pivot point of objects as well as editing geometry. 'Manipulate pivot points only' Beside the Pivot Point Selection tool on the header Working Pivot - Snap (Shift-S)
Modifiers work differently in each program. They both have similar features and functions. Max has lots of modifiers and many operations rely on them, Blender has a smaller selection. This video explains how they work in Blender.
- Object Creation Settings
You can change settings at Object Creation with Max before you convert the object to an editable poly. In Blender you can only change the object settings immediately after object creation in the 'Operator panel'. The settings are accessible on the toolbar on the bottom left corner of the window or by pressing (F6) to get the object settings popup window.
For the Adventurous Tiger
If you are feeling adventurous you can also find more addons that are not in the official beta releases, Blendtuts goes over how to get these builds at Graphicall.org.
You get the latest builds of blender with bug fixes and sometimes new features this way. Some of my favorite Addons such as Vertex Slide, Loop Tools, Bridge and Bevel, you can find in builds by filiciss.