A couple of years ago, there was much talk on the internet about a planned 3D computer desktop called BumpTop. We even had a (very short) thread about it here.
Well, BumpTop is now in limited Beta release. You need to sign up, and they will send you an invitation in due course. It took me about 10 days from signing up to getting the program, but i assume this will speed up as they roll it out faster.
There are videos on the site to show you what it’s all about. It really is quite amazing, and fun to play with. The video on the main page is an old one, from when the program was just a demo. The Download page has a more recent video that demonstrates the current release’s capabilities.
There is a capability to turn each folder within Windows into a BumpTop environment, although i haven’t been able to get it working. I’m not sure if it’s a bug in the Beta software, or a product of my old hardware. But if i could get it to work, this would be a really great program. Confined to the desktop as i am now, it’s fun but not especially earth-shattering. If you’re the sort of person who already organizes your files obsessively, it might not help you at all; but if you tend to leave them sprawled all over the place, then it could really make your life easier.
People running very old computers with onboard graphics should probably not even bother with this. My 4-year-old Pentium 4 3.0GHz with 2 Gb of RAM and a 128Mb FX5200 graphics card only just copes with BumpTop. The amount of movement and rendering in the prgoram won’t be any problem for newer machines, especially those with high-end graphics cards, but it’s a bit of a strain on older hardware. BumpTop is also a bit memory intensive; it uses between 150 and 200 Mb of memory quite consistently on my computer.