My friend was showing me BumpTop, a working concept User Interface that extends the poor man’s interface of today, from a flat world with no interactivity to a multi-dimensional world with physics.
BumpTop is pretty fancy. You’re in a 3D environment where you’ve got a table like setting and then you also have walls. You have your standard icon tiles, but they do more. They can be pushed and thrown, similar to the way you scroll on an iPhone. Resizing the icons for importance is possible to, but of course, it alters their physical properties, so the larger icons need a stronger push can need more force to be pushed.
Groups of icons can be corralled like a herd of sheep in a pen (you know the rectangular box you get on the desktop so you can select many things at once, this is the same but more fluid and non-square) and either put them into a so called box. The boxes then have properties too. They can be pushed, added to and re-sized like any other icon, but they have special abilities like a flip-show, like sticky notes and a deck of cards spread.
BumpTop clearly is a work in progress though. Through out the images and videos, there is no offering on UI beyond the metaphor of a desktop. There is no mention of a Windows Explorer or Finder like system. Folders seem to be absent too, but you have boxes and it’s possible that you could put boxes in boxes. Also, even though you can hang stuff on the walls, I expect more than that from the 3D space you’re given.
That’s BumpTop. You can watch the video on youtube, or you can even sign up for the beta. It’s still private as of this post, but who knows, it could become more public soon. (I’d like to see a Open Source movement similar to this, if not this.)