God, it's been years since this concept surfaced. BumpTop, the 3D, physics-enabled, extremely literal take on a desktop manager is finally available for download. It looks... well, it looks as interesting as it ever did.
A free version is available for us to play around with, while the Pro version is $30. But both are lush, and the 3D desktop environments are eye-popping. One thing that the early demos may not have gotten across, though, is that BumpTop doesn't actually change that much about your computing experience. It's not an OS by any means, nor is it even a full shell conversion. No, it's really just a new desktop with some widget-like functionality. You can throw around your icons, which is fun, but beyond that you're limited to whatever extensions BumpTop supports: For example, flicking photos into a Facebook icon will upload them to the site, but this kind of behavior isn't systemwide—it's just the function of a specific widget.
CNET says the app is well suited to touchscreens, but I suspect it'll really come into its own when a multitouch version is released later this year to coincide with Windows 7. For now, though, it's a fun toy. [The Download Blog]