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My workplace is an utter mess; the piles of paper house everywhere, even on the floor beside my bed. However, I always find what I’m looking for.

Everyone has a distinct way of creating a mess. The cables go in that corner, the gotta-see-to-that stuff heads to the left of my keyboard. It’s a mess, but an intuitive one.

Computers, on the other hand, are extremely organized. And ironically, it can be extremely hard to find a file in that immense grid if you don’t keep a clean desktop. Everything is organized, but in a very impersonal way.

BumpTop – Reinvent Your Desktop

BumpTop manages to bring this workplace intuition to the desktop. Originally introduced at our beloved TED, the application has now finally left Beta.

Instead of neatly arranging all your files into grids, BumpTop unleashes desktop physics on your head. It allows you to stack your files on a pile, toss them into a corner, or even pin them along the wall.


There are other ‘virtual desktops’ out there. These applications were quicker in being released, but it gets clear really quickly that BumpTop is the real thing. BumpTop works better, is smoother, and feels as if you’ve used it half your life.

As can be expected, like with everything in the world, BumpTop has disadvantages. One real disadvantage actually, so let’s get that over with. The application eats computing power, but it’s a process of giving as well as taking. If you’ve got enough memory left, it’s certainly a worthy sacrifice.


Balancing this one negative point, the application brings several great advantages. Read on to see how BumpTop will make handling your files easier and you more productive.

Easy & Intuitive Organizing

It takes a few minutes to get used to this different approach, but BumpTop makes file organization easier and more intuitive.

The application comes with a great physics engine, allowing you to hurl your files and folders across the desktop. When you don’t need them right away?  Shove them in a corner!

When you want to shorten your files, you can easily select them, and pile them up according to name, date, or file size. Create neat little piles of your stuff, like you would on your desk. You can then browse through these files by temporarily aligning them in a grid, or quickly fan them out like a deck of cards. Make a pile permanent by converting it to a folder, or the other way around.

The most urgent and important files, you can pin against the wall, so you’ll never lose that reminder for your partner’s birthday.

If you make too much of a mess to retrieve your stuff, Search as you Type to instantly highlight your files of interest. Launch them with a hit of a key, or stack them into a pile as well.

Instant Interaction

Pin your Flickr, Twitter, or FaceBook accounts on the wall, and literally throw a picture or document online or in an email. Don’t waste any time with unnecesary actions or intermediate applications.

Giving Your Workspace Personality

Custom design your walls and icons to give a personal touch to BumpTop. The less creative or time-blessed people can browse online through the dozens different themes, ranging from mario to film-noir, and more are added each day.

Great themes can be found at Customize Bumptop. Browse by date, tags, or even by colour. The collection is still limited at the moment, numbering sixty-odd themes, but this will certainly grow with time.

In Short

BumpTop is a wonderful alternative to the dull and boring everyday desktop. Work intuitively and more efficiently, and tickle your eyes while you’re at it.

What do you think?   The best thing since sliced bread or a total waste of computing power?

  1. Bit Hacker
    April 13, 2009 at 11:11 am

    Agreed with macobex.....Cool but uncomfortable

  2. macobex
    April 13, 2009 at 10:04 am

    Yeah, it is truly an amazing productivity tool. I like almost every feature that it provides. But, the feeling is a little bit uncomfortable. So, I just decided to stick on my original desktop, simple yet productive.

  3. Lommen
    April 13, 2009 at 9:46 am

    Just did.


  4. Lommen
    April 13, 2009 at 8:22 am

    Just how do you apply the alternate themes?
    I get them as .zip files, and the contents are mostly picture files. Please help...

    • Simon Slangen
      April 13, 2009 at 9:07 am

      BumpTop features an extensive Theme Installation Guide on the site.

      Check it out!

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