3D User Interfaces of the Future

3 06 2007

As we only begin to scratch the surface of the information age, it seems as if the traditional GUI brought to us by Apple or Microsoft (or XEROX if you want to get historical), are beginning to face its limitations. With so much information, organizing all of this data from a user-perspective must go beyond our basic 2D desktop. A 3D desktop can give computers a real-world touch – here are some user interfaces that may become mainstream in a few years:


Bumptop is a master’s thesis by Anand Agarawala. It is currently being integrated into a workable desktop solution. Wouldn’t it be cool to organize your files the way you organize them physically in real-life?


Metisse is currently integrated into Mandriva Linux 2007. It is not a 3D desktop manager like Beryl. It would be great to see the Compiz/Beryl team to implement Metisse as a plugin. I could see myself saving a lot of space by folding windows =).

Project Looking Glass

Project Looking Glass is a project started by Sun Microsystems, the same guys who brought you Java. Project Looking Glass is an entire desktop management system written in Java, and is completely 3D. Though Beryl is known as a 3D desktop manager, it is still used in a two dimensional way. Project Looking Glass seems to be a cross between all of the technologies mentioned above. This video is showcasing how Project Looking Glass can be used in the Ubuntu environment.