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Tech Tips

Customized Your Desktop with BumpTop

By James Wise
web posted April 18, 2009
TECH TIPS – Today’s column offers a break from some of our more serious topics like backups and cleanups (more on those topics very soon) and offers something with a bit more “fun factor” if you aren’t happy with the desktop on your Windows computer. BumpTop (www.bumptop.com) is a new program which was just released. It creates a 3D desktop allowing you to create piles with related objects (i.e. files) much like you might have on your actual desk. You can also add things like photos and sticky notes and there is a free version. This program may have more appeal for more advanced users but it’s easy to install and reasonably intuitive to use I think.

Here’s an example of my desktop when running BumpTop:

It’s hard to describe the program in words so you can checkout a video made by the BumpTop publishers here.

There are numerous themes you can apply as well for a different look. Settings such as themes can be accessed by right clicking the BumpTop icon in the system tray (the area of the task bar near the clock), and choosing settings. The themes tab also includes a shortcut to download new themes.

The “pro” version of the program costs $29 (which covers three computers). I would suggest starting with the free version though to see if you like it. It has most of the features of the pro version except for:
- Toss files onto USB keys
- Most used files automatically grow
- Flipping through Piles
- Limited to two sticky notes (pro is unlimited)

The download link on the BumpTop website front page lists minimum requirements which include Windows XP, Windows Vista, or Windows 7, a 1.8GHz processor, and 1GB of RAM.

I have been trying the program out for the past few days. So far, I’m liking it. I’m not sure this will increase my productivity but it’s certainly a fresh and interesting approach and some users might also find it helps them stay organized and get things done.

If you don’t want such a radical change, you might want to checkout a program I mentioned once before called “Fences” which looks like a traditional desktop but with grouping and a nice feature to hide icons by double clicking the desktop.

Do you have a tech question you would like answered or a program you would like to recommend? Email me at edgefieldtechhelp@gmail.com. For computer questions, please include your operating system version (e.g. Windows Vista) and sorry, but I don’t do Macs.

Disclaimer: Software, tips, and links provided are used at the risk of the reader.

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WEBNEWS –  Send in your favorite or favorites. There is no limit to the number of recipes you can send in. With the Editor’s wife being the driving force behind her own personal section, help her create an exchange of local favorites, home cooking, grilling, sauces, and deserts!  Send in your submissions here.