end of the desktop?

There’s an article in the MIT Technology Review about the end of the desktop. The article talks about the history of the desktop (it’s 30 years old!), it current limitations, and highlights a few current initiatives to start moving beyond the desktop. It’s pretty interesting – they have some screen shots about some of the new ideas. One of them is a 3D interface that appears to have grown out of Microsoft Bob – it’s metaphor is a house with unlimited rooms. Users ‘hang’ their files around the house. Interestingly, in test studies, users didn’t ever hang their files on the floors or cielings – in essence cutting their space by 1/3. Also amusing is the complaint by an engineer that idea of having a metaphor as a navigational/organisational tool is outdated – he doesn’t metaphor at all. Which is just so engineery of him to say.