Oof, the bling-tastic Desktop Cube GNOME extension by Simon Schneegans just keeps getting better.

Fresh off implementing drag-on-desktop-to-rotate — a workflow behaviour I lived and breathed in the early 2010s — the latest update adds another Compiz-inspired feature: “skyboxes”. These are background panoramas that replace the image behind the workspace switcher in GNOME 40 (and above), and move in motion with it.

The result is an immersive, 360°-esque stage to spin your workspace in:

spiny spin spin spin

You can find compatible panoramas on sites like polyhaven.com/hdris. Just find a panorama that looks good, download the tone-mapped JPEG version to use with Desktop Cube, then pop open the extension’s settings (via the Extensions Prefs tool or similar) and add it.

Also new in Desktop Cube 9 is the (optional) ability to drag windows to adjacent workspaces from the workspace switcher and, more useful, from the desktop itself. Just pull an app window to the edge of the screen and, assuming you do it without enough pressure, the next workspace will spin around and you can let go.

Regardless of whether you use Desktop Cube out of some well-nurtured nostalgia or not, the addition of panorama backgrounds in this extension gives us another easy way some add a bit of extra personality to the GNOME desktop.

Desktop Cube is free, open source software and is best installed from the GNOME extensions website.

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