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Super fly

Let these realistic virtual flies crawl all over your nice clean desktop with this cool freeware.

Flies have been crawling across our computer screens for decades, and no doubt the Ancient Programmer who coded the first digital fly had a good chuckle over it. Since then, flies have probably been the most common digital vermin dragooned into desktop duty. Much like real flies, the simulated kind have never quite gone away and have even gotten more realistic over time. Fly on Desktop by Drive Software is the most evolved specimen yet, closely simulating the look and behavior of Musca domestica, the common housefly. It's not really a screensaver; it's just pretty cool.

We extracted Fly on Desktop's compressed executable and opened the program. Five simulated flies began to crawl across our screen in what scientists would call flylike behavior. Double-clicking a fly made it disappear, simultaneously calling up a very small Settings dialog that let us set always-on-top and start-up options as well as the number of flies to display, from 1 to a truly creepy 99, in which the flies seem to crawl out of a hole in the center of the screen. We could also open the Settings directly by double-clicking the program's system tray icon or by right-clicking the icon and selecting Settings on the context menu, which also let us add single flies, add five flies at a time, or remove all flies. There's no Help file, although it'd be a stretch to say one is needed; there is an About file, but the links didn't lead to anything other than general support. Real flies may be fast and tricky but not complex, and their virtual analogs are easy to swat with your cursor when they stand still. We anticipate few difficulties for most users.

There are two kinds of people in the world: those who can't imagine needing a virtual fly on their desktops, and the rest of us. And if you must have flies, you must have the best. Drive's Fly on Desktop is certainly the most realistic virtual version we've seen so far.

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