I finally bit the bullet and installed Xgl on the laptop. It's -amazing-. So hot. The screenshot on the right (click on it) is a shot during mid turn. I use mine in a cube, but you can have as many virtual desktops as you want.
It is -very- flash. What you are seeing in the shot is xmms with a number of plugins, ppracer, a browser and some other bits running. What you aren't seeing is the raindrop effect, which is a trip, but silly, the wobbly window thing, the switcher that runs real time...it's exceptionally lively. Linux users should definitely check it out.