The control center for Windows 3.x operation, which was introduced in 1990. It provided the means to launch applications and manage the desktop. Although the interface changed in Windows 95, Program Manager remained an option for a while (PROGMAN.EXE was included in Windows 95/98, NT 4.0 and 2000). See File Manager. See Win 3.1/9x differences.
Program Manager used resizable windows to group application icons to suit a user's work style. Many users found program launching easier with Program Manager than with the Start menu, and Program Manager remained available as an option for a while.
What Goes Around Comes Around
Reminiscent of Program Manager, the Mac Launchpad interface was added in 2011 to follow in the footsteps of the iPhone/iPad home screen (see Launchpad