A user on the Ubuntu Forums has done some pretty cool things to form an Ubuntu System Panel (USP). It's largely based upon the SLED (SuSE) menu system. It looks pretty interesting and has potential from the screenshots.

Features
* Supports drag and drop
* USP is pin-able to allow you to drag items from the original ubuntu menu
* Show only the pane, you want to see
* Filter applications/places
* Search computer
* 'All Applications' pane showing all applications as icons
* Configure frequently used items directly from USP
* Right click to edit labels directly in Applications/Places panes
* Fully configurable search, more-applications and system items
* Fast
* Supports 'Plugins' if developers are willing to write them
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=222546