Detailed notes on RealtimeAV Workshop

  • Looking at tools for making real time audio-visuals
  • Focusing more on graphics than on sound
  • Looking at systems that can work with both low level hardware issues, as well as higher level media issues

softwares used/discussed/developed in the workshop:

  • ogre (using C - powerful, but slow cycles of coding, compiling and executing, changing the code, compiling, executing again). During the workshop - discussions and demos only. After the workshop, Nik and Pix are working on the Ogre bindings for Python and Lisp.
  • fluxus - very good as a sketchbook. Used extensively during the workshop, and proved a flexible tool for testing different ideas. Several people worked on an 'arm wrestling' patch - that would take in muscle tension information and translate it into different graphics responses. Physical Performance Programming using the dance-mat and game controllers were demonstrated and discussed as well. Dave Griffiths implemented implicit surfaces in fluxus during the workshop.
  • pdp - jitter-like extension for PD. only discussed about, quickly reaching limitations.
  • PF (Packet Forth) - command line tool for accessing programming hw/media. although still very much in development, PF proved to be good for going between low level programming to access different hw interfaces and drawing pictures and making sound, while never leaving the PF environment. A couple of experiments using muscle tension to draw were implemented

interesting discussion on 'dirt'

  • how to make 3D aesthetics less polished and more dirty
  • often most projects deal with shapes and geometry, even though this is only 1/2 of the story. Texturing is often forgotten and neglected part. It is a difficult job to get good at, and not as fast and rewarding as creating geometries. It is like painting on sculpture (garden gnomes).
  • example of simple structures and complicated textures: fur
  • looking at making textures dynamic (usually the texture is static, while the geometry is dynamic) - blurring the edges between geometry and texture
  • animating static textures
  • video textures (pix will continue working on this in Ogre, Dave Griffiths in Fluxus)
  • video textures are now used only for games, but in a very miopic way (e.g. replaying a game path)
  • the videos don't loop
  • it is not possible to stream video onto a geometry

many discussions on the advantages and disadvantages of scripting vs. programming languages.

Def. scripting language: you can write it while it runs. Good for sketching, but often has lots of limitations.

At the moment - not many languages allow for a smooth transition between scripting and programming,

In the last 10 years, there are new styles of scripting languages, which you can use, as well as write more easily.

Pix mentioned that making and using tools at the same time is the best situation to be in - wearing a users' and a developers' hat simultaneously

Problem with open source: people offering assistance on the internet, usually don't know what they're doing.