Archive for the ‘Randomness’ Category

Vuo 0.5.0 – Public Beta

Friday, October 25th, 2013

You might have heard of Vuo, a new visual programming environment made by Kosada, the same people who are behind all the excellent Kineme plugins for Quartz Composer. The first public beta version of Vuo was just released (you need to pay for a subscription to access it) and I wanted to talk a little about what I think about it.

Screenshot 2013-10-24 20.57.00

Why do I care?

For the past 5+ years, I’ve made my living mainly by making art, interaction design, installations, animations, real-time graphics, performances, custom tools and other various things using Quartz Composer. I use openFrameworks, Pure Data, Max, Processing and other tools also, but I will pretty much always choose to work in QC if it’s possible to create the project at hand using it. For me, it’s the environment where I work the fastest.

Screenshot 2013-10-24 20.54.41

Sadly, QC is made by Apple and it has been quite obvious for a few years that Apple doesn’t really give a shit about the people working with Quartz Composer. It’s not aimed for the corporate executives creating their slideshows, funny posters and generic GarageBand songs on their MacBook Airs at the airport while waiting for their connecting flight.

Screenshot 2013-10-24 20.26.32

I’m still hoping that a QC 5.0 update magically appears from somewhere and fixes all the bugs that have been there for a long time, but still it’s good to have a plan B. That’s why I’m happy to see Vuo actually getting released.

Is Vuo any good?

I’ve been using the 0.4.9 alpha release for a little while now and I’m going to say that it’s very promising. A lot of features are still missing, but the overall feeling is positive.

What you can do with it right now (Vuo 0.5.0):

  • Load and display images (local files or from the internet)
  • Blend and fade images together using different blending modes
  • Load and display 3d objects (uses the Open Asset import library)
  • Create simple 3D Objects (sphere, square, cube, triangle, parametric objects)
  • Basic logic and math operations
  • Control how events are triggered
  • There are lots of nodes for general data flow control
  • Multiple output windows in one composition (I love this!)
  • Print out text to a console
  • Midi in/out (notes, CC)
  • Get mouse input
  • Get keyboard input (only through the console window for now)
  • Get input data from the Leap Motion
  • Export your compositions into applications. (I haven’t tried this, but it should be possible with the command line. Maybe?)
  • Create custom nodes using C programming language. There are example Qt creator projects that make this process pretty easy.
  • Create GLSL image filters by making custom nodes
  • + some things I probably forgot to mention

So what is missing? (Mainly a list of the things I care about the most):

  • Audio input/output
  • Video input/output
  • Syphon
  • OSC
  • Serial
  • DMX
  • General math expressions
  • Something like the iterator in QC
  • Currently no way of collapsing multiple nodes into sub-compositions/macro patches
  • + things in this list

Check out the roadmap to see when these and other features are planned to be implemented.

So many key features are still not there, but the basic infrastructure is pretty solid and the feeling of working in Vuo is pretty similar for me as working in QC. There are of course bugs and I think a couple of confusing things in the event triggering need to be clarified, but overall I’m quite happy with it. Looking forward to seeing what kind of custom nodes people develop when they get their hands on this.

What have I done with Vuo so far?

Nothing super exciting, but go check out my GitHub repository for Vuo related things:

https://github.com/Mnstri/MnstriVuoExamples

The compositions folder has a bunch of experiments I’ve been messing with.

I also made a bunch of custom nodes, mainly just to get to know the process of doing that, but people might find them useful. They are more like abstractions rather than really complex new nodes.

I made a few basic math nodes and bpm/fps to event timing converters:

Screenshot 2013-10-24 21.47.39Input Splitters. Vuo didn’t have these so I decided to make them. I use them a lot for routing values to multiple nodes or input ports more easily. I got bored and didn’t make splitters for all data types, but these should get you started. Integer and Real are the most used for me anyway.

Screenshot 2013-10-24 21.50.44

What does it cost? Why isn’t it free?

Because Wu-Tang.

See the website for pricing details. I personally really don’t mind paying the subscription price. The Kineme plugins (free and paid) have been a real lifesaver for me and without them I would have had to spend countless of hours more on many projects or some projects might have not been finished at all. So every single euro I’ve sent their way has paid itself back multiple times. If Vuo becomes what I hope it will, I’m sure I will be quite glad to support the development.

Attack of the Persu Snakes – A Kinect-Based Game Prototype

Thursday, April 14th, 2011

I was messing around with Quartz Composer and Kinect yesterday. I started to make a drum machine, but something went horribly wrong and this came out. Evil Super Snakes are attacking the world (or perhaps a plane?) and you must try to destroy them.

New Website Launch – Månsteri

Friday, July 10th, 2009

This is it! New website! Update your bookmarks and RSS feeds!

I’ve decided to move all my stuff from originalhamsters.com to this new site mansteri.com. There are many reasons, but one of the biggest is because of mix ups with a certain gentleman from Chile. I honestly didn’t know about him when I came up with the name 6 or 7 years ago. Anyway, time to move on.

The move is still under progress and I haven’t decided exactly on how to organize the content. The layout needs some work also, but this is a good start.

The old site is not disappearing anywhere. There are going to be some changes once I figure out how to organize my stuff. All the old content is going to stay there though. At least the blog, since there are a lot of links pointing there from all over the interwebs. As you may have noticed the old blog is duplicated here along with the comments and everything. Commenting on originalhamsters.com has been disabled for now.

Just clear something up Månsteri is pronounced Monsteri. The å is the Swedish-o letter. Sorry for confusing all the non-Scandinavians.

No FireWire On New MacBooks, Only One FW800 on MBP

Wednesday, October 15th, 2008

Nerd ranting warning.

What the hell is Apple doing? There are no FireWire ports on the new MacBooks! Essentially, that means that anyone doing any serious work in video or audio has no reason to buy a MacBook. Our university buys roughly 60 MacBooks per year for the students to buy at a cheap price, but now I dont see any reason why our Audiovisual Media Culture program would buy any of these, since they are useless for video work.

And the new MacBook Pro only has one FW800 port. Again, making any musicians life a bitch since you will most likely need at least 2 FW ports, for an HD and an audio interface. Well, at least you can daisy chain FW devices. And another useless idea was introducing the DisplayPort. That means dropping the support for S-Video and composite adapters. So you´ll need more dongles to connect to different diplays or projectors. I would rather have a computer that is 2mm thicker than having to carry around five different dongles to display the image. Granted, it is smaller and cheaper to manufacture, but that should show up in the price or that would have allowed the space for another FW800 or USB port. Did I mention no E-SATA and no Blu-Ray?

I´m just hoping my current MBP will last through this generation and that Apple would change their course and actually start making laptops that are useful for audio and video professionals.

Damn It Feels Good To Be a Banksta

Sunday, October 12th, 2008

From Sinfest

Updates + Månsteri-posters

Wednesday, January 9th, 2008

I’m updating the site. So some things may not work correctly for a while.

Check out Månsteri 2.0 this friday.

Mindfuck

Monday, October 22nd, 2007

Haven’t updated for a while. Been crazy busy, but something kewl coming soon. Meanwhile, check this out:

mindfuck.gif

Is the woman spinning clockwise or anti-clockwise?
http://www.news.com.au/dailytelegraph/story/0,22049,22535838-5012895,00.html

Remember these too:

Brutal Nipple

FF>> Mediafestival

Nasty Thing

Tuesday, August 28th, 2007

I was checking my website stats from Google Analytics and found this thing.

nasty thing

I would like to thank that guy (come on, this has to be a guy) from Chicago who actually googled “girls doing nasty thing with hamsters” and ended up in my website. I haven’t laughed this much in a long time.

I want to laugh more so I’ll add some more keywords here: hamsters, sex, nasty thing, girls, nude, squirrels.

It’s WordPress, Baby!

Tuesday, August 21st, 2007

Things will look strange for a few days. I migrated from Blogger to WordPress. I got tired of the limitations Blogger had for blogs that were published via FTP to other servers.

I just need to get used to this guy and everything should be back to normal in a few days.

I worked on this tonight and things are pretty much normal. Some images are missing and some of the links might be dead. Contact me if something isn’t right. If you see something, say something!

It's WordPress, Baby!

Tuesday, August 21st, 2007

Things will look strange for a few days. I migrated from Blogger to WordPress. I got tired of the limitations Blogger had for blogs that were published via FTP to other servers.

I just need to get used to this guy and everything should be back to normal in a few days.

I worked on this tonight and things are pretty much normal. Some images are missing and some of the links might be dead. Contact me if something isn’t right. If you see something, say something!