Animated traffic

Got the traffic animated! This is a test using procedural keyframing with hermite curve interpolation. I’ve never tried this before, but it seems to be nice and fast. Good to get the city populated, although it still looks like some slick future techno city which wasn’t the original plan… No collision yet, and they are all driving in the middle of the road :) I forgot to link to the code earlier…

Fluxus Friday

I’m trying to allocate a chunk of time in the week to work on free software, rather than squeezing it into evenings and weekends as I used to have to do. Yesterday I got fluxus working in a hopefully easier way for packaging, and started working on tiled rendering support (so we can make gargantuan sized renders limited only by memory). This isn’t quite working yet, but resulted in a nice accidental art gallery:

Artificial companions in games

Noting an absence in the Lirec research about games (maybe I’ve missed it – there is a lot to read) I’ve started collecting together games which attempt to nurture a bond between the player and another character. My first thought was Ico, but I also remembered the Chau in Sonic Adventure, which migrate from the DreamCast to the VMUs and back again – covering one of Lirec’s core themes.

Java newbie

Java’s quite good (I’ve never looked at it before). All the things I like about C++ with a class system like PLT Scheme. It won’t stop me Scheming, but it might mean I write less C++ in future. I’ve been playing with this game engine quite a bit too.

I’ll get back to posting more pictures and less words soon, I can’t have this turning into a proper blog…

(open-trapdoor)

Thanks to the ever helpful Matthew Flatt, I can now catch scheme errors before they cause an exception and stop everything running. It’s also possible to detect that an error has occurred and do something else (play a suitable sample, electrify the keyboard…)

(define error-happened #f)

(define (my-error-handler n)
    (set! error-happened #t))

 (with-handlers ([(lambda (x) #t) my-error-handler])
    (modulo 0 1 2)) ; some erroneous code

(when (error-happened)
    (open-trapdoor))

Scheme bricks, menus and mice

The first performance attempt of a livecoding system is always stressful, but scheme bricks at make art was especially so for me – using the trackpoint on my thinkpad hurt my finger, there was too much typing and it generally felt really really hard (I ended up switching to betablocker). In order to help combat this I’ve taken the following measures:

  • Added a menu with common commands and atoms you can drag and drop
  • Using a mouse – and employing the wheel for scrolling the menu
  • Rehersing!
  • The last point is key really, and I’m having quite a bit of fun with it now, so all going well, I’ll be giving it another go next week.

    A history of robotic art

    In order to get more context for potential artistic directions for the lirec project, I’ve started compiling a timeline of robots in art – I haven’t even got as far as electricity yet…


    The Digesting Duck of Vaucanson

    Voltaire wrote that “without […] the duck of Vaucanson, you have nothing to remind you of the glory of France.” (“Sans…le canard de Vaucanson vous n’auriez rien qui fit ressouvenir de la gloire de la France.”) This is often misquoted as “Without the shitting duck, we would have nothing to remind us of the glory of France.”