VIMEO LIKES

The other day I had a little time on my hands, so I decided to make a Vimeo video explorer.

From the beginning, Vimeo was created by filmmakers and video creators who wanted to share their creative work, along with intimate personal moments of their everyday life. As time went on, like-minded people came to the site and built a community of positive, encouraging individuals with a wide range of video interests. We hope that you feel inspired to show us both your creative side as well as your friendly side.

What is a ‘like’?

A ‘like’ is quick and friendly way to let a video creator know that you appreciate or like his or her video.

What is the point of liking a video?

‘Liking’ a video is simple way to let other users know that you enjoy their videos. Once you look around Vimeo, you’ll quickly start to find videos that you enjoy. By ‘liking’ a video you are helping to promote content to your contacts and subscribers as well as giving that video a creator a nice feeling.

So the Vimeo Explorer site looks up all the videos a user has “liked” – then displays their thumbnails in this semi-3D grid. You can then click a thumbnail to read the details of that video – and click again to watch the video.

There’s a few weird bugs in there still – sometimes the description doesn’t match the selected video, and the embedded vimeo player has a few odd quirks of its own. But on the whole, I was quite pleased with how it turned out.

As well as trying the Vimeo API, I got the chance to try out some cool effects, such as text to speech conversion and animated displacement maps.
See – http://wonderfl.net/c/rgyc and http://wonderfl.net/c/tLMY for source code demos.

The page is set to default to my personal Vimeo Likes – but by passing in any Vimeo user’s ID, you can load theirs.

For example – you can check out the likes of –
James Alliban of Tech Arts Vimeo Channel
Mario Klingemann aka Quasimondo
ideajockey.tv – a vlog about creative idea videos
Erik natzke – Flash based generative artist
John Davey of Flash On The Beach

Hopefully you’ll find it a fun way of exploring the videos liked by various people.
Cheers.
Lawrie.

Arduino Project + Home Office

So, I’ve been pretty busy lately – back to work, which is great – getting stuck back into interesting Flash development for an awesome client, with some really good people.

But that doesn’t mean I’m falling behind on my other on-going projects. I’ve still got 2 games almost finalised, and my interactive arts project with Josh Sadler is coming on well.

For the arts piece, I’ve recently picked up an Arduino.

What’s an Arduino?

Arduino is an open-source electronics prototyping platform based on flexible, easy-to-use hardware and software. It’s intended for artists, designers, hobbyists, and anyone interested in creating interactive objects or environments.

Sweet! I’ve been interested in HCI, hardware hacking and alternate input devices for a while – so I really should have picked up an Arduino ages ago!

Check out this beaut –

Here’s the kit I bought – complete with LEDs, potentiometers, breadboard and LCD screen. There’s lots of possibilites here. On the day it arrived, Josh and I managed to get it hooked up to some code we’d written (in PureData and Processing respectively).

And as a bonus, just for mentioning it, I get extra added blog cred. Just check out this XKCD –

In other news, the design site Inspiredology recently ran part two of their round up of “INSPIRING WORK ENVIRONMENTS”.

It’s fun to notice how every single one is a mac! I guess mac users are just more stylish. My current “home office” certainly offers no competition –

Yeah, that’s right. I code on a stool.

UK election Twitter tools

It’s been a while since my last post, sorry about that. I’ve been busy working on some personal projects, hunting for work, and making some new games, currently up for sponsorship on Flash Game Distribution. I’ll be posting my latest games here once/if I get them sold over on FGL, and my other projects as they’re done.

In good news, I recently started at twentysixdigital, as a Flash Developer. It’s awesome to be back to work, and we’ve got some great projects coming up. Any office with a table-football-table seems like a pretty good place to work.

Another thing that’s been sucking up a lot of my time and energy is the UK election. Interestingly my new agency, and my last one, Sense Internet, have both (independently) created awesome sites scouring Twitter for political tweets. They’re very different, but both really well put together. It looks like the political situation here in the UK might not be sorted for a while, so these sites should be interesting for a while.

Check out 10 Downing Tweets by TwentySixLeeds –

And also Tweetlection by Sense Internet.

Flash Midi Server 0.1 released + Sonar source code and audio air apps.

The title says it all really. I’ve updated the project page, but I’ll add the info here too incase you’re reading this through an RSS reader.

Flash Midi Server v0.1

Lawrie Cape 2010
Download from the Google Projects Page.

WHAT IS IT?

Flash Midi Server is method for sending MIDI data out of Flash. Using an Actionscript 3 class and a Processing application, you can create generative,

dynamic, fun audio tools in Flash.

WHY?

Mainly just for fun. Flash Midi Server (FMS) started as an experiment to test communication between Processing and Flash. From there it developed into a

class I played around with a lot – seeing what fun things I could use it for.

As FMS is built in Flash, it allows developers to rapidly prototype audio tools, experiment with new input methods and acess to a huge public code base to

build on top of. There’s a huge amount of technical skill and creativity in the Flash scene and hopefully some of it will be applied to creating innovative

new audio apps using FMS.

HOW DOES IT WORK –

FMS sends data from Flash to the FMS server – which then sends the data as a Midi signal.

Firstly run the FMS app in the “Server App” folder.
Then run one of the Flash or Air apps. Note – you cannot run .swf files as they do not have the security permissions to access the midi server, unless you

set the permissions here – http://www.macromedia.com/support/documentation/en/flashplayer/help/settings_manager04.html

You can set which Midi Channel the audio is played through via the drop down on the FMS app.
Windows XP has “Microsoft Midi Mapper” which plays the notes back over the soundcard. Mac OSX has a similar default Midi Playback setting.

To use FMS with other audio apps, you must install virtual midi softward. For example – LoopBe http://nerds.de/en/loopbe1.html
These channels will then show up in the FMS settings drop down.

HOW DO I USE THE CLASS MYSELF? –

Place the uk.co.lawriecape.midi folder structure in you classes folder.
You can then check out the .Fla sources in the “Example FLAs” folder.
A basic setup can be seen below –

In flash –

//Import the Flash Midi Server class.
import uk.co.lawriecape.midi.flashMidiServer;
//Create an instance of the class.
var MS: flashMidiServer = new flashMidiServer();
//Add event listeners for the various Server events - (optional)
	MS.addEventListener("FLASH_MIDI_SERVER_ESTABLISHED", connectionEstablishedHandler);
	MS.addEventListener("FLASH_MIDI_SERVER_LOST",        connectionLostHandler);
	MS.addEventListener("FLASH_MIDI_SERVER_NOT_FOUND",   connectionNotFoundHandler);

function connectionEstablishedHandler(e:Event):void{
	trace("Flash midi server connected.");
	trace("You can start sending data now!");
	MS.sendNote(50);
	//or
	//MS.sendCC(50);
}

function connectionLostHandler(e:Event):void{
	trace("Flash midi server disconnected.");
}


function connectionNotFoundHandler(e:Event):void{
	trace("Flash midi server not found, please check the program is running and try again.");
}

WHAT COMES NEXT? –

There are quite a few limitations to the current system, which I’ll be trying to address in future releases. These include –
The ability to send CC data on specified CC numbers.
The ability to have audio output on multiple midi channels at once – to controll multiple instruments from a single server instance.
The ability to send multiple notes at once – eg. Chords or simultaneous drum hits.

If you have any suggestions, or make anything using FMS, please get in touch with me.
Cheers.
Lawrie.

Lawrie at LawrieCape.co.uk

See also –

Flash Midi Server – Sonar reproduction. from Lawrie Cape on Vimeo.

Download the source code for Sonar from the Google Projects Page.

Flash Midi Server – Processing + Flash + Webcam Instrument from Lawrie Cape on Vimeo.

Flash Midi Server – Processing + Flash + Webcam Instrument

Right, this has been something I’ve had in development for a while – and I’ve finally decided to put out a video demo. More info, videos, audio and hopefully source coming soon.

Flash Midi Server + Webcam image to audio app

An early test of my Flash Midi Server – used to send Midi notes and controllers from within Flash movies.

This early demo shows the Processing based Midi server (blue app in the bottom left), and also a Flash Webcam based audio tool. The Flash app takes still images from a webcam, and analysies them for 4 colours within them. These colours are then mapped to a range of notes, so for example, a white image will send a high note, whilst a black image wil send a low note. These notes can then be played back using Midi, and the corresponding images are displayed.

As an extra feature – the “activty level” (amount of movement) in the webcam can be monitored, and sent as CC data, to alter any settings. Here it is linked to a paramater of the midi instrument.

More polished versions coming soon.

Hopefully some nicer audio coming soon too : )