Week-2 in ICM was pretty fun and deep. The class-work was focusing on manipulating shapes using variables and a short introduction to transformations (Link) As a take-away assignment, We were asked to create a piece in which:
One element controlled by the mouse.
One element that changes over time, independently of the mouse.
One element that is different every time you run the sketch.
While trying to figure out what to do, I chanced upon the clocks assignment which sent me down a deep rabbit-hole. (Thanks Cassie!) Going through John Maeda’s work has always been educational but the clocks piece blew me away. I also realised that its a wonderful, self-contained assignment for visual programming newbies to test the limits of their creativity. More details can be found below:
Golan Levin’s INSANELY DETAILED lecture on clocks, time-keeping and it’s representation in New Media. (It’s really worth your time to read through!)
As a first exploration, I decided to focus on being able to capture the current time and represent it using simple shape creation techniques that I learnt in Week 1. I got stuck with trying to calculate the arc angle but Shiffman’s coding challenge on clocks came to the rescue.
The first clock: Link
So now that I was confident of being able to capture and manipulate the time variables, I decided to go for a number representation. I was looking at Shiffman’s background fade sketch and that jittery pattern was quite interesting. I decided to use that as a base for the fill of my number shapes.
The numbers were then drawn with a simple grid and by manipulating the frame rate and opacity, you could achieve a nice blur effect:
I added some interactivity but being able to change the background color on mouse click. I did not have time to try out more effects (Which I am coming to believe will be the leitmotif of projects at ITP) but I was pretty happy with the outcome this time. The full sketch can be found at: Link
While I am pretty happy with the lessons so far, I think that I need to update my ability to manipulate shapes using Maths(!!!). I wonder if there is a “Maths for programming newbies”. Adding interactivity to shapes using co-ordinate based manipulation is not going to get me too far.
Currently listening: Clocks-Coldplay