Archive for May, 2009

Using openFrameworks for iPhone dev

Sunday, May 31st, 2009

[Also available at ITPedia. Watch video of the BarCampNYC4 presentation.]

This is an overview of getting set up using openFrameworks for iPhone development.

What is openFrameworks?

openFrameworks is a “a C++ library for creative coding”. It shares a similar philosophy with Processing (as a library for Java). The intended audience “are folks using computers for creative, artistic expression, and who would like low level access to the data inside of media in order manipulate, analyze or explore.”

There are good resources for reading more about it below, under the Resources heading. This article assumes basic knowledge of programming and of the Xcode development environment. You can simply follow along and launch the demo app, but you should really read the resources to understand the structure of a typical openFrameworks-based application.


iPhone native application development is typically done in Objective-C. Not pressing the merits and detractions of Obj-C, but it’s *another* language to learn. If you have code / experience working in C++ then you can use oF to migrate those programs to the iPhone somewhat painlessly. Arguably easier to begin working with – espeically if you’re coming from experience with Processing.

Why not?

However, if you already develop in Objective-C, then maybe you don’t need to use oF. OpenFrameworks is not as well documented as Objective-C (even though Apple’s docs are as dense as the proverbial stereo instructions joke). Certain applications are not as suitable (lots of hierarchal views) It’s very easy to overwhelm the iPhone if porting desktop oF code over.

Ultimately, however, this eliminates 90% of Obj-C. Still need to use Obj-C (or Obj-C++) to use iPhone interface widgets. Don’t worry about it right now. (more…)

[my] summer of code

Friday, May 22nd, 2009

iconIn preparation for several iPhone application development gigs which have lined up for the summer I’m getting back into my previous projects. Specifically, I’m going to get Follower and Pinwheel ready for release and am looking to push them out to the AppStore in the next month or so.

Also, as an exercise to get working with a web API I’m building an iPhone native client for SHIFD, called Slide. Right now it’s overly simplistic, but I much prefer the native app to the mobile web app. I’m not sure if I’m going to keep it as a learning project or also invest the time and resources to make it another released application.

All this is in service to building out, the online version of the CloudReader generative text animation project. I’d like to make that something available sometime.


Tuesday, May 19th, 2009

On a much needed vacation following the ITP Spring Show. Just back from a week in Philadelphia catching up with beloved places and friends. Looking forward to a few more days of relaxing in NYC before getting back to work.

Thinking Physically: BlindSight presentation

Monday, May 4th, 2009

This is the final project presentation of BlindSight for the ITP Thinking Physically class in Spring 2009. BlindSight is is a collaboration between Robert Carlsen and Andrew Styer.

BlindSight aims to explore synesthesia by associating certain body positions with visual hallucinations induced by photic stimulation. In other words, flashing lights at various frequencies seems to cause visual patterns to appear for the viewer. Simple wearable sensors adjust the frequency of the flashes and thus provide various patterns. (more…)