Processing and livetifact

July 1, 2013 at 08:24


Three weeks ago, I enrolled in a Coursera course called Creative Programming for Digital Media & Mobile Apps. I’m enjoying the course very much despite I find it a bit easy. We were asked to develop a couple of projects, focusing both on the artistic and the programming part. We’re using the Processing framework to accomplish our goal. The IDE is prepared to export code written in Java to Android (Java), web browsers (JavaScript) or as a desktop application (the default behavior). Depending on the architecture chosen, the code may change, so it’s important to develop with some architecture in mind.

At the moment, I’ve been playing in four different mini-projects or sketches, as processing community called them:


It’s a little grass-field simulator. I wanted to play with bezier curves and the wind (simulated when clicking with the mouse on the screen). You can access the sketch here (only works on Chrome): grass.


This sketch is opening a Caffeine molecule from a PDB file and displaying it in 2 dimensions. Here it is a small screencast:

You can download the binary and the code from here.


Same as before, but this time using 3D capabilities:

Download the binary and code from here.


This is my favorite project, I’ll spend much more time on it in the next three weeks. Livetifact names comes from “live” and “artifact”, it’s a kind of cell which breaths (and suffers from some anxiety!). You can feed it clicking on the screen. Livetifact will launch its ciliums to catch the food and will generate some sound (or noise). I’m planning to use it as a platform for developing a “sensing and living” sampler. Access the project here (only fully supported on Chrome browser): livetifact. There’s a lot of job to do on the programming, sound and graphics parts.

Theine and caffeine

September 30, 2012 at 21:23

Many times I’ve been involved in this discussion: are theine and caffeine the same? The answer is yes. And that’s also true for guaranine and mateine. The difference in names is due to the different source (tea bush, coffee bean, etc.).

Caffeine is safe for humans, but what I didn’t know and I discovered reading the Wikipedia entry for caffeine is that is toxic to many animal species and can be used as a natural pesticide.

NASA have used spider-web patters to determine toxicity, below is one picture published in 1975.

I’m not a heavy tea drinker, but if caffeine affects spiders in that way I’m afraid of the source code I write 🙂