Greetz from London

mirek's picture

Hey there,

I'm a developer (sys integration, web tech and iphone apps). Also art-hobbyst, recently discovered quartz composer, I'm still in shock, why people dont talk about it?? It's amazying...

Mirek

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cwright's picture
Re: Greetz from London

Welcome aboard! :)

I too am shocked that NO ONE IS FREAKING TALKING after 4 YEARS OF EXISTENCE (6 if you count pixelshox) -- I don't know what Apple's thinking, but they've got a goldmine on their hands... :)

toneburst's picture
Re: Greetz from London

Hi Mirek,

I'm also in London. Welcome to the community!

a|x http://machinesdontcare.wordpress.com

psonice's picture
Re: Greetz from London

Fully agree, it's an awesome app that's not publicised nearly enough.

I'm not from london (warrington, up near manchester), but I'm doing similar stuff (sys admin as my main job, a fair bit of QC stuff when I have time / work, iphone apps or contract work too). I'm quite involved with demoscene too, are you into that at all? There was a london pubmeet yesterday, not that I went (busy recovering from an operation).

And welcome aboard :)

leegrosbauer's picture
Re: Greetz from London

Welcome, Mirek!

I'm a QC hobbyist in Canada. I'm a not a coder but I'm solidly addicted to Quartz Composer.

everybody (except George) wrote:
why don't people talk about it?
Hey guys ... in my humble opinion, the issue is that nobody actually talks to each other, period.

Quartz comps are conveniently streamable, eh? So are any of us using AV conferencing to stream realtime assemblages and discuss Quartz Composer with each other? Nope, we aren't. lol. That would be a bit too invasive for comfort, I'm suspecting. heh.

I'm ready whenever you folks are. ;-)

gtoledo3's picture
Re: Greetz from London

Welcome... People DO talk about it because WE are all here :o)

I think it's different than some seemingly similar software, because theoretically, it's a development tool, and the subsequent qtz's would be used inside of an application (again, theoretically).

... and since all of you UK-ites are gather, I would like to humbly ask a question.

The +44 number thing is your international country code/ or an internet scam? This has a been an issue of discussion on some engineering forums I belong to.

toneburst's picture
Re: Greetz from London

psonice wrote:
I'm quite involved with demoscene too, are you into that at all? There was a london pubmeet yesterday, not that I went (busy recovering from an operation).

Thought I hadn't seen much of you here lately, Chris. Hope you're back on your feet soon, and give me a shout next time you ARE back in London. We should meet up, if you have time. I'm intrigued by this whole Demoscene thing too, not that I'd be any good at it myself- as I understand it, it tends to revolve around doing complicated stuff in limited time. Speed is not my strong-suit, sadly ;)

a|x

psonice's picture
Re: Greetz from London

Oh, I've not been active with QC much lately because I'm too busy with other stuff. Been writing a few iphone apps and learning to code properly on that, and I now have a contract writing an app for somebody else. No time for QC fun :/

It's not so much 'time limited' with demoscene stuff, the only deadline is the one for the party you want to release at (and that usually gets missed ;). The only general rule is "it has to be realtime" - and so long as you're getting a reasonable framerate in QC, you pass that one :) Doing something entirely in a tool like QC would be considered a bit poor though.

The limits are mainly size - there are usually competitions for 4kb or 64kb. The main demo competition these days has a limit of 64mb or so, so you can almost consider it unlimited.

There are plenty of other competitions though. There's a 'wild' competition, which is for all kinds of weird stuff (typically home-made or obscure hardware, or anything that doesn't fit in the other competitions) and an animation/video competition, plus lately 4kb graphics competitions are popular (write a program that makes a picture in 4kb).

I'd say the vast majority of demosceners are totally inactive btw - there tends to be a few active groups, and a load of people who just watch and go to parties. If you're interested, I'd say just keep an eye on what gets released at pouet.net (the bbs there is fun too, but not really representative of the demoscene!) and perhaps turn up to a pub meet or a party some time (sundown is the main UK one, in september). The people are very friendly, so not knowing people isn't a problem. It's not really serious too, most parties involve drinking, a live performance/concert or two, heading into town for food + more beer, the competitions, then more beer :)

I'll give you a shout when I'm next in London (could be a while mind, it's been years since I last went, although I should really try and make it this year some time). I'll stick a post up here too when the next pub meet gets organised.

salman22's picture
Re: Greetz from London

This is a TEST Comment Salman Khan Salman Khan http://www.google.com/

usefuldesign.au's picture
Re: Greetz from London

Hi Mirek and welcome,

I used to speculate about a digital tool that used analogue synthesiser paradigms (like LFO, VCA, ADSR envelopes) with image filters and sprites. Kept talking about it to people for years and no joy, no offerings. (I now realise there have been other tools out there!)

Then I finally bought a Mac for home use, loaded the developer tools with Tiger and found QC. That's exactly what I had been dreaming about and somebody made it beautifully then Apple bought it and made it available for all. How cool is that. I think a lot of coder artist types are on the other platforms from what I can see. The artists I know on Macs aren't interested in coding one bit (excepting web monkeys – I mean "Hi, I'm an Artist" kind of artists).

Best with your Visions Alastair

cybero's picture
Re: Greetz from London

Hello again mirek .

Just in regards of your question.

Quote:

recently discovered quartz composer, I'm still in shock, why people dont talk about it?? It's amazying..

and in respect of what leegrosbauer said in response too

Quote:

Hey guys ... in my humble opinion, the issue is that nobody actually talks to each other, period. Quartz comps are conveniently streamable, eh? So are any of us using AV conferencing to stream realtime assemblages and discuss Quartz Composer with each other? Nope, we aren't. lol. That would be a bit too invasive for comfort, I'm suspecting. heh.

I'm ready whenever you folks are. ;-)

As we all already know, we are talking to each other, the problem is not so much a dearth of knowledge or enthusiasm within the Mac community. I would acknowledge though that some of my busy freelance friends have only just begun to cotton onto QC at all, so still some progress to be made amongst existing Mac users.

The rather larger problem, at the time of writing for any content developers is that getting QC comps running in a non Mac environment, which is what most people run, is frankly impossible, at least until such a time as a framework or shared library for Windows OS rolls out that supports the QC and presumably the Quartz framework too.

Such realtime and podcasting video communications as suggested can be achieved to supporting platforms.

To get a really great buzz going cross platform is going to need at least webkit with quartz composer on more than just the Mac and the iPhone. To achieve more will need the full porting of the QC application to the Windows platform [ back to new Windows framework / shared library needed again].

Otherwise we can convert and inform the convertible and present and inform in HD / Broadcast to the unconverted mass audience.

leegrosbauer's picture
Re: Greetz from London

cybero wrote:
... Such realtime and podcasting video communications as suggested can be achieved to supporting platforms ...

... Otherwise we can convert and inform the convertible and present and inform in HD / Broadcast to the unconverted mass audience ...

Indeed. My involvement with Quartz Composer was a direct outcome of encountering third party QC capable streaming applications. I didn't know anything at all about the visualist community until after I had begun trying to create compositions for use in those broadcasting applications. Hence, my own focus on Quartz Composer is strongly biased towards promoting QC awareness via it's utilization in/during communication exercises.

In that regard, as QC content providers .. platform differences shouldn't create significant presentation barriers for us. Skype and the other common realtime AV conferencing applications are ubiquitous. Browser based, flash assisted realtime web presentation and reception is accessible to everyone.

As near as I'm able to discern, what's missing and what would be substantially beneficial is for us to brazenly begin to stream our QC content regularly to everyone we interact with, regardless as to their platform of choice. ( I'll agree however that whether or not anybody will actually accept our presentation attempts, and look attentively at our streamed content, is debatable. )

Anyway and again, I'm ready for it anytime.

toneburst's picture
Re: Greetz from London

cybero wrote:
To get a really great buzz going cross platform is going to need at least webkit with quartz composer on more than just the Mac and the iPhone. To achieve more will need the full porting of the QC application to the Windows platform [ back to new Windows framework / shared library needed again].

That's never going to happen, though, since QC is based on a whole load of OSX-specific technologies that Apple are never likely to port to Windows.

That's my take on it, anyway.

a|x

cybero's picture
Re: Greetz from London

toneburst wrote:

Quote:

That's never going to happen, though, since QC is based on a whole load of OSX-specific technologies that Apple are never likely to port to Windows.

I think that Apple are never likely to port that full graphical functionality to the Windows environment.

It is not impossible to make cross-platform Cocoa - witness WebKit.

Porting Quartz or significant parts of it to Windows would be a real log jam, especially if it involves a slew of other stuff, resources, classes, etc

Then again see - Cocoa for Windows Will Not Happen for an alternate take in some of the comments - the article makes a good case for why it will be very unlikely to happen.

One thing is for sure, it will only happen if Apple believe it to be in their business interests. Another sure thing it would probably be easier the other way around :-)

For me, the key indicator regarding such cross platform endeavours is simply one of watching what happens with WebKit in particular.

HTML 5.0 compliant, Web 2.0 compliant, Standards compliant and great performance cross platform are the main targets medium to long term for Safari and any other type of browser.

If fuller QC composition protocol service were achievable in Safari OS X then it might get bundled out bit by bit to Windows, which currently does not support QC.

Mind, nor is it supported at all on Mozilla on OS X, only WebKit plugin compliant browsers, like Safari and others. Only movies and stills for Firefox OS X and any other non WebKit Intel OS X browser , likewise for all Windows browsers.

We've got the possibility of streaming renderings of our compositions, many of which really only work especially well in situ linked to a specific protocol.

So in terms of true portability we are restricted for live rendering and presentation to the Mac, on which we'll need the Developer Tools installed, which is still a bit of a leap for some Mac users. Ok one could just bundle out stuff that does Finder interface, Screen Saver and iTunes visualizations, but again we are presenting to only those running one specific platform.

Pretty unlikely - just not strictly impossible is the matter of porting frameworks. Logically enough, even if run in emulation, it will be running on hardware that is broadly of the same form factor and capability CPU/GPU and RAM wise.

Virtual driver city too is Windows - but if it were proven to be hugely profitable would one count against it happening ?

leegrosbauer's picture
Re: Greetz from London

cybero wrote:
So in terms of true portability we are restricted for live rendering and presentation to the Mac, on which we'll need the Developer Tools installed, which is still a bit of a leap for some Mac users.

With respect, I'm not understanding why you feel this to be the case. From my perspective, as presenters it's a relatively simple matter of us configuring compositions as image filters, layering them into an appropriate application and streaming them to any platform of our choosing. The comps and layers can be manipulated in realtime during presentation in a similar manner to how they are manipulated during presentation at a live event.

With the caveat that I'm not a performance artist by any stretch of the imagination, I can nonetheless present in realtime to Windows users just fine. They can't modify my presentation of course, but that's nothing unusual.

In terms of popularizing Quartz Composer, I feel it would be tremendously advantageous to be vigorously demonstrating QC's capabilities out amongst the lay masses; Windows folks and those Mac users who are bereft of Xcode Tools, alike. Who better to do that demonstrating, but us?

cybero's picture
Re: Greetz from London

Quote:

With respect, I'm not understanding why you feel this to be the case.

and with respect what you then go on to say ...

Quote:

as presenters it's a relatively simple matter of us configuring compositions as image filters, layering them into an appropriate application and streaming them to any platform of our choosing. The comps and layers can be manipulated in realtime during presentation in a similar manner to how they are manipulated during presentation at a live event

has given me something to think about and research into.

I guess I've just been getting a mole's eye view of this cross platform presentation stuff, shall have to enquire further.

I shall have to check out streaming of quartz composer presentations.

cybero's picture
Re: Greetz from London

leegrosbauer,

Do you know what, I'm a little wee bit confused.

If you're proposing streaming from a server these Image Filter compositions through QuickTime [RTSP] , QuickTime has only limited support for all the functionality QC has, just wraps the file, no audio input support. If it's in the browser even more limitations as only WebKit browsers support it. Then only on Mac OS X or iPhone [Mobile Mac OS X]

In what vehicle / application will the presentations be received ? iTunes podcasts ? Again still platform restrictive. Unless I'm missing something here. Presenting to a Mac only audience with only Apple standard filters and transitions and so on - AOK - no problem.

Presenting to or upon Windows / Linux users / machines requires that I bridge the OS gap, the only suitable vehicle for which would be to create an audio synchronised 'fake' live render version. Other specifically interactive compositions would only render when used - live. Again , rigging a fake 'dummy' version is the only option.

Whatever I'm all for promoting the use of a great technology and showing what it can do.

Am I basically missing something here, misunderstanding your use of 'streaming' perhaps ?

I await clarification.

SteveElbows's picture
Re: Greetz from London

+44 is the international dialing code for the UK, yes. Im interested in what sort of scam its been associated with?

Im in the middle of the UK, switched to macs on the day or Tiger's release because I knew I wanted to check out Quartz Composer after years of enjoying but then getting frustrated with node-based visual stuff on windows. Also wanted to see how Apple Motion was for realtime stuff via midi control. Ended up slightly disappointed with both, but got into QC again when Leopard came out and have been really into it for last 15 months and the Kineme plugins have really been a difference maker for me, very happy.

Would like to meet some other Quartz Composer users one day though would prefer it be after I actually create a few things Im happy with. I want to share a lot of my qtz files with the community too, but most of them are messy and unfinished, I'll try to do get a bit organised later this year.

leegrosbauer's picture
Re: Greetz from London

ah, ok cybero,

I suspect that we're probably both envisioning somewhat different, albeit potentially complimentary scenarios. Before elaborating, I'll acknowledge that presenting a live performance event and assembling a live audience for that event were not exclusive to my considerations. Again, I was thinking in terms of widespread popularization of Quartz Composer in general, not merely popularization amongst visualists and their audiences. Within that broad context, I was attempting to promote the notion that it would best be the visualists who intentionally embarked on the widespread presentation of Quartz Composer's capabilities to the general public. And if they also want to gather up large web audiences for formal web events ... hey, that's just great too.

That said, I merely meant to indicate that in order to stream all that's needed is that the Quartz compositions, layers and chains be housed and manipulated in a suitable QC capable virtual cam application. It's the virtual cam app that is seen by the streaming tool. From there it can be sent to anywhere the streaming tool is capable of sending it to .. a flash based host which will re-stream to browsers, an AV conferencing client on someone else's computer, etc.

Beyond that, audio is a separate consideration. As you are aware, Soundflower from Cycling74 can be helpful on occassion. So can live mics.

For sure, a web or AV conferencing presentation scenario would be approached and received differently than a live event where everything and everyone is present together in the same location. Folks generally have different expectations for web presentations. To my way of thinking, this is an area where the skills and creativity of the performance artist (which I am not) could be of significant advantage.

Perhaps I should offer an example. It's entirely possible for you to stream a fully controllable series of your excellent visualizers, complete with transitions and any additional QC effects or video sources that may strike your fancy at the time of presentation. Does the imagery of that circumstance help in clarifying what I'm trying to suggest?

cybero's picture
Re: Greetz from London

Just got back from seeing a client and found you had kindly replied to my post.

Much clearer now leegrosbauer , much clearer.

Funnily enough I was just mailing mulle-sight manufacturers and coders earlier today, possibly leading to something similar (AV conferencing presentation) , and yet I couldn't even see where you were coming from on this :-)

Got bogged down. Stuck in a rut. Only Live Rendering [will do] sort of thing.

LOL

Any roads, I shall be seeking out members of the local visualist / demoscene scene in and around my neck of the woods fairly soon.

toneburst's picture
Re: Greetz from London

SteveElbows wrote:
I want to share a lot of my qtz files with the community too, but most of them are messy and unfinished, I'll try to do get a bit organised later this year.

Everything I've ever done is messy and unfinished, so don't let that put you off.. ;)

a|x http://machinesdontcare.wordpress.com

leegrosbauer's picture
Re: Greetz from London

Great!

Incidently, there's no reason that I can think of that such an effort couldn't originate from, and be an addition to, traditionally presented events as well. It's merely another useful QC tool.

Edit and clarification: Regarding the Live Rendering that you referred to; I was indeed speaking about live realtime broadcasting with live realtime rendering of QC effects, layers, composition chains and video sources. It's just that the audience is remote although, in fact, they would be live too. You probably understood that but I just wanted to be clear that I wasn't describing a recorded podcast or something similar. There's no forfeiture of live rendering in this utilization. And to be effective, it would require performance skills.

vade's picture
Re: Greetz from London

Eh, Webkit is an App, and a rendering engine. Webkit-the app is Cocoa/Obj-C++/C++, but as a rendering engine its just C++ (this allows it compatbility with Konquoror and friends and simple cross platform ports. Obj-C++ allows for Cocoa bindings etc). See http://trac.webkit.org/wiki/GlibBindings

Just because Webkit is sponsored by Apple and its cross platform does not mean Cocoa is cross platform.

Obj-C which is a language, which is compilable and runnable on just about any OS/Hardware out there. Cocoa is a Mac OS X API that uses Obj-C and provides standard Mac interfaces when writing Obj-C apps for Mac OS X.

But you can write Obj-C apps on Windows, in fact, you CAN write Cocoa apps on Windows, using Cocotron, however its just the Cocoa portions of the Mac API, reverse engineered and re-built on underlaying native Windows APIs, not their underlaying core foundation Mac APIs so you cant get access to the Quartz rendering engine, which is means no QC for anyone but Mac OS X users.

So, Webkit on Windows does not mean a thing WRT to Cocoa on Windows or QC on Windows. Sorry :\

vade's picture
Re: Greetz from London

Interesting. Im researching how to make a plugin for QC that does multicast RTSP streaming.

I also have a working iChat Theater plugin that allows streaming whatever input image is fed to it to iChat, but its.... buggy and has some issues.

cybero's picture
Re: Greetz from London

vade

My , no need to apologise at all -

Quote:

So, Webkit on Windows does not mean a thing WRT to Cocoa on Windows or QC on Windows. Sorry :\

thanks for the clarification, [ a vote worthy post] the situation seems even more restricted than I had initially understood.

I had heard of Cocotron, though haven't used it ever.

Do like the rtsp plugin you were referring to in your previous post.

Quote:

Interesting. Im researching how to make a plugin for QC that does multicast RTSP streaming.

I also have a working iChat Theater plugin that allows streaming whatever input image is fed to it to iChat, but its.... buggy and has some issues.

I shall be following up on that link

leegrosbauer's picture
Re: Greetz from London

vade wrote:
Interesting. Im researching how to make a plugin for QC that does multicast RTSP streaming.
And that's interesting, too. As a non-tech, I had to look up RTSP at Wikipedia. It said: Clients of media servers issue VCR-like commands, such as play and pause, to facilitate real-time control of playback of media files from the server. Could you further clarify about the plugin as it would function in Quartz Composer?
vade wrote:
I also have a working iChat Theater plugin that allows streaming whatever input image is fed to it to iChat, but its.... buggy and has some issues.
That sounds potentially useful too. Same protocol?

Since I've already said about as much as I can in this particular discussion to urge promotion of Quartz Composer to the general public via the usage of streaming techniques, I'd like to follow up with a recommendation to check out the latest release of CamTwist. The disclaimer is that I beta test for that application and that the developer was gracious enough to include two very simple quartz effects of mine in the v 2.0 release. That said, I would merely further mention that CamTwist 2.0 contains numerous enhancements over previous versions, but the most significant to participants of the Kineme community would probably be the output resolution options: 320x240, 640x360, 640x480, 720x480, 1280x720 and Custom. Additionally, CamTwist 2.0 is projectable: Full screen display capability on a second monitor.

I urge folks to check it out. In my opinion it's a worthy companion tool to traditional visualist applications and it fulfills those criteria which have been under consideration here. I'd also be more than happy to attempt to address any inquiries that may emerge as long as the circumstance doesn't abuse the Kineme forums by becoming excessively promotional. Please do check it out. It's a very capable QC tool.

vade's picture
Re: Greetz from London

RTSP allows for live streaming to either multicast (multiple clients reading your stream) or unicast (to a reflection server, you upload to the server and it has more bandwidth and reflects the stream, meaning tons of clients can hit due to higher bandwidth). As for VCR like control, yea, thats kind of not going to happen ;)

As for the iChat plugin, im unsure what the protocol is, Apple provides an API to allow you to send video to iChat, so im using that. The issue is notifying that your app is video capable requires editing a document within the app (info.plist), and there is no programmatic, just in time way of doing it, so plugin installation requires editing files for each app you want to use (ie Quartz Composers info.plist), and thats generally a bad thing.

Plus, it seems to have issues within other apps that I cannot identity yet unfortunately. Its a bit of a hack, and not 100% as useful as a true RTSP streaming solution could/would be.

As for cam twist, how does this differentiate from iChats new QC integration?

leegrosbauer's picture
Re: Greetz from London

The RTSP for QC sounds cool! Related to your iChat plugin remarks; Camtwist's developer has made similar observations and I suspect that it might be due to those restrictions that CamTwist doesn't work with iChat.

edit: I was considering the implications of your iChat efforts and how they might relate to the utilization of your excellent screen grab tool in combination with quartz-effects host applications. I just wanted to say that I've used your screen grab and I find it to be more efficient than the screen grabs that are built in to CamTwist. If you can get that iChat plugin working, I'll be simply delighted to vigorously promote it's usage. The more Quartz Composer can be usefully incorporated into our communication tools .. the happier I am. /edit

Regarding differentiation from iChat QC integration? I'm not sure if this is the appropriate response, but CamTwist appears to currently be primarily purposed as a broadcasting tool. As such it has a UI (which is starkly minimalist, imho) that's most appropriate to usage in web streaming. That said, in my experience the UI also turns out to be remarkably flexible for manipulation of individual quartz compositions and combinations thereof. I guess I would observe that iChat's UI doesn't address those functionalities quite as thoroughly or as conveniently. For example; I near as I am aware, iChat doesn't accommodate the layering of quartz compositions or the realtime manipulation of effects chains.