I found this TED Talk about this guy, Marcos Tempest, who is a magician that works with technology, and using Processing and the Kinect, an HD cam and a some very efficient programmers, does an amazing job to stun the viewer’s eyes. One could arguably say that this guy is not a real magician and that the real magicians are the programmers, but he is the presenter, so he takes all the credit. He uses augmented reality and the Kinect keeps track of his hands on a 3D plain.
The game’s object is to keep the bigger ball away from smaller (obstacle) balls with the paddle. This was a good a practice of understanding what we talked about in class. The bigger ball bounces in a circular pattern to the left, while obstacle balls just move side to side of the screen horizontally. In my first attempt with obstacles, I made the little balls bounce as they do in bouncy bubbles, but it did not work, because the game became too hard to last for a second. After creating the obsticles to work with the paddle, the biggest challange was to keep the speeds of the little balls reasonable for a player not to lose as the game starts right away. Also to find a good velocity for the big ball to have ability to bounce relatively steady with the user’s control of the paddle. With some help from my peers I finally got the speeds to work with the game. I also could not make the bottom of the paddle be active, just the top, and the paddle boundary activation does not quite fit the size of the paddle yet. It took me a while to figure out how to insert an image in the background with objects present without getting errors, but I finally figured it out from different examples provided in processing. I have attempted to put a score keeper for every time the ball hit the paddle, but no matter what I did I kept getting errors, so my goal is to figure that out over summer. I am attempting to have a way to restart the game and have different levels of difficulty and I think I came pretty close. Also, I have attempted to insert an image into the bigger ball, which was a picture of Mies, but trying to make that work with shapes gave me all sort of errors as well for some reason, so hopefully this summer I can figure that out too. The book “Processing: A Programming Handbook for Visual Designers and Artists” by Casey Reas and Ben Fry the first step for me in learning processing. It took me a while to figure out anything until I have actually opened this book and tried the examples with explanation of what is going on, because there are just so many ways to make ideas work in processing. For me personally, I think learning processing has very much in common with architecture, simply because in order to understand how things work in both, I have to experiment and try things to work in specific ways that relate to each other. This class has been a positive experience and made me realize that sometimes really confusing things just take many trials and errors to learn, and just time and patience.