Monthly Archive: January 2012

Fast 3D Vector Text in Processing

Open /scripts/analysis-and-simulation/fast-3d-vector-text-in-processing

Technical illustrations and 3D graphs tend to need lots of different kinds of text - some bold/italic, some large/small, and often in a range of different colors or shades of gray. Having struggled with image-based font glyphs for ages, I've finally had enough so set out to develop my own parametric vector text in Processing/OpenGL. Font glyphs are okay for most things, but small text often lacks definition and is difficult to read, but you want to keep most of your text small so as not to unnecessarily obscure other information. Also, tablet CPUs are slow and, when you have lots of text/annotation, invoking a display list for each character is a noticeable overhead. However, with vector text, you can easily cache all their line segments and pump them to the GPU using vertex buffer objects with just a few OpenGL calls. This applet is a demo of some of the types of 3D text object I've been playing with as well as some experiments with annotation arrows.

Music Composition with Reason

Open /blog/andrew/music-composition-with-reason

I recently upgraded from Reason 4 to Reason 6 and had a bit of time over Christmas for some remixing and further experiments with PropellerHead Reason. Okay, I know what you are thinking, but I do have history here as I used to have a great MIDI setup in the late 80s and early 90s when I was a student. I've had Reason 4 for a while, but never the time to properly finish a piece before. They're not everyone's cup of tea, but if you are interested in a little electronic music...