Daily Archives: 17 Jan 2012

Fiona Apple on Truth in Art

“The way I feel about music is that there is no right and wrong. Only true and false.”

— Fiona Apple (as quoted in Daniel Shiffman’s book Learning Processing)

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Back to the Basics with "Learning Processing"

I decided that before I got too much further in Ben Fry‘s rather-advanced book Visualizing Data I would do well to go back through Daniel Shiffman’s introductory-intermediate-advanced book Learning Processing. So, in a sense I’m starting from square one again, as I’m doing every coding exercise in the book from  the beginning. But it’s always nice to have a firm foundation, isn’t it?

So, here’s the first batch of sketches. In the book, Shiffman recommends that one create a basic shape to elaborate upon as one learns new material. He made a simple alien that he calls Zoog. I decided to make a stick-figure dancer. (In Getting Started with Processing by Casey Reas and Ben Fry, they use P5, the Processing Robot as the running example.) I have still images in the gallery above. The first two are inherently static, the second two are screenshots from a dynamic sketch. Videos of the sketches in action are below.


  • Learning Processing, Ch. 00: Preface (0 exercises)
  • Learning Processing, Ch. 01: Pixels (1 exercise)
  • Learning Processing, Ch. 02: Processing (1 exercise)
  • Learning Processing, Ch. 03: Interaction (2 exercises)
  • Learning Processing, Ch. 04: Variables (1 exercise)
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Getting It All on Video

I’m planning on creating a whole bunch of things on my computer that can’t be adequately represented with screenshots. (I will, however, still include those as often as possible.) As such, I thought it would be nice to upload some small videos so my professors could see what I’m up to. I already have a YouTube channel at youtube.com/bartonpoulson but that functions primarily for my statistics tutorials (which are doing very nicely, thank you) and I didn’t want to mix these up with those.

At first I thought I’d try posting my artsy videos on the extra artsy Vimeo service. But then everything got very, very complicated. Vimeo wanted money, they wanted me to wait 30 minutes to see my 30 second clip, and so on. Then I thought I would try WordPress’ own service, VideoPress. But that, too, looked like it would be expensive and cumbersome.

Then I found out that I could simply embed the URLs from YouTube. Quick, easy, and free. As Yul Brenner, as Pharoah, was wont to say: “So let it be written, so let it be done.”

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