Sunday, March 27, 2011

My class - I love 'em!

Well, the DU Winter quarter finished a bit ago - the quarter where I do my Visual Programming class. This was probably my best class ever, perhaps because it was heavily pushed by the Art Department, and we had a lot of participation by people that were as interested in art as programming.

An interesting thing happened: although my teaching stuck with the typical "20 Objects" model that I've developed, I tried to force people into non-traditional media output. This cause people to spend a lot of time digging through the Max Reference and to find ways of doing things that I hadn't directly taught. The result was an inspiring set of team projects.

The class was divvied up into 4 groups of 4 people, and their final team projects consisted of:

- A realtime 4-person live improv where a narrative was created out of random old science video snippets.
- An installation piece that pulled and stored seismic data, then created a projection piece with mediated OpenGL shapes.
- A realtime piece that used MSP to generate sculpture-ettes from corn starch and water dropped onto a speaker cone. This was further mediated by having a video capture and effects system alter the view of the process for presentation.
- A realtime piece that used a Twitter feed to alter the mix of a musical piece (think Twittering "more cowbells" and having a mix add more cowbells).

I was blown away by the results, and commend everyone in the group for their inventive thinking. They worked really, really hard on this, and I'm proud of the results.


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