Robert of Flight404 fame has posted his initial dabblings in Quartz Composer.

I find it rather exciting that a Processing Ninja such as Robert can find inspiration in QC. I have a terrible head for languages – both human and machine – so I’ve been wondering whether a node-based environment may be easier for me to grasp.

  • That's a really beautiful looking example.

    I'm not as torn as Robert is on the code vs. patching issue — I'm pretty comfortable with both, and many of the tasks that are inelegant with one are better suited to the other (in both directions).

    My problem is that I've been entirely unable to find *anything* you can do in Quartz Composer that can't be done in Jitter, often with fewer quirks. Sure, Jitter costs hundreds of dollars whereas Quartz Composer is free. But Jitter can work with hardware for I/O, build runtime apps that run on Windows and Mac without another Max license, provides more direct access to the graphics card, supports Core Image as QC does but with the addition of greater shader support, draws in 2D and 3D, imports 3D models, has much better support for MIDI, and audio and MIDI functionality in the same environment.

    Maybe that's an unfair comparison. But each time I've started a project in QC, I've immediately had ideas for how to do it in Jitter. The biggest advantage seems to be the particle generators built into QC and its talent for iterating through lots of repetition.

    That's not to knock QC. But to me, it's primarily useful if you're comfortable with Xcode and Apple developer tools.

    I know, I know — this is coming from someone who's advocated and taught QC. But that's part of why I'm torn: I haven't been able to do more partly because I've come up with much more interesting possibilities with other tools. I admire QC a lot, but for my own work I've found it constrictive.

  • Let's face it, this guy's a god. It doesn't matter what tools he uses. -Carl

  • Oh, yeah, there's that.

    The stuff I've done in an hour doesn't look like the above. 😉