For more on the creation of the new VISP visual app, there’s a terrific story by creator Michael Creighton at Adobe Edge:

Building a visual performance app with Adobe AIR, Flex, and Flash

The advantages of this combination are potent for visual development:

  • File system API (so you can easily manage video clips, generative sketches, whatever)
  • Native window system API (so your UI looks at home on your OS)
  • Flex, for CSS + XML goodness
  • Clarity of the ActionScript 3.0 language (I’m totally onboard with this one, frankly, despite complaints from AS old-timers)
  • Ease of development in Eclipse

As I noted, it looks like MIDI support comes from an external application. But there’s hope for more interesting possibilities in the future, by hooking up VISP to Java via a new AIR-to-Java bridge called Artemis:

Artemis Tutorial

Now we’re talking. It seems Michael is thinking like I was: wouldn’t it be great to have Processing hooked up to all of this? Now, of course, I hoped to do everything on the Java side, though there is that pesky problem with video support in Java being, how shall we say, less than fresh. But, in the meantime, I’m happy to combine the two where it makes sense.

Onyx was a little shorter on the AIR stuff (aka Apollo), which is what lets you manage files from the file system, so I could see some of what’s in VISP benefiting Onyx, as well .. and visa versa.

Now, someone in Javaland: you know you really want to improve Java’s multimedia support. Come on. All the Adobe people are having so much fun. They’re going to have much better parties. Think about it, won’t you? (Yes, unfortunately, Apple is one of the players who could help remedy the situation and they’re extraordinarily unlikely to be interested, but surely there’s a way.)