Image: sketches from Processing alpha, found in toxi’s archives. Via toxi @ Flickr.

The open coding tool Processing has many, many libraries. Some deserve special mention. So I’m going to shift into infomercial mode for a second. Imagine video images of knives cutting through concrete blocks, etc.

Tried searching used book tables for math books because you can’t work out how to do vector math for illustration and the last math you remember is (barely) how to add?

Clueless about whether or not your sphere is intersecting your spline?

Wishing you could export an OBJ file?

Wait! Don’t waste valuable CPU cycles on sine and cosine calculations when your Processing sketch could run much faster with a lookup table! Don’t manually calculate pixels to mm conversions or wave generators!

Karsten Schmidt’s toxiclibs does all this — and more! It’s not just one library — it’s a whole bunch of libraries, each sharpened to slice right through one specific task.

Act now, and you also get tastier-than-ever particle physics using verlet integrators. (No clue what that means? You don’t read this site enough! It’s like other particle systems, only more awesomeish.)

It slices! It dices! It sorts color palettes! It spells color colour!

How much would you pay for this kind of useful library? $100? $200? $500? What, do you think this is Flash? (Sorry, couldn’t resist.) It’s free — free as in beer and as in speech. In fact, someone go buy toxi a beer.


Okay, I promise never to do that again. If none of that made any sense, go pick up Processing. And try those lookup tables — they really are a good thing. If you were a CPU, you wouldn’t want to keep calculating sine and cosine functions, either.

Side note: of interest to CDMotion readers, you’ll notice that JMF video support library is not there. That’s no loss — no fault of toxi’s, Java’s JMF library from Sun has long been abandonware and falls squarely in the “scream and run the other direction” category. I hope to revisit the issue of how to make video work right with Processing over the coming weeks. And having talked to folks at Sun, I am optimistic that, after years of waiting, video on Java is finally getting back on track. I’ll be talking more about that soon.