Scott Garner has taken an effective and useful approach for his motion class assessment. Rather than do the assignment himself, he decided to program an assignment-completing robot!

This is a screencast of a Processing sketch I developed called TypeStar. It’s basically a karaoke machine that renders lyrics in realtime according to a number of preset visualization schemes.

It was originally created for a project in my Type in Motion class which required students to create a kinetic type animation for the Busy Bee scene from the movie Best in Show. I decided that rather than create yet another kinetic type piece, I would write a kinetic type engine.

TypeStar from Scott Garner on Vimeo.

The mouse controlled camera is pretty rough, but of course Scott has thought of this. I’d love to see some smooth, generative camera-control added as well.

Currently the sketch can be controlled via keyboard and mouse along with rough support for SMS control on laptops, iPhone control via OSCemote and oscP5, joystick control via proCONTROLL and midi controller support via proMIDI.

This kind of problem solving is precisely where the world of artistic, accessible code is taking us. Rather than each project having to reinvent the wheel to achieve a particular style, if one person has taken the time to build a framework, each subsequent artist can help to increase its capabilities, and use their creative time to find more interesting uses.

Update:  Scott has released standalone apps for Mac, Windows and Linux, bundled with the TypeStar processing code! Thanks Scott.