Category Archives: ofxAddons


22 Jan 2013



neurosky-mindwave-bci-headsetNow this is a cool idea. Thinkgear is a set of sensing hardware and software developed by Neurosky that can be used to take readings of the user’s mental activity. By extension, ofxThinkgear allows the user to connect a piece of Neurosky hardware to openFrameworks so that one can incorporate brain wave readings into a project.

The possible projects would be partially constrained by the available level of hardware–to my knowledge the practice of brainwave reading is stilla very inexact science–but even a simple neural interface would be an interesting input to work with. In fact, the main challenge beyond getting the technology to work would be to avoid making a piece that was only interesting for its novelty.

It could be interesting to develop a similar project to the projects that encourage their participants to stay very still–the user is subjected to a buzzing flurry of images and sounds until they relax their minds, at which point the surrounding environment becomes quiet and meditative. This could be accomplished by constructing an installation that simulates a busy, artificially sped-up area like a city that becomes calm and begins to reveal small secrets and treasures when one begins to relax. Another angle the project could take is that one can only progress and explore the area when their head is clear–otherwise all of the necessary details to move on become lost in the rush.


A projector’s a great base tool for large projects. ofxPJControl lets the user control a projector through a network.  There are already a lot of interesting projects that have been done with projectors but controlling a projector through a network would be an especially good tool for a crowd-sourcing interactive piece.

There are so many fun applications for a projector that I’m going to stick with listing potential setups rather than the specific projects that could be applied to each. A good base for a couple projects is a setup consisting of a projector, an open space, and a website that anyone passing by can contribute to. Mining internet data and projecting a representation real-time is another solid place to build from. It would also be a good way to share a performance piece or natural phenomenon across a large area–if combined with a GoPro one could share an experience like exploring a deserted city with a large, populated city for example. It would also be a good method for sharing an augmented reality with a large area–a projector on a spinning dias could sweep an area and change it as the light touches it.

There are plenty of ways for a projector to share an experience from far away. I’d love to explore a few of these ideas a bit more.


The multitouch screen is by this point a pretty solid technology that can be smoothly incorporated into most projects. I therefore think it would be most engaging to make projects with this kind of framework that serve only as an interface with a larger work. An iPad that controls a kinetic sculpture is one idea. A set of touch screens that each force their users to sacrifice parts of the project to conserve the whole is another. At this point I see this framework as a nice, smooth way for the users to interact with the piece but I’m sure given time I could find some more interesting uses for it.


22 Jan 2013

ofxGreenScreen by underdoeg


I would like to able to hook up a green screen to a live video feed and replace certain colors with different types of imagery, possibly interactive. It would also be interesting to see if you could select multiple colors to be replaced with different images to create an ad hoc environment on screen.

ofxOpenSteer by underdoeg

link to Github

I’ve always found flocking and steering algorithms to be very interesting and very visually engaging. I think it might be interesting to overlay particles with flocking behaviors onto live video feeds, and enable the predator/prey pathing in such a way that the overlayed particles interact with whatever is currently on camera. Maybe they’ll flee from certain colors or motion or brightness, or maybe they could be attracted to light or motion.

ofxMSAFluid by Memo Akten

live demo

I actually saw this in action in my previous looking outwards post, and I’m glad I stumbled onto the actual add-on! I woould like to find a way to use some sort of touch screen-based fluid system in conjunction with the green screen add-on to project interactive fluids onto solid-colored surfaces. The camera of a tablet or smartphone could be used to view an environment while certain colors are green-screened out to become the interactive surface.


22 Jan 2013


by robotconscience

An openFrameworks addon supporting the Flickr API. [view on Github]

Most people think of Flickr as primarily a social media tool, but I also like to think of it as an ever-expanding and virtually limitless source of data.  This addon looks like it still needs some work (compatibility with other operating systems and some additional features) but that’s what github is for, right?  I would be most interested in using this tool to pull down lots of images with similar keywords, especially landmarks (e.g. the Colosseum, Eiffel Tower, Cathedral of Learning).  From here, there’s surely a lot of cool image processing we could do to extract and combine information to form more complete depictions of these places.  If only we had some computer vision libraries…



by kylemcdonald

Alternative approach to interfacing with OpenCv from openFrameworks. [view on Github]

Oh look!  YES.  OpenCV is a great library for doing computer vision without having to reimplement it from scratch.  I would argue that it requires more of an understanding of computer vision than, say, faceOSC, to know what to use and when, but the upside is that it is much more open-ended in its possibilities and widely used in fields like robotics.  There are lots of other ofx addons that implement parts of openCV, but this one appears to do most of them.  I can imagine combining the SIFT / pose estimation features of openCV with the images acquired from Flickr to reconstruct common subjects in 3D, given enough images.  Technically, you really only need two to do one facade well, and every additional image just makes it better.  So what do we do when we have enough images to do a really good reconstruction?



by kalwalt

a simple wrapper for polyvox lib, to make voxel meshes with a Minecraft style or as Marching cubes [view on Github]

Make it with voxels!  This is much more fun than just reconstructing things to be photorealistic.  Adjustable voxel sizes make the resolution scaleable.  My dream would be to make my own ofxMinecraft plugin to take the output of these voxel reconstructions and import them into a Minecraft world.  In the meantime, this alone could provide instructions to minecraft architects to build the structures manually.  If we imagine combining these three addons, we could create a tool where a server full of Minecraft players could search for a landmark, see it rendered in voxels as reconstructed from crowdsourced Flickr images, and then view each layer individually in order to build it digitally from the ground up.

Like this!

(from Spyrobandi)


22 Jan 2013

ofxFX by Patricio Gonzalez

This is an add on for open frame works that allows you to write open gl shaders (abbreviated GLSL). Shaders, as opposed to normal filters or visual effects, are nice because they are really low level, so you can do lots of fancy things all at once. A few examples of what you can do with shaders include, filters, generative stuff, and interactive fluid systems.Gonzalez did this supper cool project where he make a sand pit into a topological map using a shader. This is a link to a sandbox of running example with code. From what I can devine

ofxInteractiveSurface by Patricio Gonzalez (this guy just has all the cool ones)

With this add on plus a kinect you can turn any object into a muti touch surface. I don’t I actually want to do something with this. It is too much about making interfaces. You could orchestrate a situation where inanimate unexpected objects, such as a small garden gnome or a collection of porcelain figurines, become the controllers for an uncanny technologically mediated garden. (just a thought).

Fern Tracker by CVLAB

Their readme file is not informative, but from what I can gather fern is a computer vision library that sees and models images it is trained to recognize by its key features. The system can then determine how far the image is from the camera and the tilt and orientation. I’ve seen two big projects that use similar software; First there was the boards magazine project by Theo Watson and Emily Gobeille. I also saw a project that augmented peoples personal vision with glasses. I could see this software being used to identify all the media people are engaging with within a certain public space. It would also be fun to hide messages within different images.



22 Jan 2013


ofxGSTT by julapy 

ofxGSTT is an openFrameworks addon to use google unofficial speech to text API. It is an addon that translates speech into text for openFrameworks. There are two projects that come to mind. I think it should be interesting to use this addon in a classroom environment. Imagine a class or a lecture hall where a teacher speaks, and his speech is projected onto the wall. That speech can then be saved and given out to students at the end of the class. It will also be interesting to see what comes out of a person’s mouth over an hour or so period of time (Let’s hope that the professor doesn’t swear). Also, it would be cool to use this similar concept, but instead of a classroom, it will be used at a concert. The lyrics that you sing will be projected on a large screen, allowing people to follow along — a mix between a performance and a karaoke.

ofxMSAFluid by memo

ofxMSAFluid is an addon for solving and drawing 2D fluid systems based on Navier-Stokes equations. Navier-Stokes equations describe the fluid motion, and can be used to model many things such as water flowing through a pipe and air flowing around airplane’s wings. I took a class called ‘Fluid Mechanics’ that studies fluid and the force that is being applied,  Honestly, I don’t really know exactly what kind of application I would use this for, but I find it very interesting to see an application that uses the technical material that I learned in a mechanical engineering class to create work that is artistic and beautiful.

 ofxMpplr by maxilla cult

ofxMpplr is a projection mapping addon. I am pretty new to the concept of projecting virtual contents on physical objects. But after looking through videos of projection mapping projects, I want to explore more on this art form. I think this addon could make a potentially powerful work.

a projection mapping work I really like:


22 Jan 2013


I think this is a well thought, and handy framework. For data visualization or for crazy CV projects,
this framework is the ultimate tool / the swiss-pen-knife. Enabling artists to stream cameras from all over the world,
and making it dead-simple to use them in an environment like OF is amazing.
First thing that came to my mind was to use this for generative music from all over the world.



Every once in a while, a new interface like Kinect, or Sifteo lands on artists’ desktops.
And it is a challenge to hack it, and make something useful out of it.
This year, Leap Motion will be released, and yet the ofxAddon is already out, even before the device itself.



Hoping to find an addon for my Emotiv EPOC EEG Headset, I checked the ofxaddons website, and found this.

However, my enthusiasm to use this addon died, right after I saw that it’s an empty github project, with just a readme file.
Challenge accepted. I will be hacking Emotiv EPOC and coding an ofxaddon throughout this semester. I think this will enable artists to use the power of their ‘brains’ in ofx.


22 Jan 2013


Although not exactly a ofxAddon, ProCamToolkit is collection of apps aimed at making high level projector-camera calibration more accessible. What I like about it is the possibility to combine and calibrate multiple cameras and projectors, something I have been wanting to experiment lately. It has been developed by Kyle McDonald during Guest Research Project v.1 at YCAM Interlab.




I just can’t say enough good things about James George and his contribution to the Openframeworks community. ofxTimeline is probably one of my favourite addons, espcially when I am dealing and experimenting with generative animations and art. For example the video below is an animation I created with Openframeworks, where all the scaling, rotation, coloring has been automated using timelines.



21 Jan 2013

It’s probably worth pointing out at the get-go that I have never used openframeworks, and as such I have very little knowledge about what half of these addons are even capable of. So here is my hand-wavy, blue-sky assessment of what I think looks interesting.

by IntelPerceptual

openFrameworks addon for Intel’s Perceptual Computing SDK (PXCUPipeline) [view on Github]

The thing that drew me to this add-on was the fact that Intel’s Perceptual Computing SDK apparently supports Nuance Language Processing. Having worked with some of the Nuance people and seen their speech to text programs in action in high-pressure situations (like electronic medical record generation), I’d love the opportunity to experiment with it in my personal projects.

Consider: a program where two people talk into a microphone on separate occasions and tell a short story of their own making (or maybe two versions of the same ‘truth’). The program merges their tales into a new, third story by looking at the sentences and substituting clauses or appropriate parts of speech. Like mad-libs, only more fluid, and actually blending full sentences into each other rather than just filling in blanks.

by ofTheo

An implementatin of the Fern tracker from EPFL CVLab [view on Github]

This is sort of cheating, since we watched the ‘magic book’ demo in class on Monday, but I fell madly in love with that project, so here I am. I feel like this addon would help me take the next step in a project I began last semester in Sequential Visual Narrative. There, I created a set of photographs of objects which told a fictional story. An evidence form was attached to each photo, which had been filled out by one of the characters in the story: a police detective. The aim of the game was to piece together what was going on in the larger narrative based solely on the artifacts the detective had amassed, and his very biased opinions about them.

When I saw what the Fern tracker was capable of doing, I immediately wondered what other secrets I could hide within those photographs. Maybe in addition to the detective’s written narratives, the Fern tracker would reveal the history of the object —hidden poems from the owner, memories, daydreams, promises… Maybe tilting the photograph would reveal a fingerprint, or a monogram … Maybe tilting the camera in different directions would reveal the opinion of a different character…

by kylemcdonald

tesseract-ocr wrapper for openFrameworks [view on Github]

My thoughts on this addon are similar to the previous two, but harnessing Tesseract could give me the ability to interact with printed text, and once I have the text, I could do any number of language processing activities with it, illustrate it, re-format it, translate it, or just use it as a data set.

Words, words, words!


21 Jan 2013


Is anything less sexy than a mySQL database? Probably not. However, I’ve got tons of the damn things though storing data from 20-30 websites I’ve developed in the last few years. They’re sort of a goldmine for things like text, image URLs, and other resources. I’m not totally sure what I could do by stripping them out into OF, but certainly large data visualizations of pervious work is one very enticing possibility.


Coming from scripting/flash world, the idea of accurate timers is extremely enticing. A problem I’ve had with both flash and js based timing solutions is their utter craptacularity due to their rather high-level implementation. Timing in processing is also pretty impossible because all changes happen through void draw() meaning you’re limited to graphical updates to fire timed events. This means you’ve got very little fine grained control over (in particular) audio events. Looking forward to playing with this one.


I took an HCI class last semester (Software Structures for User Interfaces) and I came to love state machines as a very minimal MVC-style abstraction. Basically, they let you separate views from logic really easily and tend to simplify implementation of finite state control systems. They’re especially helpful for implementing custom UI elements.