Lack of Visualizations - Printable Version
+- XBMC Community Forum (http://forum.xbmc.org)
+-- Forum: Development (/forumdisplay.php?fid=32)
+--- Forum: Visualization and Screensaver Development (/forumdisplay.php?fid=38)
+--- Thread: Lack of Visualizations (/showthread.php?tid=105083)
Lack of Visualizations - Exavior - 2011-07-08 00:55
As someone who primarily uses XBCM to play music (on the Mac), I'm saddened by the distinct lack of visualization options. There are a few items in the menu, but honestly the only "real" choice is ProjectM. What options we do have are either simplistic our outdated.
Now, I know this is the internet, but I'm not just here to complain. I have a positive suggestion to contribute... honest!
Part of the beauty of open source projects like XBMC is that aspects can be opened up and handed off to others for expansion. Take fan art for example. Thanks to the efforts of fanart.tv, we gain access to an actively maintained (living) pool of content to improve our UI experience.
Why not do something similar with visualizations?
The core XBMC development team should not be burdened with the task of creating/porting/maintaining visualizations, but rather opening up the API so others can. Much like how we now install addons via an in-application UI, the same should exist for visualizations.
And rather than trying to create a new community of visualization developers, it may be a good idea to try and leverage existing communities, by making it easy for their visualizations to be imported. In this case, I am speaking specifically of the "demo scene" community.
Here you have an active community of artists and programmers that create complex 2d and 3d visualizations (many of which are designed to interact with music). A partnership here could really breathe some new life into the world of XBMC visualizations.
- jmarshall - 2011-07-08 01:07
Anyone is welcome to create a screensaver or visualisation - they're addons.
- Exavior - 2011-07-08 02:36
Understood, but there does not appear to be anyone doing it. I've looked around and had no luck finding anything. And from inside XBMC's addon interface I've not seen any visualizations available.
What I am suggesting is XBMC (in some official capacity) reaching out to another community in the hopes of breathing some life into what appears to be a dead portion of the product.
XBMC is amazing and beautiful, it just needs a collection of worthy visualizations.
- Dumb ? - 2011-07-09 02:33
I agree with Exavior in that the progress of visualization/ screensavers has taken a backseat to other XBMC projects (with good reason). With the development of AppleTV2, ARM and SoC architecture, maybe we should look to outsource these particular projects to developers who are already creating visualizations. For example, there are many Itunes visualizers, Android live wallpapers and visuals of these matters that would fit in perfectly with XBMC's interfaces. Maybe we should look into gaining permission to port some of these ideals into XBMC as possible add-ins. This would increase or replace the ones we can't update due to older architecture (Open GL) and definitely blow all media centers (including Apple's) out of the water.
My question as a person with no programming experience is "Does it have to be developed in Open GL ES?" Are there any other programming languages that would be compatible with XBMC?
- Exavior - 2011-07-09 13:41
I've just confirmed that going to the add-ons section via the system interface from inside XBMC you will find no category for visualizations anywhere. It is only accessible from the OSD display menu when you initiate the visualizations drop-down. (which basically means its hidden when using the standard UI or not playing music) And on the Mac, there are 0 visualization add-ons listed.
Making the visualizations category as accessible and prominent as the other add-on categories would be a big improvement... then it's a matter of getting content.
I am by no means suggesting that progress in the visualization front should distract from other product improvements, (I know you are all hard at work making XBMC even more awesome) but it should at least be on the list.
A big part of how software is perceived is by its appearance, and when playing music that really comes down to visualizations. We have beautiful skins, so we are half way there.
I would just love to see a visualization development community (like those that sprouted up around winamp "back in the day") generating new content, but that would require both outreach and making visualizations an accessible top level add-on category.
Heck, even publicly providing an API or templates for flash based visualizations would open the door to a large audience of developers, with a relatively low barrier to entry. I have a few flash based visualizations I made back in my VJ days that I could port to AS3. Granted flash will never deliver something as slick as milkdrop, but you can absolutely (and very easily) have a large selection of fun/beautiful visualizations that trump "OpenGL Spectrum" or "Waveform"
- spiff - 2011-07-09 16:49
So start coding.
- topfs2 - 2011-07-09 17:25
Dumb ? Wrote:My question as a person with no programming experience is "Does it have to be developed in Open GL ES?" Are there any other programming languages that would be compatible with XBMC?
It has to be what the platform needs, i.e. on windows its DirectX on desktop linux/os x (and windows if compiled right its OpenGL. and on ARM its OpenGLES. Visualizers on OpenGLES should work on OpenGL if we bumped the spec (or had a runtime check of it).
One could probably add support to make visualizers in pure sw also, but I doubt that would be very fast and convenient for anyone.
- Exavior - 2011-07-10 03:51
spiff Wrote:So start coding.I can't code visualizations into the top-level (or properly listed) add-ons categories for the default skin.
I can't code outreach to potential communities of content developers.
I will however look into what would be required to develop flash based visualizations.
Edit: Also, there is a big/active community around the open source "processing" visual programing language, and they make a lot of audio-reactive content.
I want to help - garbear - 2011-08-09 13:36
Can someone help me out on this?
I'm reading a lot of screensaver and visualization code to get a sense of how everything is connected togther.
huceke and Memphiz have been adding some GL and addon stuff. What are they working on? Is it iPhone-specific, was the code ported from another pre-existing part of the project, does it even change anything really? I wish I had the dialog between them, i feel it would help me understand this area of code better
- spiff - 2011-08-09 13:44
* spiff chants irc
anyways, they ported the gl spectrum to gles. in particular for ios.