Processing is an open source programming language and environment developed for artists and designers to quickly and easily develop programs for any application. The language is java based, fairly easy to learn, even for the non-programmer, which includes many functions to create dynamic graphics. The environment allows for easy debugging of scripts, testing, and finally exporting of your programs to web applets or to an application for any operating system. And best of all Processing is completely free to download and very well documented, with definitions and examples for every function.

Among other things, Processing supports the creation and dynamic manipulation of complex vector graphics, images, 3d environments, typography, and sound. It is a great introduction to object oriented programming and a great tool for interactive designers and artists. If you can’t find what you need within processing you can extend the language by adding more libraries. Libraries extend processing to add new functions to interact with more hardware or software. New tools to work with sound, xml, scalable vector graphics, databases, and even macbook motion sensors can be added.

I began working with the language about two months ago as my first serious attempt at programming, exploring data and sound visualization, graphic fractals, and a number of other possibilities. My first major project, a program built to create an interactive, visual representation of Wikipedia should be available within the next few weeks. Some of the other applets i have created will also be posted here and in my portfolio.


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