Testingdays Performance Engine – Day 8

P1010260.JPGWe’re working on implementing the proper protocol to all the systems, both for the INIT-list and in- and output streams. The aforementioned 255 item per list bug is now solved by sending several  packets that never exceed this 255 item maximum. This has however again be implemented to the Audio-, 2D- and 3D engine. Also the <TAB> separated structures are vulnerable to mistakes, which results in messy input lists in the Statemachine.

Jan-Jaap needed to go in the morning, he has left the 3D engine patch unfinished. We want to present the Performance engine to Mart-Jan Zegers at two however, so Ferdy tries to build a quick-and-dirty patch. The connection between  Reactivision and Unity 3D is now not yet working through the Statemachine but makes use of a dirct DP link.

Mart-Jan Zegers arrives at two, he’s a dramaturg and researcher. The presentation goes ok, the connection between Reactivision and Unity 3D works very jittery. It seems as if the virtual objects and camera want to jump back to their original positions. Mart-Jan comments on  the fact that the Performance Engine seems mostly reactive; it is not changing its behavior. Also the ‘communication’ between the physical and the virtual world seems to be one-way; from the physical to the virtual. We actually wanted to create more physical connections already through the Arduino and relay’s which would enable us to control 230 W power connections or motors. Simply have not had the time yet, another thing on the todo-list. Finally we discussed the problems of representation and and how a maker / performer should aproach the Performance engine in terms of bringing prepared idea’s and material. Also Mart-Jan acknowledges the reseacrh potential of the Performance engine as an environment to explore and experience. He was very interested in investigating the workings of perception and interpretation through working with this environment.

Our tests with the Infrared LED´s are a bit disappointing. We are now considering using Infrared lights to light the stage-floor with Infrared light. For this we don’t have to  buy special lamps, conventional Theatre lights have a Infrared spectrum also, which means we only have to filter out the visible-light. Have a look at this suggestion for using existing fluorescent light bulbs and theatre light color-filters to create an near aproximation of an IR-floodlight. More on this later.

At the end of the day Tarik Barri came by to offer his solution to the aforementioned Blob-sorting problem. In short, the optical tracking in MaxMSP through CV.jitt works with a sorting order from top-left to bottom-right of the screen. The first object that is detected in this order will get ID-1 the next ID-2 etc. If objects move on the screen the order of ID-s can potentially change. In this way, we never know what is what. The blob-sorting that is offered in MaxMSP / CV.jitt is not working properly, so tarik has programmed it’s own solution in Java. We will start testing with this soon.

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Finally we discussed the order of the presentation we will give to Yvonne Franquinet of Huis aan de Werf tomorrow. From september onwards we’ll do three so-called LAB’s with Theatre makers, so this presentation is important for showing the potential of our system. In general everything seems to work now so it will be fine.


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