Head tracking in 3D

I started trying to find useful things to do with face detection, but with limited success. I tried using the Libspark Haar Cascades implementation of face detection with Papervision3D to create a sort of head tracking effect, but it’s a little flaky – partly because of poor tracking accuracy and partly because it’s too CPU intensive. You can view it on its own page here.


 


 

Synchronising animation across multiple player instances

I’ve been asked a few times how to create effects that require multiple instances of the Flash Player on a page to remain ‘in sync’, even with user interaction. Reading and writing to cookies frequently is inefficient and resource heavy. Also, when you have more than 2 SWFs, deciding which SWF updates who becomes tricky – especially if someone decides to change or remove an instance, or an instance which you picked as ‘master’ is not loaded, for some reason.


 

So, I came up with this solution, using LocalConnection with a twist, which works pretty well. But, if anyone has a better method, drop it in a comment below 🙂

How Wonderfl

I’ve been playing around a little with the online Flash building tool, Wonderfl. If you haven’t seen it already, I urge you to create an account and have a go. You can browse the weird things that people have created, fork other users’ code, or write you own from scratch and see the results compiled online in realtime. It’s a great way to learn graphics coding in AS3 I reckon.


 

Wonderfl

You are here…

I made this globe that ‘should’ look up your IP address and point to where you are on Earth – the nearest city at least. Am I close? 😉

Audio visualiser

I finally got around to making a simple audio visualiser, something I’ve been meaning to do for a while. If you have a microphone, simply click ‘allow’ below and put some music on. You may need to play with your micrphone gain though, just right-clic, go to ‘settings’ then click the micrphone tab and drag the ‘record volume’ slider up/down.

Migrate to AS3 now!

Much as it pains me, I still develop in AS2 when it’s absolutely necessary – usually because a legacy application needs maintenance. But I was never a big fan of AS2; its quirks, the weird workarounds and its ‘almost but not quite’ OOP nature always annoyed me.

For those still clinging to AS2 like a comfort blanket, daunted by new-fangled syntax and the loss of some of AS2’s most trusted old arcane method, fear not! Help is at hand in the form of this handy AS2 to AS3 migration guide.

In many ways, AS3 is actually simpler than AS2, because it retains less of the AS1 legacy that plagues AS2’s structure and behaviour. We should all be developing in AS3 now and drop AS2 like a bad habit. That’s not because I’m some kind of code fascist; I find that the development and maintenance of projects built in AS3 just seem to go smoother – but the enforced use of the proprietary, often clumsy frameworks I encounter in some of my contract placements is another story altogether.

Flash 10 Matrix3D demo

I quickly cobbled together this little demo using the new native 3D transforms in Flash 10. Alongside the regular transform.matrix property, DisplayObjects now have a transform.matrix3D property, which controls its appearance in 3-D space. It’s pretty easy to play with in Flash CS4, without any coding knowledge – I can’t wait to see a version of GTA built using this 🙂

Webcam controlled 3D Earth

Playing around some more with my webcam, I cooked up this 3D Earth with Papervision and made it controllable through a webcam (if you have one). The motion detection is rather flaky, since it tracks the centre-point of a whole area of motion – if you move a lot it will just get confused 🙂

Motion graphics, video production, games/app development and infosec.

%d bloggers like this: