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Besides the opportunity to promote the project and share my current work, this gathering is an opportunity to actively collaborate with artists and to observe first hand their creative processes and relationship with technology. This environment is also an excellent opportunity to perform tests and drive forward the code's development to provide useful functionality faster, taking it one step closer to being usable in real projects.
Take a look at the residency's wiki page to know about all the project being developed here.
And if you are in the neighbourhood, you are welcome to join us.
One of the cool things I got around to doing for my Codebits presentation this year was to finally dust off and publish microflow, my experimental Python implementation of the basic Flow-Based Programming concepts.
This small library was very useful to me during the early stages of my research, when I was first exploring the ideas around Flow-Based Programming, but it never actually worked in the sense that you could build anything but very simple applications with it. So while I was going through the FBP book again while preparing for my Codebits talk I took the chance to finish off the rough edges of the library and update it to use Python 3. I also optimized it for readability, so other could use it as a learning tool or as the basis of other runtimes.
Sure, there are other FBP or FBP-like runtimes written in Python, like Kamaelia or protoflo, which are more robust and better performing, but if you are learning about the basics of Flow-Based Programming, it could be a simple example to start playing with the concepts in a very expressive and readable language.
So, if you have some time have a go at it and let me know what you think. I hope it can be as useful to you as it has been for me.
The "Collaborative Practices in Creative Computing" study is now over, and the number of responses has far exceeded my expectations. I'd like to send a big heartfelt Thank You to all who have participated, your input will definitely help me develop new tools which will hopefully help your creative practices.
It will still take some time to fully explore the data from the study and draw some meaningful conclusions, so in the meantime my focus will be on building the code scaffold for dataflower, a minimum base platform that can be publicly released and used to develop creative projects.
As we enter the development stage, I'm also going to try and make better use of this blog as a communication and research platform. So expect more frequent updates beyond the odd announcement here and there.
In order to fulfil my PhD requirements, last January I had to present a research proposal outlining my thesis topic, a rough state of the art and a research plan. Last week I successfully presented my proposal to my thesis committee and had the good fortune of having Professor Brad Myers, head of Carnegie Mellon University's Natural Programming Project, as the main jury member.
I really enjoyed the discussion that followed the presentation and I feel that it helped me focus on what could be the core contribution of my work, namely to better understand the role collaboration plays in modern digital creativity and to focus on designing tools that better support this creativity.
I would like to thank Professor Myers, all the committee members and everyone who has discussed this work with me so far, your support has been precious. Now it's time to make good on the promise of that research plan and get to work.
I just received word that my talk proposal for Libre Graphics Meeting 2013 has been accepted. The selected theme for this year is "Future Tools", so this will be a fantastic time to present my work, get in touch with the Libre Graphics community and discuss the future of Free (as in Freedom) creative programming tools.
Hope to see you in Madrid next April. Meanwhile you can already get involved in the conference and join the ongoing discussion that is being used to generate the posters for the event.
Update: the conference program is up.