More for exercising than for competition reasons, I recently recreated a great Processing visualization by Ben Fry using HTML5. I had the strong feeling that the kind of animation is totally doable without plugins like Java and Flash. This post sums up what I learned.
Last year I contributed a Flash-based world map to the open source Piwik Web Analytics project. At that time, all of the Piwik charts where rendered in Flash, but as with release 1.5, all Flash charts were replaced with JS/canvas charts. Now, my map plugin is the only Flash component in the whole project, which is why they asked me if I could rewrite it in SVG. I will take some time in October to do this and I want to write here about my work. In contrast to many past projects where I wrote making-of like posts after finishing, I now want to write while working – literally. This kind of invites everyone interested to take part in the design process and, besides of that, provides a good amount of documentation and tutorial-like resources.
Well, as all of you might know, Processing is cool and easy to learn, especially for graphic designers and makers of all kinds, and finally, Processing is a fun thing to work with. Really? Actually this is not quite the experience I get whenever I start sketching a visualization. Yesterday was such a day, when I found myself running from obstacle into obstacle. Here’s a short documentary of what went wrong and why.