I started using computer vision libraries in Processing and then shifted to openframeworks. But have not done anything in web for quite sometime. So thought of trying out some cool stuff in flash. I had very low impression on flash when it comes to computer vision stuff. But looks like even though its slow, its very easy to code in as3.
I built my first gestural bubble game. I dont have to explain the game for those who are familiar with opencv example of processing. But for others, ya this game is all about hitting the bubbles using your hands / fingers / head / anything in your hand 🙂
You can play for yourself by clicking here.
Note: Obviously you need a webcam to play this game.
Recently I have been spending a good amount of time in developing facebook apps and have learned some valuable lessons about social media users. The user’s behavior is not the same as normal website users. In this case, they are already in a website and they see your app as a feature / tool. So conceptualizing an app is slightly different from conceptualizing for a website. I encountered a lot of unexpected and surprising things while developing few apps. It was both technical and conceptual. Thought of sharing few ‘must dos and don’t in developing apps for social media’. Even though things mentioned in this article are about facebook app, most of the points apply to any social media app. Thus people who are going to develop apps for Google Plus also can consider these points for sure. Now lets get to the point!
If a stranger came up to you on the street, would you give him your picture? Probably not.Yet people often dole out all kinds of personal information on the Internet. Services like Facebook, Google Plus, Twitter and Flickr are oceans of personal minutiae — birthday greetings sent and received, school and work gossip, photos of family vacations, and movies watched.Computer scientists and policy experts say that such seemingly innocuous bits of self-revelation can increasingly be collected and reassembled by computers to help create a picture of a person’s identity, sometimes down to the Social Security number. I am trying to potray this through ‘Privacy Pixels’. Using a server side script, profile pictures of random people from facebook are fetched. These pictures are then used in constructing the ‘Privacy Pixels’. The pixel blocks with silhouette are the people who did not upload a profile picture.
Note: Facebook allows anyone (may not be your facebook friend) to fetch your profile picture in four different sizes. There is no privacy settings to disable this.
This video shows the dynamic construction of the Privacy Pixel Canvas. Tens and Thousands of Profile Pictures were fetched to complete this canvas. Music composed in Fruity Loops.
Privacy Pixels in Large Canvas
While developing an facebook app – AWESOME PICS, I came to know that facebook doesn give access to the bigger profile picture of an user directly. I mean there is no easy way like http://graph.facebook.com//picture?type=large. Thus if you are working on an app which uses large pictures, you might fetch the larger profile pic in the following ways. I know its tedious. But as of now these are the only ways available.
Developed a facebook app AWESOME PICS. It authenticates users using their facebook account, fetches their profile pic and places it in a variety of locations like the cover page of a magazine, public tourist spots etc and posts the pic to their facebook album. It also generates fake ID cards of big brands like Google, Facebook, Apple etc. This gives an opportunity to the user to play pranks with their friends and have fun.
The interface was developed keeping in mind that the user will spend less than 5 mins in the app. There is only one layout (template) for the app which reduces the users learning curve. User gets to see a post card size demo pic of him/her placed in a new location, then he/she can just click on the image or the POST button to post it to their facebook wall.
The app was coded in php and MySQL. The php SDK 3.0 Facebook API and php’s GD library was used.
Click here to experience the app for yourself.