Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Anything you can do (in Max), I can do better (in PD)

Toronto-based Interaccess Electronic Media Arts Centre held Anything you can do (in Max), I can do better (in PD) a grudge match between Max/MSP and PD-extended this past July 24th. For those who have never heard of these two audio programming environments, this may not be that interesting, but you should know that the open source PD-extended was the victor. Mind you, the PD team were two people (complete with Mexican wrestler masks and bottles of beer) whereas the Max/MSP team was one guy (in a dress shirt).

The six tasks consisted of creating a buzzer, creating a scoreboard, creating an applause-o-meter, move a clip-art kitten across the screen, make the clip-art kitten dance(,dance,dance), and teaching a new user how to build a patch to make an on-screen image change. And, to directly quote from NowPublic.com (since I read most of my info from there) :

The final event was a game of Pong, in which each team had to build a paddle powered by external input. Max/MSP's kitten-paddle was driven by a scream-o-meter. Pd-dextended's old-school paddle was driven by a piezo-enabled teletubby toy. Yes, someone had to spank Tinky-Winky in order to play the game.


It looks like it was a pretty interesting time from the clips, photos, and write-ups I found:
http://www.interaccess.org/blog/?p=731
http://www.flickr.com/groups/interaccess/
http://www.nowpublic.com/tech-biz/anything-you-can-do-i-can-do-better-midi-software-duel-5


It's good to see that a collaborative open source effort like pd-extended can win in a competition of tasks ('cause who really cares how pretty your programming language is anyway) - even if it was 2-against-1.

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