Yesterday we made our first public presentation of an alpha version of MadMapper, a real time video mapping tool. The tool allows you to map video projections to physical surfaces in real time.
Frz and I spent the earlier part of the day setting up the boxes. He quickly made a simple QuartzComposer setup to test things out and then I stepped in for a bit to try it out myself.
The presentation was short, starting with a smaller projector to show how the interface worked and then showing how the software worked. Boris demonstrated how Modul8 works with the MadMapper and then everyone was provided with a limited version of the MadMapper in its current state so they could try it out themselves in three different places in the empty apartment building provided by the festival, including the court yard.
Here is a breakdown of the current features:
- Real time mapping using ‘quads’ with four corners
- Infinite ‘quads’
- Will work with one output or a triple or dual head2go.
- Usable with any live video performance application on Mac OS X Snow Leopard
So how does it work? The interface consists of three areas, on the left edge is the layers window where you can select and re-arrange your quads. The center panel displays your video application output where you select regions of your output to be mapped into the quads. The right side is for deforming the quads to fit whatever surfaces you want to map.
Despite the software being in an alpha state, it performed very smoothly no matter how many quads I added. Having used Perspective transform in its various forms through the years and then recently the MapMapMap module, this was a whole other level. Being able to see results immediately, not just on the surfaces of the objects I was mapping, but also within the application itself made the whole process a lot of fun. I was able to use existing material within Modul8 and arrange them as textures.
For the moment we still have a long way to go with this tool. I am not at liberty to provide details about the additional features planned and timeline for the release. What we do know is that based on the reaction of the attendees we have something simple and very useful that we are really excited to work on. I recall a very similar type of excitement when I first started using Modul8.
More photos are available on our flickr account.