I had a wonderful dinner tonight with digital imaging maestro and acclaimed artist Kurt Ralske (of the AUVI library for jitter which I use extensively). I was fortunate enough to catch his performance at Diapason earlier in the month and finally meet him in person after many an email too and fro. If you can catch it, his work is really beautiful. Of course, if you’ve been to the MOMA, you already have seen it…

We spoke of Max/MSP/Jitter, his library, programming in general, gripes, licensing UI design, and more Jitter. He is an incredibly bright, very acutely perceptive guy. It was a real pleasure to talk to the mind behind AUVI, which I personally regard as a must have video add on to Jitter if you are serious about exploring all of its depth. It really blows ‘Jitter proper’ out of the water in a lot of ways, and is incredibly consistent and much faster to work in if you are strictly working with video.

He mentioned offhandedly his emotional attachment to AUVI when speaking about licensing and his past attempts at negotiating, which as a programmer I completely understand. Slaving away on code that really does what you want as art is incredibly hard to give away, even as a money making scheme. It embodies not only your aesthetic goals (especially with image processing code), but your methodology, mindset and ‘licks’ (as Adam Kendall likes to put it). Ive been fighting a real internal battle on how I want to release Vade (if at all..). Giving away a program that contains all the choices youve made as an artist to someone else – and to see them use it – takes away from the uniqueness of you using it. Of course, Adam and I had this very discussion at the Share Roundtable with myself hurrah-ing giving everything away, so perhaps I’m playing devils advocate one way or the other. Of course this makes me a bit of a hypocrite when the time comes to step up, but im reminded of Josh Goldberg who was kind enough to show me his patches (Dervish and Focus) and let me rip them apart. I have to say I learnt so much from that and probably wouldn’t be where I am today without going through that patch by subpatch.

Apprently Kurt liked my work well enough – he was kind enough to invite me to SVA to show some Max work to his class. Quite an honor. The good news is the modular method of implementing effects in the new build of Vade is indeed usable with the AUVI license and Kurt doesnt mind at all. This means I can release the patch, but you have to go and download (and purchase for usage outside of the demo) AUVI if you want to use it.

Also, helping people is always rewarding.

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