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Creative coding is a type of computer programming in which the goal is to create something expressive instead of something functional. It is used to create live visuals and for VJing, as well as creating visual art and design, art installations, projections and projection mapping, sound art, advertising, product prototypes, and much more.
Using programming to create art is a practice that started in the 1960s. In later decades groups such as Compos 68 successfully explored programing for artistic purposes, having their work exhibited in international exhibitions. From the 80's onwards expert programmers joined the 'Demoscene', and tested their skills against each other by creating "demos": highly technically competent visual creations.
Currently there is a renewed interest in the question why programming as a method of producing art hasn't flourished. Google has renewed interest with their Dev Art initiative, but this in turn has elicited strong reactions from the a number of creative coders who claim that coining a new term to describe their practice is counterproductive.
A number of libraries have been created that aid in the rapid prototyping and development of these works. There are libraries for various functionalities, such as computer vision, as well as motion detection devices such as the Microsoft Kinect camera and Leap Motion. Popular larger toolkits that are used (and often created by) creative coders are:
Two of the largest festivals in which creative coders gather and discuss their work are EyeO in the United States, and Resonate in Europe. Smaller festivals and meetups are organised all over the world.
- The Art of Creative Coding Video produced by Off Book (web series)
- Creative Application Network, a website that showcases new work
- Dev Art - Art made with Code, a project by Google
- CreativeCode.io, an education initiative of GrayArea.org
- push.conference is a series of events and workshops aiming to unite Creative Coders & User Experience Designers
- oF COURSE is a creative coding program to give both hardcore coders and designers with no programming experience the hands on experience,tools, ideas, and full support for making their own stunning projects.
- "Hack The Art World". www.hacktheartworld.com. Retrieved 16 July 2014.