Just heard about this from Casey yesterday:
Having designed Processing to do one thing or another, several of the submissions made me laugh out loud for ways their authors managed to introduce new quirks. For instance, consider the
createFont() function. Usually it looks something like this:
PFont f = createFont("Helvetica", 12);
If the “Helvetica” font is not installed, it silently winds up using a default font. So somebody clever figured out that if you just leave the font name blank, it’s an easy way to get a default font, and not burn several characters of the limit:
PFont f = createFont("", 12);
Another, by Kyle McDonald, throws an exception as a way to produce text to plot on screen. (It’s also a bit of an inside joke—on us, perhaps—because it’s a ubiquitous error message resulting from a change that was made since earlier releases of Processing.)
One of the most interesting bits is seeing how these ideas propagate into later sketches that are produced. Since the font hack appeared (not sure who did it first, let me know if you do), everyone else is now using that method for producing text. Obviously art/design/coding projects are always the result of other influences, but it’s rare that you get to see ideas exchanged in such a direct fashion.
And judging from some of the jagged edges in the submissions, I’m gonna change the
smooth() to just
s() for the next release of Processing, so that more people will use it in the next competition.