Forum

Where to go next?

Hi all;

I’m really really new to Vvvv and visual editing/programming in general and I’d really like some direction please.

I’ve gone through the video tutorials and through using other programs like Pure Data have a pretty good idea of how to use the interface and what the basics do.
I’m really struggling with where to go next. There’s so many different nodes and some seem quite specific with what they’ll go with.

Is there anything else that’s essential to get to know, or any sort tips for a total beginner.
I’ve looked through example patches and tried to have a mess around, but it seems some things are not compatible with others and so on.

Any help or advice would be fantastic :)

I totally understand that getting to the vvvv party late is pretty overwhelming. I think just do a little project for yourself and you will find out that there are many ways to do the same thing.

What do you mean with example patches are “not compatible”?

Be sure to understand all the Frequently Used Nodes: fun

Yeah, the FUNs :)

and get your head around the different types of data you’re dealing with to find the logic behind 'what connects to what

As westbam mentioned, a good idea is to set out for some mini-project. For instance, a vvvvorkout that I like to do every once in a while is to start with something like this:
sites/default/files/imagecache/large/screenshot1379075905.png

and try to make some funky clocks :)

Wonderful; thank you for the replies :)

When I say that certain things don’t seem compatible I mean for example; I don’t understand why a pillow or a quad can be connected to the renderer, but the sphere or box can’t.

There’s so many nodes, and for some the help patch isn’t all that informative. I’ll look at help patches for different things and try and take segments of each to use together, but they wont work.
I’ve no idea why certain things go to different renderers and such.

I’ll have a look at the FUNs and get on it. I’m teaching myself a little each day and I’m giving myself a year (hopefully less) to hopefully become quite efficient with it.

I’m really looking forward to be able to use Vvvv effectively with Pure Data, Arduino and Kinect

I agree with the 2 above and would add that when I started with vvvv, i was in the same position and maybe differently to a lot of other software I found that just looking at and messing with existing patches didn’t get me very far. There is sometimes some quite complex logic and usually patches that people have done are optimized and cleaned up to the maximum, so it might be hard to follow sometimes, especially in the beginning.

Understanding basic data types, spreads and a couple of basic nodes will be enough for you to start throwing some stuff together. Looking at the help patches of nodes you don’t know also helps (press F1 after clicking on a node), not just to understand what they do, but simply to know THAT they exist for use at some point.

For me it also took a little while to fully understand what it means that everything is evaluated every frame. So if you want something to only happen/be triggered once you have to make sure it only does it ONCE.

It can be hard to think of stuff to just do without a clear goal. The best is always a real-life project to get you started. Maybe start with something simple like making an mp3 file play (hint: filestream). Then you go on to use FFT to analyse it. Then you could make a simple visualizer using that data. Maybe start with a simple thing in a GDI renderer and then move up to something 2D or 3D in an EX9 renderer.

Nodes i use in almost every project: LFO, TogEdge, Counter, Switch, i, GetSlice and the basic math operations (+ - * /) and boolean (AND OR …).

regarding

read this: ex9 rendering

Well, not to copy/paste some documentation, there is a difference between a Box and a Quad. If you look at the nodes, you see between the brackets what category they fall in to.

A box (EX9.Geometry) is a piece of Geometry, a primitive, so you need a shader/effect to make it show. Other examples are the Teapot (cool for testing) and the Sphere. So unlike a quad it needs one more extra node to make it show in the renderer. The cool part is that different shaders give you different looks. These are 3D ojects that react to lights etc. If you want to make your own object, than check out the .X files. xfile(EX9.Geometry Load)

That is what the GouradDirectional is doing in the helpfile, showing that piece of Geometry. So check the EX9.effect category in the node browser for more shaders/effects.

The Quad, Segment, Pillow, Sphere but also Text are directly visible in your renderer, but these things are flat. Now, to see 3D, you need to connect something to your renderer, like the Perspective (transform) or a Camera (Transform Softimage).

On a personal note, add me to Skype, you can always ask questions, if I am online: westbam.v4p

Thank you so much for all the advice. I’ve started running through the FUNs to see what does what and I’m following the help files of various different nodes.
I’m kind of wondering around aimlessly at the moment with no clear goal, but at least I’m getting to grips with the very very basics. I kinda feel like I’m standing at the bottom of a huge mountain with a bit of rope… But I will persevere.

Is it worth learning all of the primitive bits and using them as baby steps, or should I focus on the newer nodes and geometries?

I guess my ultimate goal is to be able to use V4 to add visuals to my music and do live/interactive visuals (ideally 3d). Something similar to Amon Tobins live visuals for the Isam tour I guess (in style… The projection mapping can come later); which was done in Touch Designer so I’ve no doubt that similar could not be created in V4.
This is a long way off yet; but is there anything that I should be looking at that would benefit me towards this eventuality?

Thank you once again for all the advice. I really appreciate it.

P.s. Using v4 Is it possible to do bits like this:

Patch with a goal. The goa video you posted begin with a starfield.
So you can start with a simple starfield as a project.

The possibilities of VVVV are endless and you can do the same thing even better and better and better and better as you learn.

Attacched a starfield patch made in 2 minutes. Is not perfect but you can improve it.

ALSO:
The best thing of VVVV is the community. Every day here member posts awesome stuff and everyone help each other on simple and advanced stuff, you can really improve your skill just reading the forum, bookmark what you think it’ll be usefull. In the future, when you’ll face a problem, you’ll already know where to look to solve it…

Have a nice patching, you’ll become addicted.

starfield.v4p (22.2 kB)