ImX (Image/ine for OsX)v1.0ß


An OsX rewrite of the old Image/ine is well on it's way now. As the old slash in the name would cause MacOsX to become seriously confused (or worse) the name has been changed to ImX.
As a programmer one is embarrassed with one's efforts about two weeks after they have been committed to file; ImX is, therefore, a complete rewrite of the program, as opposed to a simple port to OsX.
The hope is that a stable 1.0 version, including a manual, will be complete before summer. In the mean time, posted versions should be usable (and will be) in live settings.
Have fun!

What is ImX?

Image/ine, developed at STEIM from 1997, in close collaboration with Steina, was the first piece of software (for normal computers) that allowed users to manipulate uncompressed video in real time. Limited, at the time, to 320x240 pixels at some 10 frames per second (the Macintosh 8600 was the dream machine), it nevertheless proved a point: artistic quality and stage guts made lack of frame rate and image quality of secondary interest; real time video manipulation could be done! Soon others followed, all with their strengths and weaknesses. What set Image/ine apart, and sets ImX apart, is that this is software for video people, not for musicians and not for programmers.
Computer hardware has come a long way, image quality and frame rate are no longer considerations on the latest hardware. Let's say the suggested minimum is a G4 1Ghz. For performances loaded with effects a multi-processor G5 is hard to beat, though; ImX will use all processors it finds in the machine, and more memory allows for bigger sample buffers...
ImX has two main areas of application: live performance on stage (VJ, or as a part of a live music performance) and installation art. As a secondary application one can generate movie clips in real- and non real time, but there ImX is not the best software, by far. Coming from the STEIM tradition, real time, redundant and flexible control is everything. Midi, OSC and HID devices are supported for all parameters, as well as lfo's, keyboard, mouse and more. This allows for a totally separate, networked rendering engine, as well as catering to the keyboard and mouse focussed laptop artist. The user interface of ImX is not the most intuitively understood interface you'll have come across. This has two reasons, the first being that the program is complex and has many options and possibilities. The second reason is that the software is really laid out for live performance, where the user needs feedback on what he or she is doing in an immediate and very clear way; a combination of 'edit' and 'performance' mode is what you see in the interface. After a little while it will all make sense, and actually feel natural, honestly.