FITC Toronto 2009 Recap

fitclogoMy third pilgrimage to Toronto to attend FITC has come and gone. Knowing the routine of the conference made this the best one yet for me. I finished off my deck of old business cards from last year and filled my wallet with a stack of cards from others.

Here are few notes and links:

  • For me, the conference kicked off with Alec Cove‘s Beautiful Algorithms: Design from Nature and Mathematics, which fell in the thematic vein of sessions I’ve seen from Keith Peters and Grant Skinner, which described beautiful algorithms inspired by or mimicking nature.
  • The Adobe keynote on day one was a tad disappointing as it was filled with what was (to me and those I talked to) old news. I did pick up one link from it when Justin Everett-Church demoed an interesting augmented reality piece by Goodby, Silverstein & Partners for GE—a piece which later won at the FITC award show. See it here (use FireFox, I had issues in Safari). A great interactive piece, though for a site promoting more environmentally friendly energy practices, the requirement to print out a piece of paper for the sole purpose of interacting with the site seemed disappointingly off message.
  • Another Adobe session covering Adobe Flash Catalyst was an interesting introduction to this product, which I’m sure I’ve not seen the last of. Some features, such as the four pre-defined states of a button and existence of a timeline (though time, not frame, based thankfully) were reminiscent of the Flash IDE.
  • Check out SourceBinder, a node-based programming environment. Build programs visually by linking nodes of functionality together. Also, VizualPV3D, a GUI interface for laying out PaperVision3D scenes.
  • Grant Skinner’s Things Every Flash Developer Should Know was one of my favorite sessions of the conference. Well prepared and refined, as I’ve come to expect from Grant’s presentations. Check it out online here.
  • There were a number of frameworks shown this year, two I hadn’t previously heard of:

    • Gaia Flash Framework, for quickly building mini-sites (showcase-style sites was my impression)
    • Moccasin – “Flex framework for visual object-based editor applications.”

    Additionally, there was a session on PureMVC, which was to be presented by its inventor, Cliff Hall, but was instead covered by someone else whose name I failed to jot down.

  • The final general session was an engaging presentation by Jared Ficklin of Frog Design, who taught much about sound and sound visualization through his hour talk/flame-and-smoke-machine-laden-sine-wave-surfin-act. A very fun session :) . Within his presentation, Jared showcased the work of the talented Annika Hamann at Das Plankton, creator of some remarkable sound visualization work housed at