Processing Project – Evaluation of Project and the Unit

Now that my project is finished and I have reached the deadline I can take a step back and critically analyse how I feel the project has gone.

Firstly, I did find learning Processing to be interesting, I know that it is always a good thing to learn a new code language, even if I will not use the language in the future I know that learning ‘how to learn’ code languages is an excellent skill. In the next unit we will create an app, this will involve learning ‘swift’, another language used to code which will then require me finding better ways of how to learn how to successfully master this code language, I feel it is of upmost importance to view each unit and subject or piece of software we use to be a positive learning experience.

Saying this, I can say that I haven’t found using Processing to be enjoyable, as is evident from my blog as well as the learning process I had to take to complete this project, I feel this was mainly due to the structure of the workshops however I found it was even more evident when doing the coding in this project that I have more of a designer mentality, therefore coding is not a strong point of mine. I feel that once I decided to attend more workshops (once more were put on) this gave me more time to seek guidance from Paul, our tutor. Overcoming many barriers along the way actually helped me understand Processing better as I had to understand what each function meant to be able to successfully debug my code.

I feel my performance was good during this project and I am happy with the outcome, it must be noted that I did not manage to achieve the goal that I first set out for myself, the original idea for this project was to use colour tracking to track the colour/s individuals were wearing and highlight or light up logos that are similar to that colour. The outcome I ended up with was a board of logos which would react to pixel values taken from the webcam, I feel this compromise did not lessen the visual impact of the project but simply made it more visually diverse and more immersive for the audience, this was because all of the logos were viewable even when their colour was not directly affected by the webcam values, this kept the screen filled with logos  which would react randomly to movement inside the radius of the webcam, I’m grateful for my tutor for helping me scale my ideas down before undertaking this project because he allowed me to break down the work flow into manageable sections, one part of Processing which still can be mis-leading for beginners is that it may look like the code used to create large, complex projects is short however due to the large array of commands and functions inside the software this does not necessarily mean it will be any easier to make sketches, something which I have learnt during this project.

To adress future improvements, I feel a way of improving the project would immediately be to again increase the quantity of logos, I feel the project works when users see a logo they recognise which then prompts them to begin considering their own relationship to the brand, therefore to add more logos would simply increase this effect as they would no doubt see more logos and brands they would purchase from or look to. As well as this I feel one interesting addition to this project could be to use blob-detection (body tracking) to track a user and create a ‘body’ of logos, this would immediately make the project more personal to the audience, something which I feel is important as in this project my aim is to show users how we are beginning to operate more and more like a hyperrealistic culture where we adhere strictly to idolised, perhaps ‘unhealthy’ normals and begin to lose ourselves in the want to be ‘normal’, had I had more time to complete this project this would have been something I would look in to.

I am also pleased with how I handled issues along the way with this project, due to my knowledge before undertaking this project that I struggled with coding I knew it would benefit me to take more time to come in and attend extra workshops and spend more time in the university campus meaning I could seek guidance more easily, meaning I use my time more efficiently, furthermore, when I did have an issue that I was not able to solve individually I made sure I met with my tutor on the same day to rectify the issue, this shows professionalism and ensured I could carry on working on my project again quickly.

Using the iterative process for creating this sketch benefitted me I find that the way I think means that the ‘trial and error’ process which is a key trait of the ‘prototyping’ process in the iterative design process benefitted me greatly. It also allowed me to gain critical feedback throughout the process and improve my project at regular intervals during the completion of the project.

When considering the theory aspect of this unit I made sure I stuck to my main concepts of identity and consumer culture which I felt was important as it meant I was able to stay on track with my project and sensibly limit myself in this aspect of my project, this ensured my final project still fit the brief.

To conclude this unit, I have learnt how to design iteratively, I have evidenced my work here on this blog and have tried to use as much evidence as I can to clearly show the stages I went through to create this Processing project as well as various inspirations I’ve had along the way, partnered with other hobbies and interests and finally posts regarding the Dorset Independence campaign brief we were given at the beginning of this unit.

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