## Packery Preview, from Metafizzy & descended from Masonry

David Desandro / metafizzy, maker of masonry and isotope of which I’m a big fan and user of has been busy with a new project called Packery.

Packery, looks to be a child of Masonry. As you would expect it seems to be pushing things much further and addressing a few pain points of masonry. He’s boasting in this blog post that it will optionally support grid layouts, and give you the option to go grid-less for a more haphazard looking layout. It will allow filling holes and adding elements on the fly, but most impressively… We’ll have drag and drop support (including touch support and multitouch support)! You drag an item around the grid (or non grid) and watch live as elements reposition to embrace the newly placed item! Very cool and I can’t wait to play with it. ## Working out a Math Problem | BIT-101

I love how math creeps into design, programming and other problem solving. I had some fun playing with Keith’s code (as usual). I’m always impressed with how he’ll see a problem and eventually at least figure out how to solve it using math/trig/physics. It’s a breath of fresh air and it almost makes me wish I was a math teacher and I could whip the example out whenever a student says ‘how is math useful’. I use it and even enjoy using math in my work to solve problems and it what bits I paid attention to in school still really help me.

Anyways, Keith was trying to figure out how to have a ring of a certain number of exactly touching circles around one central circle of a predetermined size. Sounds like a perfect bonus question from trig, right?
Here’s his post: Working out a Math Problem | BIT-101. And then his follow-up post where he gets to what I was expecting in some nice renderings showing how he’s using this simple pattern to make some really interesting designs.

I commented that I liked his problem solving procedure and was interested to see it animated! I love how math creeps into design like this. So I toyed a bit with animating the form. Check out my jsbin at http://jsbin.com/icahul/132/edit.

## Parallax Online and In Space

Astronomy has a lot to do with web design nowadays… This video teaches how distance is measured in space and discusses parallax as one way of calculating distance. Have you ever wondered how astronomers figure out the mind-boggling distances between the Earth and various astronomical objects?

## SVG Preloader with Raphael JS

Here's a very creative use of using a newly available technology. Using svg graphics which are very lightweight, for a website preloader. I like the animation used as well. Make a stylish preloader with SVG | Tutorial | .net magazine
Many sites neglect users with slow connections. Ian Culshaw explains how to use SVG library Raphaël to create a preloader that’ll hold the users' attention while pages load

## Exploring the Javascript requestAnimationFrame API

Here's a great overview and explanation of the new-ish requestAnimationFrame API for javascript. This makes the animations happen in sync and controlled by the browser. This is something that will really help javascript come up to par with animations we are used to and use hardware acceleration. Although it still requires vendor prefixes for all browsers there is a polyfill available to make it happen. I want to see some more demos, (the one linked here in jsfiddle –http://jsfiddle.net/wMkJg/ is more jumpy than my first flash animation 7 years ago). requestAnimationFrame — The secret to silky smooth JavaScript animation
Do you often find yourself lying awake at night wondering how you, too, can get your JavaScript animations to be as smooth as those silk sheets of yours? I can’t say for certain that all of us on the CreativeJS team actually have silk sheets, but we did want to show you how to make your animations rock, so we created a page over in our Resources section dedicated to the new(ish) requestAnimationFrame API. Go take a look!

## Snow via Javascript & Canvas – Tis the Season

After playing with the settings in my experiments I found a few settings I liked and wanted to develop further. The first was snow! An added bonus I was able to work on a project just for the holidays and used much of this code in it! I looked around the web and saw a couple interesting examples of snow, but nothing that stood out to me. I used couple images and pulled them into the canvas in place of the dot (choosing one of 3 flake graphics), and learned how to apply a rotation to that graphic from somewhere online (I think stackoverflow, but now I can’t find it again to link it. The physics settings are hardcoded now and the update function doesn’t check the dot y position against the top of the page, since the snow should all be moving down with the gravity, it could be moved up with it’s floating, but I just wanted it to come down on it’s own. Then to get the rotation we need to save the context state, more to the flake center, rotate it and then move back to the canvas origin, draw the image and restore context. This process sounded complicated and took a bit to get things in the right order and the whole time I was scared it would be too processor intense for a good amount of snowflakes, it seems to do just fine! interactive physics animations via javascript & canvas | snow application example: check it out! [cc lang=”javascript”]
\$(function () {
var canvas, context, width, height, x, y, radius = 25, clickX, clickY, drag = false;
var total_dots = 150;
var fps = 24;

canvas = \$(“#canvas”);
context = canvas.getContext(“2d”);
var dots = new Array();
var drag_i = -1;
var gravity = .05;
var friction = .98;
var bounce = -.96;
var wrap = true;
var float = true;

var imgs = new Array();
var img1 = new Image();
var img2 = new Image();
var img3 = new Image();
img1.src = “snowflake_1.png”;
img2.src = “snowflake_2.png”;
img3.src = “snowflake_3.png”;
imgs = img1;
imgs = img2;
imgs = img3;
var this_dot = {};
for (var i=0; i < total_dots; i++){ createDot(); } function createDot(x, y, r, vx, vy){ var this_dot = { x: typeof(x) != 'undefined' ? x : Math.random()*canvas.width, y: typeof(y) != 'undefined' ? y : Math.random()*-canvas.height, radius: typeof(r) != 'undefined' ? r : 25, scale: Math.floor(10 + (1+50-10)*Math.random()), vx: typeof(vx) != 'undefined' ? vx : Math.random()*3-1, vy: typeof(vy) != 'undefined' ? vy : Math.random()*3, //this will pick a digit 1, 2 or 3 and set it as the src value, this could also be a Math.floor(Math.random()*3)+1 to really be random src: (dots.length % 3) + 1, r: 0, vr: 0 }; dots.push(this_dot); } draw(); \$("#canvas").mousedown(function (event) { createDot(event.pageX - this.offsetLeft-25, event.pageY - this.offsetTop-25); }); \$("#canvas").mouseup(function (event) { drag = false; drag_i = -1; }); function update(){ for (var i=0; i < dots.length; i++){ if (drag_i != i){ var this_dot = dots[i]; if (float){ this_dot.vx += Math.random() - .5; this_dot.vy += Math.random() - .5; this_dot.vr += Math.random()*.01 - .005; } this_dot.vx *= friction; this_dot.vy = this_dot.vy * friction + gravity; this_dot.x += this_dot.vx; this_dot.y += this_dot.vy; this_dot.r += this_dot.vr; if (this_dot.x > canvas.width + this_dot.radius){
this_dot.vr = 0;
}
else if(this_dot.x < 0 - this_dot.radius){ this_dot.x += canvas.width + this_dot.radius*2; this_dot.vr = 0; } if (this_dot.y > canvas.height + this_dot.radius){
this_dot.vr = 0;
}

}
}
}
function draw() {
context.clearRect(0, 0, canvas.width, canvas.height);
for (var i=0; i < dots.length; i++){ var src = img1; if (dots[i].src == 1){ } else if (dots[i].src == 2){ src = img2; } else { src = img3; } context.save(); context.translate(dots[i].x+dots[i].scale/2, dots[i].y+dots[i].scale/2); context.rotate(dots[i].r); context.translate(-dots[i].x-dots[i].scale/2, -dots[i].y-dots[i].scale/2); context.drawImage(src, dots[i].x, dots[i].y, dots[i].scale, dots[i].scale); context.restore(); } } setInterval(function() { update(); draw(); }, 1000/fps); }); [/cc] Follow the whole Interactive Physics Animations via Javascript & Canvas series.

## Microsoft Touch Mouse and The Art of Touch | Giveaway

Microsoft has a new line of TouchMouse. They have a campaign to cooinside with it called the Art of Touch and have invited a few artists to participate and more to drive interest with free shwag! Basically that boils down to me having a [amazon_link id=”B004HYGU18″ target=”_blank” ]Microsoft Touch Mouse[/amazon_link] to give away! So go play with the app and link a comment to your art. I’ll randomly select someone for the award as a christmas present! Be sure to comment with an email address you’ll reply to.

[amazon_image id=”B004HYGU18″ link=”true” target=”_blank” size=”medium” ]Microsoft Touch Mouse[/amazon_image]

I played with the drawing app, and while it’s not totally generative, it does add a sense of randomness to it. It’s fun in that it tried to incorporate a few different styles of artists, including one of my favorites, Erik Natzke. Here’s what Erik had to say:

Along with the custom brush that I designed for them, there are an assortment of brush styles they’ve designed to help hone in on your artistic flair that you can share, print & even compete to win some prizes. The link below will allow you to vote on the one I just made. I’m curious what other people will make.

And here’s what I came up with in a couple minutes: Comment below with a link to your art to be entered to win a new [amazon_link id=”B004HYGU18″ target=”_blank” ]Microsoft Touch Mouse[/amazon_link] this Christmas.

## Interactive Physics Animations Javascript Canvas 17

I’m really enjoying giving a control panel of sorts to the end user and letting them control the physics rules of their canvas. Let’s add more motion to it by applying a jitter to the velocity of each dot. This is similar to earlier, when we first started animating by applying a random number to the coordinates, but now we’ll apply a (smaller) random number to the velocity. This will be much smoother and will give a sense of real life to the dots. Straight lines and trajectories is always theoretical and hypothetical, but to make things look more real, sometimes we have to break the clean, straight lines. This will be another checkbox to control the float. I’m really enjoying the fact that the more properties we add to our controls we get exponentially more possible configurations. Perhaps we should even give a slider to control the strength of gravity…
interactive physics animations via javascript & canvas | 17. [cc lang=”javascript”]
\$(function () {
var canvas, context, width, height, x, y, radius = 25, clickX, clickY, drag = false;
var total_dots = 10;
var fps = 24;

canvas = \$(“#canvas”);
context = canvas.getContext(“2d”);
var dots = new Array();
var drag_i = -1;
var gravity = 0;
var friction = .98;
var bounce = -.96;
var wrap = false;
var float = true;

var this_dot = {};
for (var i=0; i < total_dots; i++){ createDot(); } function createDot(x, y, r, vx, vy){ var this_dot = { x: typeof(x) != 'undefined' ? x : Math.random()*canvas.width, y: typeof(y) != 'undefined' ? y : Math.random()*canvas.height, radius: typeof(r) != 'undefined' ? r : Math.random()*20+10, vx: typeof(vx) != 'undefined' ? vx : Math.random()*30-10, vy: typeof(vy) != 'undefined' ? vy : Math.random()*30-10 }; dots.push(this_dot); } draw(); \$("#canvas").mousedown(function (event) { var dx, dy, dist; for (var i=0; i < dots.length; i++){ dx = event.pageX - this.offsetLeft - dots[i].x; dy = event.pageY - this.offsetTop - dots[i].y; dist = Math.sqrt(dx * dx + dy * dy); if(dist < radius) { drag = true; drag_i = i clickX = dx; clickY = dy; continue; } } //none clicked if (!drag) { createDot(event.pageX - this.offsetLeft, event.pageY - this.offsetTop); } }); \$("#canvas").mouseup(function (event) { drag = false; drag_i = -1; }); \$("#canvas").mousemove(function (event) { if(drag) { dots[drag_i].old_x = dots[drag_i].x; dots[drag_i].old_y = dots[drag_i].y; dots[drag_i].x = event.pageX - this.offsetLeft - clickX; dots[drag_i].y = event.pageY - this.offsetTop - clickY; dots[drag_i].vx = dots[drag_i].x - dots[drag_i].old_x; dots[drag_i].vy = dots[drag_i].y - dots[drag_i].old_y; draw(); } }); function update(){ for (var i=0; i < dots.length; i++){ if (drag_i != i){ var this_dot = dots[i]; if (float){ this_dot.vx += Math.random() - .5; this_dot.vy += Math.random() - .5; } this_dot.vx *= friction; this_dot.vy = this_dot.vy * friction + gravity; this_dot.x += this_dot.vx; this_dot.y += this_dot.vy; if (wrap){ if (this_dot.x > canvas.width + this_dot.radius){
}
else if(this_dot.x < 0 - this_dot.radius){ this_dot.x += canvas.width + this_dot.radius*2; } if (this_dot.y > canvas.height + this_dot.radius){
}
else if(this_dot.y < 0 - this_dot.radius){ this_dot.y += canvas.height + this_dot.radius*2; } } else if (!wrap) { if (this_dot.x > canvas.width – this_dot.radius){
this_dot.vx = this_dot.vx * bounce;
}
else if(this_dot.x < 0 + this_dot.radius){ this_dot.x = this_dot.radius; this_dot.vx = this_dot.vx * bounce; } if (this_dot.y > canvas.height – this_dot.radius){
this_dot.vy = this_dot.vy * bounce;
}
else if(this_dot.y < 0 + this_dot.radius){ this_dot.y = this_dot.radius; this_dot.vy = this_dot.vy * bounce; } } } } } function draw() { context.clearRect(0, 0, canvas.width, canvas.height); for (var i=0; i < dots.length; i++){ context.beginPath(); context.arc(dots[i].x, dots[i].y, dots[i].radius, 0, Math.PI * 2, false); context.fill(); context.closePath(); } } setInterval(function() { update(); draw(); }, 1000/fps); \$("#gravity").click(function(){ if(\$("#gravity").is(':checked')){ gravity = 2; } else{ gravity = 0; } }); \$("#wrap").click(function(){ if(\$("#wrap").is(':checked')){ wrap = true; } else{ wrap = false; } }); \$("#float").click(function(){ if(\$("#float").is(':checked')){ float = true; } else{ float = false; } }); }); [/cc] Follow the whole Interactive Physics Animations via Javascript & Canvas series.

## Interactive Physics Animations Javascript Canvas 16

I always want to give the end user (at least some) control of how they view and interact with data. Earlier we gave users control over gravity. Here let’s give them control over the canvas edges. Rather than having our dots bounce on the edges of the canvas, lets have them wrap across to the other side. Like in the asteroids game the ship can fly to the edge of the screen and see space wrap them back to the other side. We’ll set this up as a control exposed to the user much like gravity. Let’s call it wrap and use a boolean value to store the setting. We’ll need to add another block of conditionals for this case where we have the set already with the bouncing. I took some care with the values so that the dots leave the canvas before they make the hyper-jump to the other side. Otherwise you’d see the magic. interactive physics animations via javascript & canvas | 16. [cc lang=”javascript”]
\$(function () {
var canvas, context, width, height, x, y, radius = 25, clickX, clickY, drag = false;
var total_dots = 10;
var fps = 24;

canvas = \$(“#canvas”);
context = canvas.getContext(“2d”);
var dots = new Array();
var drag_i = -1;
var gravity = 0;
var friction = .98;
var bounce = -.96;
var wrap = true;

var this_dot = {};
for (var i=0; i < total_dots; i++){ createDot(); } function createDot(x, y, r, vx, vy){ var this_dot = { x: typeof(x) != 'undefined' ? x : Math.random()*canvas.width, y: typeof(y) != 'undefined' ? y : Math.random()*canvas.height, radius: typeof(r) != 'undefined' ? r : Math.random()*20+10, vx: typeof(vx) != 'undefined' ? vx : Math.random()*30-10, vy: typeof(vy) != 'undefined' ? vy : Math.random()*30-10 }; dots.push(this_dot); } draw(); \$("#canvas").mousedown(function (event) { var dx, dy, dist; for (var i=0; i < dots.length; i++){ dx = event.pageX - this.offsetLeft - dots[i].x; dy = event.pageY - this.offsetTop - dots[i].y; dist = Math.sqrt(dx * dx + dy * dy); if(dist < radius) { drag = true; drag_i = i clickX = dx; clickY = dy; continue; } } //none clicked if (!drag) { createDot(event.pageX - this.offsetLeft, event.pageY - this.offsetTop); } }); \$("#canvas").mouseup(function (event) { drag = false; drag_i = -1; }); \$("#canvas").mousemove(function (event) { if(drag) { dots[drag_i].old_x = dots[drag_i].x; dots[drag_i].old_y = dots[drag_i].y; dots[drag_i].x = event.pageX - this.offsetLeft - clickX; dots[drag_i].y = event.pageY - this.offsetTop - clickY; dots[drag_i].vx = dots[drag_i].x - dots[drag_i].old_x; dots[drag_i].vy = dots[drag_i].y - dots[drag_i].old_y; draw(); } }); function update(){ for (var i=0; i < dots.length; i++){ if (drag_i != i){ var this_dot = dots[i]; this_dot.vx *= friction; this_dot.vy = this_dot.vy * friction + gravity; this_dot.x += this_dot.vx; this_dot.y += this_dot.vy; if (wrap){ if (this_dot.x > canvas.width + this_dot.radius){
}
else if(this_dot.x < 0 - this_dot.radius){ this_dot.x += canvas.width + this_dot.radius*2; } if (this_dot.y > canvas.height + this_dot.radius){
}
else if(this_dot.y < 0 - this_dot.radius){ this_dot.y += canvas.height + this_dot.radius*2; } } else if (!wrap) { if (this_dot.x > canvas.width – this_dot.radius){
this_dot.vx = this_dot.vx * bounce;
}
else if(this_dot.x < 0 + this_dot.radius){ this_dot.x = this_dot.radius; this_dot.vx = this_dot.vx * bounce; } if (this_dot.y > canvas.height – this_dot.radius){
this_dot.vy = this_dot.vy * bounce;
}
else if(this_dot.y < 0 + this_dot.radius){ this_dot.y = this_dot.radius; this_dot.vy = this_dot.vy * bounce; } } } } } function draw() { context.clearRect(0, 0, canvas.width, canvas.height); for (var i=0; i < dots.length; i++){ context.beginPath(); context.arc(dots[i].x, dots[i].y, dots[i].radius, 0, Math.PI * 2, false); context.fill(); context.closePath(); } } setInterval(function() { update(); draw(); }, 1000/fps); \$("#gravity").click(function(){ if(\$("#gravity").is(':checked')){ gravity = 2; } else{ gravity = 0; } }); \$("#wrap").click(function(){ if(\$("#wrap").is(':checked')){ wrap = true; } else{ wrap = false; } }); }); [/cc] Follow the whole Interactive Physics Animations via Javascript & Canvas series.

## Interactive Physics Animations Javascript Canvas 15

Earlier we worked on making all the dots draggable, but what’s better than simply dragging dots? Let’s set up a way to throw the dots! Now as we drag it we record the positions and use that to calculate a new velocity. Then when a dot is dropped, it will have a trajectory to follow that matches the path and speed it was dragged. This iteration only looks at the current frame and the previous frame, but a better solution may be to average the previous few positions to get a better feel. I’ve noticed that (with a mouse especially) people tend to stop dragging just before they mouseup, so this kills any velocity the dot receives during the drag. Enjoy throwing the dots around the canvas! interactive physics animations via javascript & canvas | 15. [cc lang=”javascript”]
\$(function () {
var canvas, context, width, height, x, y, radius = 25, clickX, clickY, drag = false;
var total_dots = 10;
var fps = 24;

canvas = \$(“#canvas”);
context = canvas.getContext(“2d”);
var dots = new Array();
var drag_i = -1;
var gravity = 2;
var friction = .98;
var bounce = -.96;

var this_dot = {};
for (var i=0; i < total_dots; i++){ createDot(); } function createDot(x, y, r, vx, vy){ var this_dot = { x: typeof(x) != 'undefined' ? x : Math.random()*canvas.width, y: typeof(y) != 'undefined' ? y : Math.random()*canvas.height, radius: typeof(r) != 'undefined' ? r : Math.random()*20+10, vx: typeof(vx) != 'undefined' ? vx : Math.random()*30-10, vy: typeof(vy) != 'undefined' ? vy : Math.random()*30-10 }; dots.push(this_dot); } draw(); \$("#canvas").mousedown(function (event) { var dx, dy, dist; for (var i=0; i < dots.length; i++){ dx = event.pageX - this.offsetLeft - dots[i].x; dy = event.pageY - this.offsetTop - dots[i].y; dist = Math.sqrt(dx * dx + dy * dy); if(dist < radius) { drag = true; drag_i = i clickX = dx; clickY = dy; continue; } } //none clicked if (!drag) { createDot(event.pageX - this.offsetLeft, event.pageY - this.offsetTop); } }); \$("#canvas").mouseup(function (event) { drag = false; drag_i = -1; }); \$("#canvas").mousemove(function (event) { if(drag) { dots[drag_i].old_x = dots[drag_i].x; dots[drag_i].old_y = dots[drag_i].y; dots[drag_i].x = event.pageX - this.offsetLeft - clickX; dots[drag_i].y = event.pageY - this.offsetTop - clickY; dots[drag_i].vx = dots[drag_i].x - dots[drag_i].old_x; dots[drag_i].vy = dots[drag_i].y - dots[drag_i].old_y; draw(); } }); function update(){ for (var i=0; i < dots.length; i++){ if (drag_i != i){ var this_dot = dots[i]; this_dot.vx *= friction; this_dot.vy = this_dot.vy * friction + gravity; this_dot.x += this_dot.vx; this_dot.y += this_dot.vy; if (this_dot.x > canvas.width – this_dot.radius){