I was pleased by the kind of “cheezy space film” mood David Van Brink’s pointless applet put me in, so I got the wild idea of creating a Mac OS X screen saver out of it.
Since I don’t do Java and am not sure how difficult it would be to use it directly in a screen saver, I decided to do a more-or-less verbatim translation to Objective-C Cocoa. This turned out not to be too much work, and the process I adopted was to paste David’s Java code into my Cocoa source file, #ifdef’d out. I then proceeded to bite of chunks of the code and translate them into equivalent Cocoa. This was motivational because I got visual feedback on my progress, even if it wasn’t too pretty at first:
Some of the bugs were surprisingly charming:
Though not as charming as the final product, with most if not all of the bugs ironed out.
In David’s applet you can add new blips by clicking the window, but in the screensaver that would just stop the screensaver from running. Thanks to Mark Dalrymple for pointing out that I can still grab keystrokes without waking up. Press “b” to add a new blip, and “i” to toggle the stats display.
If you like the screen saver, donate some cash and I’ll split the proceeds with David.
Update: Well, I just can’t put this thing down. I decided to play with the background color and I think this looks just amazing with a medium gray backdrop. I’ve decided to update the binary download with this setting.
If you don’t like it, well, build your own!