Hot visual patch summer: adds character camera control, new physics, remote viewing

The free browser-based patching environment for visuals has one hot summer update. New ray casting and the power to walk around and walk into walls.

Here’s the quick version:

ammo.js JavaScript port of the bullet physics engine – new Ops now, more in the future (Ops.Physics.Ammo). That means –

Physics tricks. Bodies, body collisions, world, characters, a character-controlled camera. So you can take AmmoCharacter and fire up the trusted WASD navigation and wander around a space with collisions (see the demo in their blog post).

CleanShot 2022 06 10 at 23.12.08

Augmented Reality features. Remember the days of coding and patching a bunch of tracking features that didn’t work, or desperately trying to hack into the Kinect? Uff. Nowadays, there’s Google’s MediaPipe library in the browser, which fluidly tracks bodies, faces, heads, and hands. It’s spooky good. It’s how we imagined it would work.

So that’s now integrated directly in, which is huge. (I’ve been playing with a tech demo in some of my workshops just to pipe out MIDI – see HandMate.) Can’t wait to check this out.

Improved Webcam, new MultiCam. There are tons of improvements to webcam support, which pairs nicely with the augmented reality stuff (and any video input application). And there’s the ability to choose from multiple cameras with the possibility of using multiple cameras in a single patch.

CleanShot 2022 06 10 at 23.10.50

Remote viewing. No, not the psychic one. This means you can make live connections across a bunch of devices for testing or projection or multiuser patching. Wow. So now having this all be browser-based suddenly makes loads of sense. (They do warn this stuff is new, so consider it in testing phase.)

There are also 50 Ops updates based on improved Image Compose, which appears to offer more advanced texture manipulation and shader generation as far as dealing with aspect ratios, masks, color, alpha, and parameters.

And yes, more PBR material features. A bunch of new physically-based rendering and lighting and tone mapping stuff to make your materials look nicer.

They also promise a ton of improvements to workflows, rendering, integrated help, making stuff more visible and easier to use in the editor.


  • Improved website (which is key in a web-based app!)
  • More visible license info for patchers, other community support improvements
  • Open Type fonts and geometry extrusion (90s vibes coming on here)
  • QRCode support and OS sharing
  • fxhash integration for blockchain fans
  • … and more

This is just an enormous release:

But hey, it does run on multiple devices, so northern hemisphere folks can still explore it in the park with a lemonade or beer.

Here’s a key tutorial to check out, as well, published recently:

PS, write-up on new Jitter stuff coming soon, as well, and my TouchDesigner expert friends have new stuff in that territory, too.

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