Try it


The ‘Graphical Shell prototype’ (GSp) turns one of the case-stories presented in the catalog into a working prototype. Through an online election the participants of the LGRU chose GSp out of the 16 presented ‘case-stories’ to be developed into a prototype by Pierre Marchand. From spring 2012 onwards, we tested several ideas that were related to this startingpoint, in some way continuing the work on LiteralDraw and Lazy Landscapes.

  1. How would a menu-based command line work; an inbetween language between on canvas action and actual programming? (IMG Lena drawings PH)

  2. Could we talk to our canvas using several backends, languages, and even invent new ones? (DID THIS EVER HAPPEN? SCREENSHOTSIMAGES?)

  3. How to draw by command, speak to your drawing, line by line? Letting go of all in-between layers of a graphical interface, we focused on a kind of drawing and typography that felt close to the bone. (IMG WORM, Code tasting) (IMG screenshots current

  4. The final development focuses on the way histories can be replayed, copied and shared. In this way we shortcircuit the flow of language between the document, the program, the canvas and command. You can copy/paste the log/recipe of a drawing into the command-line to duplicate an object. Meanwhile you could have changed some parameters in a text editor, removing or adding new commands even. Graphic design truly becomes an allographic art (art work which is interpreted out of a notation) now that the undo history is used as material. Edit the history, select one part of it, replay it for preview and then reapply it. (IMG ???)


GS allows you to live read the story of your drawing, understand what lies behind a WYSIWYG interface. In parallel you can follow the canvas evolution of your collaborators as layers where you can also act. As the canvas is served on-line, several people can connect to the program and draw on the same document at the same time, manipulating the same object. Command-line completion helps you to quickly manipulate and style your shapes. Tool buttons appear depending on the type of object you are manipulating.

Short manual

  • click select to select an object to manipulate - select the canvas to create a new object - create a path object - create a text object - select a path object - make lines - move - translate - select a text object - translate
  • some command lines available: - create [object] [name] - translate [x] [y] - move [x] [y] - set_text [text] - set_pos ??? - style [svg style property] [value] - style fill [color] - style stroke [color] - style stroke-width [number] - style font-family [fontname] - style …
  • ![command] —> runs a command without taking care of which object is selected

Structure, technology

GSp uses Meteor, git and javascript.

Interface structure

| a.+ b. | c. | | shell | his | | + | to | | on-canvas | ry | | editing | |

e. d. Several ways to manipulate a drawing a.+ b. The canvas is the scene of a dialogue between clicks on graphical objects and commands given to edit their properties. c. The history d. The svg -> bakes the process e. The program itself, in javascript

Some examples of commands

text123 = new Text() text123.set_text(“bla”) Install To install Graphical Shell prototype on your own machine: - install meteor - Debian/Ubuntu curl | /bin/sh - Arch Linux yaourt -S meteorjs - clone the graphical shell repository git clone git:// cd meteor - open your browser at the URL the terminal gives you: http://localhost:3000/


GSp is licensed under an Affero GPL license