Rutt-Etra-Izer is a WebGL emulation of the classic Rutt-Etra video synthesizer. This demo replicates the Z-displacement, scanned-line look of the original, but does not attempt to replicate it’s full feature set.
The demo allows you to drag and drop your own images, manipulate them and save the output. Images are generated by scanning the pixels of the input image from top to bottom, with scan-line separated by the ‘Line Separation’ amount. For each line generated, the z-position of the vertices is dependent on the brightness of the pixels.
Running the Demo
To run the demo you need the latest version of Chrome or Firefox, and a fairly new machine. Check if your browser supports WebGL here. If it’s still not working, try restarting your browser.
If you are experiencing slow performance, there are a few things to try:
- Reduce stage size
- Increase line separation
- Reduce input image size
You can view more images generated by this demo in this Flickr set.
I also built an audio-reactive version with Processing . View a video of this in action below:
More About Rutt-Etra
The Rutt-Etra video synthesizer was built by Steve Rutt and Bill Etra in 1972. It was one of the first devices to allow real-time manipulation of live video and helped instigate the video art movement of the 1970s. Unfortunately Steve Rutt recently passed away. His pioneering contributions to the field of video art will be always be remembered.
UPDATE (June 13): It appears that saving images from WebGL is broken in Chrome 12. I’m looking into possible solutions. In the meantime, you can use Firefox instead.