I was searching for an app for the iPad, where you can creative code in a Processing-style. This app should also work offline – so as a standalone-app. I was really skeptical to find something that would fit my needs. To my very surprise I found two apps that are more or less exactly what I want. The the third app is a online-Processing-app that unfortunately needs an online-connection.

1. Coders for iPad


Coders (AppStore-Link) is a BASIC-style coding app, that is very well made and targeted at “learn to code“. Its design is close to the processing-way of thinking: get results in 2D-graphic coding as fast and convenient as possible. The app itself wraps around the lua-scripting language (as you might know, Apple allows to embed lua-interpreters apps on the AppStore). Coders is really straightforward, simple in its design and even animations are possible. There are good tutorials and a reference as a part of the app. Unfortunately the reference is not available online, so peeking the API before buying is not possible. But I can really suggest this app for people who like to “holiday code” some animated graphics on their iPads.

2. Paragraf for iPad

Paragraf is an GLSL-wrapper, that lets you edit and run GLSL-shader-scripts right on the iPad. Its design is simple and straightforward as well. There is a bunch of examples shipping with the app, to play with and build upon. You can use the build-in camera to get realtime video-material. There are short tutorials and examples that comes along with the app, but not a reference. The developers promise to enhance this tutorials in future versions. Best thing is that this app is available for free. This app works offline, too, and is great for learning GLSL.

3. Processing in Safari: HiperPad

If you got online-connection than you can use HiperPad (link to Processing-forumthread) to run real Processing-scripts on the iPad. It’s a web-app that wraps the Processing library around JavaScript running in HTML5. Every script is send to the server, interpreted and returned to the browser. That’s why you need online-connection to use this app. The good thing is, that you can make an app-icon on the iPad’s homescreen with the Safari-bookmark. If online, it’s like having Processing similar to a native iOS-app.

Update: You surely will love to check out Codea (renamed from Codify) and Shaderific as well.

Blog - Date published: September 4, 2011 | 2 Comments

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  1. [...] a round-up on the excellent Digital Tools blog, Paragraf is a fun little GLSL [...]

  2. [...] I lately had another posting about scripting-tools for iPad. There are more and more creative code tools for the iPad emerging, that use Lua as language. [...]