“Star Soup” – Quartz Composer screen saver for Mac OS X

Star Soup

I’ve been sitting on this one for a few years. Mind you, for most of that time I thought I had lost it amongst my many backups and migrations from machine to machine.

This is a Quartz Composer… um… composition that I put together back when Quartz Composer was only new. Today I fired it up under Leopard’s newer shinier Quartz Composer and it still seems to work. I played with it for a minute or two and then added a couple of extra settings for people to play with.

Click “Read More” to see some screen-shots and videos showing what various tweaks to these settings can do.

Standard Soup

Star Soup Screenshot

These are the default settings. Just a general swirling soup of psychedelic stars.

Changing Dot Color On
Changing Randomly On
Proximity 20
Spin On
Tail Density 40
Scale 3
Rush 0
Looseness 0.5

Lonely Noodle

Star Soup Screenshot

A lonely minimal star.

Changing Dot Color Off
Changing Randomly Off
Proximity 11
Spin Off
Tail Density 1
Scale 10
Rush 0.025
Looseness 0

Neon Streamers

Star Soup Screenshot

Long curly streams of neon light. Fluro colours, how fashionable.

Changing Dot Color On
Changing Randomly On
Proximity 0
Spin Off
Tail Density 800
Scale 10
Rush 0
Looseness 0

Meteor Storm

Star Soup Screenshot

Sitting in the eye of a meteor shower.

Changing Dot Color On
Changing Randomly Off
Proximity 40
Spin On
Tail Density 400
Scale 5
Rush 0
Looseness 4

Eat your heart out Moire X

Star Soup Screenshot

A new Moire for the naughties. Here’s one for the nostalgic.

Changing Dot Color On
Changing Randomly Off
Proximity 17
Spin Off
Tail Density 200
Scale 0.5
Rush 0
Looseness 0

Floater

Star Soup Screenshot

Ahem… not that sort of floater.

Changing Dot Color On
Changing Randomly Off
Proximity 10
Spin Off
Tail Density 20
Scale 7
Rush -0.025
Looseness 0.01

Disco Inferno

Star Soup Screenshot

One of my favourites. A more intermittent pattern of waves reminiscent of an illuminated dance floor.

Changing Dot Color On
Changing Randomly On
Proximity 40
Spin Off
Tail Density 200
Scale 0.5
Rush 0
Looseness 0

Slippery Slides

Star Soup Screenshot

Mmmm, nice.

Changing Dot Color On
Changing Randomly On
Proximity 20
Spin On
Tail Density 400
Scale 0.5
Rush -0.25
Looseness 0

The file already!

StarSoup.qtz.zip – 30KB.

To edit the file you will need the Quartz Composer application which is part of Apple’s Developer Tools.

You can also run it as a screen saver. Just drop it into /Library/Screen Savers/. Then you can play with the settings in the System Preferences. “Star Soup” will appear in the screen savers area under “Other”.

Running Windows or Linux? No soup for you!

License

GNU Public License version 2 (GPLv2).

Let me know if you do anything interesting with it.

Enjoy the soup!

12 comments
  1. It took Google less than 15 minutes to index this post. WordPress.com has powerful seo-fu.

  2. nice very nice job.! the best screen…

  3. Jimi said:

    It doesn’t work on

    iMac OS X 10.5.2
    Intel Core 2 Duo 2.16 GHz
    NVIDIA GeForce 7600 GT

    It won’t open in Quartz Composer either. Just spins out.

  4. jack said:

    So what has this got to do with a WordPress mug?

  5. @jack

    Fear not, I have another WordPress Mug update in the works.

  6. @Jimi

    Try re-downloading the file. This happened to me once too while I was tinkering with it. Re-copying the file from the original fixed it.

  7. micaela christie said:

    dear sammy,
    I very much enjoyed watching your disco dot soup thingy. What a soothing distraction from packing for my trip to Victoria

    Being a neo ludite pc chick sadly, no soup for me
    I don;t understand most of what is being discued on your “page” but I do like the pretty lights.

    micaela x

  8. Anonymous said:

    Your link is dead, and so is every other link to this file I’ve been able to find online. Is there any way you could reupload it somewhere? I’d really like to get a copy.

    • Looks like my DNS was a little screwed up for that site. I’ve fixed the DNS and it should come back online soon.

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