I just got word that QuartzComposer, the software that most of CamTwist’s effects are built with, has been deprecated by Apple. While that’s not a complete surprise, it’s extremely disappointing. The effort of recreating all of those effects by hand is a non-starter and should QuartzComposer actually die, it will very likely take CamTwist with it.
Until that time comes, I’ll likely continue with what I’ve already started and go for one more release. Let’s hope for a change of heart over at Apple, or perhaps a replacement for QuartzComposer can be found.
Edit: Vade took down his post, presumably. It’s still here though: http://lists.apple.com/archives/quartzcomposer-dev/2013/Apr/msg00019.html
Edit 2: Apple is saying the message about QC being deprecated was a mistake. Let’s hope that’s right, but I have a suspicion that it won’t be good news for 10.9. Time will tell.
I just wanted to take a moment to (finally) publish some history behind the creation of CamTwist and where it is going in the future.
In late 2006, I was spending a lot of time on what was a relatively new site called Stickam. Before long, I started seeing my chat mates having fun with video effects. They were using PCs and a software product called WebcamMax. At that time, there wasn’t anything available for the Mac so I set off to creating something. In a few weeks I had a simple prototype going and CamTwist 1.0 appeared shortly thereafter.
Over time I added more effects and other features but CamTwist was never intended to be much more than just a toy. To my surprise, I started receiving email from people who were trying to use CamTwist for more serious broadcasting and they were asking for features. I resisted the idea of turning CamTwist into a video switcher but eventually it seemed like the right direction to go. The Studio interface was then added.
Today’s CamTwist has seen a bunch of revisions and performance improvements. Unfortunately for CamTwist, family life has taken over my free time and the development of CamTwist has slowed to a crawl.
While CamTwist functions well enough for a lot of people, admittedly CamTwist suffers from its history. Not a whole lot of up-front thought went into the design and even less thought went into some of the code. Furthermore, MacOS X is evolving and there are several new technologies that CamTwist could benefit from. To that end, I’ve started a significant upgrade to the internals of CamTwist. The implication of that means the next major revision to CamTwist will require MacOS X Lion or better.
Despite the pace of my development, my Lion build is coming along nicely. I couldn’t possibly predict a release date but what I have is almost ready enough to be considered an alpha.