As a great admirer of Robert Hodgin's work, it was just a matter of time before one of his projects appeared on VC.
Solar is an engine built with Processing using OpenGL. It is an attempt to create the look of a sun by using non-traditional methods. Many particles are created from an emitter and are free to move about. Once the emitter is transformed into an attractor, the particles flock to the surface of the attractor and spread out as best they can based on the properties of magnetic repulsion. Using these particles as end points for the implied surface normal on the attractor, images are added to the attractor's surface to simulate the look of a glowing sun. This engine was eventually repurposed to make a non-official music video for Goldfrapp's 'Lovely Head' and the particle text was changed to lyrics from the song.
The iteration of Solar shown here was presented by Robert Hodgin at UCLA on January 25, 2008.