Friday, April 11, 2008

Weekend Fun: Create fiery drawings on your desktop

A software called Napalm lets you draw over the desktop in a fiery animated ink. The artwork stays on the desktop and spews fire like an animated wallpaper. The author says that his software is useless and thus absolutely necessary. I like this argument.

When you install the application and launch it you will see the Settings window. Click "Start Over" to remove the NAPALM logo. Then press Ctrl+F6 to hide the settings window. The whole screen should be covered with a transparent blue layer and the mouse pointer should turn into a plus sign indicating that the Drawing mode is on. Now draw with your mouse. When you are done press Ctrl+F8 to turn off the drawing mode. The blue screen will be removed and the mouse pointer will return back. What will remain is your fiery drawing on the desktop. The artwork remians in the background and does not hinder the normal usage of your computer. Pressing Ctrl+F7 will toggle this fire drawing on and off.


There is a whole lot of settings to adjust the look and behavior of the flames. Settings like hue, saturation and alpha controls the appearance of the flame. Then there is something called Gravity. A zero gravity will allow the artwork to float at one place. If you increase the gravity the artwork will slowly fall to the bottom of the screen deforming the artwork as the force of gravity acts upon it, just like real. The emitter lifetime setting controls for how long the flames will burn. A low lifetime causes the flames to die down gradually as if the fuel is exhausted. There are number of other settings to play around. You can also save your artwork and load them later. Just have fun!

NAPALM requires Windows XP, Vista or above. Download NAPALM (direct download link, 1.4 MB)


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