COMP1720/6720 has always been a collaborative endeavour between the ANU School of Computing and the ANU School of Art & Design.

COMP1720 began life in 2011 as a collaboration between Tim Brook and Henry Gardner in teaching computing to art students and vice versa. Originally, COMP1720 was taught using the Processing language created by Ben Fry and Casey Reas.

In 2015, Ben Swift took over as lecturer & convenor, in collaboration with Kit Devine from the ANU School of Art as the “artist in residence”.

In 2017 Ben ported the course from Processing (which is based on Java) to Lauren McCarthy’s p5.js (which is based on JavaScript, hence the .js suffix). Most of the current content (e.g. the slides, the “build it up, break it down” labs) can trace its roots to that time, although it has benefited a lot from contributions from lots of cool people (lecturers, artists, tutors, students) in the intervening years.

In 2017, Kieran Browne wrote & delivered the “art theory” parts of the weekly lecture slots. In 2018 that role (including even more new art-theory-for-comp1720-coders content) was passed to Tony Curran.

Since 2020, with Ben taking parental leave, the torch has been passed to Charles (with Tony Curran remaining as the artist in residence). Going forward the bones of the course will remain the same, but Charles has lots of exciting things in store to keep things fresh and interesting for every student who enrols in COMP1720/6720.

In 2021 the COMP1720 course material is even being used by Ben & Ushini as part of the ANU’s first ever ANU Extension Course in Creative Computing.

Like the Ship of Theseus, COMP1720 changes year-to-year, but retains the original spirit of interdisciplinary work which stretches both artists & coders to learn new things.

Updated:    07 Jun 2021 / Responsible Officer:    Head of School / Page Contact:    Charles Martin