Perlin Noise was developed by Ken Perlin in 1982 for the feature film TRON. Rapidly attaining ubiquity, it is today embedded in most natural looking textures encountered in CGI. In 'Perlin Field' the noise algorithm is applied to a vector field to produce a generative visual system.
The aim is to manifest the algorithm as an object in itself, as an actor within a regime of parametric representation. Its inner workings — the synthesis of noise by layered periodic functions organised into octaves — are made apparent in the form of nested oscillations.
The piece is designed to be run as live code, for screen or projector. A short essay is available online. The software can be downloaded and run on any desktop computer (.zip, 51MB). The web version above plays on the incompressibility of noise, exploring the compression artefacts produced by its encoding into video.