You didn’t realize it, but there’s been a huge hole in your life, a hole shaped like an app that lets you play with flowers that go “ding.” But now that hole has been filled: Flaar Amaris is available on the App Store for iPhone and iPad. It’s a musical graphical thingy in which you arrange flowers to make a pretty tune.

The flowers are procedurally generated using a bunch of random numbers and bad math — every petal is more or less unique. The music is sequenced in code as well, though you have a lot more control over that based on how you plant the flowers. I used OpenFrameworks for code and graphics, and Animoog to create the audio samples.

My primary goal in developing the app was to make something simple, pleasant, and meditative. My secondary goal was to push something quickly through the App Store submission process, just to get a better feel for how all that works. (FWIW, the initial submission took 6 working days to approve, and the update took 4. It may or may not help to have a ridiculously simple app). My not-really-a-goal-but-it-was-in-the-back-of-my-mind was to do something as un-Sifteo-like as I could (i.e., no grids, squares, or grids of squares), just to stretch myself a bit.

This is actually the second version of the app. I never announced the initial release a couple of months ago, because there were some parts that weren’t entirely to my liking, like the entire music timing system and all the chord tunings. You know, minor things like that. So I held off from mentioning it to anyone until I had a chance to do an update. Lesson: even a quickie side project can be released too soon for its own good. But it feels pretty good to me now, so I’m putting it out there for you to mess with.

Of course, an app is a living thing, so I’ll be gathering feedback and making tweaks, and thinking about how to develop it further. So please play around with Flaar Amaris and let me know what you think.