What is openFrameworks?
oF (openFrameworks) is a collection of classes and methods that simplify writing programs in C++.
Those packages with classes and methods are called addons. You can include an addon into your software and this way use all of its capabilities.
oF comes with a set of main addons that are commonly used and well tested. One example is the ofSimpleXML addon that helps you with parsing your xml and making xml files.
This is one of the addons that I’m using in my twitterEmeter app.
Because oF has an open community everyone can contribute by making new addons that fit their personal needs and by sharing them online we can all benefit from this.
A platform called github (https://github.com/) is a common used way of sharing code with others.
oF has a growing community, his community is important for the applicability of it. Where new media platforms are born new addons are made.
Why and when to use oF?
I would say, use it if you need the software to be powerful: If you need fast and accurate responses or if you need to progress large amounts of data for example with video processing.
oF is not the best tool for parsing data like I did because the addons are not really providing a lot in this field.
C++ is definitely not the easiest way to go for mainly because of its sometimes complicated syntax. You have to keep in mind a lot of things like memory household for instance.
The java based platform Processing has a far more natural human language so to say. oF is also doing a great job with this natural coding but still a bit more advanced with more complex error messages.
An other good thing of oF is its stability. If your program runs and you didn’t make stupid mistakes your program is less likely to crash. This also depends on the quality of the addons your using.