I just read on John Nacks Blog that pixel Bender is now available for download from Adobe Labs. The first question you might have is, “What is Pixel Bender ?”

Pixel Bender

Pixel Bender is a new technology from Abobe that “delivers a common image and video processing infrastructure which provides automatic runtime optimization on heterogeneous hardware.”  What that means to you is that the Pixel Bender language can be used to create image processing algorithms in a hardware independent manner. The means that filters and effects can be created outside of the application using the XML-based language. According to Adobe, there are many advantages to Pixel Bender technology”

  • Low learning curve — Pixel Bender offers a small number of tools that are sufficient to write complex image-processing algorithms.  
  • Parallel processing — Pixel Bender allows the same filter to run efficiently on different GPU and CPU architectures.
  • Supports all bit-depths — The same kernel runs in 8-bit/16-bit/32-bit within the application.
  • Support by multiple Adobe applications — Pixel Bender is integrated with multiple Adobe applications. It allows you to develop filters that are portable among various Adobe products. 

What does Pixel Bender mean to you?

According to John Nack, and I have to take his word for this because I haven’t had a chance to run it yet, Pixel Bender will:

  • Run filters really, really fast on your graphics card.
  • Pixel Bender also runs cross-platform in After Effects CS4 & Flash Player 10.
  • The filters people write for Flash will also work in Photoshop.

For more on this go see Johns Blog.

I plan on downloading and running this as soon as possible. (When my laptop comes back from Apple)