Foundation. The Processing Foundation is an organization that develops software tools for the visual arts.


The goal of the Processing Foundation is to promote software literacy, particularly within the visual arts, and to promote visual literacy within technology. Our primary charge is to develop and distribute the Processing software, both the core Application Programming Interface (API) and the programming environment, the Processing Development Environment (PDE). The board of directors for the Processing Foundation consists of Ben Fry, Casey Reas, and Dan Shiffman. The first member of the board of advisors is John Maeda.

To succeed, the Foundation needs to raise money to support future versions of the Processing software and related initiatives. The Processing team, a small group of volunteers, has released over 200 versions of the software since 2001, leading to the 2.0 release in the spring of 2013.With almost no funding between the 1.0 and 2.0 releases, the software was written slowly while the developers managed full-time work and many other responsibilities. The 2.0 software release happened in an unsustainable way, at tremendous personal expense to the lead developers. The Foundation must raise funding for the initiative to continue.

With the 2.0 software release, we're now asking for donations from individuals who use the software, and we're actively seeking larger gifts from individuals, companies, and other non-profit organizations. To learn more about why you might want to contribute, please read the 2013 status report below. The Processing Foundation was publicly announced in June 2013 with the release of the Processing 2.0 software. Our official non-profit status was was granted by the IRS on 6 March 2014, with our tax exception status retroactive to our date of formation, 14 June 2012.

2013 Report

We had a busy and productive 2013 with a wide range of activities:

  • Released Processing 2.0 and 2.1
    • New OpenGL renderers for speed
    • Integrated GLSL shaders and API
    • New video library for faster capture and playback
    • Enhanced library manager for easy install
    • Enhanced modes infrastructure to make it easier to add new languages to the PDE
    • New features for working with XML and JSON
    • New classes for working with data
    • New features for working with SVN and OBJ
  • Launched "Hello Processing" video tutorial
  • Processing Fellows
    • Lauren McCarthy, exploratory research led to p5.js
    • Greg Borenstein, released OpenCV library
    • Wilm Thoben, work started on new core Sound library
  • Community Development
    • Worked with community library authors to port and develop 109 libraries for 2.0
    • New templates developed for creating libraries and tools
    • 2.0 Processing Forum launched and 1.0 Forum archived
    • Website redesigned with simplified navigation and new tutorials
  • Google Summer of Code 2013. For the third year, we mentored a group of university students to explore their ideas for extended Processing. Please read our summary post.
    • Manindra Moharana's PDEX brings code completion, debugging, and more to the PDE
    • Gal Sasson's Tweak Mode makes it easy to modify parameters while a program runs
    • Gottfried Haider's Serial library is a needed update to the core library
    • Martin Leopold's GUI library is a new approach to created interface elements
  • Thank you! This year, we're especially grateful to the following people and groups:
    • Processing users who have donated through the Download page
    • O'Reilly Media for the December 2013 matching grant
    • Arduino for the generous donation in February 2013
    • The Google Summer of Code program for supporting students to work with us

Despite the new fundraising goals, Processing remains almost entirely a volunteer organization pushed forward by a small group of people. In starting our fundraising push, the initial goal was to hire one full-time developer to maintain and build the Processing code base, while the current Processing team continues to volunteer time to the project. We've received a constant stream of donations through the Download page interface, but at the end of nine months the amount is about 10% of what we need to hire a developer. We're currently utilizing the donations to support Processing Fellows, short-term appointments to explore future directions for Processing and to produce essential libraries. For instance, we supported Lauren McCarthy to explore new ideas for integrating Processing with JavaScript and we supported Greg Borenstein to development the new OpenCV library.


Individuals making $5 to $100 donations are the largest source of income for the Processing Foundation. We're grateful to all who have donated and we're proud to be supported by the community.

In 2013, O'Reilly Media and Arduino made donations to the Processing Foundation.

The Google Summer of Code program has provided and excellent source of energy and new development through supporting students to work with us. This program has now supported Processing for three years, 2010 to 2013. It has provided the base for many important enhancements to the software.

Prior to incorporating as a Foundation, Processing received key funding and support from several organizations and companies. These commitments enabled a series of pivotal improvements to the software.

The Interactive Telecommunications Program (ITP) at New York University sponsored a Processing 2.0 development workshop in the summer of 2011.

The Armstrong Institute for Interactive Media Studies at Miami University funded The Oxford Project, a series of Processing development workshops during the 2008-2009 academic year. These four-day meetings in Oxford, Ohio, enabled the November 2008 launch of Processing 1.0 and stimulated future development.

Oblong Industries funded Ben Fry to develop Processing during the summer of 2008. This funding also assisted in the completion of the 1.0 release. The Rockefeller Foundation awarded Ben Fry with a Media Arts Fellowship in 2006. The grant marked the first time that Ben was able to work on Processing as a funded project. This support led to further developments of the OpenGL and PDF rendering engines, as well as significant enhancements to other libraries and their integration.

The Interaction Design Institute Ivrea funded four individuals' work on Processing in the summer of 2003. This resulted in Dan Mosedale's preprocessor using Antlr, Sami Arola's contributions to the graphics engine, and other contributions to the Processing Development Environment and 2D graphics engine. We are grateful to Interaction Ivrea director Gillian Crampton Smith for her encouragement and support.