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WebSocket Architecture: How to Send Data From TouchDesigner to

In this tutorial, we will learn how to send data from TouchDesigner to manipulate data right into the browser. Let’s see how.

In the previous tutorials, we learned what is WebSocket and how to use this technology to send data from our smartphones to TouchDesigner. Today we will dive into the opposite way. We will create a patch to send data from TouchDesigner straight to the browser.

Since learning is beautiful, we will include a new guest:

What is

It is a JavaScript node-based browser environment, that allows users to create interactive visual web content without coding. All the functions are encapsulated into nodes – just like Touch Designer components – that are connected through inputs and outputs.

Sounds nice? Yes, it is, so let’s get started.

WebSocket Architecture: the TouchDesigner Patch

First, let’s imagine we want to control our lovely installation through three sliders in Touch Designer that send rotation data to

So, we create three slider components and connect the output of each slider to a Math CHOP, to map the range from 0 to 1 to 0 to 360 (degrees). Then we connect each Math CHOP to a Null CHOP.

Next, we create a DAT Table to store the upcoming values from the Null CHOPs.

Then we create an Execute DAT to create a list from the table, convert it to a JSON format and send data through WebSocket to our patch.

websocket architecture

Here is the full code:

# me - this DAT
# frame - the current frame
# state - True if the timeline is paused
# Make sure the corresponding toggle is enabled in the Execute DAT.

import json

def onStart():

def onCreate():

def onExit():

def onFrameStart(frame):

	# Get the table DAT
	table = op('table1')
	# Initialize a list to hold the table data
	data_list = []
	# Loop through the rows of the table, excluding the first row
	for row in table.rows()[1:]:
	    row_data = {}
	    for col in range(len(row)):
	        row_data[table[0, col].val] = row[col].val  # Use column names from the first row
	# Convert the list to JSON format
	json_data = json.dumps(data_list)
	# Remove the square brackets
	json_data = json_data[1:-1]
	# Send the JSON data through WebSockets
	websocket = op('websocket1')

def onFrameEnd(frame):

def onPlayStateChange(state):

def onDeviceChange():

def onProjectPreSave():

def onProjectPostSave():

Let’s analyze it:

  • First, we import the json package
  • Then we get the table DAT
  • We initialize a list to hold the table data
  • We loop through the rows of the table, excluding the first row
  • We convert the list to JSON format and remove the square brackets
  • Finally, we send the JSON data through WebSocket

As in the previous tutorials, we create a WebSocket DAT. Remember to insert your own Network Address.

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Send Data From Touch Designer to

The first thing to do, of course, is opening our browser and the website.

I created an open and simple patch you can copy and paste and freely use.

websocket architecture

First, on top we have a WebSocket node. In the Input parameter you have to insert the URL of your WebSocket server.

Next, we connect the WebSocket node string output to a Parse Object string node, that parses a string to a JSON object.

We will therefore be able to retrieve the X, Y and Z coordinates from Touch Designer via the ObjectGetNumber node. We connect these three nodes to the output of the Parse Object string node, select the three keys (values, valueY and valueZ) and connect a Number node to each ObjectGetNumber node.

We are now ready to have our data parsed from TouchDesigner sliders to

In this tutorial we want to focus on the networking/protocol side, so you will be in charge of the creative side. That’s why we will use our data just to manipulate the X, Y and Z rotation of a simple cube. offers an incredible plethora of resources to create stunning visuals, so sky is the limit!

To display our cube, we create a MainLoop node – that acts as a sort of renderer for the whole patch – connect it to a simple shader (LambertMaterial), connect the shader to a Transform node and control the X, Y and Z rotation by connecting the three Number nodes to the respective Transform node inputs.

Finally, we connect the output of the Transform node to a Cube node and that’s all. Now, if we move the sliders in Touch Designer, we will be able to rotate the cube in

Download the TouchDesigner patch

Wrap Up

As you can see, WebSocket is a powerful protocol to establish communication between different environments. By implementing WebSocket both in Touch Designer and in browser scripting such as, new opportunities arise for engaging and interactive installations.