“Screentendo”: Turn Any Part of Your Screen Into a Game of Super Mario Bros.

Just when you thought you had enough distractions at work, tech developer Aaron Randall unveils Screentendo, an interactive app that transforms your computer screen into a playable level of Super Mario.

The desktop application uses Cocoapods and Sprite Kit technologies to detect major edges on graphics, logos and text. After you launch the app, a translucent rectangle will appear, allowing you to resize it over a portion of your screen. When you click inside the window, a game of Super Mario will load up, with the level of difficulty depending on the structure of the content beneath it. A little Mario will appear on the screen, and you can navigate him through the course, just like the video game version. On virtually any webpage or screen display, Screentendo transforms your screen into your favorite childhood video game.

The app is able to detect the data of the open windows on your computer (window ID, bounds, size, etc.), which allows it to retrieve a screenshot of Safari and convert it into a format that Screentendo can use at a game level. Keep in mind that the app requires a good amount of color contrast to detect edges, and Screentendo has difficulty recognizing smaller text.

If you’re working on a Mac, make sure you have Xcode running and Cocoapods installed. You also must have Mac OSX 10.10 Yosemite.

For more information about how Randall determined level generation and game logic, and to download Screentendo for yourself, visit his blog.

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