Developer Tools

During the last years, Project Blinkenlights has created a big collection of tools, applications, simulator themes driving our installations. Being an open project, we have published that code under an open source license and will continue to do so.

Most Blinkenlights software is targeted on the UNIX platform as we are running most of our systems under the Linux and BSD Unix operating systems. So if you are using any flavour of Unix, you might be successful of getting our code running in no time. This usually includes Mac OS X as it is based on BSD Unix as well. On Windows your mileage may vary.

The Original Blinkentools

This set of tools has been the core software for the Blinkenlights, Arcade and /blinkenlights/reloaded projects. It's all object-oriented code written in C using glib from the GTK+ project. The software is split up in several parts to create modularity.

We link to the original distributions of the software that comes in source code form only. You might want to check with your Linux distribution or your BSD ports system if specific downloads are available for your platform.


blib stands for "Blinkenlights Library" and is the core library for using the whole set of tools. Every single application is using blib as it provides the core functionality you need almost everywhere: reading and writing Blinkenlights movies in all suported formats and sending and receiving the Blinkenlights Protocol in addition to various minor services that might be useful.

So it is a library full of useful things to hack the Blinkenlights. If you want to create applications to read the various formats for Blinkenlights movies, want to implement the network protocol, or aim to develop a viewer/editor or simulator for the Blinkenlights, this is what you need.

Download blib: blib-1.1.7.tar.gz


blinkentools is a set of commandline utilities related to Blinkenlights. It includes b2b, a converter for blinkenmovies that can apply some simple effects, b2mng, which creates MNG animations from blinkenmovies, and bsend, which sends movies over the net using the Blinkenlights network protocol.

Download blinkentools: blinkentools-2.9.tar.gz

blinkensim and blinkenthemes

blinkensim is a graphical Blinkenlights simulator that displays the UDP packets it receives according to the Blinkenlights network protocol. It supports themes and comes with graphical backends for DirectFB and GTK+ as well as a console backend based on AA-lib.

blinkenthemes is a set of graphical themes that are used by blinkensim to create a visually stunning and realistic impression of our original installation.

Download blinkensim: blinkentools-2.9.tar.gz
Download blinkenthemes: blinkenthemes-0.10.tar.gz

The New Blinkenlights Software Suite

For Stereoscope, Project Blinkenlights extended the original Blinkentools with a variety of new programs and subsystems. We are going to publish the software soon after the launch of Stereoscope.