@pixelsorter a Twitter bot that sorts your pixels

@pixelsorter is a Twitter bot written in Ruby heavily utilizing EVA-01/pxlsrt and mispy/twitter_ebooks. It sorts the rows (or optionally columns) of an image according to a specific method like hue, red, brightness, luma, etc. Simply attach an image to your tweet (links to images currently not supported) and mention @pixelsorter. @pixelsorter will respond with an image that has been processed using one of a number of random presets.


There are a number of presets available. You can specify a preset by including the string preset[] with the name of the preset between the brackets. For example, to use the "drip" preset, you would include preset[drip]. If @pixelsorter can't find your preset, it will default to a random preset. Below are a list of presets, sample images, and how you would reproduce them using `cmd[]`, but note that the end effect varies highly depending on the image. I encourage you to experiment!

If you do not specify a preset[] nor cmd[] when giving an image to @pixelsorter, a random preset will be chosen along with a slight "shaking" of the parameter values, making sure that random results you get are not identical/boring. If you specify a preset directly, this shaking will not occur.

baseline image (no pixel sorting)


cmd[middle 2 vertical true]


cmd[middle 5 max 90 min 80 reverse true]


cmd[max 300 min 600 method luma diagonal true reverse true]


no parameters passed


cmd[vertical true max 80 min 10 smooth true method uniqueness]


cmd[middle -3 max 50 min 49 vertical true method saturation]


cmd[vertical true max 300 min 600 method saturation]


cmd[middle -2 max 20 min 10]


cmd[middle 10 max 350 min 350 diagonal true reverse true]


cmd[middle 3 max 300 min 240 diagonal true]

Custom Parameters

You can pass custom parameters to @pixelsorter by including cmd[] in your tweet with a set of parameters between the brackets. Parameters will always come in key-value pairs and should look something like cmd[max 50 min 20 diagonal true]. You should always have an even number of words between the brackets. If you pass an invalid value as a parameter, @pixelsorter will not respond.

Here are the custom parameter details (mostly a rewriting/copy of the docs in EVA-01/pxlsrt):

  • method <string> - the method by which to sort pixels. sum-rgb by default. Don't actually include the brackets (< and >). There are a number available:
    • sum-rgb - sorts by the sum of the red, green, and blue values of the pixels
    • red - sorts by the red value of the pixels
    • green - sorts by the green value of the pixels
    • blue - sorts by the blue value of the pixels
    • sum-hsb - sorts by the sum of the hue, saturation, and brightness values of pixels. smoothing option is suggested for this method. smooth true is suggested
    • hue - sorts by the hue value of the pixels, looks like a rainbow. smooth true is suggested
    • saturation - sorts by the saturation value of the piexls, looks like bands fade to grey. smooth true is suggested
    • brightness - sorts by the brightness value of the pixels
    • uniqueness - sorts by the "distance" of the pixel from the average color of the band
    • luma - sorts by human color perception
    • random - randomizes the pixels
    • magenta - sorts by a magenta value
    • cyan - sorts by a cyan value
    • yellow - sorts by a yellow value
    • alpha - sorts by the opacity of a pixel
    • sum-rgba - sorts by the sum of the red, green, blue, and alpha values
    • sum-hsba - sorts by the sum of the hue, saturation, brightness, and alpha values
  • min <integer> - minimum length of bandwidth to sort, 1 to infinity--by default is infinity. Don't pass infinity manually, as @pixelsorter doesn't accept a string for this param
  • min <integer> - maximum length of bandwidth to sort, 1 to infinity--by default is infinity. Don't pass infinity manually, as @pixelsorter doesn't accept a string for this param
  • vertical <boolean> - will sort vertically instead of horizontally. false by default
  • smooth <boolean> - places identical pixels adjacent to each other in the band. false by default
  • reverse <boolean> - sorts in reverse. false by default
  • diagonal <boolean> - sorts diagonally. false by default
  • middle <integer> - "middlates"--essentially creates a mirror effect by sorting from the middle out. If you pass 1, you'll have a mirror effect. If you pass more, you'll get a duplicated mirror effect. Negative numbers will cause interesting ripple effects. By default, middle is disabled. Numbers greater than 20 or less than -20 are capped because of the memory-intensiveness of this operation.

High Resolution

You can have @pixelsorter return the full, high-resolution version of your image. Ordinarily @pixelsorter will download the default medium size of your image that is displayed on twitter, but if you include the string hires in your tweet, @pixelsorter will download and return the largest available image. hires should be included outside of cmd[] or preset[]. For example, these two tweets would return high resolution images:

  • @pixelsorter cmd[vertical true] hires
  • @pixelsorter preset[drip] hires


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Coming Soon

  • Random params option
  • Dimension-aware max/min values

Feedback and Suggestions

Any feedback and suggestions can be sent to @wayspurrchen. Longer format stuff can be sent to wayspurrchen at gmail dot com.