nerverot man page

nerverot — induces edginess in the viewer


nerverot [-display host:display.screen] [-foreground color] [-background color] [-window] [-root] [-mono] [-install] [-visual visual] [-db] [-no-db] [-colors integer] [-delay microseconds] [-count integer] [-line-width integer] [-event-chance fraction] [-iter-amt fraction] [-nervousness fraction] [-max-nerve-radius fraction] [-min-radius integer] [-max-radius integer] [-min-scale fraction] [-max-scale fraction] [-fps]


The goal of nerverot is to be interesting and compelling to watch, yet induce a state of nervous edginess in the viewer. This manpage describes v1.3 of the program.


nerverot accepts the following options:


Draw on a newly-created window.  This is the default.


Draw on the root window.


If on a color display, pretend we're on a monochrome display.


Install a private colormap for the window.

-visual visual

Which visual to use.  Legal values are the name of a visual class, or the id number (decimal or hex) of a specific visual.


-no-db Use double-buffering (or not, respectively). Double-buffering may make  things look better for larger line widths and/or larger numbers of blots, but "better" may equate to yielding less of the desired edginess effect. You'll be calmer after watching the double-buffered variant; you're more likely to go into epileptic fits with it off. Hence, it is off (false) by default, resource doubleBuffer.

-colors integer

How many colors should be used (if possible). The colors form a smooth ramp between two randomly-chosen colors. Defaults to 4, resource colors.

-delay microseconds

The interframe delay, in microseconds. Defaults to 10000, resource delay.

-max-iters integer

The maximum number of iterations (frames) before a new model is generated. The actual number of iterations per model is a random number between 1 and this value. Defaults to 1200, resource maxIters.

-count integer

How many "blots" to draw at a time. This number may be rounded down to fit the particularly chosen model, and has a fixed minimum per-model. Defaults to 250, resource count.

-line-width integer

The width of the lines to draw. 0 means an optimized pixel-thick line. Defaults to 0, resource lineWidth.

-event-chance fraction

The chance, per iteration, for a life-altering event to occur (such as picking a new rotation target), in the range 0..1. Defaults to 0.2, resource eventChance.

-iter-amt fraction

The fraction of movement towards a target (such as rotation angle or scale) that happens per iteration, in the range 0..1. Defaults to 0.01, resource iterAmt.

-nervousness fraction

How nervous the drawing is, in the range 0..1. This is how jumpy the points on each blot are. Defaults to 0.3, resource nervousness.

-max-nerve-radius fraction

The maximum radius of blot nervousness, as a fraction of the radius of the blot, in the range 0..1. Defaults to 0.7, resource maxNerveRadius.

-min-radius integer

The minimum radius for a blot, in the range 1..100. Defaults to 3, resource minRadius.

-max-radius integer

The maximum radius for a blot, in the range 1..100. Defaults to 25, resource maxRadius.

-min-scale fraction

The minimum overall scale of drawing, as a fraction of min(windowHeight,windowWidth), in the range 0..10. Defaults to 0.6, resource minScale.

-max-scale fraction

The maximum overall scale of drawing, as a fraction of min(windowHeight,windowWidth), in the range 0..10. Defaults to 1.75, resource maxScale.


Display the current frame rate and CPU load.



to get the default host and display number.


to get the name of a resource file that overrides the global resources stored in the RESOURCE_MANAGER property.

X Resources

There are resource equivalents for each option, noted above.


nerverot should have more models.

XDBE should be detected and used, if available.

See Also



Dan Bornstein <>.


5.36-4.fc26 (10-Feb-2017) X Version 11 XScreenSaver manual