Alias|Wavefront Announces Maya 3

Last week Alias|Wavefront unveiled a new upgrade to its powerful 3D

animation system Maya, an upgrade which will add a major new feature to the

software, particularly useful to games developers. Trax is a new non-linear

animation editing solution which will allow games developers to manipulate

extensive amounts of animation and blend it together in a way that can be

reproduced in the final game play. Trax features include reusable time

independent motion clips, blending of hand animation, data filtering and

processing of motion curves, and user-extensible plug-in filters that allow

game developers to match the same blends in Maya software that they use in

their games. This very game-oriented announcement for Maya 3 is

interesting. Last week Alias|Wavefront also announced that Maya had been

used in all three of this year's best visual effects Academy Award nominees

-- with this major upgrade announcement coming out at the same time one

would think Alias|Wavefront would have chosen to make a more visual

effects-oriented Maya 3 announcement. Perhaps Alias|Wavefront feel that

they have conquered the visual effects industry and now they're moving on

to games makers? Or perhaps they simply feel that the games industry is in

a massive stage of growth right now (Dreamcast, Playstation 2, etc.), and

they want a piece of the action. What we do know is that Maya 3 will

provide animators with more advanced and dynamic tools for an ever-more

demanding industry. That, we've come to expect from Alias|Wavefront.

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Rick DeMott
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