With visual effects work needed on a global scale, J. Paul Peszko investigates the rise in VFX throughout the Middle East.
A number of this seasons most anticipated games have been created with Autodesks 3ds Max and Maya 3D animation, modeling and rendering software products.
Insomniac Games RESISTANCE: FALL OF MAN and Monolith Prods. F.E.A.R. were created with Autodesk software and are expected to become blockbuster games for Microsofts Xbox 360 and Sonys PlayStation 3 (PS3).
NVIDIA Corp. announced the immediate availability of NVIDIA MAXtreme 9 D3D and POWERdraft 2007, new performance drivers, developed in close collaboration with Autodesk, for 3ds Max 9 and AutoCAD 2007 softwares. Recent tests show MAXtreme 9 drivers increased performance up to 100% when coupled with the NVIDIA Quadro FX 5500 graphics solution, while POWERdraft 2007 running on Quadro FX 5500 graphics improved AutoCAD 2007 performance by as much as 73%.
Cinital Llc., an emerging developer of next-generation visual effects tools, announced the availability of Previzion HD Studio, the companys robust, end-to-end virtual studio solution that offers affordable, advanced camera motion tracking and scene integration technology for rapid previsualization and visual effects creation. Previzion effectively integrates the complete visual effects pipeline into one application, including 3D camera tracking, live video I/O, keying, 3D background rendering, compositing and realtime color correction.
REALVIZ is making VTour software available on the Macintosh platform. REALVIZ VTour, which launched in March, draws on the award-winning technology of Stitcher and ImageModeler, and offers users of all levels an innovative and effective solution for the creation of photoreal 3D environments from 2D pictures or panoramas. VTour has been specifically developed for use in a wide range of applications, such as virtual walkthroughs, 3D simulation, virtual reality, urban planning and videogames, and is also well suited for the creation of virtual sets for film and television.
Animation and digital effects studio Pendulum has been pursuing the challenge of believable 3D characters and digital acting by dedicating substantial R&D efforts toward creating a unique solution for this growing need in the entertainment industry. Partnering with the mocap experts at House of Moves, the Pendulum team is diving deep into the complex realm of high-end digital actors with the development of its new proprietary facial motion capture software, and a uniquely powerful 3D character creation pipeline.
Silicon Imaging, with help from CineForm and Intel Corp., unleashed a 2K Digital Cinema camera system intended to revolutionize movie and HD production. The Silicon Imaging SI-2K will shoot footage directly to disk, at either 1920x1080P HD or 2048x1152 cinema resolutions running on motherboards integrated into the camera or on laptop computers powered by Intel Core 2 Duo processors. Captured footage is instantly editable using CineForm's Prospect 2K realtime visualization and colorization software.
John Cawley looks at how, in a matter of a few years, TV animation production has moved to rely on Flash more and more as a costing alternative.
Autodesk Inc. announced the first creative tools extension for its Autodesk Toxik 2007 software, containing advanced features for image transforms, filtering and warping. Toxik is used to create feature film visual effects, offering 2D and 3D compositing tools, integrated collaboration and the ability to manipulate high-resolution, high-dynamic range (HDR) imagery with ease. The software has been used to shape such several feature films as SILENT HILL and THE FOUNTAIN.
Dosch Design has launched the product line DOSCH CAD, which contains many of the popular DOSCH 3D models in additional and optimized file formats. The models can be used in most CAD-applications such as ArchiCAD, Autodesk AutoCAD, CATIA, form.Z, MicroStation, Ngrain Producer, RenderWorks, Rhino, SketchUp, solidThinking, Solidworks, Think ID, UGS NX, VectorWorks and many more.
The polygonal 3D models are provided in the formats: DWG, DXF, FLT - Open Flight, IGES, Iris Inventor, NGrain, Rhino, SLP, STL, Universal 3D and VRML.
Apple announced that its entire MacBook Pro line of notebooks now includes the new Intel Core 2 Duo processor and delivers performance that is up to 39% faster than the previous generation. All MacBook Pro models now offer double the memory and greater storage capacity than the previous generation, as well as a FireWie 800 port for connecting to high-speed peripherals. The new MacBook Pro's stunning, lightweight, aluminum enclosure is just one-inch thin, available in 15- and 17-inch models, and features a built-in iSight video camera for video conferencing on-the-go.
Alain Bielik takes on the mission of uncovering the secrets behind the visual effects of Stormbreaker. Includes QuickTime clip of Baseblacks vfx work in the films climactic rooftop sequence!
Iridas, film industry pioneers in metadata-based color grading technologies, and Silicon Imaging, leaders in IT-centric digital camera and RAW workflow solutions, are partnering to develop the first camera system to incorporate live "look" visualization for a color-managed pipeline from acquisition through post and presentation.
AMD has completed its approximately $5.4 billion acquisition of ATI Technologies Inc. Combining the complementary strengths of the two technology leaders, the new AMD opens for business as a processing powerhouse committed to driving innovation, choice and growth in the technology industry. With approximately 15,000 employees, the company merges AMD's technology leadership in microprocessors together with ATI's leadership in graphics, chipsets and consumer electronics.
Digital Anarchy, a leading provider of cost-effective vfx software for Adobe and Apple products, announced the immediate availability of the ReSizer 2.1 update. ReSizer is a plug-in for high quality scaling of footage or up-converting SD to HD. This gives designers and filmmakers the power to produce high quality SD to HD up-conversions while staying on time and within budget. The plug-in works in Adobe After Effects, Adobe Premiere Pro, and now natively in Apple's Final Cut Pro and Motion using Apple's FxPlug plug-in architecture.
In this months Career Coach, Pamela Kleibrink Thompson makes an impression on the reader about business cards.
NVIDIA Corp. announced NVPerfKit 2.1, a comprehensive suite of next-generation performance tools for the debugging and profiling of OpenGL and Direct3D software applications for Windows and Linux.
As in previous versions, Havoks realtime physics technology has been upgraded for Autodesks 3ds Max 9. The softwares 64-bit architecture makes it easier to work with the massive datasets required for next-generation digital content creation. The upgrade of Havok Physics in 3ds Max 9 means that greater numbers of interacting objects can be simulated in realtime, helping digital artists manage the increasing complexity of 3D datasets characteristic of next-generation game, film, broadcast and design development.
Caligari Corp. announced version 7.5 of trueSpace, the industrys first 3D software application to feature realtime collaborative authoring technology. The new release, which will become available in Q4 2006, will feature a number of significant enhancements, including brand new character animation, modeling, rendering and collaborative tools and a simplified UI. trueSpace7.5 is the only 3D authoring product on the market to offer all aspects of realtime design, modeling, animation and rendering within a virtual 3D space shared by remote participants over the broadband internet.
Autodesk 3ds Max 9 modeling, rendering and animation software is now shipping. The latest release of the 3D software provides dramatic improvements in display performance and complexity management required by next-generation production pipelines. It also includes significant rendering enhancements for architectural professionals. From the greatly expanded boundaries of the first-ever 64-bit release of 3ds Max to the newly integrated hair-styling interface, 3ds Max artists have more options, better performance, and greater flexibility than ever before.
Avid Technology Inc. announced the availability of version 5.6 of Avid Studio Toolkit, which delivers significant enhancements to a set of tightly integrated, industry-leading software applications, including Avid 3D, Avid FX and Avid DVD by Sonic. Avid Studio Toolkit is the first multi-format solution for simultaneous DVD and Blu-ray Disc authoring, designed specifically for professional film and video editors looking to create and deliver projects in HD.
The University of Hawaii, in partnership with PipelineFX, has deployed a powerful animation render farm in support of digital media education programs across the island.
NVIDIA Corp. announced support for the Microsoft "Certified for Windows Vista" logo program and the certification of an extensive line of GPUs. The program, the latest in a series of milestones leading up to the launch of Windows Vista, identifies the industry partners working closely with Microsoft to help educate consumers so they make the best choices when buying or upgrading their PC.
Animal Logic has adopted a Vicon MX40 system for realtime facial, hand and full-body capture. Animal Logic is already innovating with the capabilities of Vicon MX to create weekly episodes of a primetime talk show, in which a virtual host, driven by realtime performance data, interviews and is viewed by guests and the audience live in the studio.