There’s been a lot of talk about WebGL and HTML, but I haven’t seen much happen with it except the occasional neat demo. One group aims to change that through an entire game engine built for the platform called “Goo Engine”. Already with a few demo games online, their website shows some other work like a Facebook-integrated MineCraft clone and a “Left for Dead” copy that show lots of promise for competing with regular gaming.
Hit their website to try some demos.
MaxUnderground has a great review of GPU-accelerated Octane Render system, focusing on lots of the gritty details in the system. Many GPU renderers have come under fire for restrictions in textures and scene sizes (due to limitations of GPU memory), and they’ve broken down the hard limits in their review.
There’s also a limit on the number of texures that can be used, imposed by the CUDA API. This is dependent upon the card architecture you’re using. For pre-Kepler cards the limits are 64 RGBA textures, 32 greyscale textures, 4 HDR RGBA textures and 4 HDR greyscale textures. For Kepler architecture the allowances are more generous with 144 RGBA textures, 68 greyscale textures, 10 HDR RGBA textures, and 10 HDR greyscale textures permitted. Kepler GPUs also introduced the concept of bindless textures which theoretically removes these limits, though this has yet to be integrated into Octane because it would remove support for pre-Kepler cards.
via Octane Render review – Max Underground.
Another acquisition for Autodesk today, this time it’s TinkerCad. TinkerCad is a solid modeling tool popular amongst kids and hobbyists, designed for rapid design of 3D printer models. With this acquisition, Autodesk has a new toolsuite to target at the smaller markets.
I am happy to announce that we have just signed a deal where Autodesk will purchase the Tinkercad site and core technologies. This is a great day for all Tinkercad users, Autodesk is a very enthusiastic and capable steward. There are two main impacts of this deal: the site is fully operational and Autodesk has some very exciting plans for Tinkercad.
via SolidSmack.com – Tinkercad is Back. Autodesk Acquires Site, Tech and Plans 123D Integration.
If you’ve ever wondered how these giant world-wide high-resolution maps come together, Wired has a great new article with the creators of “MapBox”. MapBox is taking continuous streams of satellite data from the likes of NASA to construct giant near-realtime images of the entire globe at staggering resolutions.
“For the new release we’re processing two years of imagery, captured from January 1, 2011 through December 31, 2012,” says Loyd, “this amounts to over 339,000 16-megapixel+ satellite images, totaling more than 5,687,476,224,000 pixels. We boil these down to a mere 5 billion or so.”
The first problem is even getting the data. It’s all available in the public domain, but just transferring it over to MapBox’s servers was a major task because of the volume. To do this render, they needed to download two thirds of a terabyte of compressed data. “We’ve got 30 to 40 servers pulling down data from NASA,” says Herwig. “We called them up and said, ‘hey we’re going to hit you hard, what’s the best way we can do it for you?’”
via A Cloudless Atlas — How MapBox Aims to Make the World’s ‘Most Beautiful Map’ | Wired Design | Wired.com.
FXhome’s HitFilm has made good strides into film-editing suites on Windows, but has always been a windows-only application. Lots of reasons (I don’t want to get into “PC Rules, Mac Drools” arguments) exist for this, but with modern equipment and Microsoft’s new “features” like Windows8, they acknowledge that it’s time for a Mac version. They’ve been working on it internally and mostly completed the project, but have opened it to kickstarter for a quick community-infusion of excitement (and cash) to finish it off, to the tune of £25,000.
The vast majority of the Mac version will be funded by FXhome. We’ve already invested heavily in the initial R&D. The challenge is in the immediate cost to equip our developers with the essential hardware, development tools, software licenses and test machines needed to create the Mac version.
That’s where we need your help.
This Kickstarter gives us the boost we need right now to accelerate development. It allows us to keep the software affordable and speed up development so that HitFilm Mac comes out this year.
via HitFilm for Mac by FXhome — Kickstarter.
Up in British Columbia, legislators are pitching a new film labor tax credit raise up to 40% that will “allow competition with other jurisdictions”. With a proposed cost per-film of $100,000-$120,000 paid by the taxpayers, there is obvious backlash.
But economists call it “corporate welfare,” and say B.C. should get out of what has become a “race to the bottom” with tax incentives.
“We know that we have the best crews in North America,” he said in one of his final rallies, where he was surrounded by close to a thousand supporters at Vancouver Film Studios.
“All they require is a level playing field and we will compete, and we will win, and we will bring jobs to British Columbia.”
via NDP’s ‘corporate welfare’ for film industry won’t save jobs: economist | Globalnews.ca.
ComputerGraphicsWorld brings us the news that on June 10th up in New York, there will be a VFX Town Hall moderated by Mariana Acuna (@vfxchick) to discuss the recent turmoils in the VFX space.
“The VFX Town Hall at COLLIDER promises to be a unique experience,” says Acuña. “There are so many vital issues at stake in our industry right now, and so many different opinions on the subject, that no two town hall gatherings are ever going to be exactly alike. Basing this discussion in New York will provide a distinctly East Coast perspective to the rest of the country and the world. This is an ideal opportunity to keep the conversation moving in the right direction.”
via Computer Graphics World – Collider Conference to Host NY VFX Town Hall.
With 3d printers getting popular and cheaper, the ability to build and share models is becoming more important. A new website called “FabFabbers” connects OpenSCAD’s open model creating tools with GitHub to allow full revision control and backup of your models.
“I was motivated to do this from discussions on the RepRap forums,” Marcos says “People seemed to have become disenchanted with some aspects of the Thingiverse terms of service, ownership/licensing of models, etc.”
via SolidSmack.com – FabFabbers is the New Site to Share and Edit Your 3D Models.