At the upcoming Congress on the Future of Engineering Software (COFES), LightWorks will be on-hand demonstrating the capabilities of their new Lightworks Artisan product and their partnership with Caustic Graphics.
Dave Forrester, CEO at Lightworks, commented, “We’re delighted to be taking part in this year’s Cofes. It’s a key event in the industry’s calendar and we’re looking forward to showing attendees some of the latest advancements from Lightworks. I think people will be particularly interested in seeing our new versions of Lightworks Artisan which incorporates the latest multi-core technology from Caustic Graphics and we’re delighted to be working with them at this event.”
Caustic Graphics, a company I’ve loved since day 1, has just been acquired by Imagination Technologies for the tiny sum of $27M. Imagination Technologies makes the PowerVR SGX chips used in the newer Apple iOS devices (iPhone, iPad) among other things. When asked about it:
“Ray tracing is a key additional technology that traditionally has been regarded as the exclusive domain of specialized markets and non real-time applications,” said Hossein Yassaie, chief executive of Imagination. “We intend to change that.
Yassaie said the acquisition for $27 million will allow Imagination to create even more advanced graphics technology in the future. Caustic’s patented hardware and software technology allows for more powerful and less expensive ray tracing.
At first glance, I’m not sure if this is good or bad. Good for Caustic employees probably, but I had always hoped I’ld see a CausticTwo card in my workstation. Who knows, maybe I will but it’ll be the PowerCaustic card.
Lightworks will be at SIGGRAPH again this year, and once again will be showing how well their products operate with the impressive Caustic Ray-Tracing solutions. This year they’ll have the CausticOne and the new OpenRL spec showing real-time raytracing power.
Dave Hutchinson, Product Director at Lightworks, commented “At Lightworks we aim to be at the forefront of new technology so that our customers are always in the best position to compete within the global market place. We’re delighted to be able to enhance our products by offering OpenRL to our customers, as we know it will be incredibly beneficial and give additional value to their own applications.”
It’s important to note that while many vendors are showing “RealTime Raytracing” systems, only the Caustic solution is truly RealTime & Interactive full-screen Raytracing. Many solutions use iterative rendering (like mental images’ iray), but the Caustic solution renders full-frame real-time RayTraced imagery, and even allows geometry and light manipulation on-the-fly.
I plan to stop by their booth and check it out, I recommend you do as well!
We’ve talked about Caustic Graphics and their impressive CausticOne card before, but I missed when they announced OpenRL. OpenRL is a freely-available cross-platform Ray Tracing API that runs independent of their impressive hardware, allowing you to implement hardware accelerated (or software emulated) ray tracing on a wide variety of systems. Over on Vimeo they have this great example of the system running on a MacBook Pro with the GeForce 9400M.
This technical example demonstrates OpenRL’s heterogeneous computing ability by leveraging a Macbook Pro’s Intel Core 2 Duo processor, together with an NVIDIA GeForce 9400M graphics processor to solve the ray tracing problem. Essentially whichever device is ready to do more work then OpenRL will assign more rays to it. The result is the fastest performance of ray tracing on a laptop today.
Of course, don’t take this to mean they aren’t working on their hardware cards anymore, they most certainly are. This way they just have an open API that everyone can use whether they have the Caustic card or not. It’s somewhat like the Freemium model: Get Brazil (or some other OpenRL enabled app) and try it on your GTX480, and be amazed. Then once you’re hooked, fork out the extra cash for the Caustic card and be blown away.
If you’re a developer interested in working with the CausticRT real-time raytracing system, but haven’t gotten an actual CausticOne card to work with, you should head on over to their website and register for their developer program where you might get a chance to try out their new Emulation SDK.
Caustic Graphics has created a “software fallback” that allows developers to run a cross platform emulated version of CausticRT, without the CausticOne™ raytracing accelerator card. Within the next few months we will be offering our CausticRT Emulation SDK as a free download for developers to create new or port their existing software applications that utilize raytracing. Applications developed on the CausticRT Emulation SDK are fully compatible with CausticRT. Target markets include but are not limited to, Film, Video, Games, Transportation, Education, Consumer Products, Architecture, Engineering, and Construction.
In addition to the SDK, you’ll get free access to their developer forum to discuss CausticRT, CausticOne, CausticGL, and see some fine examples of the system in use.
Caustic, makers of the revolutionary CausticRT & CausticOne systems for hardware accelerated ray-tracing, have released a new demonstration video showing the system at work within Autodesk’s 3ds Max with Brazil.
This is our latest interactive demo of “true” global illumination using the CausticRT platform with Brazil in 3dsMax. Its a fully ray traced interior living room scene with 2,080,957 polygons, and outdoor and indoor lighting that includes classic 3D geometry such as the Stanford Dragon & Bunny. The poly count for each of the objects are as follows:
Bunny: 70K polygons
Dragon: 800K polygons
Buddha: 1M polygons
Interior: 22K polygons
The 3dsMax ActiveShade window resolutions are: 400×300 & 800×600
It’s a powerful demo that really shows how companies are embracing the technology, and some of the fantastic features it enables for users. See the full announcement, with more details, and the video after the break.
Caustic, makers of the real-time graphics card we’ve discussed before, had a huge announcement at SIGGRAPH: They’ve partnered with the likes of Autodesk, Rhino, Lightworks, and more to bring their card to the masses. If you’ve seen my latest podcast then you know I spent some time talking to them about the hardware and how it works. Read on after the break for the details.
The sequel to “SIGGRAPH2009 – Exhibits Day 1” is now online. In this episode I show some of what was going on in the Autodesk booth and a few others, and focus primarily on the Caustic card and its features. Be sure to come back for a full writeup on the Caustic Card soon.
Here at VizWorld we’ve been watching the Caustic graphics card with reserved excitement. The possibilities of the card are amazing, and the few results they’ve shown are impressive. However, something like this needs buy-in from the major players in the industry to add in support for existing tools before we can expect to see anything very significant. Well, Caustic is proud to announce that day is today:
Autodesk, Inc. booth (#2201) – Caustic’s technology will be featured as part of the Autodesk Design Visualization presentations shown at SIGGRAPH. The CausticRT platform will be showcased as part of a fully ray traced, interactive virtual walk through of a trellis structure designed by the architecture visionary Greg Lynn, rendered with the Brazil™ interactive renderer implemented in Autodesk® 3ds Max® Design 2010 software..
Lightwork Design booth (#2635) – Caustic will be featured in a new Lightworks application – Lightworks Artisan, which is due to be unveiled at SIGGRAPH. The Caustic demo will demonstrate multi-core working and will also illustrate the performance improvements possible using Caustic.
Robert McNeel & Associates booth (#2030) – CausticRT will be featured in a plug in for Rhino, featuring interactive raytracing.
That’s right, Caustic’s card now works with Autodesk, Lightworks Artisan, and Rhino, some of the biggest names in 3D Modeling and rendering out there. They’ll be demonstrating the functionality all over the conference floor, in their own booth and their partner’s booth. If you’re at SIGGRAPH, make sure to stop by and congratulate them and check it out!
Read the full announcement and see some spectacular ray-traced renders after the break.
I just got off the phone with the crew at Caustic Graphics, makers of the amazing real-time raytracing card the CausticOne. See that graphic above? They’ve got some big announcements coming up at SIGGRAPH that fit in those big black boxes, but if you want to know what it is then you’ll have to wait until Monday at 8am (Eastern)! Caustic Graphics will be at SIGGRAPH in booth #2026 demonstrating their CausticRT and CausticOne systems, as well as participating in a few other mysterious locations that we’ll announce on Monday!
In addition, Caustic will be presenting at the High-Performance Graphics conference August 1-3 in New Orleans, one of the co-located events with SIGGRAPH, to discuss their technology and talk about making CausticGL an open-standard, like OpenGL and OpenCL, for ray-tracing graphics.
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