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May 20, 2003, 01:51 PM
so hows the maya coming along zeno?
anything to show yet?
May 20, 2003, 02:28 PM
Negative, as powerful as this baby is, it's a b*tch to learn. If you don't have the time to invest in the kind of high rez shots that are possible, it practically makes no sense even trying. Maya has a very steep learning curve. The PDF manual alone is a few hundred MBs large!
Maya can render shots from positive infinity to negative infinity. That means, theoretically, you can create an entire universe of an unlimited number of objects contained in each other all the way down to infinity. This is based on the concepts of inheritance and polymorphism (if you are familiar with C, you should have an idea of what I'm talking about).
Creating wireframes is not the problem. It's Anti-aliasing those wireframes after texture and bumpmapping have been tossed in. Anti-aliasing is the actual process of rendering an image in 3D (actually, 2D after the render is complete) after textures and bumpmaps have been applied. This process can take anywhere from 30 seconds to 30 days. I'm not kidding...
You see those hi-rez shots in Final Flight Of Osiris (The Animatrix)or Final Fantasy? those were rendered in Maya and took 3 weeks of non-stop anti-aliasing - on a supercomputer! That means, the animators simply plugged in the animation co-ordinates into the wire-frame's motion paths, applied the final textures, and then took a vacation. A LOOONG vacation.
That's one of the reasons why I'm looking forward to The Matrix: Reloaded. There is a scene in which Neo fights one hundred Agent Smiths. The truth is that neither Keanu Reeves nor Hugo Weaving were actually fighting in this shot. All the animators did was to scan the likeness of Hugo and Keanu into the computer via Maya, storing their faces as bitmap meta-files (you Flash and Photoshop experts should know what this is).
They then created 101 wireframes, (100 for Agent Smith, 1 for Neo) and painstakingly superimposed their likenesses onto the face of each wireframe. Thanks to a new program called Massive 3D which also exists as a plugin for Maya, the animators can randomly assign a unique intelligence to each individual wireframe object (also known as Decals or NPCs). The only wireframe image that is animated is Neo's NPC. The other NPCs are simply "told" to attack the Neo NPC. The computer then randomly generates an attack technique for each of the 100 wireframe objects and they all do their own thing.
The only filming that took place in that shot was the Omi-Vision camera shots which essentially filmed an empty playground. All the fighting is entirely computer generated. That's how powerful Maya is.
So basically deakie, I am BARELY scratching the surface. I can't render those kinds of shots on my measely little 2.0 Ghz PC. I'd need a Cray-3 supercomputer to pull off that kind of rendering. On a desktop PC, rendering a hi-rez shot in Maya can take up to a month - for only 5 minutes of video!
The animators at Manex or Industrial Light & Magic have a shared processing system in which their Desktop PCs are hooked up to what is known as a High Granularity Central Processing Unit. In Layman's terms, this is a computer system in which Desktop PCs send rendering requests to the Supercomputer which sends back the completed high rez video in a few minutes. Think of it in the same way that ASP and PHP work in a client server scenario.
So while Maya is powerful for cute little animations like those seen in Toy Story or Finding Nemo in the space of days, to render the kinda shots I'd like to do, is impossible / impractical.
If I were being paid to do this sorta thing, I'd give up programming / networking / hardware careers in a heartbeat! ;D
May 20, 2003, 05:24 PM
hehe....its my hobby xeno.....i use max though my buddies want me to convert to xsi or softimage. maya is also used by loads of my mates.
i saw you mention it and if you really want to learn your tool 'maya', i have ppl who will encourage you. ;)
actually, im an admin on an international board for 3D. we do have ppl from industry up there who we kinda keep under wraps. under nicks, if you know what i mean. they often give tips etc. we have a couple from ilm as well. we dont go pushing it like the big boards but are more of a lil community for beginners who we push and cajole into becoming better.
so if you really want to 'learn your maya' let me know k. 8)
dont worry about the rendering times. its in the art. to decieve the audience..hehe....long renders is not always the case and often most renders take seconds on 1GHz machines and up.
take a look if you like and check some of the piccy's of the ppl who are extending themselves there.
everyone welcome still.
hope you enjoy it. :)
May 20, 2003, 05:53 PM
Maya? :o runs away and hides. That there is an imense piece a software man. I reached somewhere past the door tutorial and fell asleep. It's very powerful though, if you into 3d ani. I'm staying in the 2d world. :) Keep at it Xenocrates you can only get better.
May 20, 2003, 05:59 PM
hahaha....maya can be real tough to start. 3d studio max is much better to learn quickly. i use studio because i can knock something up in it quick. coming to grips with studios tools is much quicker than maya in my opinion but others may say differently.
besides, studio is the tools for games for sure. ;D
May 20, 2003, 08:13 PM
GREEEAT!!! didn't know there were more than a handfful of us in Ja. .. gonna start a 3d thread now!!!
May 20, 2003, 08:28 PM
I was using Max for development.. along with Poser and Bryce. My problem is that I use Bryce for landscaping, Poser for people (becasue I don't have character studio for Max -hope that's the right name-) and max for anything else... and then can't bring the three togetjer unless I render them individually... making it impossible to fine tune and make critical edits.
any ideas onn where to go?
don't say maya - i tried it and nearly fried my brains.. I don't have the time to dedicate to learning maya.. or XSI
May 21, 2003, 02:58 AM
lol....poser....dont admit to using it...hehe.....actually here is how you do it. poser is for quick knock ups of characters but seriously, not for any real animation.
you can output your files from bryce and poser as a 3ds file then import using max. ;)
what version of max you using? poser 4 and max 4 allows some compatability and you can open the poser within max, providing you have the plug. No character studio? Its normaly there....pm me. 8)
anyway, as this board is really for tech's. go over to the site I mentioned and use up fi dem bandwidth, otherwise we may get a load of ppl coming here about the wrong subject....lol
they are quite helpful in these things....including 2d ;) but be warned, they expect you to do it yurself. ;D
May 21, 2003, 12:56 PM
I find Bryce 3D to be pretty engaging. I love creating 3D landscapes and then creating wallpaper from it. The only problem with Bryce that I find (and this is entirely based on my lack of skill) is that it's quite difficult to create photorealistic textures, environments and moods. I find that fog effects near water and land objects create an additional sense of realism to the final render. It's just that they consume massive amounts of CPU cycles when anti-aliasing is being done.
I know someone who created an entire planetoid (complete with oceans, trees, shrubery, underwater creatures etc.....using Bryce 3D. Ofcourse, the final render took a week to complete.... ::)
May 21, 2003, 02:29 PM
was using max 3...
the prob with Poser exports is that the mesh isn't joined when you expost to 3ds.. so you get a hand a neck and a head
Poser is definately for quick stuff.. but like I said.. no character studio
gonna move to XSI soon... as soon as I get rich that is..
will check out that site tho.. thanks
May 21, 2003, 03:55 PM
gonna move to XSI soon... as soon as I get rich that is..
Do you buy all the software you use GodKid? I sure as ever don't have the US $2700 for Maya nor do I have US $700 for Bryce 3D. But that shouldn't stop us from exploring should it?
May 21, 2003, 05:15 PM
Maya, Bryce, XSI,
What other 3d animation software do you guys use?
May 21, 2003, 06:16 PM
Maya has a Full trial version that's free I think
May 21, 2003, 06:41 PM
yups.. i'll admit.. i've started buying :'(.. unless it's a demo ....
decided that I wouldn't pirate and have retired them shoes for the paast year.... it's an EXPENSIVE decision... but worth it
May 21, 2003, 10:38 PM
An expensive decision indeed. But for the sake of learning, we would never know the things we know now if it weren't for piracy. The truth of the matter is, neither the UWI nor UTECH would have been able to provide the necessary learning experience without massive piracy. That implies all of our computing degrees were indirectly, illegally attained. If software piracy were to be eliminated tomorrow morning, that would be the same as shutting down civilisation as we know it, for then we'd all be guilty of the same crime. The whole concept is analogous to the quantum paradox of catch 22.
I'm about to open Pandora's box, so stay with me...
Think of it this way, we know what we know because of what we were acquainted with in youth. What we were acquainted with could not have been acquired without the necessary capital. Since that capital did not exist at the time we first became acquainted with what we know (unless you were born with a silver spoon in your mouth...), it is logical to assume that what we were acquainted with, was acquired through ill gain. But was it necessary? Well to answer that, an even more difficult question has to be posed, Do you love your job?
The information we know was stolen. We were forced to steal it. If we did not steal it, then neither would you be posting to this site, nor would you be in the job you are now. You're being paid to do what you are doing now because of what you know which was acquired via stolen software. In return, you create new software or support new ones for which you hope is not being stolen, but is stolen anyway for the education of a new generation of pirates who will someday exchange their "blades" for a necktie and a jacket....and the vicious cycle of life repeats itself for an umpteenth time.....
.....the paradox GodKid is that all of our technological reality is based on the simple rule that nature finds a way. Knowledge will be propagated one way or another. For let's face it, all of the knowledge that we freely flaunt on this website is acquired one way or another via technological misappropriation, or even more technically, the illicit propagation of backups for software which is the backbone on which corporate society is based.
We steal software because we have to. If we do not, someone else will, and ultimately you will end up using software that has been stolen - one way or another. It's inevitable, unavoidable and exists as a necessary constant for the propagation of intelligence, especially in the third world where we are all born without silver spoons in our mouths.
And while the authorities pin down those who distribute software illegally, the truth of the matter is the wealth of knowledge of each individual that participates in cracking down on software pirates was first attained through the inevitable necessity of software theft. In effect, they are hypocrites to their own cause, shutting down those who are in effect the spawn that fostered their intelligence and them who continue to effect it for the next generation.
What I'm saying GodKid, is that the only way to avoid software theft, and to be completely guiltless of it, is to simply abscond technology itself. For these petty rules that govern its distribution were created by immoral men who's only intention in drafting these rules was to secure wealth for themselves only. That's essentially the same as charging a man for the air that he breathes. That constitutes greed - knowingly or unknowingly. Can you see the moral paradox in which we all find ourselves? To steal software is illegal, but to purchase it and live succinctly by the rules governing the end user license agreement for paid software is in essence participating in the greed of those distributing it for profit.
Do you think software manufacturers care about the majority that cannot afford it? It's a principle that rapes and mends itself at the same time. Software piracy is illegal, thereby driving the will to acquire it to better one's self so that they paid enough to be able to afford it so that they can rise above the law of illegality.
In short, the only way to be able to pay for software is first to pirate it.
I'm not telling you to go out and pirate software, I'm just telling you that end often justifies the means, and the motive is what you should examine. So long as no direct personal monetary gain is involved, (which is, paradoxically, what the ultimate goal is), software piracy is a necessary and justifiable act of human nature buckling into itself.
Just be sure to know, that you cannot justify your own moral convictions via immoral ones created by others - whether knowingly, or unknowingly. That's the paradox of life. God sees the heart and he knows the true intention. It's the motive for a man's act that God judges a man, not the act in itself.
Sure, when you get rich and can afford it, by all means, buy it. But until we can buy it....
May 22, 2003, 10:17 AM
I cannot rest, without responding to Xenocrates...
Sounds like another "I'm a product of my environment" argument. (You know) Like the story about how slavery causes some of us to have children out of wedlock (is true mi great grand was a slave, a dat mek me dweet).
In response to some of your points:
... for the sake of learning, we would never know the things we know now if it weren't for piracy.
I learnt everything I know using opensource software and trial software. I pay for software only if I really can't find an open source alternative. When I can't afford it I don't use it. Blender is my 3d suite because it is free. You can learn all the principles of 3d animation using the free educational version of maya, the open source blender and the open source povray. I'd dare to say, that I know more than the average user because I DON'T pirate!!!
We were forced to steal it. If we did not steal it, then neither would you be posting to this site, nor would you be in the job you are now. You're being paid to do what you are doing now because of what you know which was acquired via stolen software.
Forced by who? I am a webdeveloper and technical trainer and I stole no software to become one. Open Source really helps to bridge the digital divide. I'm being paid because of the knowledge I have acquired, perfectly legally. (remember, there is such a thing as a trial version)
We steal software because we have to. If we do not, someone else will, and ultimately you will end up using software that has been stolen - one way or another.
I would tend to agree there... human nature tends towards the basest of vices. This is also why persons kill steal, lie and rig elections. There will always be software pirates, just as there will always be corrupt politicians and theives who break into houses, cars or banks (that's human nature). Human nature , however, is not an excuse, you are not a slave to your nature (at least you don't have to be<knowledge> GodKid</knowledge> ;)) . I'm typing this message from my recently installed SuSE 8.2 (Linux) system (perfectly legal).
What I'm saying ... is that the only way to avoid software theft, and to be completely guiltless of it, is to simply abscond technology itself.
I guess I'm an absconding web developer ??? (I hope I'm guiltless, if I'm not, I'm making an effort).
A few more thoughts:
It is possible in today's world to develop almost all the skills necessary to be functional in the software industry without pirating. Where as your arguments sound nice, they tend towards rationalization.
On the contrary. If it wasn't for open source software, such as Linux and FreeBSD the internet would be much less accessible and much more backward than it is now (Google would not be economically viable and possibly Amazon.com as well).
If you pirate software, don't blame anyone else but yourself. I don't buy this "I'm a product of my environment" argument.
May 22, 2003, 03:59 PM
I'm a product of my environment
That's not quite what I'm saying. I'm not trying to make it seem OK to steal software pigeonflight. I'm merely stating the obvious paradox with which we have to deal with in regards to obtaining software through legitimate means. You fail to realise that it is practically impossible for everyone in the IT profession to learn what they know without pirating software at least once. The IT profession does not consist only of webdevelopers. Before there was the web, how do you explain how so many people got their hands on software they had no money to afford?
I'm not trying to rationalise theft pigeonflight, but in most cases (and I do agree that exceptions like yourself will exist) software piracy is inevitable. Not everyone will be able to be free from that element like you have. That is merely an element of chance, not choice. Not everyone is a webdeveloper, and not everyone prefers to use Linux over Windows etc. I do not need to get any more detailed than that.
What you can learn from minimalist 3D engine that is not paid for does not compare to what you can learn from the full version. If you can afford it, buy it. If you need it, but cannot afford it, do you consistently abscond? Only if you business depends on it. Besides, this law actually states that you can install these copies, but must uninstall it after 24 hours. This is hypocrisy, since you can install and uninstall it everyday, argue for this condition in court and still win the case. Can you see my point?
Anyways, I don't want to deviate this thread any further than it already has. I always seem to have an inherent bad habit for doing that.... ;D
While I'm using the free fullblown (trialware) version of Maya, since I'm not going to be in that business anyway, I don't need to go out and buy the full licensed version for US $2700. But I think it absolute nonsense to reason that I shouldn't use it because I can't afford it. I break no laws unless I'm redistributing it or selling it to someone else.
May 22, 2003, 05:17 PM
:) - it's interesting that my few words sparked such a passionate exchange.
Xeno.... my response to your posts is simply this... the justification or rather rationalization of a matter/offense, via whatever means, does not dispense of its offensive nature.
it's that simple... at least for me ;D
May 22, 2003, 05:38 PM
hehehehe.....xeno...u have a talent for writing my friend. i love to read your stuff.
pigeon, one thing i will remark on is this, lots of the 'talent' that now crow in industries , especially the multimedia ones were built on liberated stuff. do you know how many guys i know who went on to build programs for sale and are doing well after having toyed with 'pirated stuff'? hmmphh
loads of the top guy's who now have illustrious careers in the whole spectrum of software started out learning on pirated stuff.
maya, xsi, max and other big titles, even adobe products couldnt be sold as big now if it werent for the students of their early pirated software. its what made them big. they now introduce demo's because in the face of the BSA, they are doing something.
they realise that without students of their products, there is no one to tell the companies what to buy.
the average training time on anyone of these products is a minimum of 6 months for just the basics. its easier to grab ppl who have some knowledge than none. companies training bills are less. its the practical way companies operate. they are in busines to make money, not to be training centres, unless they are massif.
so while today, we have uni and college courses offering suitable training in these areas, they didnt before. and to get inhouse or other site training would have taken a movie studio budget to do it.
funny, now that im far along, i do own a hell of a lot of my softy, but even when something new ventures on the market, unless i play with a demo, real or not, they are not going to see my money for some unknown quantity. maya and xsi were cr*p to start with. dont care who used them. at one point xsi nearly vanished down the tube. the pirating of version 1 made it a software that was recognised by individual talents and its now a rapidly growing tool.
i cant repeat what authorised trainers have said to ppl bout piracy, but basically it works like this.
you learn on the crack, fair enough, do a paid job and if you dont have a licensed version when they show up then expect to pay.
web pages have flourished from the cracked macromedia products that were around. now one can go and do a serious web course doing asp, php, oracle,flash, dreamweaver etc etc and become another talented and qualified person in the game. it wasnt like that a few short years ago. it didnt exist or wasnt even recognised as a true field.
now there are more discreet reasons why ppl play with funny demos.
the proliferation of new versions like rabbits expecting ppl to upgrade at enourmous amount of money. they should get real and not offer anything new until they have really improved it.
now all that being said, its of course best to buy your software as you sit their feeling guiltless and yes it does make you work harder at learning it after spending all that money. ;D
just my 2 pennies.
May 22, 2003, 05:46 PM
oh! and one more gripe.
when i started using the internet all them years ago, it was really and truly a free medium.
it was full of information and was the new library of the world for research. i work in science and to me thats one of the most important tools. to be able to find knowledge.
today hoever, its being gobbled up by the bandwagon of commercialism which seeks to destroy the soul and spirit of what it was design for.
if you do a search for something on the net now, you have to trawl through a hundred useless companies trying to sell you, lets face it, cr*p.
its why standford uni tried to address the problem with google. a search engine that actually works. even here the companies are finding ways to have their poxy little products get nettime. its a shame really. i understand our global village needs to grow and with it will come these changes but not when they ram it down your throat.
today email and net traffic is the most scanned traffic on the planet. its a complete invasion of privacy by corporate and government machinery. in the uk alone, the isp's have to hold unto all net addy's and emails you have browsed or sent for the last seven years.
outrageuos or what. >:(
May 22, 2003, 05:52 PM
@ godkid, now with ref to your problem.
in poser you can also export the mesh as a whole without it being split. check the options when you are exporting.
you can also join them in max by selecting the edit mesh tool and joining each bit by using the attach tool. ensure that you select one part first and convert it to an editable mesh. ;D
May 22, 2003, 08:32 PM
Deakie, there's one thing I wanted to ask you but lost track of it, have you ever done a motion capture before? In other words, have you ever used motion capture to give lifelike movements to a wireframe lattice, even if just a stick man so to speak? Think of my question as being independent of the software platform.
Once I can get the procedure down, I think I can create some realistic flash animations (exports). I've seen where they do it on DVD extras for many of my DVD movies, but they don't actually show you how they convert a filmed motion capture in the 3D geometric points in space.
A perfectly good example is the fluidity and lifelike movements of the characters in both the Final Fantasy games and movie. Just recently they used motion capture to create the Gollum character in The Lord Of The Rings: The Two Towers. While I may never get a render to look as flawless as Gollum, a stick figure would be a major accomplishment for me. If you know any resources on the subject, you can point me there as well. Thanks.
May 23, 2003, 11:16 AM
motion capture is all hardware.
they have several ways of doing it. magnetic, optical and electrical.
take a look at the gypsy system...here...
in this system, it uses a suit that records your relative movement. adjustments will have to be made in the final product like any other system.
basically with most systems, you have sensors attached to key points on your body. eg at the joints or in the middle between joints.
recievers (cams or magnetic recorders) are placed at strategic points in a cube like space, could be a room but doesnt have to be.
the positions of each sensor is recorded and some mathematical interpolation is then used. normally 3d space geometry.
all this is done to some refernce points that you know or measured before hand quite accurately. the interpolations are with respect to these points.
this is then output as a file, normally asci which is then read by some compiler for the 3d program. you have to remember that your maya or max etc is actually a 3d viewport that works on the likes of opengl or directx. these are 3d multimedia languages for the computer that have multiple capabilities like 3d sound, space etc. most games, over 90%, employ these languages for their interpretation.
now after you load your file, the plugs that come with the motion capture equipment normally do some cleaning and then you now specify your characters limbs etc. by attaching points of significance to the character which match the sensors that were previously on the individual, we can now replicate the movements.
they use these techniques for complex movements that will try and mimic life like movements. however, you prolly wouldnt use them for cartoon like chracters, as these tend to have far more exaggerated movements and thats where the skill of an animator comes in. if you went up on some of the sites dedicated to animation (3d), you will see some examples of this.
all in all, motion capture has unique problems of its own, like noise or inaccurate and fals readings because of visual or electrical interferances. the prices are coming down, but still remain high when renting a motion house for a couple of hours.
this is where fight and dance scenes are done.
in final fantasy, lots of the work was actually animation done by animators. even the scene in flight of osiris, there are movements in the sword fight that is humanly impossible, hence where our skilled animation ppl come in. and they do kick ***. coupleof my mates do this for a living and i get lil privy's to some seriously excellent work.
even just for ads for tele.
maya has its own animation system and so does most of the 3d proggies available. best way to do it is to do a tutorial. i'll ask one of the maya guys to recommend one for you to see how these things are done in maya......as you wanna be a mayan :P ;D
hope this proved helpful. i'll get back to you on the tut later. ;)
May 23, 2003, 11:43 AM
@ xeno and other interested parties.
some good links for maya and other proggies. just search around in there for exactly what you need and browse the industry big wig works while yur at it. ;D
that should give you a good start. if you get stuck, then just pop along to the link i gave you and the guys in the maya section will help out. i'll make sure of it....hehehe...
heres a good link for 3d and 2d alike. its a mag but they know how to put up a good tut every month. web designers will find it usefull as well. ;)
August 11, 2003, 08:14 AM
hey, I use 3d max 5 (character studio too) with poser, motion builder, and HumanIK, if u are really into the animation part of 3d max, u needs HumanIK, its like character studio, but it basically, setup most of the constraints for u.
Motion builder is also a program for animation, its EXTREAMLY good and easy to create animation, it even has a feature where u could talk into your mike and the model would react in real time, of course u have to do a lot of tweaking.
I have been messing with 3d max for about a year now, I've even bought the 3dstudio max bible,(fell asleep after a few hundred pages) but I found a website that gives FREE VIDEO training there actually very detailed for a free Tut. unfortunately, its not a complete course, they dont touch on advanced animation yet, but they do show u how to model one of those big eyed gray alians you always see on TV, they show you evey single step to do it too, thats probably the only reason I am still interested in 3d max O yeah they even have a online school... which is FREE!!
August 12, 2003, 12:11 PM
post the link the kilaj1 ;D
August 12, 2003, 01:38 PM
O yeah sorry...
August 12, 2003, 03:31 PM
O yeah sorry...
someone told me about this link just last week......
and it is free..... well some of it ;) you know how it is in the business world.
August 14, 2003, 07:26 AM
someone told me about this link just last week......
and it is free..... well some of it you know how it is in the business world.
The whole Tutorial section is free, granted that its not the complete thing, meaning they only provide u with info up to a certain point, but its VERY GOOD!!. ;D ;D ;D
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