This is cool, you got to see this! The pain of endless render times will soon be history. Companies around the world is working hard to develop the future of rendering. And that is GPU (Graphics Processing Unit) accelerated real-time rendering of ray traced photorealistic renderings! So instead of waiting two hours, you just have to wait two seconds, for a rendered result on your screen. As I mentioned there are quite a few companies working on this kind of technology out there, and here are some of them.
iray (mental images)
mental images and nVidia joins forces to create a real-time renderer using the mental ray and CUDA (wiki) technology. It will be available in mental ray 3.8 and the current version (3ds max 2010) is 3.7 so perhaps the next release of 3ds max (sometime mid-2010, perhaps) will include the iray renderer, wouldn’t that be awesome!
RealityServer (mental images & nVidia)
This is cool, nVidia is developing a server-side real-time rendering solution for web 3d. It utilizes the iray technology from mental images and renders the scene on a server and the image is then sent to all the client computers, all within just seconds! Check out a video presentation here: http://blogs.nvidia.com/ntersect/2009/12/nvidia-realityserver-30-now-shipping.html
Now wasn’t this really good news!
During the production of Roland Emmerich’s apocalyptic disaster film 2012 Autodesk’s 3ds Max was used extensively to create very impressive visual effects. Here are some screenshots I grabbed from a “Making of” video, were you can see 3ds Max on the artists’ monitors.
Check out the video and read the article here: Special Review: 2012 Film. The Making of. HD Video
The company behind the VFX is Uncharted Territory, LLC.
A new plug-in for 3ds Max called volumeBreaker was used to smash buildings and roads to pieces.
volumeBreaker is a volumetric geometry fracturing tool that will instantly create sub-geometry within any mesh – geometry that perfectly fits together and fills any given volume. With volumeBreaker Cebas brings a Hollywood quality destruction tool to 3ds MAX. volumeBreaker was developed in consultation with, and to meet the very exacting demands of, VFX artists working on multi-million dollar movies – because of this, volumeBreaker truly is a production proven tool.
The tool is being developed by cebas VISUAL TECHNOLOGY Inc. and you can read more about it here: http://volumebreaker.com/index.php?pid=product&prd_id=77&feature=912
Now, ain’t that cool?
Walt Disney Animation Studios are working on a new method for unwrapping polygon meshes, and the idea is to not unwrap them at all! They call it Ptex (Per-Face Texture Mapping) and it automatically unwraps all the quad faces of a subdivided mesh. This saves artist a lot of time when they don’t need to spend time with unwrapping, eliminating texture stretching and texture seams; it is all done automatically.