Elpub buttonVirtual Reality News: 26th March 2002

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A number of readers have asked us about the Information Society Technologies Programme (IST), a major theme of research and technological development within the European Union's Fifth RTD Framework Programme (1998-2002). IST is a single, integrated research programme that builds on the convergence of information processing, communications and media technologies. IST has an indicative budget of €3.6 billion and is managed by the Information Society DG of the European Commission.

An opportunity to influence the VR/i3D content of the Sixth Framework Programme is available at VR World Congress V, September 9th and 10th, 2002 in Paris France.

URL: http://VREfresh.com
URL: http://www.cordis.lu

Users, Applications & Projects
01 Canadian CAVE by Fakespace & Sun/Opticore
02 Korea: Mission Simulator by E&S
03 3D Scene Digitizer in Court
04 Cabinet Maker Uses HOOPS
05 VR for Anheuser-Busch

Products & Services
06 Touch-based Modeling System
07 SmartScene Advances
08 Creator Terrain Studio
09 Special (Free) Offer at PartsWorks.com
10 Virtools Dev 2.1
11 Digitized Model to an Animated Model
12 3D Exploration Software Upgraded
13 Viewpoint Media Integrator for Deep Exploration
14 Geomagic Qualify 4.0
15 Kaydara FiLMBOX online 3.5
16 Graphics Accelerators from ELSA

Companies & Markets
17 Job Losses at Disney
18 Okupi Closes
19 125,000 Register for gmax
20 Alchemy ArtistPack Available for Free
21 Immersive Design Added to MAI
22 Viewpoint and NewTek will Co-market
23 Digimation will Distribute Exluna's Entropy
24 Avid Chooses Graphics Accelerator
25 Portuguese Distributor

People & Opportunities
26 People: Raindrop Geomagic
Worth Watching
27 Multimedia on Cellular Phones and Mobile Handhelds
28 LBS Demonstration using 3D Map Data
29 Organic Light Emitting Diodes

Events & Calls for Papers
30 VR World Congress V
31 2002 European Simulation Interoperability Workshop
32 Other Events

186.01 Canadian CAVE by Fakespace & Sun/Opticore

The Sun Center of Excellence (COE) for Visual Genomics at the University of Calgary (U of C) has opened. This COE joins a network of academic institutions developing advanced technology in computational biology. The U of C is one of the leading bioinformatics research centers in Canada. A feature of the center headed by Dr Christoph Sensen, Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at the U of C Faculty of Medicine, is the ability to create 3D models of biological systems (e.g., genomes, organs, cancer cells ) using a Java 3D API-enabled Sun Fire 6800 server with a CAVE (CAVE Automatic Virtual Environment) walk-in virtual room. The complex bioinformatics research to be conducted at the COE will utilize four Sun Expert3D Graphics Accelerators on the Sun Fire 6800 server. The results will be displayed in the 8' x 8' CAVE system from Fakespace Systems. Sun Microsystems made an in-kind donation of more than $1 million towards the project. Federal and provincial governments contributed more than $4 million toward the $6 million facility and will also provide funding for initial staffing.

URL: http://www.sun.com

At CeBit Sun Microsystems announced three products designed for the compute-intensive technical market and high-end visualization, "personal visualization." Sun's trio are key components of its new vision for Personal Visualization Systems: The Sun Blade 2000 workstation, the Sun XVR-1000 graphics accelerator, and the 24-inch, digital flat-panel monitor. Sun also announced a relationship with Opticore to bring Sun's 64-bit UltraSPARC architecture and professional-level 3D graphics to a new customer base.

Opticore is a provider of real-time 3D software for interactive, product visualization. Manufacturing companies including Audi, BMW, Ford, Jaguar, Volvo, and Nokia use Opticore software-based applications in areas such as design, engineering, manufacturing and marketing.

URL: http://www.sun.com
URL: http://www.opticore.com/Products

186.02 Korea: Mission Simulator by E&S

Korea's aerospace company, KAI, has selected E&S to provide a complete visual system solution for its T-50 Golden Eagle Advanced Jet Trainer full mission simulator. Under the terms of the contract, E&S will deliver a fully integrated system that includes its Harmony II image generators, a 24-foot, 320-degree horizontal by 130-degree vertical field-of-view dome display with two E&S TargetView target projectors, database modeling training, and modeling tools. In addition, a three-channel Harmony image generator will be supplied for modeling use.

URL: http://www.es.com

186.03 3D Scene Digitizer in Court

3rdTech Inc has been giving public demonstrations of the DeltaSphere-3000 3D Scene Digitizer. Teaming with Quincy Technologies, 3rdTech has presented a system for crime and accident scene measurement, reconstruction and display. The DeltaSphere-3000 3D Color Scene Digitizer can scan data to be used to find the distance between any two points in the scene, to view the scene from any vantage point (including directly overhead), and can create a full-color, 3D model for use in the investigation and in court.

URL: http://www.3rdTech.com
URL: http://www.quincytech.com

186.04 Cabinet Maker Uses HOOPS

Tech Soft America's HOOPS technology is being used inside eCabinet Systems, recently released by Thermwood, supplier of low-cost, production machines. The system brings together major industry suppliers, a sophisticated cabinet software package, and Thermwood's e-commerce system to streamline the cabinet making process. "The cabinet industry is large and diverse, with long hours and difficult communication between the suppliers, manufacturers and customers. Thermwood has decided to use its technology to address this situation. By using TSA's HOOPS technology, we were able to quickly create a sophisticated solution with compelling graphics, which will help ensure the success of the program," said Mr. Mike Hardesty of Thermwood. eCabinet Systems streamlines the entire cabinetmaking process including designing cabinets and kitchens, selling those designs to customers, purchasing supplies and components and building the product.

URL: http://www.thermwood.com
URL: http://www.hoops3d.com

186.05 VR for Anheuser-Busch

GameCom has signed with Anheuser-Busch Adventure Parks to add its "VR Zone" virtual reality entertainment system in Busch Gardens-Williamsburg, USA.

186.06 Touch-based Modeling System

SensAble Technologies has announced Version 5 of FreeForm, the touch-based modeling system. Modeling with touch allows companies who create products characterized by highly organic forms to move from traditional, physical processes to a completely digital production process without sacrificing design quality and artisanship.

URL: http://www.sensable.com

186.07 SmartScene Advances

Digital ArtForms has announced Vega/SmartScene, martScene/Collaborative, and SmartScene/Linux, three advancements of SmartScene immersive, realtime 3D environment software with its intuitive two-handed user interface. SmartScene/Collaborative has linked the boardroom at the New York Stock Exchange with Silicon Graphics' Reality Center in Mountain View, USA for a demonstration design review and brainstorming session. The new products will be available April 1, 2002.

URL: http://www.multigen-paradigm.com

186.08 Creator Terrain Studio

MultiGen-Paradigm has announced a tool for processing and managing data for the creation of complex visual simulation databases. Creator Terrain Studio delivers a set of 3D scene creation, workflow management and geometry/texture creation tools focused on large-area realtime 3D terrain database development. This application is a significant addition to MultiGen-Paradigm's product portfolio because it captures the workflow process and catalogs meta-data about datasets based on MultiGen-Paradigm's MetaFlight schema to facilitate shorter development and production cycles and enable the reuse of data.

URL: http://www.multigen-paradigm.com

186.09 Special (Free) Offer at PartsWorks.com

Cadalog,Inc. has launched a membership drive for PartsWorks.com, providing SolidWorks users with what the company believes to be the largest and richest database of 3D, native, feature-based, components available today. Under a special offer, PartsWorks.com is free of charge to any visitor to March 31, 2002. During that time as many parts as needed may be downloaded. A simple web browser interface shows various categories to help find a specific part. Families of parts, manufacturers, category, type and specific dimensions or number of each part are displayed.

After finding a specific part, a user selects the SolidWorks or other CAD file formats desired and downloads a zipped file. Files take about 5 seconds to download with a T-1 connection and a little longer using a dial-up modem. After downloading, the file may be unzipped and dragged into SolidWorks. The PartsWorks.com online parts library now includes ANSI, ISO, JIS and DIN standards for machinery design. The library also includes thousands of part files from 52 manufacturers' catalogs such as Futuba, D-M-E, Jergens, PEM, Nordes, Misumi, Global, THK, Thomson Industries and SKF. Cadalog, Inc. adds about 100,000 parts every month, growing the library according to parts requests received by customers.

URL: http://www.partsworks.com

186.10 Virtools Dev 2.1

Virtools Dev 2.1 includes new features, including over 20 new behavior building blocks and a new DirectX 8.1 Rasterizer. Virtools has also added a number of new features to the Dev 2.1 interface to improve workflow. Enhanced documentation, including new resources and samples Dev 2.1's scripting capabilities, helps users with new behavior building blocks such as Animation Recorder, Filter Texture, Hardware Level, Lens Flare, LightMap, Volumetric Fog and ShadowStencil. New functionalities have been added to the Behavioral Engine, and the Virtools SDK and Web Player have been boosted to provide increased control over user experience. Dev 2.1 has been reinforced, with a complete list of bug fixes in the new documentation and a host of optimizations for the GUI, the Behavioral Engine and Managers, and the Render Engine.

URL: http://www.virtools.com

186.11 Digitized Model to an Animated Model

Inspeck has released a new version of its 3D Modeling software, EM. New features have been added to enhance, optimize and improve game development workflow from a digitized model to an animated model. A new feature has been added to the 3D Morphing tool to allow the creation of texture that is 100% compatible with UVs of the model to be morphed. The result is a model with the digitized texture but with the same UV map and the same polygonal structure of the original model. InSpeck also added a 3D tool that features an automatic surface creation algorithm that interpolates non-digitized areas. As well, a new view based projection texture map generation has been added to reduce texture distortion and to fill non-digitized areas with realistic information. This tool is particularly useful for creating a complete model of human body using digitized 3D data.

URL: http://www.inspeck.com

186.12 3D Exploration Software Upgraded

Right Hemisphere has upgraded its 3D Exploration Software -- now renamed Deep Exploration. New features of Deep Exploration include enhanced functionality for file management, visualization, translation, rendering and 3D Web Publishing. Users can search for, view and manage almost all digital assets in one program with file translation and batch processing functionality included.

Deep Exploration is designed to improve all corporate graphic communications by publishing assets to a wide range of formats including 3D web formats for use in collaboration, training, sales presentations and marketing. An enterprise server version of Deep Exploration "Deep Server" will also be available in Q2 2002. This provides integration with Media Asset Management (MAM) applications that require a better understanding of 2D and 3D digital assets.

URL: http://www.righthemisphere.com

186.13 Viewpoint Media Integrator for Deep Exploration

Viewpoint and Right Hemisphere have announced their interactive authoring solution for Viewpoint Experience Technology (VET), Viewpoint Media Integrator (VMI) for Deep Exploration.

URL: http://www.viewpoint.com/partner/right_hemisphere

186.14 Geomagic Qualify 4.0

Raindrop Geomagic has announced Geomagic Qualify 4.0, quality inspection software that combines the speed of non-contact 3D scanning with a new level of simplicity for computer-aided inspection (CAI). The software takes advantage of technology in 3D laser scanners that can capture thousands of data points per second. It also works with large and small point clouds from CMMs, articulated arms and other data acquisition devices. According to reports from the National Institute of Technology (NIST), dimensional accuracy verification is the biggest bottleneck in the manufacturing process.

URL: http://www.geomagic.com

186.15 Kaydara FiLMBOX online 3.5

Kaydara and BOXX Technologies have announced the availability of Kaydara FiLMBOX online 3.5, a real-time 3D production solution with video I/O, on BOXX Technologies' high-performance 3DBOXX PC-based broadcast workstation. Featuring the integration of real-time character-based 3D content into virtual environments, and advanced video I/O options, this turnkey system provides broadcast professionals with a high-end Windows-based solution for the production of programming for news, game shows, sporting events, awards presentations, and talk shows.

URL: http://www.kaydara.com
URL: http://www.boxxtech.com

186.16 Graphics Accelerators from ELSA

ELSA has launched its GLoria4 Quadro4 XGL family of graphics accelerators for 3D computer-aided design (CAD) and digital content creation (DCC). The three boards-Quadro4 700XGL, Quadro4 750XGL and Quadro4 900XGL - are based on the NVIDIA Quadro4 XGL series of Graphics Processing Units (GPUs) and provide features for improving workstation graphics application performance, graphics programmability and multi-display productivity.

URL: http://www.elsa.com

186.17 Job Losses at Disney

The New York Times reports Walt Disney Feature Animation, the creator of animated classics like ''Snow White,'' ''The Lion King'' and ''Beauty and the Beast,'' has told 250 employees today that they were either being laid off or that their contracts would not be renewed over the next 12 months. The job cuts in the division come quickly on the heels of layoffs at Miramax Films, another subsidiary of the Walt Disney Company, which announced last week that 75 jobs would be trimmed. In recent years, every movie studio has been looking for ways to cut costs, and Disney-owned properties have been no different. The cuts also come at a time when computer-generated animation films have proved to be more popular than their two-dimensional cousins pioneered by Disney in the 1930's.

186.18 Okupi Closes

Sad to report that okupi is closing. According to Simon Warner-Bore: "It has been a difficult decision to make, but it is the right one. We are seeing less projects, with smaller budgets and it is not possible for us to continue and be profitable. I have had a very rewarding 6 years with okupi - the chance to work with and learn from some exceptional people. I am continuing my work on user driven, community based learning and knowledge sharing projects. I will be working as an associate/consultant for some key companies/organisations developing projects/practice in this field." In the UK Okupi was best known for its work with an i3D web site for the Science Museum in London. Okupi developed the 3D interface and virtual environment of the museum itself. The site was sponsored by Intel.

186.19 125,000 Register for gmax

Discreet has announced that in five months of availability, more than 125,000 users have registered copies of its gmax consumer game design and content editing software. gmax allows game enthusiasts to create and customize content in supporting titles, thereby enhancing and extending their enjoyment of that game. Microsoft will soon release a gmax game pack for its Train Simulator software on its web site. In addition, the next release of Combat Flight Simulator series will include an integrated gmax game pack to be released later this year.

URL: http://www.discreet.com/

186.20 Alchemy ArtistPack Available for Free

Intrinsic Graphics will make its Alchemy ArtistPack for Discreet's 3ds max software, available as a free download via the web. Alchemy ArtistPack for 3ds max software provides a flexible scene viewer that can be embedded directly within 3ds max viewports. It allows artists to immediately grasp, at modeling time, how content assets will perform on the hardware platform they are creating for. Exporting in the free version is limited to the PC.

URL: http://www.intrinsic.com
URL: http://www.discreet.com

186.21 Immersive Design Added to MAI

Immersive Design Inc has been added to the Autodesk Mechanical Applications Initiative (MAI) program. The MAI program consists of a group of mechanical software developers offering integrated extensions for Autodesk Inventor 3D mechanical design software that provide users with a complete design-through-manufacturing solution.

URL: http://www.immersivedesign.com

186.22 Viewpoint and NewTek will Co-market

Viewpoint Corporation and NewTek will co-market and sell Viewpoint Experience Technology (VET) Licenses to content developers utilizing NewTek's LightWave 3D. This agreement, which will be implemented through Viewpoint's Partner Portal Program, offers users of LightWave 3D access to Web technology used by companies such as AOL, Ford, Herman Miller, Compaq, Thomasville and more. The NewTek/VET portal site will also serve as an automated license dispenser and a step-by-step guide for VET deployment, allowing NewTek's customers to easily publish digital assets on the Internet, for themselves or their clients.

URL: http://www.newtek.com
URL: http://www.viewpoint.com/

186.23 Digimation will Distribute Exluna's Entropy

Digimation will distribute Exluna's Entropy 3.1, which includes an integrated interface for Discreet's 3ds max software. Digimation is a supplier of extension products for Discreet's 3ds max, the 3D modeling and animation package with an install base of over 175,000 users.

URL: http://www.digimation.com

186.24 Avid Chooses Graphics Accelerator

3Dlabs' Wildcat III 6210 graphics accelerator has been chosen by Avid Technology to power the graphics subsystem of Avid/DS and Avid/DS HD, versatile production systems for film, television, music videos, commercials and interactive DVDs.

URL: http://www.3dlabs.com
URL: http://www.avid.com

186.25 Portuguese Distributor

C-3D Digital has engaged Portugal-based, Sernis Solucoes Tecnologicas Lda, to provide representation and distribution of C-3D's products by introducing the Company's proprietary 3D viewing system, Another Eye 2000, to Europe and Brazil.

URL: http://www.3d.com

186.26 People: Raindrop Geomagic

Raindrop Geomagic has promoted Peter Scott to vice president of engineering. Before joining Raindrop Geomagic, Scott was director of software development at Elumens Corp. He has also held engineering and management positions at NxView Technologies, Virtus and Raytheon.

URL: http://www.geomagic.com

186.27 Multimedia on Cellular Phones and Mobile Handhelds

Eyematic and Texas Instruments Incorporated (TI) are working together to bring Eyematic's range of multimedia software capabilities to 2.5 and 3G cellular phones and mobile handhelds based on TI's high-performance, ultra-low power OMAP(TM) application processors and wireless modems. The collaboration is expected to yield mobile multimedia experiences more akin to current desktop PCs than to the limited capabilities of older mobile devices. The companies have demonstrated several mobile multimedia applications powered by Eyematic's Synthetic Video software running on TI's OMAP processors. Demonstrations have included multimedia messaging, avatar-annotated photo albums, first-person 3D games, personalized digital phone "agents" and television-style news and information services. OMAP processors have been selected by Nokia, Sony, Ericsson, Palm, Sendo, Hewlett Packard, HTC and others for their 2.5 and 3G wireless devices.

URL: http://www.ti.com
URL: http://www.eyematic.com

186.28 LBS Demonstration using 3D Map Data

E-City Software has completed a location-based services (LBS) demonstration using E-City's three dimensional map data and ESRI's Geographic Information Services (GIS) technology.

URL: http://www.esri.com
URL: http://www.ecitysoftware.com

186.29 Organic Light Emitting Diodes

High efficiency organic light emitting diodes (OLEDs) using dendrimer materials have been developed by scientists sponsored by Opsys. The results have implications for the commercialization of OLED technology in the flat panel display industry. The Opsys sponsored teams, led by Dr Paul Burn at the University of Oxford and by Professor Ifor Samuel at the University of St Andrews, have shown that dendrimers can be used to produce efficient solution processed OLED devices with just a single layer of organic material between the electrodes. In contrast, existing phosphorescent materials require multiple layers of deposition by more expensive evaporation techniques.

The only OLED materials other than dendrimers that can be deposited by solution processing methods are light emitting polymers (LEPs). However, LEPs are not as versatile, as the same chemical components of an LEP are responsible for both its light emitting features and its processing features. In dendrimers, the surface groups may be tuned independently of the emitting core, providing flexibility in the processing properties. Light emitting dendrimers comprise an organic or organometallic light-emitting core, which is connected to surface groups by branched organic dendrons. The dendritic structure controls core-core interactions and hence the photoluminescence and device properties of the materials. A key advantage of dendrimers is that the luminescent cores are kept well apart by the bulky dendrons, which minimizes luminescence quenching.

URL: http://www.opsys.co.uk

186.00 Events & Calls for Papers

186.30 VR World Congress V

VR World Congress V will be held in Paris, France on September 9th and 10th, 2002 and offers an exceptional opportunity to identify project partners to make proposals to the European Commission's Sixth Framework Programme (the budget for the 5th was $3.5bn). A copy of the current working draft agenda is available. The delegate fee for this not-for-profit event is just $150 and, as numbers are limited, early registration will be essential.

URL: http://www.VREfresh.com

186.31 2002 European Simulation Interoperability Workshop

The 2002 European Simulation Interoperability Workshop (Euro SIW) is sponsored by the Simulation Interoperability Standards Organization (SISO) in cooperation with The Society for Computer Simulation - Europe International Training Equipment Conference (ITEC, Ltd.). The 2002 Euro SIW will be held 24-26 June 2002 at the University of Westminster, UK.

URL: http://www.sisostds.org/siw/02euro/index.htm

For extensive information about events relevant to the European VR/i3D community, see the events pages on El.pub: for Europe: base05.htm, for the rest of the world: connone.htm

About VREfresh news
Each edition of virtual reality news is now published on a separate page, ensuring that links (particularly from VREfresh) continue to remain current. To view news from previous issues, please use the navigation buttons below.
Email alerter of news items and associated URLs, send an email with your name, organisation, country (and for the US a zip code) to the Editor via the link above.
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