The closest I’ve been to the Statue of Liberty

loocas | miscellaneous,opinions,photos | Friday, July 31st, 2009

Fake Statue of Liberty

American kitsch at its best… :D

The journey to Siggraph 2009 begins…

loocas | miscellaneous | Wednesday, July 29th, 2009

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That’s right, folks! ;) I’m coming this year!

I’ll make a quick, 3 day, stop in New York first, but then I’m all New Orleans! My plane is leaving tomorrow at 11:15am from Prague to JFK.

I’m especially looking forward to the digital workflow and pipeline presentations and products. Then I’m going after entertainment and advertising systems and, of course, Eyeonline’s and The Foundry’s new additions to the compositing mill. Maya 2010 migh also be fun.

So, anyways, if you’re going to visit Siggraph this year, stop by Cebas’ booth #3207 and say hi, or just enjoy the demos of finalRender we’ll be doing at the booth ;)

3ds Max 2010, Advanced to Expert book – sent to printer

loocas | 3ds Max,miscellaneous,opinions | Saturday, July 18th, 2009

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I received a word, that the 3ds Max 2010, Advanced to Expert book, I’ve contributed to (1 chapter + a tech. review of the MAXScript Chapter), had been sent to the printer and thus is on schedule to be ready for shipment in August! This is great news and I’m really looking forward to the publication (I’ll receive a copy of the book, which is awesome :) ).

If you’re still hesitant to preorder, 3DATS has put up a few pages from each of the beefed-up chapters for your viewing pleasure, go see them on the book’s page.

But if you want to stay on my blog ;) here are the direct links for you:

The full table of contents in PDF
The sample pages from all of the 20 chapters, also in a PDF

I very highly recommend this book for any advanced (not limited to 3ds Max) user, from what I’ve seen, it’s a massive publication full of the juiciest information on the subject. If I didn’t receive a complimentary copy of the book, I’d have preordered one as well as there are some chapters I’m particularly looking forward to read (Color Management, Compositing, Managing Large-scale Projects and pretty much the entire sixth part of the book).

For only $99.90 USD + Shipping, this is a bargain! Coz’ remember, education is the only thing nobody can take away from you ;)

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I’m done with ICQ, for good!

loocas | miscellaneous,opinions | Wednesday, July 15th, 2009

No More ICQ

That’s it. I’m never going to log in to ICQ anymore. It’s a dumb, lame and insecure protocol for chatty teens.

I haven’t used ICQ for quite some time, well, very rarely did I log in just to ask some of my collegues/friends something, but then I immediately logged-off. Also, I hate those kids always asking dumb questions like “hey, why are my blueprints in the viewport so blurry?” or “help!!!111one, I don’t know how to unwrap this model” etc… And the worst part? When I didn’t reply, they were pissed and started attacking me via ICQ, I mean, what the fuck?!

Anyways, today was one of the rare days I needed to let a friend of mine know about something, so I fired up Trillian (don’t get me started on the default ICQ IM), but it failed to connect?! Don’t know why. Did they change the protocol again? Hell, I don’t give a shit anymore, I’m not using ICQ anymore, so what?!

If you need anything important, I’ll be on Skype from time to time, but the best bet will always be e-mail.

Annoying Vista Pen and Input Devices service

loocas | miscellaneous,technical | Tuesday, July 14th, 2009

If you have a Wacom tablet, properly installed its drivers and expected it to work as advertised on your Vista system, you’re out of luck, buddy!

I totally hate Vista’s Pen and Input Devices service. It’s integrated and thus cannot be disabled or removed from the system. The issue I’ve always had was with the right-click and hold (especially useful in Total Commander) when using Tablet. The cursor froze until I moved the pen. I’ve always had this problem after reinstalling Vista and have always resolved it somehow.

But this one last time I’ve reinstalled Vista and included all the Service Packs (maybe that’s the reason?), I just couldn’t get rid of the annoying bug! So I searched the web for a solution until I found a hint in the Wacom documentation. All I needed to do was to install the latest Wacom drivers (at the time of writing this, the latest drivers for Intuos3 are pro611-3_int.exe) and, strangely enough, disable the Wacom HID Driver in Vista’s Computer Management.

Vista's Computer Management Dialog

That was it. After a reboot I was up and running with a properly functioning tablet and its buttons, including the pen buttons. All programs, so far, seem to work just fine, especially Photoshop CS4 (64bit), no problems here. So if you have similar problems, try this and see if it works for you or not. If not, just revert to the original state, no problems.

Containers are not a solution to retarded XRefs, unfortunately

loocas | 3ds Max,opinions,technical | Wednesday, July 8th, 2009

It is sad, but the promising concept of Containers introduced in 3ds Max 2010 is lacking fundamental functionality. It’s lacking so much I can hardly see a benefit in using them instead of XRefs.

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FireFox 3.5 color management madness

loocas | miscellaneous,software,technical | Wednesday, July 1st, 2009

If you’ve just upgraded to FireFox 3.5, like me, and have problems with displayed graphics, i.e. they seem too dark or too washed out, it’s because FireFox introduced a new default value to its color management engine.

Thankfully there’s a fix and its super simple.

  1. In the address bar, type in: about:Config
  2. Locate a setting named: gfx.color_management.mode
  3. Set it to: 0, which means no color management at all!

FireFox Config Page

The available values for the mode are:

  • 0: No color management at all
  • 1: Enables color management for rendered graphics (I don’t recommend this, unless you’re strictly on a sRGB profile, which I’m not)
  • 2: Enables color management for tagged graphics only, which means images with an embedded profile will get color managed, as far as I understand

That’s it, hope this helps. It sure did help me :)

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