duber studio server is finally online!

loocas | hardware,miscellaneous,technical | Saturday, January 30th, 2010

duber server is online

Hell yeah! :) After a few months of putting the gear together, getting all the paperwork done, installing the electrical and network cabling, we finally run our own data management platform with an added bonus of a private render farm. How cool is that?! :D

The pieces are falling together

loocas | miscellaneous,opinions,software | Thursday, November 19th, 2009

Windows Server Standard 2008 box

I finally received the Windows Server 2008 Standard (not R2) package via the terrible czech post service, so I can finally start to fully concentrate on the server side software development for my studio.

I’ll write about it some more later, when I actually have something worthy showing off :D

Operation WS2K8

loocas | miscellaneous,opinions,technical | Wednesday, October 14th, 2009

I’ve finally found some spare time to dive into the server installation. I’ve chosen, after a bit of an evaluation, Windows Server 2008 R2 Standard (couldn’t have chosen Linux for several reasons and this version of Windows was the best choice). However, the installation process isn’t as easy and boring as it is on any regular PC, the server is a bit of a proprietary mash of partly commercially available parts and thus requires a little bit more elaborate approach.

The very first time I booted up the server I had to flash and update its SYSTEM and the PERC BIOSes at first, because they were of a bit older version that wasn’t officially supported by Dell.

Dell PowerEdge 2600 booting up

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Siggraph 2008 is coming!

loocas | miscellaneous,opinions | Sunday, August 3rd, 2008

Siggraph 2008 banner

I can’t wait to finally see what’s been cooking in the industry for the past year. I was lucky enough to attend the last year’s Siggraph and see it for myself, but, unfortunately, I’m unable, due to work, to attend this year’s exhibition in LA, which is a real pitty as I’d love to see LA and the biggest CG event that gets even bigger in LA.

What I’m most interested in, obviously, are the progresses of Autodesk and Softimage, but I’m also interested in MoCap evolution as well as various other areas: rigid/soft body simulation, rendering technology, data interoperability etc…

Hopefully Max 2009 SP2? Or perhaps Max 2009.5 (as I don’t believe Autodesk would release software from a way too distant future, like Max 2010 :D ) will bring some sweet new features or at least a long-time wishes (i.e. bug fixes) to the table. Especially since ICE is making so much noise these days. Which is always good. I’ve heard some rumours about a complete core-rewrite of Maya, but who knows, this has been said about Max for years as well. We’ll see in a few days time what these software giants have to offer.

For the time being, if you’re interested, here are
some photos I took last year at Siggraph 2007 in San Diego.

3ds Max 2009 announced! (milking the cow dry continues)

loocas | 3ds Max,opinions | Thursday, February 14th, 2008

autodesk’s message to the 3ds Max usersOut of the blue, Autodesk today announced a big news, the release of 3ds Max 2009 and also a “brand new” package, 3ds Max Design 2009. So, what is so special about Max it deserves a new full version number and a specialised, different, version? Well, let’s take a look at the facts.

According to the press release and the additional, more detailed and concrete PDF documents, the new 3ds Max 2009 introduces a new technology called “Reveal Rendering” used for complex iterative rendering workflow, which, in my opinion, sounds great and quite useful (if only I didn’t have to write all those scripts and tools for such tasks in the past…), but we’ll see what it really is and how this technology really proves itself in the harsh and unforgiving real studio environments. The next one is enhanced UVW editing that introduces a Spline mapping tool and enhances the current Relax and Pelt tools. Good, helpful, but is it really worth the update? I personally think not. Then biped, finally, you can actually create a quadruped with the enhanced system. I can’t resist to not mention that I personally don’t even load biped up on my Max installation, so, there you go. Then the documents go about a better support for inter-application workflows. This is great news as we’ve actually been more successful at bringing Softimage XSI’s rigs into MotionBuilder than from both Max and Maya, considering that MotionBuilder, Max and Maya have been developed by a single company, one cannod stop wondering, WTF?! Well, to be fair, yes, I’ve managed to bring rigs from Max to MotionBuilder to Maya and vice versa, but XSI has actually been a bit more comfortable and easier to do so than the aforementioned packages. The other question is a direct transfer between Max < => Maya, I hope this got addressed in this service pack full blown brand new release.

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Where is Autodesk headed with 3ds Max?

loocas | 3ds Max,opinions | Tuesday, January 22nd, 2008

Autodesk 3ds Max 2008 banner

The “new” version of 3ds Max, renamed to a fancy “3ds Max 2008″, has been out for a few months now and one can’t resist to ask one self a question: “where the hell is Autodesk aiming at with 3ds Max?”
I don’t know, but let’s take a look at the features that might at least suggest the way Autodesk might target the market with 3ds Max:

  1. The, I need to say great, new MAXScript Pro Editor
  2. Some modeling enhancements
  3. New Scene Explorer lists
  4. Very nice “WYSIWYG” viewport systems
  5. Couple more additions and features, but mainly some bug fixes and polishing

All these are great and very much welcomed additions to 3ds Max, however, something “feels” wrong about all this.

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