Tuesday, October 3, 2000
From CFD analysis to collision detection of machine parts,
animation is one of the most useful new gadgets in the engineer's toolbox. It is
also used for factory floor assembly instructions, and for showing interactive
parts diagrams on the company website.
USAnimation® V5, from Toon Boom Technologies Inc. (Montreal,
Quebec, www.toonboom.com), brings
animation to a new level with its vector-based, resolution-independent system.
And it addresses one of the biggest drawbacks of animation files-they soak up
too much processing power. But since vector-based files are small in size, they
can be quickly loaded, transferred, and displayed. Finally, these files are
enabled for Macromedia® Flash™, so they are easily played over the Web.
USAnimation can handle tasks at all stages of the animation
process, including: drawing directly into the system or scanning your drawings;
laying out your scene using the interactive, real-time 3D scene planning;
producing the final output; flexible compositing; and broad visual and lighting
The software will run on SGI's IRIX systems, Windows NT, or Linux,
each with system requirements of a standard 128 Mbytes of RAM and 4 Gbytes of
disk space. This flexibility prompted one user, Mercury Filmworks (Vancouver,
BC, www.mercuryfilmworks.com), to
run 15 USAnimation rendering engines on mixed NT, SGI, and Linux platforms to
meet the deadline for its Christmas animated special, "Timothy Tweedle."
For other examples of the projects completed with the product,
check out www.liquidanimation.com,
www.moonmuncher.com, www.pacotilla.com, or www.womics.com.