Elpub button Current Creative Technology topic news, 20th June 2001

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This section of the site is no longer being actively updated, however the links are checked from time to time to ensure they are active. It will be re-organised and merged into topics when we have time (15.08.2002)

Creative Technology

CT is the area of electronic publishing which covers artistic applications - electronic arts, design, advertising, games, animation, FX. This section of the site will be concerned primarily with tools for creativity and examples of state-of-the-art work. The focus will be on interactivity - the idea which is the most difficult to apply at this point in the development of new media. CT is the R&D of content.

Proposals for inclusion are welcomed: mail to: epifocal@ketlux.demon.co.uk

New Quicktime codec

Zygovideo have produced a new video codec for Quicktime. "Provides smooth Quicktime playback for Windows and Mac PPC machines. Using wavelet technology for key frames allows low datarate, high quality video for a number of video genres. Compression speed is very fast, especially on mid-range PC machines." they say. Download the basic version free and have a try. 20/6/01

URL: http://www.zygovideo.com/


Terragen is a work-in-progress scenery generator for Windows 95/98/NT/2000. At this stage of its development, Terragen is free for personal non-commercial use. Terragen is already capable of photorealistic results for professional landscape visualisation, special effects, art and recreation. Images on the main site and user sites are quite astonishing. Software can be downloaded. 20/6/01

URL: http://www.planetside.co.uk/terragen/

Museum of e-failure - Ghost sites

"This exhibit - The Museum of E-Failure - is an attempt to actively preserve the home pages of sites that will probably disappear in the next few months. Our goal is not to laugh at the fallen, but to preserve their last image, before all traces of these sites' existence are deleted from history's view.It is my hope that these screenshots may serve as a reminder of the glory, folly, and historically unique design sensibilities of the Web's Great Gilded Age." writes Steve Baldwin. 20/6/01

URL: http://www.disobey.com/ghostsites/

2001: A LEGO Odyssey

I wonder what Kubrick would have made of this short from Marc Atkin. Some bits of Lego and a camcorder is all that was required - apart from a little creativity. I'm sure this deserves the description of postmodern if you take it seriously. 20/6/01

URL: http://www.ifilm.com/ifilm/product/film_info/0,3699,1338602,00.html

Sculpture of Angkor and Ancient Cambodia

The US National Gallery of Art has a number of virtual exhibitions on its web site, using QuickTime VR and Real Audio. They include Van Gogh, Calder, Cambodia and Crown Point Press. 14/5/01

URL: http://www.nga.gov/exhibitions/camwel.htm

Talk to the John Lennon Bot

Triumph PC Group is a Washington, DC-based technology company specializing in Persona-Bots™--Artificial Intelligence-based chat robots that they inhabit with unique human personalities using the subject's own words. These include John Lennon of the Beatles. The goal of the John Lennon Artificial Intelligence Project (JLAIP) is to recreate the personality of the late Beatle, John Lennon, by programming an advanced artificial intelligence with John's own words. 14/5/01

URL: http://triumphpc.com/

Bangalore World University and Stephen Spielberg

Bangalore World University is one of the finest institutions of higher learning in the solar system—and definitely the largest. So says its web site. However this is part of the pre-release advertising for S. Spielberg's new film AI, due for release in the US this summer. Plug "Jeanine Salla" into your favourite search engine and see what else you can come up with. 14/5/01

URL: AI web site and trailer http://aimovie.warnerbros.com/

BMW open film site

BMW, the car makers, have opened a web site with new short (about 6 mins.) films from famous directors that feature BMW cars. The first two films, Ambush from John Frankenheimer and Chosen from Ang Lee are already online. The films can be viewed with standard Real, Windows Media or Quick Time players, or downloaded and viewed with a DVD like BMW film viewer. This is one of the first examples of a major manufacturer setting up a brand web site that is designed to pull surfers in through pure content value rather than cataloging. It may open the door to a new revenue channel for content providers that is tied directly to a brand web site, rather than adding ad hoc banners and other ads to a site that is branded by the content owner rather than the advertiser. A form of this model already exists on TV with sports sponsorship / reporting such as the Ford / rugby link up. 14/5/01

URL: http://www.bmwfilms.com/

Free music composition tool

If you fancy yourself as a musical composer then go to Coda Music and download Finale Notepad. This is the entry level product in their range of music notation software and is available free for Windows or Mac. Simple drag and drop interface to put notes to stave and then hear how it sounds in Midi. 14/5/01

URL: http://www.codamusic.com/coda/np.asp

TelePresence / TeleRobotic - Control a robot via Internet

The TeleZone offers you the possibility of having a robot build architectonic structures. Construct a virtual model of your ideas with the ConstructionTool on the TELEZONE website and have your ideas turn to reality. Follow the performance of your actions live from your own terminal. The robot realises the draft project 1/1 on a platform in the Ars Electronica Center, Linz. From here it can be viewed via WebCams or on location. TeleZone is the crystallisation point for a self-organizing community. 14/5/01

Tom and Jerry creator Hanna dies

William Hanna - the American animator behind classic cartoons such as Yogi Bear, The Flintstones and Scooby Doo - died recently, aged 90. With Joseph Barbera, 89, Hanna was a dominant force in American film and TV cartooning for more than half a century, creating Tom and Jerry - which won a record seven Academy awards. 12.04.01

Sony/Connectix agree on virtual playstation

Sony Computer Entertainment (SCE) and Connectix Corporation recently announced a joint technology agreement. The companies will proceed to define a series of development initiatives in the area of advanced emulation solutions. As part of the agreement the two companies have resolved all legal issues pertaining to Connectix Virtual Game Station (CVGS). For consideration, Sony Computer Entertainment will acquire from Connectix all assets related to the VGS emulation technology. Connectix will continue to offer the current version of both CVGS for Macintosh and Windows until June 30, 2001. Previously (1999) Sony filed a copyright and patent violation suit against Connectix. 12.04.01

URL: http://www.connectix.com/

UK study of computer game playing in children

The Home Office has released a report on "The effects of computer games on young children - a review of the research". The main conclusion seems to be that more research is needed and that little recent research has taken place (most of the studes covered were undertaken before 1995). The report also criticises much of the research on methodological grounds. Although the title suggests that the report is confined to young children the studies covered ages up to 21. 12.04.01

Worlds releases authoring package

Worlds, the 3D world portal, has released WorldsShaper, a professional web authoring tool for 3D interactive virtual worlds. For a limited time, the WorldsShaper is going to be offered for an introductory price of only $39. For $39 you get the WorldsShaper software, documentation, access to support board, hosting of 4 worlds for 1 year, plus one full year Worlds VIP membership. 12.04.01

URL: http://www.worlds.com/3dcd/shapersignup.html
URL: http://www.worlds.com

Digital video competition

Gizmoland, Fnac, Canal + and the magazine Reperages are running the second "Video Cuts" competition for digital film and animation. Ftp your entries up to 31 Mai 2001. Details on the Gizmoland web site. 12.04.01

Terraplay network games SDK

Terraplay is new set of tools for game developers. The kit enables game developers and programmers to integrate Terraplay's platform (an IP-based sustem that distributes and prioritises real-time datea) into all online games. Terraplay makes the use of available bandwidth more effective. 90-day trial version can be downloaded from the web site. 14.03.01

URL: http://www.terraplay.com/

Return of Cleo

Cleo the pretty french 3D animated star of Canal+ TV from the 1990s has reappeared on their web site. Powered by QEDSoft streaming media, you can catch Cleo by clicking on her image on the Canal+ web site. You will need to download the plug-in. 14.03.01

URL: http://www.canalplus.fr/

Daft Club (music)

InterTrust Technologies Corporation, the leading developer of peer-to-peer, distributed digital rights management (DRM) technology, recently announced a strategic alliance with Virgin Records, a label of EMI Recorded Music, Zomba Music, the world's leading, independent music publisher, and Daft Life, producer of Daft Punk. The first pioneering project to be produced by the alliance is the 'Daft Club'. Daft Club is a creative, artist-led project, offering fans of successful French band Daft Punk, the opportunity to become members of their own online club, with access to a large amount of free, digitally-protected content. 14.03.01

URL: http://www.intertrust.com/

Blender free 3D game development package

Blender - the amazing 3d modeling/rendering/animation software from Not a Number (NaN). Blender was initially published as a freeware gift to the world-wide computer graphics community, giving design and animation professionals and enthusiasts alike access to the same tools as the expensive programs available on the market. The reactions to this release were so positive, that NaN was founded to continue the maintenance and development of Blender for the growing user community. Download from web site.14.03.01

URL: http://www.blender.nl/

NightKnight and Viagro Amore

The web 3D animation systems of Imagination in Motion are very impressive. Visit the web site and load up the RealActor plugin to view some examples. Designed to work with standard modems the results are surprisingly good, whether adverts or webisodes. The character animation system includes lip-synching and facial animation. 14.03.01

URL: http://www.imaginationinmotion.com/

Myst changes hands

The French company Ubi Soft has acquired the entertainment division of The Learning Company. Thus Myst III due for release on May 7th will belong to Ubi Soft along with Prince of Persia, Pool of Radiance and over 80 other titles. Myst has sold more than 10 million copies worldwide. Ubi Soft also recently acquired Red Storm and Blue Byte and hope to become one of the world's top five publisher's. 14.03.01

URL: http://www.ubisoft.com/
URL: http://www.myst3.com/ for pre-release info

New 3D mouse

A new type of 3D mouse has been launched by Hall Effect Technologies - the Quattro. The mouse handles up and down and rotation as well as the usual directions. It has a small footprint as the base of the mouse is static. 14.03.01

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


Nicolas Schöffer lives.

A web exhibition of the life and works of Nicolas Schöffer, the father of cybernetic art, has been created on the OLATS web site. 28.2.01

URL: http://www.olats.org/schoffer/eindex.htm

New clickless game from Shockwave!!

Loop is the latest Shockwave game and whilst you have to movet he mouse around ... clicking has no effect! It is amazing how difficult it is to play without clicking. What will they think of next? So get chasing butterflies. 28.2.01

URL: http://www.shockwave.com

Getty web site update

The Getty web site has had a major renewal. The site is now nearly 54,000 pages with over 200 video clips, the Explore Art section has 3,300 works of art, 1,500 artist biographies and 1,500 glossary definitions. There is a new search engine that makes finding information easier. 28.2.01

URL: http://www.getty.edu/

Vectorama wins a new talent prize at Milia

Vectorama was one of the winners at Milia 2001 and were in the vastly entertaining Net Zapping Festival where 15 different groups got to show off their wares in 3 minutes each. Wicked. The web site has a multiuser playground where up to nine people at a time create a picture. More on MILIA soon. 28.2.01

URL: http://www.vectorama.org/

MPEG4 open source video codec

A group calling itself project mayo, has released some alpha test software to create and play MPEG4 video in Windows. There are binary dlls that can be accessed by software like Windows Media Player and a native player (called Playa). There are some test files on the site and the open source (C++) for the system. It IS alpha. There is a large forum discussing problems with the software and helpers are requested for this and other projects. 26/1/01

URL: http://www.projectmayo.com/

Macromedia launch Flash Advertising Alliance

MFAA's Goal is stated to be: Over the next 12 months the MFAA will produce four best practice solutions that will directly benefit each sector in the online advertising market : agencies, ad serving networks, site publishers, and technology vendors. The alliance is related to Macromedia's Rich Media Advertising Resource Center, a guide to creating a rich media campaign. It outlines rich media solutions and standards for use by designers, publishers, media agencies, ad serving networks and publishing sites. 26/1/01

URL: http://www.macromedia.com/solutions/richmedia/mfaa/
URL: http://www.macromedia.com/solutions/richmedia/

Mobile Photosuite from MGI

MGI have announced that there will soon be a version of Photosuite for Palm devices. The software will have a component for the desktop computer (Mobile Organiser) and acomponent for the Palm OS system (Mobile Album). The album will enable the storage, viewing and sharing of rich media.26/1/01

URL: http://www.mgisoft.com/photo/photosuite/photosuite4/palm/index.asp

Geocaching - a new high tech sport

"Geocaching is an entertaining adventure game for gps users. Participating in a cache hunt is a good way to take advantage of the wonderful features and capability of a gps unit. The basic idea is to have individuals and organizations set up caches all over the world and share the locations of these caches on the internet. GPS users can then use the location coordinates to find the caches.", says the FAQ. A sort of deferred time orienteering. 26/1/01

URL: http://www.geocaching.com/

music scores for free

Mutopia is a project Gutenburg style archive of classical music (some Joplin), out of copyright. The scores may be downloaded in .ps, .pdf or .ly format. (.ly is GNU Lilypond format). There are also simple .mid files for a rough preview of the sound. Volunteers are welcomed. 26/1/01

URL: http://www.mutopiaproject.org/

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