Elpub buttonVirtual Reality News: 8 June 2002

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Softimage has halved the price of its 3D character animation and effects software, SOFTIMAGE|3D, to $1,495. Bad luck if you just paid $3,000! Also see discount from Alias|Wavefront - item.

URL: http://www.softimage.com

Users, Applications & Projects
01 Barco at the Smithsonian
02 USA Opportunity for European VR Companies?
03 Increase in Drafting Productivity

Quote of the Issue
04 Phillip Miller, Discreet
Products & Services
05 Active Worlds Version 3.3
06 Discreet Eyes One Million 3D Sites & Half a Billion 3D Browsers
08 Data Interface for StudioTools CAID

Companies & Markets
09 Discount on StudioTools
10 Scandinavian Cooperation

Worth Watching
11 Intel Demonstrates ATI
12 SGI to work with Hitachi
13 Spatial Data, PDAs & GIS - time for i3D?

Events & Calls for Papers
14 Postponed - the DoD Executive Forum on Modeling and Simulation
15 2002 European Simulation Interoperability Workshop
16 SIGGRAPH 2002
17 VR World Congress V
18 PRESENCE 2002
19 Collaborative Virtual Environments 2002
20 Symposium on Interactive 3D Graphics
21 More Events

195.01 Barco at the Smithsonian

For the "all-dome" digital system of the Einstein Planetarium at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC, Sky-Skan Inc implemented its planetarium technology and added 6 dual-stacked SkyVision BarcoReality 909 SP high brightness CRT projectors spread over six zones on the 70-foot diameter planetarium dome. These 12 BarcoReality 909 CRT projectors deliver large screen images with high visual fidelity and true black levels. The extra rugged "split pack" version of these projectors, allows placing the Projector Head separate from the electronics chassis. Mounted in a dual stack configuration, all parts remain fully accessible for easy maintenance.

URL: http://www.BarcoProjection.com

195.02 USA Opportunity for European VR Companies?

Pentagon officials are reported to be drafting a plan to give European military contractors a share in money budgeted to develop missile-defense systems. For the year ending October 2002, the USA has allotted $8.2 billion for missile defense, including production of a large ground-based system as well as the development of air, land and sea-based options. The plan is focused on the United Kingdom, France, Germany and Italy, and could provide for some involvement by foreign governments and their military contractors. Prime candidates to benefit are BAE Systems, Thales and EADS, but European military contractors have encountered difficulties obtaining licenses to share technical information with USA counterparts. "What the Defense Department has said is that the JSF should be the model for future cooperation," said Jon Schreiber, director of international programs for the JSF office and the architect of the sales effort for the plane. "The Missile Defense Agency wants to take our model for rolling international participation and apply it to missile defense."

195.03 Increase in Drafting Productivity

Townsend Engineering, a leading meat processing equipment manufacturer, is upgrading 27 AutoCAD licenses to Autodesk Inventor Series software for its Des Moines office and implementing 10 licenses in its Netherlands office. Autodesk Inventor software is one component of the Autodesk Inventor Series, the company's new 3D design standard. Townsend Engineering also conducted a simple benchmark test that indicated they could increase drafting productivity by more than 20 percent by using 3D with Autodesk Inventor rather than using the 2D software. "Many of our engineers have become productive with Autodesk Inventor and are already building large assemblies. A particular engineer in our Netherlands office developed a 500-part assembly with moving parts and created a presentation video file 'AVI' showing the process of making a hot dog -- all in the early days of using the product," said David Hamblin, director of Engineering at Townsend Engineering Company in Des Moines, Iowa. "We expect to see significant improvement during engineering changes." Avatech, an Autodesk channel partner, has been working with Townsend Engineering for more than a decade and has worked with Townsend on their move to 3D design since last fall.

URL: http://www.avatechsolutions.com
URL: http://www.autodesk.com

195.04 Quote of the Issue: Phillip Miller, Discreet

"3D is no longer just a design choice; it has become an integral feature of the web site experience," said Phillip Miller, vice president of product management, Discreet.

195.05 Active Worlds Version 3.3

Activeworlds has released Active Worlds Version 3.3, an addition to its 3D software. This version offers user improvements including Direct3D 8 support, faster frame rate, slide detection, coronas, skyboxes, search capability, enhanced contact list, 3 axes object rotation, new movement commands, global SDK capability and on-the-fly terrain editing and generation. The new version is available to download free at the Active Worlds Web site. For developers of 3D web enabled content, 3.3 includes a "3D URL" feature, which allows a website in whole or part to be displayed in the 3D window. This is advantageous in the use of whiteboards, streaming media, other 3D world platforms or Flash applications in a 3D world environment for such uses as education and online training.

URL: http://www.activeworlds.com

195.06 Discreet Eyes One Million 3D Sites & Half a Billion 3D Browsers

Discreet has confirmed the availability of plasma, the company's professional 3D animation software for creating 3D content for Web interface, graphics, and i3D. Jon Peddie Associates expects one million sites to be utilizing 3D content and more than half a billion 3D-enabled browsers by 2007. plasma is available for purchase for $650.00.

URL: http://www.discreet.com

195.08 Data Interface for StudioTools CAID

Later this month Alias|Wavefront will ship a data interface for its StudioTools CAID (computer-aided industrial engineering) software that will interoperate with applications built on PTC Granite One, including Pro/ENGINEER. The Granite interface will be available free of charge as part of StudioTools Release 10. As a result of the integration between StudioTools and Granite, the translation process should be easier and more reliable. For example, Pro/ENGINEER part files may be imported to StudioTools without translating them first to a neutral file format such as IGES or STEP. Through the Granite gPlug interface, Pro/ENGINEER and other applications built on Granite will be able to read native Alias data. StudioTools 10 will this month with prices starting at $7,500.

URL: http://www.ptc.com
URL: http://www.aliaswavefront.com

195.09 Discount on StudioTools

Alias|Wavefront is offering a 25 percent discount off the price of StudioTools software, including DesignStudio, Studio, AutoStudio and SurfaceStudio to members of the Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA). The promotion runs until September 30, 2002.

URL: http://www.aliaswavefront.com
URL: http://www.idsa.org

195.10 Scandinavian Cooperation

Norwegian-based Octaga AS has entered a five-year strategic cooperation agreement with the IT company Vianova IT AS, Norway and Viasys Oy, Finland. The two companies are developing and marketing NovaPOINT, modularized software for road and infrastructure design (engineering). Future modules of NovaPOINT will be based on the new multimedia server/player platform Octagon from Octaga. This will give new features, including realtime 3D design, VR, simulation and networked collaboration capabilities.

URL: http://www.octaga.com
URL: http://vianova.no
URL: http://viasys.fi

195.11 Worth Watching: Intel Demonstrates ATI

ATI's as-yet-unannounced graphics chip was selected to be part of an Intel Xeon workstation platform technology demonstration featuring the newly specified Accelerated Graphics Port 8x interface (AGP8x) designed to double the graphics processing bandwidth over today's current AGP4x.

URL: http://www.ati.com

195.12 Worth Watching: SGI to work with Hitachi

Not VR, but The Nihon Keizai Shimbun reports Hitachi and SGI will jointly develop data management software to reduce research & development cost and time to market. The companies propose to develop software for managing large volumes of stored data based on SGI's software that manages data from multiple servers.

195.13 Worth Watching: Spatial Data, PDAs & GIS - time for i3D?

Organizations are investing heavily in the creation of spatial data; distributing data beyond the source to the non-technical user is essential to realizing its full value. Autodesk MapGuide has been certified to support Oracle9i Application Server. This should help enterprises create custom Java applications to distribute location-based data for improving customer services, streamlining business operations, performing efficient plant management, and developing new revenue streams.

IntelliWhere OnDemand, mapping software product for personal digital assistants (PDAs), is now shipping. This off-the-shelf, vector-based product is aimed at organizations with a mobile workforce, particularly in sectors such as government, transportation, utilities, and the military. Working in an occasionally connected mode, field personnel can view and update intelligent maps, diagrams, and asset information from the corporate geographic information system (GIS). IntelliWhere is a division of Intergraph Mapping and GIS Solutions.

URL: http://www.intelliwhere.com
URL: http://www.autodesk.com

195.00 Events & Calls for Papers

195.14 Postponed - the DoD Executive Forum on Modeling and Simulation

The 11th Annual DoD Executive Forum on Modeling and Simulation (M&S), scheduled for June 17-19 in Norfolk, Va., has been postponed. A future date has not been determined. The NTSA and DMSO made the decision taking into account competing military and civil service personnel requirements, high operational tempo and scheduling conflicts with other conferences within the M&S community. The combination of operational requirements in the nation's war on terrorism, the added workload for the Joint Forces Command and Joint Warfighting Center (JFCOM/JWFC) with "Millennium Challenge," and the milestone events in the Joint Simulation System (JSIMS) program make it "prudent" to postpone the annual gathering.

URL: http://www.dmso.mil/

195.15 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 June 24-26, 2002 at the University of Westminster, UK.

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

195.16 SIGGRAPH 2002

ACM SIGGRAPH is dedicated to the generation and dissemination of information on computer graphics and interactive techniques: San Antonio, Texas, USA - July 21-26, 2002 (exhibition 23-25).

URL: http://www.siggraph.org

195.17 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

195.18 PRESENCE 2002

PRESENCE 2002, Portugal on October 9-11, 2002

URL: http://www.presence-research.org

195.19 Collaborative Virtual Environments 2002

ACM Collaborative Virtual Environments 2002: Bonn, Germany - September 30-October 2, 2002. CVE 2002 is a conference dedicated to the design, development and use of collaborative virtual environments (CVEs). Submission deadlines for Papers, Posters, Panels, Workshops, and Tutorials is May 1st 2002.

URL: http://www.cve2002.org/

195.20 Symposium on Interactive 3D Graphics

2003 Symposium on Interactive 3D Graphics: California, USA - April 27 to 30, 2003. Papers Deadline: 15 September 2002

URL: http://movesinstitute.org/I3D.html

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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