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Per-Anders
09-29-2005, 09:53 PM
Here's a little thought for all the coders who frequent this forum, and that's been bubbling around at the back of my mind for a little while.

With Cinema there are a number of plugins that should be there, but simply aren't, because maybe they're things that you can't sell, or would take too much effort to make for free (but wouldn't sell enough to make it worthwhile if they weren't free) etc, but would still be incredibly useful to have.

So, why don't we opensource them and run the project via this board?

Here are two prospective opensource plugin project suggestions:

1) MA (Maya Ascii) Import/Export
2) Integrated web browser (e.g. taking mozilla and trying to integrate that).

marcom
09-29-2005, 10:05 PM
i am no coder. but i think that this is a brilliant idea!

cheers
marcom

JoelOtron
09-29-2005, 10:24 PM
No code here--but this would be great! A browser ala XSI would work well with the reference image manager idea I had posted a few weeks ago.

Kuroyume0161
09-29-2005, 11:27 PM
Coder here. ;)

Definitely an excellent idea there.

What would be the criteria? Open to XPresso, COFFEE, and C++ or just stick to C++? Windows only or cross-platform? I, of course, opt for the latter. Is this going to be done under a GPL, from SourceForge (for version tracking, etc.)? Just throwing out some queries to get an idea of what your conception is and get you thinking. :)

Not that I could participate any time soon. My current plugin project basically precludes any form of extra-curricular activity. When I'm not developing, I'm sleeping, eating, or taking care of all other mundane tasks.

govinda
09-29-2005, 11:46 PM
Project A, first priority, job 1, before all, list-topper...an open-source cooperative effort to get that d*mn monkey into the app, that monkey we've been promised since before v8 but which has never been delivered!

Kuroyume0161
09-29-2005, 11:50 PM
What monkey?

JoelOtron
09-29-2005, 11:58 PM
You mean to say you didnt get your monkey?

Rabbitroo
09-30-2005, 12:04 AM
1) MA (Maya Ascii) Import/Export


This seems more like something that the OEM should support in their product rather than a third-party, open source add-on. It might be a good stopgap measure, but wouldn't it de-motivate Maxon from ultimately ensuring a *supported* version in the product? (Sort of the same way that Riptide seems to have eliminated desire for more sophisticated .obj support.)

In principle, I'd take the support wherever I could get it, but I think studio pipelines would expected a supported version from Maxon. (That way SDK revs or Product revs wouldn't necessarily limit or reduce functionality.)

Now if Maxon was willing to absorb open-source developed solutions into future revs (something like what mySQL AB does with developed features) and ultimately make them a supported part of the code-base that would be a different story.

Perhaps we should lobby Maxon first to endorse these open-source projects?

*just thinking aloud here--shoot when ready*

-K

Per-Anders
09-30-2005, 01:24 AM
well... maxon offer a pretty superb sdk/api, and great support for that, i don't think they're going to say "hey guys, nooo, you mustn't add new features!" :D

on the aspect of impetus for them to do their own versions, well to be honest, i think it comes down to time and value. to maxon i just don't see these things as being priorities, nor adding massively to the sales of cinema itself, though they would take quite a while to code.

i think that a cumulative community effort has the potential to be updated more frequently than maxon could/would update.

after all these are the sorts of things that if maxon had wanted to do they would have done by now. but if they do still want to do them, then the fact that there is a plugin there isn't going to stop them (it's never stopped them in the past).

Per-Anders
09-30-2005, 01:30 AM
Kuryoyume0161 - I think we'd have to find out who was up for it first. importaers/exporters can be made in COFFEE, the nice thing there is that you don't need a compiler to make that happen. But other stuff, e.g. the browser would definitely be a C++ sort of project.

The C4D api is a very cross platform api, we can get a hook into the windows via GeDialog and CDialog, i'm not sure how cross platform the code behind a browser like mozilla is, and how feasible it would be to bring that into cinema, or if it would be more sensible to just offer a window into any browser of the users choice, a sort of wrapper inside of cinema, similar to XSI.

ThePriest
09-30-2005, 01:51 AM
On a side note, I'm about 2 weeks into a 6 week C++ course
I'm still covering much of the basics along with some trial and error experiments.
How much experience would a guy require for compiling C4D plugins?

sandidolsak
09-30-2005, 02:02 AM
exelent idea, sooo... when we start? =)

Per-Anders
09-30-2005, 02:08 AM
ThePriest - virtually none, you just need the compiler (either VC++ on Windows or Codewarrior on the Mac), simply open the project file and hit compile.

]angelus[ - whenever we want to really. the first thing will be deciding what to use (COFFEE/C++) and who wants to do what, the second thing will be making a basic framework with seperate files for each class/function so people can edit each bit. e.g. an importer/exporter will require a main file, the importer class, a parsing system, possibly a parsing library system (so it's easy to add definitions of different commands, and then choose what to do with it) etc. so all of that has to be sorted out, probably in seperate threads here, one per opensource project would seem sensible.

unseenthings
09-30-2005, 02:25 AM
Here's a little thought for all the coders who frequent this forum, and that's been bubbling around at the back of my mind for a little while.

With Cinema there are a number of plugins that should be there, but simply aren't, because maybe they're things that you can't sell, or would take too much effort to make for free (but wouldn't sell enough to make it worthwhile if they weren't free) etc, but would still be incredibly useful to have.

So, why don't we opensource them and run the project via this board?

Here are two prospective opensource plugin project suggestions:

1) MA (Maya Ascii) Import/Export
2) Integrated web browser (e.g. taking mozilla and trying to integrate that).

I'd be very interested in the idea of the project and helping. I have some c++ experience... I have years of programming experience, most of it just isn't in the c++ realm. But I'm learning coffee pretty quickly and would love to help out on a big project.

I think MA import/export would be a good thing to have in Cinema. I'm not so sure about the integrated web browser... I don't see the benefit of having it in there, and I think trying to integrate mozilla would be a nightmare. The codebase for that thing is just beyond enormous.

Speaking of integrating existing projects, though..... Anyone ever heard of the Open Dynamics Engine (http://www.ode.org)? From their website: "ODE is an open source, high performance library for simulating rigid body dynamics. It is fully featured, stable, mature and platform independent with an easy to use C/C++ API. It has advanced joint types and integrated collision detection with friction. ODE is useful for simulating vehicles, objects in virtual reality environments and virtual creatures. It is currently used in many computer games, 3D authoring tools and simulation tools." And right below that on their website, they let us know: "SoftImage XSI 4.0 ships with ODE" which I guess is possible because the ODE is under the BSD license. I know, sorry for all the acronyms. :) But I also know a lot of people have expressed a desire for a better dynamics engine in c4d... however, integrating any existing package would require fairly strong c++ people, I do believe. I don't know anything more about ODE than this, but it sounds a bit intriguing, to say the least.

People like myself with some (and not extensive) experience in programming would probably be better suited towards import/export stuff, I would think. Which leads me to the other idea I'd been kicking around but would probably be too time consuming for me to write... Anybody ever hear of Yafray (http://www.yafray.org/)? It's an open source (LGPL) raytracer with quite a few features (http://www.yafray.org/index.php?s=10) including DOF, caustics, HDRI, GI, multithreaded and distributed rendering.... I wouldn't say it's "better than AR 2.5" -- but it certainly could bear some consideration. It might be a nice alternative. It's free, runs on Linux, OS X and Windows. The file format is currently XML, which like the MA format (maya ascii) probably wouldn't be "difficult" as much as "time consuming" -- but when you throw a lot of people at something that's time consuming but not particularly difficult, you can get some nice results. Maybe a starting place for Yafray export would be getting the file format down.. maybe some of the more advanced c++ people could look into further c4d integration.

But hey, I'll help how I can with what I can.

Kuroyume0161
09-30-2005, 02:32 AM
Kuryoyume0161 - I think we'd have to find out who was up for it first. importaers/exporters can be made in COFFEE, the nice thing there is that you don't need a compiler to make that happen. But other stuff, e.g. the browser would definitely be a C++ sort of project.

Yes, of course. And of course on the other two points. :)

The C4D api is a very cross platform api, we can get a hook into the windows via GeDialog and CDialog, i'm not sure how cross platform the code behind a browser like mozilla is, and how feasible it would be to bring that into cinema, or if it would be more sensible to just offer a window into any browser of the users choice, a sort of wrapper inside of cinema, similar to XSI.

Oh, I agree. The hardest part of porting interPoser to MacOS was Mac Resources used by Poser files, otherwise nearly all of the Cinema SDK facilities remained unchanged. I agree that bringing something like Mozilla into Cinema would be difficult.

Kuroyume0161
09-30-2005, 02:36 AM
Speaking of integrating existing projects, though..... Anyone ever heard of the Open Dynamics Engine (http://www.ode.org)? From their website: "ODE is an open source, high performance library for simulating rigid body dynamics. It is fully featured, stable, mature and platform independent with an easy to use C/C++ API. It has advanced joint types and integrated collision detection with friction. ODE is useful for simulating vehicles, objects in virtual reality environments and virtual creatures. It is currently used in many computer games, 3D authoring tools and simulation tools." And right below that on their website, they let us know: "SoftImage XSI 4.0 ships with ODE" which I guess is possible because the ODE is under the BSD license. I know, sorry for all the acronyms. :) But I also know a lot of people have expressed a desire for a better dynamics engine in c4d... however, integrating any existing package would require fairly strong c++ people, I do believe. I don't know anything more about ODE than this, but it sounds a bit intriguing, to say the least.


Yes, I've heard of it. Actually, I have version 0.5 sitting here on my computer. It was an idea for a backup solution to Poser joints and IK in Cinema (not really looking at the 'Dynamics' part of it) ;). If it is anywhere near or better than Cinema 4D's dynamics, this is good candidate for an alternative!

Kuroyume0161
09-30-2005, 02:44 AM
One more thing to add:

I have this COFFEE plugin called 'Drop It!' which is used to drop objects along the Y-axis either to the 'ground' or onto other target objects. Very basic design and has some flubs due to COFFEE (6.3) limitations when using procedural objects.

Three things would be great for this plugin -

1. Porting to C++ so that these flubs are removed.

2. People have been pleading for a way to drop a selection of objects individually (currently, it does all together for calculations) onto a target object. My C++ plugins have occupied all my time, so no plans in the near future to pursue this.

3. Maybe some added functionality, such as drop in a particular axial direction, angularly, or radially.

It is a free plugin, but I only distribute a compiled COFFEE plugin. If at any time this open source project takes flight, I'd be willing to offer the source up to the project for expansion.

mindful108
09-30-2005, 05:11 AM
I don't qualify as a coder, but I think Maya file import would be really great.

Super community effort!!!:beer:



...

AdamT
09-30-2005, 05:39 AM
No coding for me, but why don't you guys code a VRay connection? :ducks for cover:

Rich-Art
09-30-2005, 07:03 AM
No coding for me, for why don't you guys code a VRay connection? :ducks for cover:

That would be great indeed.

Peace,
Rich-Art. :thumbsup:

vesalus
09-30-2005, 01:07 PM
sure guys, a vray connexion should interest plenty people... :p :)

jondoe0ne
09-30-2005, 01:21 PM
of course... A VRAY CONNECTION.... hmmmmm, sounds delightfull.... count me in into the "vray connection demand group"!

bobtronic
09-30-2005, 01:27 PM
nice idea Per. but one question why a Mozilla for Cinema what would be the advantages of a webbrowser in Cinema?

cheers,
Bob

Jorge Arango
09-30-2005, 02:14 PM
nice idea Per. but one question why a Mozilla for Cinema what would be the advantages of a webbrowser in Cinema?

cheers,
Bob

I don't understand either but I dream of a sort of html thing that would get you from the AM (or a render settings page, etc.) to the corresponding page of the manual in one click.


Jorge Arango

JoelOtron
09-30-2005, 05:20 PM
I don't understand either but I dream of a sort of html thing that would get you from the AM (or a render settings page, etc.) to the corresponding page of the manual in one click.


Jorge Arango

Also you could load in several pages of reference images to click through as needed.

Could also be an alternative fi;le browser if you target your local hardrive


Not to mention youd never leave C4d to catch up on your cgtalk ...which probably wouldn't b a plus for productivity.

Kuroyume0161
09-30-2005, 05:56 PM
Also you could load in several pages of reference images to click through as needed.

Could also be an alternative fi;le browser if you target your local hardrive


Not to mention youd never leave C4d to catch up on your cgtalk ...which probably wouldn't b a plus for productivity.

But very good at thwarting your boss (if you have one)!

Aries
09-30-2005, 06:04 PM
Why not a plugin for dwg import/export :)

ThirdEye
09-30-2005, 06:05 PM
nice idea Per. but one question why a Mozilla for Cinema what would be the advantages of a webbrowser in Cinema?

cheers,
Bob

following tutorials and running NET for a start

Kuroyume0161
09-30-2005, 06:11 PM
Why not a plugin for dwg import/export :)

Because AutoDesk's AutoCAD DWG file format is binary and proprietary - just like Cinema 4D's. Let me know when you find any Cinema 4D 6+ C4D file import/export plugins! ;)

Per-Anders
09-30-2005, 06:12 PM
and reason for browsers is instant access to any browser plugin. consider for a moment using controls/gui written in flash to control cinema, or rigs through the browser (you can do this in xsi currently). browsers have a lot of stuff built into them already that cinema lacks and coudl take advantage of, also it's a great way to have a direct portal into useful materials and reference right there, e.g. imagine you need a wood texture, now imagine donig a google or altavista search for one, finding one as an image there and simply dragging and dropping it into a texture channel, cinema would handle the internal drag & drop and save it in your project path.

then of course there's the whole working through manuals and tutorials directly in app, etc

Aries
09-30-2005, 06:13 PM
Not really... http://www.opendwg.org
And Nemetschek is there.

Per-Anders
09-30-2005, 06:17 PM
on the subject of "why maya ascii", the resons are that it's a well documented format (e.g. http://caad.arch.ethz.ch/info/maya/manual/FileFormats/ ), it's a text based fileformat, so it's relatively readable. it's used by a number of applications, not just Maya (shake and others), and it's probably as useful as RIB for getting Cinema into pipelines. and i figure it would work well as an open source project as it's probably slightly more enjoyable to do than a binary format!

and on top of that Maxon has just released the engineering bundle. the point being that as much as maxon supports third parties, third parties should support maxon in return

Kuroyume0161
09-30-2005, 06:25 PM
Not really... http://www.opendwg.org
And Nemetschek is there.

Well, I didn't say anything about 'reverse-engineering' the format. ;)

If they have an 'open' access to their DWG file format specifications, then it can be done. If this is a closed consortium, then that ends it.

AdamT
09-30-2005, 06:29 PM
I have it on good authority that .dwg support must be licensed from Autodesk, and it ain't cheap.

Kuroyume0161
09-30-2005, 06:34 PM
I have it on good authority that .dwg support must be licensed from Autodesk, and it ain't cheap.

Not cheap and in all cases that I've seen requires an installed version of AutoCAD (ala Right Hemisphere's Deep Exploration). Add that cost on top of the DWG licensing!

AdamT
09-30-2005, 07:24 PM
Nah, lot's of apps have .dwg i/o without the need to have Acad installed--just about every CAD app worth its salt has it.

Kuroyume0161
09-30-2005, 07:26 PM
Nah, lot's of apps have .dwg i/o without the need to have Acad installed--just about every CAD app worth its salt has it.

The only CAD app that I have is AutoCAD. ;) I guess most of what I've seen are apps that mainly do import/export/conversion.

lllab
09-30-2005, 07:40 PM
most appshave dwg import and export- even very cheap ones!

and NO you dont have autocad to be installed- absolute B.S.-sorry.
and there is opendwg emntioned above...heard it is even "better" than the original support from autodesk.

cheers stefan

edit:regarding adams suggestion- i would also love to see a vray bridge.
vlado said it would be VERY easy.

Thalaxis
09-30-2005, 07:50 PM
Would there be any interest in the dotXSI format now that the dotXSI SDK is freely downloadable?

My thinking is more geared toward gaming applications than integration with XSI itself.

:applause:

Kuroyume0161
09-30-2005, 07:55 PM
most appshave dwg import and export- even very cheap ones!

DWG - NOT!! - DXF

List me all of these apps (even cheap ones) that support DWG.

Not one of those on my list supports DWG (except Deep Exploration - which requires a very expensive add-on module and AutoCAD).

lllab
09-30-2005, 08:04 PM
i mean DWG man;-)
i am architect i use cad everyday, believe me, even small, cheap cad packages support dwg today.

cheers
stefan

for the list:

1) first EVERY CAD package you know by name(vectorworks,microstation, allplan, rhino, formz, powercad, minicad...

2) 1000ds of free dwg viewers that open, print and convert dwg files (like brava(open, print view dwg: 29€)

3) do a search for google for cad+free: you get 100s of free or cheap cad packages with full(even native) dwg support, i just picked the first one: http://www.zwcad.org/
there are so much i dont remember the names, again just search google.

4) http://www.opendesign.com/
open dwg: a non profit organisation supportingt hundrets of software vendors;-) free, 99% compatible to dwg2004 at the moment.
some say it is even better than the autodesk dwg licence. fromz p.e.changed from the official dwg format to the opendwg format in its last release for stability issues(open dwg is more reliable)

Jorge Arango
09-30-2005, 08:08 PM
DWG - NOT!! - DXF

List me all of these apps (even cheap ones) that support DWG.

Not one of those on my list supports DWG (except Deep Exploration - which requires a very expensive add-on module and AutoCAD).

Sketchup ($495) would be one. Illustrator ($499) another.


Jorge Arango

Kuroyume0161
09-30-2005, 08:26 PM
Sketchup ($495) would be one. Illustrator ($499) another.
Jorge Arango

I was just checking on Illustrator. Yes.

Two isn't "most".

CAD apps, maybe. Not all 3D CG apps import/export DWG. 3DSMax (obviously) and Maya.

Not:

Cinema 4D
LightWave3D
Vue (any)
Poser (any)
DAZ|Studio
Bryce
Carrara
Amapi
ZBrush (?)
Shade
Houdini
SoftImage XSI
...

We're talking 3D CG, not Architectural CADD applications. This is the Cinema 4D forum, right? ;P

ETA: Not certain of this (and I own it, go figure) - but Illustrator probably only supports 2D DWG files. Again, this is about 3D CG. And, yup, big mega-corps like Adobe can afford that big license and others can get away with the OpenDesign (Lowest commercial licensing is $1000/yr and upwards to $25,000/yr plus one-time enrollment fees). How would it look for Cinema 4D to 'officially' support DWG using OpenDesign (and not as a free third-party plugin using it)? How long before AutoDesk's lawyers show up at their doorstep?

Jorge Arango
09-30-2005, 08:51 PM
I was just checking on Illustrator. Yes.

Two isn't "most".

CAD apps, maybe. Not all 3D CG apps import/export DWG. 3DSMax (obviously) and Maya.

Not:

Cinema 4D
LightWave3D
Vue (any)
Poser (any)
DAZ|Studio
Bryce
Carrara
Amapi
ZBrush (?)
Shade
Houdini
SoftImage XSI
...

We're talking 3D CG, not Architectural CADD applications. This is the Cinema 4D forum, right? ;P

ETA: Not certain of this (and I own it, go figure) - but Illustrator probably only supports 2D DWG files. Again, this is about 3D CG. And, yup, big mega-corps like Adobe can afford that big license and others can get away with the OpenDesign (Lowest commercial licensing is $1000/yr and upwards to $25,000/yr plus one-time enrollment fees). How would it look for Cinema 4D to 'officially' support DWG using OpenDesign (and not as a free third-party plugin using it)? How long before AutoDesk's lawyers show up at their doorstep?

I'm not contradicting you. I'm only telling about the two cheap apps that I know of. And yes, Illustrator only supports 2D dwg.


Jorge Arango

lllab
09-30-2005, 09:02 PM
read my edit post above:

and for the most time for 3d viz we needed proper 2d dwg import, not 3d- most of us are modelling in c4d anyways.

cinema also want to be in thr archviz market, and it is also very good in it. the only real competitor is 3d max, this one naturally has good dwg import. hope c4d hets it too:-)

i mean, not to offend you but you where just wrong in the posts before, you can do dwg, its not a matter of price its a matter of will.

so i guess you are just of the opinion c4d doesnt need it so urgent, thats ok, i too rather see an vray bridge, dxf import is ok for now.
dwg would be possible if it is wanted.

cheers
stefan

edit: and please dont let us go this in another war, lot of people, lot of different opinions, not more not less-peace:-)

Kuroyume0161
09-30-2005, 09:03 PM
I'm not contradicting you. I'm only telling about the two cheap apps that I know of. And yes, Illustrator only supports 2D dwg.


Jorge Arango

I know, responding mainly to Illab. Yay - 99% of CAD apps may now have DWG support (this wasn't the case when I was doing E/M design work ten years ago - AutoDesk was even more rabid back then), but most others do not have native DWG support.

I was sort hoping to fix that about Illustrator before any replies... ;) The only way to find out what import/export formats it supports directly is to run the damn thing, create a project, and check. Reference manual appendix sucks.

The Open Design Alliance has a good setup. The hard part of becoming a member is printing out the Agreement, signing it, and scanning/faxing it back. Be nice if they had a way to email the scanned documents instead as I'm on a 'no land-line' system - phone is cell and VOIP. But I'm working on it.

Kuroyume0161
09-30-2005, 09:18 PM
read my edit post above:

and for the most time for 3d viz we needed proper 2d dwg import, not 3d- most of us are modelling in c4d anyways.

cinema also want to be in thr archviz market, and it is also very good in it. the only real competitor is 3d max, this one naturally has good dwg import. hope c4d hets it too:-)

i mean, not to offend you but you where just wrong in the posts before, you can do dwg, its not a matter of price its a matter of will.

so i guess you are just of the opinion c4d doesnt need it so urgent, thats ok, i too rather see an vray bridge, dxf import is ok for now.
dwg would be possible if it is wanted.

cheers
stefan

edit: and please dont let us go this in another war, lot of people, lot of different opinions, not more nor less:-)
peace:-)

I did read it. Yes, I agree that there is free access to DWG format - but with stipulations (free/instructional/inhouse only). To use OpenDesign commercially is still a steep pricetag.

This is why many software companies do not support it unless absolutely essential - there is no free DWG support unless your developers reverse engineer it themselves. The licensing prices must be weighed against the scope of the support. Obviously, for any design field utilizing CAD software, DWG support is almost a must.

Personally, I would love to see DWG support in Cinema 4D. DXF sucks. It is less viable than the Wavefront OBJ format even, or at least minimally supported leaving much to be desired. Most of my latest AutoCAD work (a few years ago anyway) used 3D solids which aren't even supported in DXF (at last check).

Obviously MAXON hasn't had the inspiration to shell out minimum $1000/yr (or greater) and neither have C4D plugin developers either. That is quite an investment for a plugin developer which requires projected sales of at least $5000 (more like $10000) a year to maintain the licensing and remain profitable. The logistics don't make it an acceptable risk in that case. For commercial viability, more about price and less about will. ;)

Going the free OpenDesign route with free plugin distribution would be the best approach. No worries about annual licensing fees, but there is also no profit which causes less incentive. And see, already, support for DWG wanes and VRay wins - that is why there is no DWG support in Cinema 4D to date! :)

dAfTiE
09-30-2005, 11:04 PM
I'm still learning programming,and I've more or less put the SDK on the side for now,
saving it for when I've gotten a better grasp of OO C++ basics.
MA support sounds like a great project,both for users,and for people like me who are trying to learn programming.
Another one that would be extremely nice,and probably not *too* hard to implement that I've been thinking about,
is extrude along spline. Actually,I thought about two of them.
One command that works like EAS,and one implemented as a generator object,
allowing users to change the spline later.

Anyways,it'd be great to see this happen,and I'd sign on to help in any way I can,
be it testing/documentation/making coffee/tea for the devs,or just idling in a chat room,if there is one.

flingster
10-01-2005, 01:48 AM
i'm liking the idea of xsi style browser in c4d interface integration.
not read all thread but surely this could be done by maxon anyways.
as for open source why not..could actually benefit us with other stuff in the future..

wouldn't you have to define a coding type convention to stick to so that people can actually read and follow each other code..not being a programmer excuse my lack of knowledge in this area?

i was hoping darf would make jenna open source unfortunately i doubt this will happen..which is a pity...but there you go.

lllab
10-01-2005, 08:15 AM
another idea was to make jenna open source, darf might sell it to the "community" here, he said it is prepared and cleaned up so that another person or group could develop it further.
it would be a pity if all that great stuff would die.

open source might be a possibility to save it.
cheers
stefan

flingster
10-01-2005, 07:35 PM
another idea was to make jenna open source, darf might sell it to the "community" here, he said it is prepared and cleaned up so that another person or group could develop it further.
it would be a pity if all that great stuff would die.

open source might be a possibility to save it.
cheers
stefan

i don't think it'll be made open source to be honest, if users are prepared to buy jenna out from darf then its viable. whether another developer has those funds i'm unsure, i'd like to see it happen but can't see it personally. anyway we are diverting this thread slightly here...lets steer back on course a little...my bad.

lllab
10-01-2005, 09:40 PM
well, it is even more unrealistic that some developerwill buy it i think.
maybe maxon could buy it, or a bigger group of users, but who will manage all that then?

i guess it will happen nothing for a long time, and then it might be trash or in better case open sourse. so why not make it open source anyway. maybe it could be a mixture of donation- to buy it free from darf and then make it open source.

i just dont see anybody buying jenna code, and i dont want to see it die.

cheers
stefan

developer
10-01-2005, 11:21 PM
Maybe you have seen what happened with Blender after the company had been gone.
The former CEO of NAN started a donation project to buy the sources to give them back to the community. After the community had donated 100.000 dollares he could buy the sources and make them opensource again. This is why Blender is still alife and available.

Regards
Peter

Gendou
10-02-2005, 06:00 PM
Hello,
I saw this thread and thought I'd post what's been written of a C4D (6.3 CE+) Yafray XML export plugin. I had this idea and was assisted by another C4D user in it's creation. He took some inspiration from an old tinrocket.com xml exporter for v7 to create the v6.3 plugin. I have attached the ZIP files to this post and will place the files on my website once it's completed. It's a little quirky in that it must have a Camera with target, all objects must be meshes, it supports point lights and spots, and has a material tag. He didn't complete this plugin due to his own complaints about Yafray's capabilities.

I have tested this plugin with the latest version of Yafray (0.0.8.2) and it still works. Yafray has had a large speed increase with this release. Yafray also has the option of hand-written shaders, a la renderman sl shaders. They need to be edited into the XML files by hand, but perhaps some talented C4D programmer could develop this further? I initially was interesed in a Yafray plugin due to v6.3 limited rendering capabilities.

ascent: "Anybody ever hear of Yafray? It's an open source (LGPL) raytracer with quite a few features including DOF, caustics, HDRI, GI, multithreaded and distributed rendering.... It might be a nice alternative. It's free, runs on Linux, OS X and Windows."
Yafray currently supports HDRI, SSS (i believe, check www.yafray.org's forum for details), radiosity, DoF, and many other features. It could be used as a low-cost alternative to the Advanced Renderer if someone would like to develop it further. The plugin is written in COFFEE at the moment and resides in the File>Export menu when installed.
The files are attached to this post in a ZIP titled "YafrayExport_R2.zip".


-Gendou

dAfTiE
10-02-2005, 07:18 PM
Hello,
I saw this thread and thought I'd post what's been written of a C4D (6.3 CE+) Yafray XML export plugin. I had this idea and was assisted by another C4D user in it's creation. He took some inspiration from an old tinrocket.com xml exporter for v7 to create the v6.3 plugin. I have attached the ZIP files to this post and will place the files on my website once it's completed. It's a little quirky in that it must have a Camera with target, all objects must be meshes, it supports point lights and spots, and has a material tag. He didn't complete this plugin due to his own complaints about Yafray's capabilities.

I have tested this plugin with the latest version of Yafray (0.0.8.2) and it still works. Yafray has had a large speed increase with this release. Yafray also has the option of hand-written shaders, a la renderman sl shaders. They need to be edited into the XML files by hand, but perhaps some talented C4D programmer could develop this further? I initially was interesed in a Yafray plugin due to v6.3 limited rendering capabilities.


Yafray currently supports HDRI, SSS (i believe, check www.yafray.org's forum for details), radiosity, DoF, and many other features. It could be used as a low-cost alternative to the Advanced Renderer if someone would like to develop it further. The plugin is written in COFFEE at the moment and resides in the File>Export menu when installed.
The files are attached to this post in a ZIP titled "YafrayExport_R2.zip".


-Gendou
If anyone wants to keep working on this,they might want to look at the Wings3D and/or Blender export plugins,
to get an idea of the file structure and some reasonable defaults and whatnot.
Blender source might be easier to read,seeing as it's all python or C/C++,while wings is erlang.
I haven't looked at rendering in Blender much in all,but the Yafray support in Wings is excellent.

unseenthings
10-03-2005, 04:01 AM
Hello,
I saw this thread and thought I'd post what's been written of a C4D (6.3 CE+) Yafray XML export plugin. I had this idea and was assisted by another C4D user in it's creation. He took some inspiration from an old tinrocket.com xml exporter for v7 to create the v6.3 plugin. I have attached the ZIP files to this post and will place the files on my website once it's completed. It's a little quirky in that it must have a Camera with target, all objects must be meshes, it supports point lights and spots, and has a material tag. He didn't complete this plugin due to his own complaints about Yafray's capabilities.

I have tested this plugin with the latest version of Yafray (0.0.8.2) and it still works. Yafray has had a large speed increase with this release. Yafray also has the option of hand-written shaders, a la renderman sl shaders. They need to be edited into the XML files by hand, but perhaps some talented C4D programmer could develop this further? I initially was interesed in a Yafray plugin due to v6.3 limited rendering capabilities.


Yafray currently supports HDRI, SSS (i believe, check www.yafray.org's (http://www.yafray.org%27s) forum for details), radiosity, DoF, and many other features. It could be used as a low-cost alternative to the Advanced Renderer if someone would like to develop it further. The plugin is written in COFFEE at the moment and resides in the File>Export menu when installed.
The files are attached to this post in a ZIP titled "YafrayExport_R2.zip".


-Gendou

Very cool! Thanks for posting. I'm anxious to take a look at it and see how it can expanded upon.

unseenthings
10-03-2005, 04:42 PM
Well, I *was* really excited about implementing some changes to the Yafray exporter.... then I found this on their official forum (I believe it's one of the developers who posted it):
"In fact, YafRay's xml format has its days numbered, because it will be replaced in the new redesign."

Blah. Oh, well. Maya Ascii anyone?

williamsburroughs
10-05-2005, 07:56 PM
I didn't read the whole thread, so I apologize in advance if this was already brought up. But it looks like some XSi devs created and Open Source Maya Ascii importer for XSI.

Check it:
http://sourceforge.net/projects/maxsi

Could be helpful to get one started for C4D.

Cheers,
-policarpo

Gendou
10-05-2005, 08:58 PM
ascent: don't let that statement on the yafray board shake you, they aren't moving along very quickly in the re-development (which was announced over a year ago and there's not even a pre-alpha release). The yafray developers are slow at working on what they have, let alone a total rewrite. The newest yafray release (0.0.8.2) has a lot of good features and is much quicker than it's 0.0.7 release. There are still many, many people using yafray and will still be using it even after they begin actually releasing builds.
At least take a look at the existing plugin and see if there's anything you can do to exapnd it. I know mant C4D users would work with it if you (or others) continued working with it. Yafray's also open-source, so the development *could* continue even after they start a re-write.

-Gendou

unseenthings
10-05-2005, 09:49 PM
I didn't read the whole thread, so I apologize in advance if this was already brought up. But it looks like some XSi devs created and Open Source Maya Ascii importer for XSI.

Check it:
http://sourceforge.net/projects/maxsi

Could be helpful to get one started for C4D.

Cheers,
-policarpo

I saw that.. unfortunately, at this point, it's still mostly just a framework. It could be helpful in the future though. A quote from the readme included in the source:

Keep in mind, right now it only imports cameras, and it only imports four parameters: transform, aperture, and near & far clip planes. The point of this importer is that it's really easy to add support for more parameters and even other types of nodes. You can take a look at node_camera.py, which does the importing for the camera node.

talos72
10-06-2005, 02:39 AM
Just out of curiosity, has anyone checked out how the browser in Houdini works? It's pretty handy. There is no pdf manual, everything works through the browser where you can do word searches, search by tools, pull up tutorials, etc. Beyond that, there are example files which you can load up from inside of Houdini. Most tools in Houdini have examples of how they are used associated with them, and when you click on the help button inside the parameters of a tool, the browser pops up a window with all relevant info on the tool: explanation of function, parameters, and actual Houdini example files of how the node can be used.

It would be awesome to have something like that in C4D.

dAfTiE
10-06-2005, 11:31 AM
Quick question to the developers out there...
Do I need to get Visual Studio to compile C4D plugin projects,or can I use the free commandline compiler/linker and the platform SDK?
At the moment I'm using the Eclipse CDT for my C++ stuff,and since I don't qualify for an educational license of Visual studio I can't afford to buy it right now.
I seem to remember a post about using the free compiler some time back,
but I couldn't find the thread again with the search.
And I don't really want to start downloading the huge platform SDK and stuff if I won't be able to use it.

Suricate
10-06-2005, 11:40 AM
Quick question to the developers out there...
Do I need to get Visual Studio to compile C4D plugin projects,or can I use the free commandline compiler/linker and the platform SDK?
At the moment I'm using the Eclipse CDT for my C++ stuff,and since I don't qualify for an educational license of Visual studio I can't afford to buy it right now.
I seem to remember a post about using the free compiler some time back,
but I couldn't find the thread again with the search.
And I don't really want to start downloading the huge platform SDK and stuff if I won't be able to use it.

Yeah, you can use either Visual Studio or the free VC++ command line compiler. Other compilers (Borland, GNU) have problems with linking the libraries and are not recommended. More info can be found in the forums at www.plugincafe.com (http://www.plugincafe.com/) .

dAfTiE
10-06-2005, 11:55 AM
Yeah, you can use either Visual Studio or the free VC++ command line compiler. Other compilers (Borland, GNU) have problems with linking the libraries and are not recommended. More info can be found in the forums at www.plugincafe.com (http://www.plugincafe.com/) .

Excellent,thank you.
Hopefully it all works under windows 2000 professional.
Looks like MS is killing 2000 support with the VS 2005 products,
and I don't really have the funds (nor do I want) to buy windows XP.

unseenthings
10-06-2005, 03:50 PM
Yeah, you can use either Visual Studio or the free VC++ command line compiler. Other compilers (Borland, GNU) have problems with linking the libraries and are not recommended. More info can be found in the forums at www.plugincafe.com (http://www.plugincafe.com/) .

Yeah, even the otherwise excellent Dev-C++ doesn't work... save yourself lots of pain and heartache and don't even try.

unseenthings
10-08-2005, 06:32 AM
<nevermind>

jamacsween
10-10-2005, 12:30 PM
What about Visual C++ express? Free download just now at beta 2 and to be released Nov 7th for $49?

Anyone tried compiling plugins using this? Should work tho and a reasonable option.

JA

Per-Anders
10-10-2005, 06:53 PM
any of the visual c++ line of products works fine, you don't need visual studio.

unseenthings
10-10-2005, 07:25 PM
What about Visual C++ express? Free download just now at beta 2 and to be released Nov 7th for $49?

Anyone tried compiling plugins using this? Should work tho and a reasonable option.

JA

I'll let you know specifically about vc++ express 2005 beta shortly.... so far, I had to install XP SP2 (which seems to have gone okay, despite my fears) and the .NET framework v2.0, as well as the actual vc++ express 2005 beta. It's my understanding that you also need the Platform SDK to compile win32 apps, so I'm installing that now. Whole shebang is gonna take about 2GB before I'm done, I think. Yeesh.

unseenthings
10-10-2005, 09:27 PM
Okay, yes indeed, you can use the vc++ express 2005 beta to compile the 9.5 SDK.

Couple of caveats and notes...


Don't try it on the c4d demo. It doesn't come with a full SDK.
Yes, you do need the Platform SDK as well.
You cannot change the include/library paths of Beta 2 in the Options, so you have to change them in a text file. I found great directions on how to do that on this page (http://blogs.msdn.com/brianjo/articles/422600.aspx) which deals with using the vc++ express beta to compile platform sdk examples.
I opened up the cinema4dsdk.dsp file which contains the samples and the API library. Opening up that file, and then picking Build->Build Solution is what did the trick, *AFTER* removing the reference to odbc32.lib and odbccp32.lib, described in the next couple of bullet points.
odbc32.lib and odbccp32.lib seem to be set as default additional dependencies. At the same time, they don't seem to be needed for the c4d sdk examples to compile. Removing them enabled everything to compile (and the plugin samples work fine in Cinema) and leaving them there prevented things from compiling.
To remove those two dependencies, from within vc++ express, go here:

Project Properties
Configuration Properties->Linker->Input
Remove "odbc32.lib odbccp32.lib" from Additional Dependencies

Hopefully this mini-tutorial isn't too OT, and will help other people who have interest (but don't have the cash to sink into Visual Studio) start up and play around. All the tools mentioned/used (vc++ express and the platform sdk) are free, as long as you've got a couple of gigs of drive space available. :) Apparently the vc++ express beta is only temporarily free and will be on sale for $49 in November as jamacsween mentioned -- that's still a pretty good deal. You *can* compile the sdk examples using the commandline and some other text editor, but honestly, if you're not really comfortable doing that and pretty darn familiar with c++, it's probably going to be more trouble/pain than it's worth.

Anyway, hope this helps someone else. I'm pretty excited about playing around with the SDK... I've been meaning to re-install my really old copy of Visual Studio 98, but now I don't have to.

Per-Anders
10-10-2005, 11:27 PM
the demo does come with the full SDK, i just downloaded it to double check. everything's there, compiles fine. the only thing is that i/o exporting/saving etc calls are disabled of course.

unseenthings
10-11-2005, 03:06 AM
the demo does come with the full SDK, i just downloaded it to double check. everything's there, compiles fine. the only thing is that i/o exporting/saving etc calls are disabled of course.

Oops. I stand corrected. mdme_sadie is correct, of course. :)

So.... getting back to the original topic... are there any more interested parties in helping with the development of an open source plugin?

Thalaxis
10-11-2005, 04:51 AM
Oops. I stand corrected. mdme_sadie is correct, of course. :)

So.... getting back to the original topic... are there any more interested parties in helping with the development of an open source plugin?

I'm interested... and I hope to have more time with an hour shorter commute to work.

BTW, Eclipse has a C++ devkit that might serve, for those that don't want to spring $50 for VC++, although VC++ has been a very good IDE at least since the first .NET version.

Kuroyume0161
10-11-2005, 01:56 PM
I'm interested... and I hope to have more time with an hour shorter commute to work.

BTW, Eclipse has a C++ devkit that might serve, for those that don't want to spring $50 for VC++, although VC++ has been a very good IDE at least since the first .NET version.

The point may be moot. I have heard of no success in using any other compilers but VC++ and CodeWarrior for compiling Cinema 4D C++ SDK plugins for Windows and MacOS since R8. Xcode on MacOS is right out (for the umpteenth time) ;).

What would be magnanimous of M$ would be to release VC++ 6.0 as a free developer tool. It's long superceded, but still quite functional for the SDK (and recommended).

jamacsween
10-11-2005, 02:16 PM
Okay, yes indeed, you can use the vc++ express 2005 beta to compile the 9.5 SDK.

Couple of caveats and notes...


Don't try it on the c4d demo. It doesn't come with a full SDK.
Yes, you do need the Platform SDK as well.
You cannot change the include/library paths of Beta 2 in the Options, so you have to change them in a text file. I found great directions on how to do that on this page (http://blogs.msdn.com/brianjo/articles/422600.aspx) which deals with using the vc++ express beta to compile platform sdk examples.
I opened up the cinema4dsdk.dsp file which contains the samples and the API library. Opening up that file, and then picking Build->Build Solution is what did the trick, *AFTER* removing the reference to odbc32.lib and odbccp32.lib, described in the next couple of bullet points.
odbc32.lib and odbccp32.lib seem to be set as default additional dependencies. At the same time, they don't seem to be needed for the c4d sdk examples to compile. Removing them enabled everything to compile (and the plugin samples work fine in Cinema) and leaving them there prevented things from compiling.
To remove those two dependencies, from within vc++ express, go here:

Project Properties
Configuration Properties->Linker->Input
Remove "odbc32.lib odbccp32.lib" from Additional Dependencies

Hopefully this mini-tutorial isn't too OT, and will help other people who have interest (but don't have the cash to sink into Visual Studio) start up and play around. All the tools mentioned/used (vc++ express and the platform sdk) are free, as long as you've got a couple of gigs of drive space available. :) Apparently the vc++ express beta is only temporarily free and will be on sale for $49 in November as jamacsween mentioned -- that's still a pretty good deal. You *can* compile the sdk examples using the commandline and some other text editor, but honestly, if you're not really comfortable doing that and pretty darn familiar with c++, it's probably going to be more trouble/pain than it's worth.

Anyway, hope this helps someone else. I'm pretty excited about playing around with the SDK... I've been meaning to re-install my really old copy of Visual Studio 98, but now I don't have to.

ascent, thats great. Thanks very much for testing that out. I use Borlands C++Builder for my own projects and it is absorbing all my time right now. However will monitor and if I can help, will buy the express edition just to contribute.

Any decisions on what you are going to do yet?

JA

NWoolridge
10-11-2005, 06:32 PM
Xcode on MacOS is right out (for the umpteenth time) ;).

Not to beat a dead horse, but for future compatibility, the path on Mac OS clearly lies with XCode. Maxon has publicly acknowledged that they have dev versions of C4D compiled from XCode, and its a fact that for MacIntel compatibility, XCode will be required.

Of course, at present, Codewarrior is necessary for Mac compiles. But the wise developer will be aware that for future compatibility, their code should compile under XCode.

Nick

Kuroyume0161
10-11-2005, 06:41 PM
Not to beat a dead horse, but for future compatibility, the path on Mac OS clearly lies with XCode. Maxon has publicly acknowledged that they have dev versions of C4D compiled from XCode, and its a fact that for MacIntel compatibility, XCode will be required.

Of course, at present, Codewarrior is necessary for Mac compiles. But the wise developer will be aware that for future compatibility, their code should compile under XCode.

Nick

Correct, but for all intensive purposes (for the next six months at least), there is no choice but CodeWarrior. Don't know what backward compatilibity will be added (if any) for using the intel XCode with SDKs prior to the first supporting (for anything R9.5 or earlier). It may be that if you are compiling earlier SDK libs/plugins, CodeWarrior will still be required. That is to be seen. :)

bobzilla
10-11-2005, 07:40 PM
Might be interesting to some:

http://forums.applenova.com/showthread.php?t=7319

Kuroyume0161
10-11-2005, 09:05 PM
Might be interesting to some:

http://forums.applenova.com/showthread.php?t=7319

Not only did I get the memo, I saw Job's HD presentation (on video). Developers can already get a MacTel system specifically for development and porting. Even Maxon states, as NWoolridge noted, they have already XCode SDK compatilibity.

But these are of little consequence until there are MacTels running Cinema 4D out of 'Rosetta mode', nay? Don't put the horse before the cart - right now, you need CodeWarrior and there are no substitutes whatsoever.

Geespot
10-15-2005, 10:32 PM
Just wondering the status of this open source plugin idea?

Personally I would like to see some kind of collaboration plugin, that allows a scene to be built by multiple people, and be able to see the results as they happen.

Something like http://www.uni-verse.org/ perhaps?

janosch1234
10-16-2005, 08:35 PM
How about a connection for this :

"Fresh from the Blender Conference, an official testing build for the integration of the Verse protocol in Blender.

The main benefit of Verse is that 3D and graphics data can be synchronized in real-time between applications. For example, via the internet (or locally on intranet) two Blender artists can see modeling changes in real-time, cooperate on working on the same scenes and easily exchange data. In the near future plug-ins will be released for Gimp, Maya and 3D studio as well."

how about a connection for C4D ?
( Verse is a real-time network protocol for 3D graphics that allows multiple applications to work with the same data. I think its not depending on blender (i mean that you have to work with a blender client together)

Sorry that i cant support programming, because my non existing knowledge of C++ programming )
But i thought this could be another good Open Source project.

Link to Verse Project (http://verse.blender.org/cms/Overview.573.0.html)
Link to Blender news (http://www.blender3d.org/cms/Newsitem.607+M5db86c7d960.0.html)

Edit: sorry geespot (and other readers), i have overseen that your post was pointing to the same sort of project (the uni-verse-link), but from that link i didnīt get the idea of what verse was capable of...
(until today when i read this on the blender news.) I just have not digged deep enough in the uni-verse-site, i think. :shrug: ... sorry again for doubleposting...

jondoe0ne
10-17-2005, 12:19 PM
i wonder how long is it going to take until u guys r going to decide who's gonna do them plugins and what will the first plugin do...

moka.studio
10-17-2005, 01:02 PM
haven't added my thoughts to this---
Sadly I cannot code, so I cannot be of much help for this, but this sounds like a great project, and I hope something comes out of it!

soccerrprp
10-17-2005, 04:06 PM
This sounds like a great idea! But, I wonder how our already proven and talented coders feel about this? This will be a huge success if we can get the proven coders aboard. This will only benefit everyone in the C4D world!

I'm not a coder, but will begin to look deeper into contributing. I need some tutorials to get me started. Any good, thorough tuts out there?

BTW, I also design and maintain websites. If we can decide how and when we're going to do this, I will be willing to PRO BONO for a new website (nothing too fancy). We, collectively need to come up with about $10/month to pay for the webspace or I may be able to use some of our school's webspace to host the project. I will need to discuss with the school, of course, but I think that it would be something that it would be interested in. Here is my school page: http://www.parishepiscopal.org/homework/rperrine_files/rperrine.htm

Once again, does someone have a thorough tut that I can peruse?

Venkman
10-17-2005, 04:56 PM
I don't know if anyone feels like doing it, but if they want to code a more robust explode deformer/plugin I will front some cash to startup development. I am not Uncle Moneybags but I would be more than happy to to discuss with whomever may be interested.

I would want physics involved in the debris, and options for attaching particle emitters - and this is key- in a very easy to use interface! Think clothilde easy. :) I would want to be able to test out different settings very quickly for animation purposes.

There was a higher end explosion plug being developed by some people on the forum but they stopped the development of it for whatever reason. :cry:

If this is the wrong place to post (I didn't read the whole thread), then whoever is moderating feel free to delete or move my post.

Venkman
10-26-2005, 02:42 PM
Originally Posted by Hilt
The project you mentioned is 4Detonate (also 4Dynamite and 4Penetrate, which are the same but not quite). The project is frozen at the moment. Detonate did it's magic for us (we used it to crash&boom&bang hi-poly models for few spots, and later used it on simulations for local defence forces).
If we released the plugs (or UI mostly) now, we'd get more complaints than praise -no documentation, LSDish UI, some bugs that stubbornly wont go away, etc.
We're still not sure what we're going to do with the tool. If we were to develop it further, it would require us (or me, the other guy is CodeWizard with capital W) to learn more coding and tweaking and optimizing. Unfortunately there's no time for such activities at the moment.
Also, my next machine is going to run under Linux OS, which means I'm forced to go bang my head against the wall with different 3D application. We are still argueing whether we should take the whole thingie to XSI or release the Detonate+source "as-it-is" for C4D. I'd vote for Cinema as it already has all the tools needed to make BlastCode look like party cracker and act like dud (pun intented).
Hopefully we get to talk about the future soon. At the moment I'm 1800km from my computer and over 2500km from the coder, so it's kinda hard to do anything for this topic.


Smurfted: nice little example there. Only thing is that we shot some material with hi-speed camera and when an object penetrates glass with speed of over 200m/s, no glass has time to wobble on impact. How did you do the shatter on glass? Vertex painting?

.mjt

Hey everyone- this is the plug I was talking about. It sounds like poor Hilt may have to move away from Cinema, and I asked him in the current "Blast Code" thread that if he is just going to shelve it, then it would be cool to give it to the Cinema open source community. If some developer would seriously look into it, I think I could raise some donations (including my own) to fund development of it.

Then release it to all!

Here's hoping. :)

spnhead
10-27-2005, 07:46 AM
As long as we're making requests I'd go with a C4D version Christopher Evans' geoBake. It "bakes out any polygonal deformation (syFlex cloth, sideBulge muscles, etc..) to a user defined set of morphs, driven by a single slider." Check out the videos http://chrisevans3d.com/tutorials.htm


spnhead

Per-Anders
10-27-2005, 07:58 AM
you can do that manually in c4d by simply duplicating an object and hitting "Current State To Object" then linking that into your morph-mixer tag (if you have MOCCA) and using a little xpresso to mix teh morphs through on another single slider. Or you could make a script to do that for you. or you could use my free xlinky plugin which while not makign morphs directly will bake out the whole sequence to external files for you to animate as you wish.

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