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Vizfizz
11-30-2007, 12:12 AM
EIAS 7.0 Feature List 11/28/2007

Compiled PPC (CFM), Universal Binary, Windows

Multi-Layer Rendering

A new plug-in shader system has been added for post processing which gives you the ability to create multi-layer output files in the PSD and RPF file formats. This means you can render the different material properties of your scene on to different layers of a Photoshop file directly. You can render the diffuse on to one layer, the specular highlights on to another, the reflections on to another, etc.

EIAS layer system is organized as a set of modules (Layer Shaders), it’s opened for third party developers and future expansion. Three basic Layer Shadera are included in the 7.0 release.

1. EI_Layers.shl Render out the scene to a layered Photoshop file

2. RPF Saver.shl Render out data to an RPF file. This format is used by a variety of applications.

3. DOF.shl This layer shader provides dof effects directly at sub-pixels level without multiframe rendering.

The layer interface in Animator is very easy to use. Any Layer Shader can be applied to a whole scene and/or to any sets of objects. The name of the set will be used as the folder name in the Photoshop Layers window. The new “pseudo-transparency” feature allows a layered render of objects even they are obscured by others in a scene. With EI_Layers you can also render front and back sides of phong transparent objects on separated layers.

The layer system is fully supported by Renderama. When you render using the layer shaders a completed image file will be created along with a sequence of .psd or .rpf files. Renderama will return all of the files to the host. The files are stitched for strip network render.


HDR Support for all Textures

Animator and Camera now allow .hdr files to be used wherever textures are supported. You can use the whole range of the HDR image or clamp it to any desired value and/or modulate/adjust it as you need.


New Raytrace Sky Maps

The World Info window's Raytrace tab now contains both: raytrace reflection sky maps and raytrace refraction sky maps. If a ray is cast and does not hit any objects, these maps can be used to assign a color to the ray for reflected and refracted rays respectively. Effectively, you can use these maps as skydomes environments around your raytraced scenes.


New Mapping Types

Three new mapping projection types have been added in order to allow you to work with the large number of existing HDR files on the web. These include: SkyDome, LightProbe, and VertCross. These options appear automatically in the Texture Info window for any Reflection or Sky map.


Image-Based Lighting (IBL)

This powerful new feature creates lighting and shadows based on Global Illumination Sky map image. It allows you to match the lighting between a photograph and your render or to save time by using a photograph itself as the source of lights' color and intensity. The IBL is fully integrated into EI GI system. All you need is to assign a desired Sky map (typically HDRI but any texture can be used as well) and select “Adaptive Sky Map” mode in GI Sky panel.

GI Glossy

In addition to diffuse lighting, GI now can perform a fast highlights calculation based on the Sky map color and intensity. It’s a huge time saver for GI scenes. Instead of “manually” creating numerous auxiliary lights to add speculars to your scene, you can derive the highlight directly from the brightest points in the sky map.

Dynamics (Physics)

Rigid body simulation featuring all Animator joint types
Enhanced collision detection
Based on powerful ODE engine http://www.ode.org
Multithreaded calculation (of collisions and time stepping) for Complex scenes
Non modal window
Very fast Solver
Substitution of Spheres and blocks with optimized proxies for faster calculation
Polygon reduction for heavy meshes for faster collision detection
Automatic detection of concave surfaces
Automatic calculation of volume and weight of closed and open meshes
Own open GL viewports for convenient setup control
Complete control over environmental parameters such as gravity and units
Bones with weights
Xpressionist interaction
Mesh reduction
Mesh convexification

Xpressionist 3.5

Real time expression feedback. Scripts can run while you drag items in the EI windows.
New "Kontrolleur" plugin is a "user-defined interface" that acts live to typed-in values
Upgraded function library


Two New Shaders
Jeans - A sophisticated weave shader that includes multiple weave levels and reactive support.
Scratches - Simulates a scratched surface.


Animator Fixes & Improvements
- fixed "deforms/bones + plugs" bug: now plug-ins react correctly for their child groups changes if they are produced by bones/deforms.
- fixed bug: "inherit deforms" = OFF was not functional if a parent group was an effector.
- fixed bug: plug-ins could not generate geometry after their duplication
- fixed bug: items in texture lists become unselectable if drag&drop was started but not completed
- fixed bug: "Smooth Across Facets" and "Color Blend" options (Group Window, Shading Tab) were not working as designed
- fixed bug: for plug-in groups "Use UV space" (Group Window, Shading Tab) had effect in Animator but not in Camera
- fixed bug: rama + deforms + shadows once = crash
- fixed bug: opened Texture Dialog was not updated after texture's image was replaced
- fixed bug: crash if a "not-viewable" font was selected in the "Add Font" dialog
- fixed bug: large images (> 2500 pixels width or height) were not displayed in Animator (Cmd-B) correctly
- fixed bug: no more crashes when Animator is brought forward or launched after a large image has been copied to the clipboard
- fixed bug: Causes of "An unknown error has occured while saving the file" have been determined and fixed.
- improved: for HDR images, the viewer (Cmd-B) shows floating point value of picked pixel (instead of ARGB 0..255)
- improved: group's flags in Shading Tab (all in "Texture" panel and first 3 in "Color" panel) are saved in the FACT file
- improved: the control-go feature of pre-6.6 Animator has been added into 7.0
- improved: increased speed of ccn writing for prjs with a lot of bones
- improved: XP scripts can control deforms in drag mode (See sample project, "Realtime Deformations")

Camera Fixes & Improvements
- fixed bug: there was a significant slow down if large groups were rendered with "outline" options.
- fixed bug: Camera removed UVs of plug-in children groups if they had no textures.
- fixed bug: "Diffuse Bias" (GI Window) had no effect for groups with default "diffuse" value 1.0 (Group Window, Diffuse Tab)
- fixed bug: missed RT reflections if they passed thru transparent/clipped objects
- fixed bug: significant RT speed slow down for scenes that contain both: very large and small objects
- improved: GI illumination calculation at object's edges
- improved: if GI is ON then Camera automatically triangulates all quadrangle polygons in all rendered groups to avoid artifacts that often happened with non-planar quadrangles

Renderama Fixes & Improvements
- fixed bug: a series of random bugs with render strips that appears as "all frames should have same palette" error message

Plug-Ins and Shaders API

- new service for model plug-ins: selection listening. Now EI plug-ins can receive dynamic info about items that are selected/deselected in the project to perform selection-dependent actions

- new service for model plug-ins: reading blocks of polygons to speed up plug-ins that read geometry intensively

- advanced UI listbox service for plug-ins and shaders. Starting from EI7 a plug-in/shader can create a listbox with enabled/disabled and/or locked/unlocked icons. List's items can have individual icons as well. List's items can be reordered and inline edited by user. A plug-in/shader can scroll list and assign unique IDs for items to simplify manipulations with them

- new UI service: plug-ins and shaders can have popup buttons (same as in Animator windows)

- new service for shaders: memory blocks. Now a shader can have blocks of data of arbitrary length. It eliminates a restriction "one value - one interface control" for EI shaders, now they can have as much data as they need, in Animator and Camera as well.

New Custom Controls

Two new standard UI controls are added: Graph Control and Gradient Control. EI plug-ins/shaders can tell host to create these controls in their windows and to get/set their data.

Expanded API for Layer Shaders and EI Post-Processing

EI shaders API is expanded in order to support multi-layered rendering and post-processing effects. Third party shaders can do the same thing that the pack of EI7 layer shaders (EI_Layers, RPF Saver and DOF) do. They can create their own render layers (standard or custom) that will be written out by host in a PSD file, or write their output files in arbitrary formats, and/or generate post-processing effects.

AzOne
11-30-2007, 03:50 AM
I've been looking for the minimum system requirements for EIAS 7 on the EITG website and can't find it. Just want to check how recent the hardware/ OS needs to be to run it.

Vizfizz
11-30-2007, 04:47 AM
I personally can't see any modifications in v7 that would require stronger hardware than v6 or v6.5. Stick with those requirements and you should be fine.

plsyvjeucxfw
11-30-2007, 06:17 AM
'Control-Go' is back. That's a small thing, but many people will find it useful.

matthoff
11-30-2007, 05:21 PM
I've been looking for the minimum system requirements for EIAS 7 on the EITG website and can't find it. Just want to check how recent the hardware/ OS needs to be to run it.

I run it on a 450MHz G4 using 10.4.9 and a 1GHz AMD running Win XP SP2.
Both Machines have 1GB of memory.

sah162
11-30-2007, 05:38 PM
Are the EIAS Konkeptoine plugins shipping yet?

AzOne
12-01-2007, 12:55 AM
Thanks for the hardware info. Matt. :)

scottfox
12-01-2007, 02:05 AM
Thank you Brian for the post.

I am VERY pleased with EITG and what they have added in v7! Congratulations and much success on this version.


Quick questions for anyone in the know...

Any noticeable Camera speed improvements?

Are there ANY posted samples of the new dynamics capabilities?

Im upgrading in Jan for business reasons so I am anxious to see more samples.
Everyones into the HDRI thing (appropriately so) someone mess with dynamics and post.
I need to live vicariously through others for a little while here. :)

Scott

PaulS2
12-01-2007, 03:02 AM
There are 3 galleries here:

http://www.ramjac.com/rodeo/rodeo/gallery_1.html

Lots of fun stuff to see.

I haven't noticed any speed enhancements but have only been trying new features so nothing to compare to.

I've just started to dig into the multi-layer rendering....wow! Talk about simple to use. And it works like you think it should. This will be used constantly.

Just on the side.

It's great to be seeing these new features for the first time. Beta testers get to see little bits at a time and sometimes things aren't working properly so there isn't a fresh view of what the software is or isn't.

Opening up the box and everything is working (except for that one crash) is really a treat!

I really feel I need to appologize for my whining and complaining about price and all:-) This upgrade is all about meat and potatoes, day to day work enhancements. Not too many 'flashy' features which look nice on paper but won't be used in real work. There isn't one thing which I have come across which I won't constantly use - these are all good, solid practical work tools.

This is a good one and have absolutely no problem highly recommending it to anyone.

Tartiflette
12-01-2007, 01:40 PM
Paul i think your apologies (even if you had the right to be concerned about EIAS...) will go direct to the heart of EIAS people. :)

And i think it's a great thing for them that v7 seems to deliver the goods, even if it isn't a enormous list of sparkling features.
The fact that what has been added is well implemented and useful is a great sign for the EIAS community about the commitment of EITG to improve the soft in the future. :cool:

Well done guys and i hope you'll be able to multi-thread Camera in the near future, that would help EIAS to stay in the top speed renderers ! :)


Cheers,
Laurent aka Tartiflette :)

juanxer
12-01-2007, 02:04 PM
I took the liberty of succinctly emailing www.architosh.com about recent events (EIAS v7 release, EIM announcement, etc.), so I hope they take a look at things and post some entry in their news section, even if only the press releases. It's just that nobody seems to notice v7 (no macsurfer entry, no nothing), and it is a shame as it sort of feels like a turning point in the history of the app.

PaulS2
12-01-2007, 03:53 PM
I think it has been awhile since EI has had much spot-light on it - has been under the radar for too long. I think with this upgrade and if EI continues to put out good upgrades on a steady basis, slowly attention will come back to it. It'll take some work to regain much of what it had lost in perception.

juanxer
12-01-2007, 04:59 PM
(Now that I think of it, we are not even www.cgsociety.org news. What's the deal? :D :D :D)

Vizfizz
12-01-2007, 05:43 PM
I'll see if I can do something about that....

juanxer
12-06-2007, 04:56 PM
We've got our Architosh coverage :) : http://www.architosh.com/news/2007-12/2007a1205_eias7-ships.html

(That "key customer" reference is rather embarrasing: I simply passed them the news, and they wrote back giving their thanks. It seems as if it would be a good idea for EIAS shaders and plugin developers to send them press releases and such if they feel it's appropiate to the website theme, as they are the first to admit that they cannot be on top of everything and are welcoming to readers and developers bringing news to them)

Vizfizz
12-06-2007, 07:17 PM
The CGsociety has agreed to give us a 2 or 3 page article on the home page as well. I'm working up the write up now.

philsphlop
12-06-2007, 08:16 PM
Hello Juan and Brian,

I just want you to know that your efforts do not go unnoticed. A special thanks to you both and everyone else in helping to get our name, EITG and EIAS back in the news.
Again thanks to you all, very appreciated.

Back to shipping,

Phil Martin
EITG Sales
www.eitechnologygroup.com

juanxer
12-06-2007, 09:19 PM
Wow! It's our pleasure to contribute, really.

(And Brian is the one doing the real hard work :))

Vizfizz
12-06-2007, 10:45 PM
Easy to do when you have a product you can believe in. Just keep selling and shipping and lets get EIAS back in the spotlight again.

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