View Full Version : Maya, Cycles and IKFK...

06 June 2003, 10:20 AM
I just wanted to get some feedback about these thoughts...

It seems that the biggest problem in Maya in regards to IKFK and character animation is that the animator always has to switch between IK and FK mode. The reason is that IK and FK cannot exist in Maya contemporaneously (at least in nothing I've discovered so far): In Maya, one either has to animate in IK mode, or in FK mode, and then blend between them. Yuk! This can cause a lot of extra overhead work on the part of the animator who is now forced to pay attention to these technical details; things that can distract from concentrating 100% on the performance of the character, which is the animators job (and joy).

Now, some collegues of mine have told me that other software, for example Messiah (although I personally have not checked it out yet), can indeed handle cycles of this type. Maya animators, imagine this: a system where keying the IK handle actually keys the joints' rotations(not position information), and keying the joints rotations also moves the ikHandle in space. You have the best of both worlds AND no IKFK switching (yeah!). Your keyframes are now always on rotations (which I think most people prefer), but you the option of controlling it via ik position, or fk rotation. It seems that this is how IKFK should really work.

Does anyone know for sure which softwares support functions like this? If I were working at AW it would be something I would invest some serious time in developing for a future Maya release. What do you guys think???


06 June 2003, 10:58 AM

Give this thread a read, tonnes of information.

06 June 2003, 11:19 AM
Yeah, I've read this thread, but I didn't really discover how the different softwares are getting their results (what's going on under the hood specifically). Also, the whole "no animation curves" discussion sounds a bit far-fetched to me. It would be great to keep anim curves, simply stay in FK mode all the time and just use the IK as a positional guide.


06 June 2003, 08:00 PM
I have heard of an, none switcheble IKFk arm but I have never seen one done yet.

And I thinck runing ideas by AW is not to good cause every time they come up with a new toy it takes 2 versions of Maya to get it to work right. :thumbsdow

06 June 2003, 08:22 PM
I also wonder what’s goin on under the hood. Does anyone know about any papers on something like this?? I found a copy of Mirai I can go and play with for a couple hours at a time, but I gotta first learn how to use it before I can figure out how the IK works.

Here's a list of the settings (and defaults) for the IK prefs in Mirai:
Close enough Ratio: 0.001
Goal Weight: 1.0
Weight Importance: 4.0
Relax Ratio: 0.0
Max number of Iterations: 100
Number of Errors Allowed: 15
Best Quality: (checkbox off)

To me, they look similar to the fixedLengthCurve prefs in the Maya Plugin (which I never got to work properly :shrug: )

I'll post more when I learn more about Mirai, learn to set up a rig and get a chance to play w/ it and the settings listed above.


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