Future of forward/inverse kinematics?



to everyone, who´s not so familiar with kaydara:

On www.3dbuzz.com there are tons (over 9,5 hours !!!) of training videos about kaydara Motionbuilder. The videos have detailed chapters for importing/exporting in/to Maya.

Just get a LogIn (It´s “clean”, never got some spam), but I´ve heard, You could wait 2 or 3 days, but it´s definitly worth it

They have also training videos about maya, XSI, 3dsMax …

Here the list:


Introduction to MOTIONBUILDER
Running Time: 3 hrs, 12 min
Video Codec: DivX 5.0.2
Audio Codec: MP3

Overview: Interested in Animation? MOTIONBUILDER is simply the most powerful animation package on the market today. Learn the basics quickly with this VTM!
1 Introduction
Running Time: 17 min | Size: 21.3 MB

2 Overview of the UI
Running Time: 19.7 min | Size: 12 MB

3 The Viewer Window
Running Time: 17.8 min | Size: 25.7 MB

4 Working with Objects
Running Time: 15.5 min | Size: 14.2 MB

5 Basic Animation
Running Time: 27.3 min | Size: 14 MB

6 Exporting from Maya
Running Time: 33.1 min | Size: 30.7 MB

7 Characterizing
Running Time: 18.7 min | Size: 16 MB

8 Character Controls
Running Time: 21.7 min | Size: 24 MB

9 Animating our Character
Running Time: 18.9 min | Size: 31 MB

10 Importing into Maya
Running Time: 3 min | Size: 8.51 MB


Poses, Timewarps, and Motion Blending
Running Time: 2 hrs, 18 min
Video Codec: DivX 5.0.2
Audio Codec: MP3

Overview: This VTM explores some of the powerful tools that make animating in MOTIONBUILDER a breeze. Learn about Poses, Timewarp cures, Motion Blending, etc.
1 Introduction
Running Time: 8.7 min | Size: 7.24 MB

2 The Clip Art CD
Running Time: 7.8 min | Size: 8.3 MB

3 Pose Controls
Running Time: 26.5 min | Size: 32.5 MB

4 Animating with Poses
Running Time: 17 min | Size: 20.6 MB

5 Timewarp Curves
Running Time: 23.75 min | Size: 23.1 MB

6 Overview of Motion Blending
Running Time: 9.9 min | Size: 10.3 MB

7 Tracks, Takes and Cuts
Running Time: 14.9 min | Size: 17.8 MB

8 Blending Takes
Running Time: 14.1 min | Size: 15.1 MB

9 Blending with Poses
Running Time: 13.7 min | Size: 14.7 MB

10 Conclusion
Running Time: 2.1 min | Size: 5.51 MB

11 MOTIONBUILDER Clipart CD - Full
Running Time: n/a | Size: 165 MB


Running Time: 3 hrs, 34 min
Video Codec: DivX 5.0.2
Audio Codec: MP3

1 Introductions
Running Time: 7.5 min | Size: 8.28 MB

2 Simple Constraints
Running Time: 39.2 min | Size: 31.9 MB

3 Relation Constraints
Running Time: 38.1 min | Size: 25.3 MB

4 Expression Constraints
Running Time: 19.4 min | Size: 15.8 MB

5 Helmet and Wrist Computer
Running Time: 35.5 min | Size: 24.5 MB

6 Backpack and Pistol
Running Time: 12.6 min | Size: 21.4 MB

7 Animation - Rough In
Running Time: 43.8 min | Size: 56.1 MB

8 Animation - Fine Tune
Running Time: 18.7 min | Size: 28.9 MB


timelapse video clips done. looks like jasons video will run at about 20 minutes. ill try to make the web version shorter.
encoding it now.


schweeeet. Can’t wait to check it out. :smiley:


Hi All,

This is a great thread. I’ve only just had a chance to download the Sega movie that Jason linked to.
It does look to work in a fashion similar to Character Studio but the IK looks a LOT more advanced. Character Studio IK/FK switch is really simple to use once you know how to work around the not-so-obvious ‘quirks’ that it has. :wink:
You can only really lock down hands and feet in character studio and then rotate around any pivot of the hand or foot ie wrist/finger joints/finger tip or ankle/ball of the foot/toe joints etc. The pivot you select is animatable to so you can switch the pivots from one frame to the next.
The main downfall of the Character Studio rig is the pelvis/root bone. It splits the lateral/vertical/rotation keys. I wish you could just grab the pelvis and move it about but it doesn’t work like that. Well not in CS3 anyway, I’ve yet to move onto CS4.

I like to animate with it as it has a simple clean rig to pose in the viewport, like the Sega system and I do work in a stopmotion stylee I just never realised until now!:wink:

I won Motionbuilder in the last animation challenge and I really should get it installed and up and running. The more I read about it the better it sounds.

I’m curious to see the Mirai demo as I’ve never used it or really seen it for that matter.

I don’t know if this is any help to anyone but just thought I’d add my bit anyway.




As I mentioned on the cg-char thread related to this one, I think it could be done using the same type of techniques out there now, but implemented internally. ie: each joint has FK and IK solution already on it…and then as an interactive tool some type of notion of the chain you are working on to allow moving OR translating the joint in its FK or IK methods, with the rest of the chain working as it needs to.

Kinda like biped…but with the ability on every joint to lock it down.

As a side note what Keith mentions about the “Pseudo-FK/IK” as I like to call it is really just a reuse of Jason Shleifer’s spine rig, where the IK handle is under several FK controls. At least that was the inspiration. So you get IK like normal, but then parent it under FK movers, so you can do either one at all times…very easy and quick to use and setup.


wow, another incredible thread with all the big hitters attending. Its a party I can’t pass up!!

Keith, I would love it if you would be kind enough to share what you can on that system you and Comet worked on at BIP.

Keep up the great work fellas, its inspiring to see the kind of industry pushing discussion that’s happening here. :thumbsup:



just finished watching the sega demo and I think its incredebly GREAT!

I was “raised” (graduated 2 years ago…) as a traditional animator and learned that the best way to animate stuff is by a key frame and pose by pose basiss.

I<m a converted 3D animator and I TRULY enjoy animating in 3D, in fact sometimes even more. But the thing that I miss the most is that simple control over the work!!!

Like, usualy when we drew something on paper and wanted to keep lets say the elbow in place (pined) , we would just have to trace over it!!! Simple!

tell me if i<m wrong, but i think thats what sega is looking to do! be able to pin stuff easily!

I work at a university in a small research company and am the character Rigger and animator there. I was basicaly hired to find an automated rigging system for the students with the maya software that would be easy to animate with!

Kaydara has a system that looks like what sega did, but to me its still not adequate wet! it has the pinning and fk/ik switch on each joint but with the interface, you just get confused with whats ik and whats fk!!! Too many bones! and its very long to animated with!!! Maybe its ,cause i<m not used to it Or I just suck!!! Who knows!

as for the animation curve and all that technical stuff most of my students don<t even want to touch that stuff its too hard to correct and somtimes imposibble like those rotatation values!

I think that an animator should be an animator and not worry about the techi stuff!!!

M. schleifer (when your this good they call you mister) braught a good point! that i hope is solved in the near future so we can all go back to simple character animation!!!

later jack


That would be a very nice way of working. I’m not a good Animator I just get by. But I have experimented in many ways of rigging. Mostly with LW, Max, and Maya. Each one making me wanting more features in just one of them. (dreaming) I have tried very hard to create rigs as close to puppeteering as possible almost no floaters and elbow and knees that give a lot of control but still being an IK system. In Lw 5.6 I made a full human IK body with all the limits and restrictions of normal human that allow me to make a human that I could pull the hand pull the whole body. Worked very nicely for a person who wasn’t a very good animator. (me) By putting the body into a natural state without posing every part. It also adds a lot of secondary motion. It was very slow back then but so was a lot of things. This was a lot like the Sega animation program (that was really amazing).

When I tried Maya I could not reproduce this. This was back in ver. 1 and 2. I even tried using Maya multichain IK that was hidden from the user. There was good reason it was hidden. 8) The way IK was used and organized changed in most apps from that point. It became a lot more focused in order to make it faster.

I never got to try Mirai’s IK But was always impressed with what I saw but the software never moved forward so it was hard to consider using it in production.

My point to all of this is the best way for Maya to have an animation system like this would be to have a complete IK structure not individual IK parts driving a FK system. Instead of some kind of blending. The IK system would take over the FK keys while posing but the model really moves based on the bone keys. My current LW rig uses nulls (locators) that fallow the bone that way I can pose the elbow they way I want but after I move time the nulls acuity snaps to the position of the elbow bone resetting the IK exactly where the elbow was placed. The elbow controller also can also effect the position of the elbow not just rotating around a poll vector. This can give the ability to controller timing of the arm much like a FK system. It’s not perfect but I like it. If you have LW you can try it out your self here

Sorry I talked about LW so much but I though it applied to the discussions


sorry guys for taking so long. :confused: but when i encode it, it always hangs at the end for some reason. i got a large one ( 300 megs that im sending to jason. so thats done. just gotta make a web version that works :confused: sorry for leaving you hanging.:frowning: )

[update] works!. uploading now. hope 35 megs aint too much a download :slight_smile: ill try to get some mirrors up for it. ( if anyone wants to volounteer that’d be great too!. :slight_smile: i dont want to kill cgtalks bandwidth with this :slight_smile: ( we get enough server busy messages as it is :wink:




Thanks for the vid ambient!

I would love to see a feature like that in Maya.
Having both methods would be awesome.

Thanks for the time put into the vid and sharing it!!!


Great job putting that video together ambient-whisper. It’s a bit too fast for me to understanding it 100% but then again I’m just getting into rigging in Maya now. Nevertheless I’m find it very interesting and informative.

Something tells me that Jason (Mr. schleifer) might have someting up his sleeve?


Originally posted by Rudity
[B]Thanks for the vid ambient!

I would love to see a feature like that in Maya.
Having both methods would be awesome.

Thanks for the time put into the vid and sharing it!!! [/B]

Downloading now. Ditto on the thanks Ambient! !! :bounce: :bounce: :bounce: :smiley:



If you are lookin for Real time feedback on your animation and IK/FK Blending that kicks ass…then u must check out Kaydara’s Motion Builder.I have been foolin around with it some…and it rocks.I guess it can do what Mirais FK/Ik can do too…but i have never worked with Marai so im not sure.
If any of you do ckeck out Kaydara’s motion builder…i would love to hear from you.



:smiley: no problemo :slight_smile: i just dont want this tech to be wasted:)

and heres a mirror to it :slight_smile:


Does anyone know of technical papers on how this works? Ever since i read this post I’ve been thinking about how this could be accomplished (the math part). I haven’t used either package, but i can see this being implemented through API and MEL. Not using any hierarchy (parent/child) but having it change depending on what you have selected (and end where ever you have it “clamped down”)

But every time i think i figure out how it could work, i think of how that method wouldn’t :annoyed:



Awesome video,tho my head was spinnin towards the end:buttrock: …i had no idea mirai was this good…and great modeling and rigging from you.Hope mirai makes a comeback!!



ambient-whisper, thanks for posting the video. I don’t remember if I read this here or on Bay’s sight but I remember someone saying there were limitations to Mirai’s skeletal system compared with what other programs are doing now. Are there any problems with customising these kind of rigs? Like driving objects and so forth.


yeah. i mentioned that earlier in this thread. you can customize the skeleton but since most functions are built in… you cant customize some things specifically just incase you would need to overwrite some functionality that might be there and do something else with it.


oh and mirai is from 1999 - i dont want to know what they do 2003 if they were still alive - ambient-whisper thanks for showing us the power :slight_smile: and is there anything mirai cant do :smiley: