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Old 02-05-2011, 11:49 PM   #101
Jim Sachs
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The video is very well-done. It must have taken forever to get all those eye-blinks drawn in. They even follow the head movements perfectly.

I was thinking of doing a similar spoof with "face-computing" - using eye-tracking and facial movements to replace the mouse. Since there is already software that can track your eye movements and position the cursor to where you were looking on the screen, I thought it would be funny to carry things a step further, adding left eye-blink for left mouse-button, two left-blinks to double-click, wiggle nose for mouse-wheel, etc. In the animation, I would be on one side of the screen, dead-panning the narration while my face would be going through hilarious rapid contortions. On the other side of the screen, the resulting computer input would be shown - button-clicking, cut, paste, delete, moving icons around, etc. I ended up realizing it would be too much work to produce.
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Old 02-06-2011, 05:13 AM   #102
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After Effects has movement tracking built-in. I can replace the side of a building in a shaky camera shot even if it's changing perspective. Locking the movement of added CGI to existing footage is getting very easy now.

And when you do tracking, you can redirect the output of the tracking data into the position, rotation, and size of any other layer or object.

I suggest looking at FreddieW's videos on Youtube:
http://www.youtube.com/user/freddiew

Some good ones:





His Behind-the-Scenes channel is here:
http://www.youtube.com/freddiew2

This is a guy doing this stuff out of his garage in a weekend.

The best website I've seen for learning After Effects is VideoCopilot.net. If you watch Fringe, the opening title sequence is by that guy (Andrew Kramer) who has also done a ton of other TV effects. His basic training is what I suggest.
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Old 02-06-2011, 10:40 AM   #103
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Neat! Maybe someday I'll be able to afford After Effects.
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Old 02-06-2011, 10:50 AM   #104
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You can download it from Adobe and play with it for 30 days.

I would suggest watching some of the tutorials at VideoCopilot.net and see what you think. The 10 part Basic Training is absolutely the way to go to initially learn it, but it's a bit boring as just something to watch, so I'd watch the bigger tutorials and see if the program looks like something you might fall in love with first. It is really astounding how much information is available for free at his website, and then the plugins, clip audio, clip explosions, etc. they offer are top-notch. He has explosions, dust clouds, puffs of smoke, blood splatter all shot in front of green screen and fully keyed so you can use it for anything.

You might be surprised to know that After Effects has a bit of scripting built into it allowing you to not only add random effects to any layer, but scale that effect or tie that effect to the effect of another layer.

The tutorial that blew my mind was adding a moving object to a shaky camera shot and it looks great. First, he stabilized the video, then he cut and paste the tracking data out of the video stabilization into a "tracking object". Now, the video was shaky again, but he had an object that moves and rotates to match the footage, giving you a key point you can then tie anything to.

After Effects turns tilting and panning a camera from the ground up to a mound of dirt and adding a castle to it into a 10 minute task.
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Old 02-06-2011, 01:24 PM   #105
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Thanks. Those were cool.
Thank you for taking the time to read this.
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Old 02-06-2011, 02:50 PM   #106
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Thanks for all the info, Morgan.
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Old 02-07-2011, 05:18 AM   #107
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One more...

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Old 02-07-2011, 09:17 AM   #108
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That was good.
Thank you for taking the time to read this.
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Old 02-20-2011, 03:15 PM   #109
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Well, half of the upcoming features has been implemented for some time. The background lighting has a multitude of options.. not sure if one could call it automatic, as it does require one to make choices. Still...

What's coming soon:

* Automatic lights. There will soon be a greatly expanded interface for customizing the background colors.
* New realistic fish behavior, including schooling, chasing, and pecking at corals.

PS to Jim.. you need to update the linked page and move item one to the what's new part
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Old 02-20-2011, 03:30 PM   #110
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Originally posted by Ralph:
What's coming soon:
* New realistic fish behavior, including schooling, chasing, and pecking at corals.  
I doubt we ever see this. I'd be happy if we just get the starfish acting the way it used to in MA2.6
Patrick

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Old 02-20-2011, 06:52 PM   #111
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I'd be happier with just a starfish (like the old one) and a moray eel (even if it doesn't move) in the cave.
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Old 02-20-2011, 08:47 PM   #112
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Hmmm, that may not be a bad idea. I hadn't really considered a partly-animated Moray Eel, which just hangs out in the cave. Might be doable.
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Old 02-21-2011, 09:25 AM   #113
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Thank you for your consideration. On my second introductry SCUBA dive in Hawaii, I had a one on one experience with my instructor and she allowed me to take down a camera. I will never forget being close enough to a Moray eel (4 feet) to take a picture of it with just his head sticking out of a cave.
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Old 02-21-2011, 01:38 PM   #114
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Originally posted by Jim Sachs:
Hmmm, that may not be a bad idea. I hadn't really considered a partly-animated Moray Eel, which just hangs out in the cave. Might be doable.  
If anybody can do it, will be you. Besides, I have not seen very many eels in very many pc aquariums so it seems to me yours would be one of the rare ones, and knowing you, one of the best ones too.


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Old 02-21-2011, 02:05 PM   #115
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The only one that I saw that has one in is DiveVisions by Atlantis 3D. So yes I agree Jim can and should do it.
Thank you for taking the time to read this.
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Old 02-21-2011, 02:52 PM   #116
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Definitely do-able, but probably wont get done. If we were to wager and put odds on it today, I would put it at a 1000 to 1 underdog over the next year. I'm very pessimistic that we see any improvements to MA3 ever again.
Patrick
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Old 02-21-2011, 03:41 PM   #117
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God I hope your wrong. I love how the tank and fish look now. But it's not done. I would hate to see it stop now. We have been waiting 10 years for this too happen. I can wait a little more.
Thank you for taking the time to read this.
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Old 02-21-2011, 03:54 PM   #118
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As long as the Moray Eel is selectable, like the Starfish, what's the harm?
I know you think you understand what you thought I said,
but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant!
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Old 02-21-2011, 04:23 PM   #119
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Originally posted by patscarr:
Definitely do-able, but probably wont get done. If we were to wager and put odds on it today, I would put it at a 1000 to 1 underdog over the next year. I'm very pessimistic that we see any improvements to MA3 ever again.  
Those sound like reasonable odds. - So, if I take you up on that, and place a 1 bet. - If Jim produces an MA3 improvement in the next 12 months, then you owe me 1000 ? ..... You're on!
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Old 02-21-2011, 04:34 PM   #120
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I'm in for a dollar too!! Don't want to take too big an advantage of Pat.


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