I'm back from Turkey. That's me somewhere in the Mediterranean sea, practically showing that refraction really works - note the double hand and the mermaid-like legs :)

Right now - finishing my ShaderX4 article and preparing for Japan.

One totally insane 64 kilobyte intro: 195/95/256 by rgba. Of course, first you have to see the original 195/95 demo by Plastic. The 64k intro copies the (party version) of the demo almost perfectly, while squeezing everything in less than 64 kilobytes. Ok, the music sucks, the loading time is nearly infinite and it has lots of bugs/glitches, but I must say that rgba guys are insane anyway.




I'm going off to Turkey for a week (vacation). Then, I'll go to Japan for a week (ImagineCup finals). Will see how it goes; should be pretty cool I guess (well, the air will most likely be hot, not cool).



Press releases and other noise

Ok, seems like Microsoft Lithuania issues some PR about ImagineCup and our demo in there, and now every news portal in Lithuania catched it.

Now, its pretty standard in a sense that from the PR itself noone could understand what it's about. The "rendering competition" is translated into something that means "the competition of presenting ideas"; and the demo is described as a "CG short film". And, of course, the usual press-like exaggerations: "competed with 17000 students and took 1/2 place" - which is obviously wrong as 17k is the total number of students; in the rendering compo there was probably something like 100.

I don't like it (the press); it's just a noise that distracts you. Meh.

One funny thing: yesterday I received a call into work phone from one local PR agency. How the hell do they get this information? They know my name and university (it's in the press release) - how do they find out where I work and more, how do they get my phone number? I mean, even I don't know my work phone number (ok, I could find it out if I needed)!


Immediate mode GUI

It's already advertised somewhere else, but I'll add it as well: Casey Muratori has an amazing lecture on Immediate Mode GUI. I like the idea, and while I think IMGUI mostly applies to realtime UIs (in-game, editors etc.), this is a good read (er... watch) for any UI programmer.

I was subconsciously heading towards that UI style as well; drawing and processing some UI "immediately", though not at the level Casey does.



Some new books

Received GPU Gems 2 and A Theory of Fun from amazon today. The first one I bought because hey, I need it; and the second one because it's (relatively) cheap and seemed like a good read. Indeed it is - it's a great thing to read!



Reading Siggraph 2005 papers...

I'm reading Siggraph 2005 preprint papers that are nicely gathered here. Some of them are really amazing! What I'm impressed with so far:

Texture Montage: looks cool. Just made me realize how primitive the "usual" texturing tools are... It makes me want to create some texturing tool...

LDPRT and Local PRT are steps in the needed direction for precomputed radiance transfer. Though Ignacio says that CPCA compression of SH is patented my M$... Bah!

Relational Debugging for the Graphics Pipeline is like NVPerfHud on steroids!

Reading on...



Mesh seamless texturing tool released

Finally I've put the MeshTexer tool online, with some documentation, the tool itself and some sample data. Basically, it takes a mesh with unique UV mapping, a normalmap and a tileable texture, and "wraps" the texture (nearly) seamlessly onto the given model. Well, the truth is that it just projects the texture onto the model from several sides, weighting by normal.

However, it worked like a charm during in.out.side demo production. Paulius has written whole texturing workflow here - the tool was used to generate base material textures, material blend maps, gloss maps etc. Later these were hand-painted in "strategic" places and combined into final textures.



On some demos

Watched some new&old demos in the last couple of days. Here (when there's a link to Lithuanian page, the 'download' looks like 'parsisi┼│sti'):

Rapid Eye Movement by Matt Current. Now that's unreal; technically simple but excellent composition and creates a very strong feeling. The similar feeling I only remember from The Planet by mfx. Also, I think the concept of "rapid eye movement" (i.e. the phase of the sleep) is done very well. I want to (be able to) do this!

Aether by mfx. The first time it didn't leave me very impressed. However, I recommend watching it for the second time. Fascinating, though I can't say what exactly.

Old ones with a very strong music: A Significant Deformation Near the Cranium by kewlers and Coma (on the dance floor) by Cocoon. I want that music :)