Learn about COLLADA for Content Authoring
Summer is a good time to go to Canada...
and if you're
in GIS, it's a very good time to go to Vancouver, British
Columbia where GeoWeb 2007 will be held in
The theme this year is "From Mashups to
Infrastructure," and COLLADA developer and author
Remi Arnaud is
scheduled to speak on July 26th on the subject of
content authoring using COLLADA.
For more details go to http:/
"'COLLADA in Production - Next Gen Asset
The COLLADA in Production - Next Gen Asset
Management DVD is the first DVD ever created
dealing with COLLADA and all the aspects related to
the use of it in several DCC applications. It was
created in response to the demand of the PixelBox
Academy student base that wanted to know more
about COLLADA and how to efficiently integrate it in a
production pipeline and covers all the functionalities of
Asset interchange (including animation,
rigged characters and complex scenes with full
screen shader effects), creation of shaders using FX
Composer, COLLADA physics (including working with
Nima on Maya), integration of COLLADA with game
engines and COLLADA with
Photoshop CS3 Extended.
The content of this DVD applies to everyone from
artists to programmers. Besides video content, the
DVD features all the example files and a dynamic
menu with links to download trial versions of all
COLLADA for the people!
Kathleen Maher, Analyst
Technologies are like children. They get born and then
they wander off to become something their parents
never expected. Take COLLADA for instance.
COLLADA was created as an exchange medium for
game developers, but as it finds its way out in the
world, it is becoming used as an exchange tool for a
variety of applications and the effect is more than
simply a lot of programs adapting COLLADA as an
exchange format. That's great, it increases the
usefulness of COLLADA as a tool for professionals.
But there's a larger effect as COLLADA makes 3D
more accessible to more people for their own uses.
We're seeing COLLADA being used for CAD models
as well as content being developed for games and
movies. It's also becoming a mode of communication
for people who want to show off the 3D creations
made with easy tools like Google's SketchUp.
Teapotters.com is just such a site. It offers models in
various formats including COLLADA. Users can
upload models and download models in various
formats and the site also provides a 3D viewer to let
users add 3D models to their site. 3D Warehouse, as
the name implies offers thousands of free models for
use in SketchUp projects.
In addition, MADLIX has announced an exporter tool
enables 3D artists to export their 3D artwork from
Autodesk Maya to the MADLIX gallery. MADLIX offers
users a stand alone viewer. MADLIX is a project of
Agency9. The company makes software tools for real-
time 3D applications and games and has created its
own 3D engine called AgentFX. CTO Tomas Karlsson
says that MADLIX was developed to connect 3D artists
with end-users and "enable 3D content for everybody."
The company has several projects in the works
including adding functionalities for personification
a.k.a."pimping" models, and they're
adding support for other 3D modelers in addition to
Maya. The company's long range vision includes
adding a payment capability so artists can sell their
3D content through the site.
Google 3D content for Photoshop users
For two releases, Adobe has increased the 3D
features in Photoshop. At the same time Adobe has
added 3D intelligence into PDF with Adobe 3D. Most
recently, Adobe has announced a plug-in for Google
3D Warehouse and Photoshop CS3 Extended. The
plug-in lets users to find and download 3D content
from the 3D Warehouse from within Photoshop.
Adobe has added support for COLLADA so objects
downloaded from the Google 3D Warehouse can be
edited and manipulated in Photoshop CX3 Extended.
Downloaded models are converted to KMZ (Google
Earth's native format). Photoshop also supports 3D
formats 3DS, OBJ, and U3D.
The Adobe web site warns that models over 5 MB will
load very slowly. Adobe is not building a CAD
system... yet. The models are designed to be used
within a design and can be manipulated to a limited
extent. Models can be rotated; there are lighting
modes, render modes, and a cross section tool.
It's also possible to edit the textures of 3D models
using Photoshop's image editing and painting
capabilities. The plug-in is free and can be
downloaded at the Adobe Labs web site.
Learn More About
Autodesk extends support for COLLADA in AutoCAD
The latest updates on Autodesk Labs for AutoAD 2007
and 2008 features improvements to the export to
Google Earth KML features. AutoCAD support
dramatically increases the power of Google Earth.
Sure, SketchUp is a great tool for creating models on
the fly but there is so much data already in AutoCAD.
The process of building virtual worlds that reflect our
real one is picking up speed.
Among the improvements is the ability to support
materials attached to AutoCAD entities as they're
exported to Google Earth 4 through COLLADA. In
addition there is new support for terrain data and also
support for attaching time to AutoCAD entities which
can be used with Google Earth's time slider features.
So for example, the slider could be used to show
project changes over time in Google Earth.
More Information on
Lightsprint adds COLLADA support
Toolmaker Lightsprint has added support for
COLLADA. The company gives users the ability to add
global illumination to their rendering thanks to their
realtime radiosity technology. The company has
included support for COLLADA in its SDK since March,
2007. COLLADA is supported as an input file and
FCDocument of FCollada is supported as an internal
scene representation in memory.
New demos with COLLADA content are in the works
but for an idea of Lightsprint's global illumination
capabilities check out their downloadable demo at www.3d-test.com.
More Information on
Anark uses COLLADA to address new markets
Gamasutra recently interviewed Anark's Frank Black,
Director of business development, Gamasutra. Black
said that his company is very excited about ongoing
development with COLLADA. As developers of
Gameface, a game development tool, Anark
represents the type of company COLLADA was
developed to help. The company takes advantage of
COLLADA in order to keep its tools within the
development pipeline so that it's not disruptive to do
some work in Gameface and other work in other
Anark has its roots in the game development world
but the company's flagship product, Anark Studio is an
interactive 3D development tool that is being used in
the aerospace and automotive industries. Anark has
found that COLLADA is a useful medium for the
exchange of CAD information. Studio takes advantage
of COLLADA to bring in CAD models. This is a space
that will be interesting to watch as large enterprises try
to take advantage of the libraries of models.
More Information on Anark
Worldweaver introduces DX Studio with COLLADA support
DX Studio is a 3D PC game development tool. The
new 2.0 version includes a 3D model editor allowing
users to create their own interactive applications. This
latest version of the product will also include support
for COLLADA. DX Studio is available in Freeware,
Standard, and Pro editions.
In addition to COLLADA support Worldweaver has
also added a new lighting engine, post-processing
effects, per pixel bump/opacity/specular map support,
and COLLADA open model format. And, the new
version allows users to connect into the DX Studio
online library to share models, materials, and script
with others, an addition that Worldweaver believes will
encourage "Web 2.0" collaboration.
"DX Studio has always been good for the final
development stage of interactive 3D applications. Now
it's the only package in the world to support the
complete application development process in a single
integrated editor," said CEO and founder Chris
More detailed information on these and other new
features and their use is available at the DX Studio
website. The official site also offers a full download of
the new version.
Information on Worldweaver