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rakker16mm
07-12-2008, 04:41 PM
I just watched Larry Shultz's IKB tutorial over at Kurv Studios. First of thank you Larry for the great tutorial.

With all due respect to the more experienced CG artists and animators who say LW is weak in the CA department, please check out Larry's tutorial on IKB. The reason I say this looking back at some of the posts on this forum tells me that a lot of people just don't realize what IKB can really do for some who know how to use it.

I used to think you couldn't do that much with IKB. I just saw IKB as quick and dirty method to do simple animation. I was completely mistaken on that point Not only can you do wonderful CA with IKB but you can do it incredibly fast and very intuitively.

For me one of the best parts about IKB is it make the dope track more powerful and helps keep me out of the graph editor, and anything that helps keep me out of the graph editor is IMOHO a very powerful and much loved tool.

If there is any problem with IKB that I can see it is that this wonderful CA tool has remained in obscurity land far too long. This is like having produced an epic masterpiece and then not bothering with distribution. It makes no sense to pay for all the development and then you don't promote it. WHY?

At the end of the day it doesn't matter how good the product is if no one ever sees it. Any one can go back through my post and see that I have never been a harsh critic of NT, however in this case I think NT has dropped the ball. Having said that I sincerely hope NT will pick the ball back up and run with it, and by run with it I mean keep developing, documenting and promoting this fantastically powerful and intuitive tool.

Dear NewTek,

I would have have paid the price for admission for this tool alone, and I will continue to upgrade if you keep it. However if you replace it with some weaker and less intuitive... well I don't know.

LW_Will
07-12-2008, 05:30 PM
The IK Boost part of the LW system is so cool in so many ways. Probably the best part is that Maya people who see what you can do with IK Boost love it. The people who actually USE the program do not want to go back.

I think that is a selling point, eh?

Rigging on LW is coming along nicely, but IK Boost ISN'T rigging. It is so transparent, so easy to use that is not rigging. This is animation!

Please Newtek, develop this part of the program. Do a full demo with Larry Schultz at SIGGRAPH this year. Please, make some money and be successful.

Wow... do we have to tell them this?

Matt
07-12-2008, 05:57 PM
From what I've seen of it it's not very friendly to use at all, certainly it could be done much better.

tyrot
07-12-2008, 06:35 PM
dear rakker

If we combine BVH + motion mixer + IKBooster - baking process = we might have almost character studio...

I would really pay more for superIKBooster...

best

rakker16mm
07-12-2008, 06:38 PM
From what I've seen of it it's not very friendly to use at all, certainly it could be done much better.

Have you seen Larry's tutorial on IKB yet?

rakker16mm
07-12-2008, 06:57 PM
dear rakker

If we combine BVH + motion mixer + IKBooster - baking process = we might have almost character studio...

I would really pay more for superIKBooster...

best

Actually I think we have "superIKBooster" it's just that many of the features have not been well documented. I always knew the right mouse button was my friend but I had no idea there were so many hidden features in IKB. They just don't just don't show up without right clicking and with seeing a tutorial you could very easily miss them. In fact I suspect that most people do miss them, but once you know they are there and what they do they are always at your fingertips. I especially like the bake spot and autobind feature.

I don't do anything with BVH so I can't comment on that, but one of the tricks Larry demonstrated seems to make motion mixer a bit unnecessary. There are some features at the bottom of the layout screen that are not readily apparent that do the same task without having to have the motion mixer widow open.

prospector
07-12-2008, 07:36 PM
I've been having a GREAT time with it. Already I have 2000 different poses saved, so soon I will not even have to pose a thing for anything (with 2 legs for now) again. Just load poses, click, click, click and run. And the more I eventually save, even the tween tweaks will be a thing of the past.
And I think I have only learned the first 7 vids in Larrys 9 hour DVD, I still got 30? more to go.
Now, I've looked ahead a bit, not to learn but just to view and if the bone dynamics are what I think they can do, we ALSO have an Endorphin program included!!!! and I can't hardly wait to get to that part.
It looks as tho if your character falls from a building or something then the bone dynamics will give correct physical limb collisions?
Can anyone further along than I confirm or deny this?

cbandla
07-12-2008, 08:15 PM
dear rakker

If we combine BVH + motion mixer + IKBooster - baking process = we might have
best

What is BVH?

Cbandla

tyrot
07-12-2008, 08:24 PM
dear cbandla

just a motion capture format..I really wish to have easy load-n-play type of animation just like in character studio' s .Bip files. IF someone integrate this (any third party) it would be so great..

best

AbnRanger
07-12-2008, 09:50 PM
dear cbandla

just a motion capture format..I really wish to have easy load-n-play type of animation just like in character studio' s .Bip files. IF someone integrate this (any third party) it would be so great..

bestActually, it looks like IK Booster is much easier to setup, cause Character studio still requires you to set up envelopes and fiddle with weights, and joint angle/bulge deformers (special lattice deformer) for trouble spots like the armpit, elbows and knees. What does he do in the DVD for those areas?

tyrot
07-12-2008, 10:45 PM
dear ranger

actually i really do not like weighting stuff for character studio but mixing motions, Bip file import,export...layering animations making things very very fast, dont you think so?

best

SplineGod
07-13-2008, 12:26 AM
Rakker, Will,
Thanks for the comments. Im glad the short demo today was a bit of an eye opener. Its really a very small subset of what IKB is capable of.
As I mentioned in the presentation several of us have been using it on a show for Animal Planet called Untamed, Uncut. Weve been told that the show is #1 and the most popular show theyve had in 4 yrs.
The studio (www.creativecinergy.com) was a Max house until I had the chance to show how easy it is to rig and animate in LW. The show has a pretty insane production schedule and we have to do a ton of animation. We literally would not be able to pull this show off using anything else.

Don, The funny thing is that the owener of the studio Im working it is very proficient with Max and he said the same thing. He knows character studio and biped and said that setting up bones in LW and not having to use weight maps is a huge timesaver and that he is shocked at the power and ease of IKBoost. A day literally doesnt go by where he tells us how excited he is by LW.
The great news is everyone here already owns it.

BTW IKB works great with mocap. Theres a couple of ways to use it with mocap. Both are pretty simple.:)

AbnRanger
07-13-2008, 12:38 AM
Rakker, Will,
Thanks for the comments. Im glad the short demo today was a bit of an eye opener. Its really a very small subset of what IKB is capable of.
As I mentioned in the presentation several of us have been using it on a show for Animal Planet called Untamed, Uncut. Weve been told that the show is #1 and the most popular show theyve had in 4 yrs.
The studio (www.creativecinergy.com) was a Max house until I had the chance to show how easy it is to rig and animate in LW. The show has a pretty insane production schedule and we have to do a ton of animation. We literally would not be able to pull this show off using anything else.

Don, The funny thing is that the owener of the studio Im working it is very proficient with Max and he said the same thing. He knows character studio and biped and said that setting up bones in LW and not having to use weight maps is a huge timesaver and that he is shocked at the power and ease of IKBoost. A day literally doesnt go by where he tells us how excited he is by LW.
The great news is everyone here already owns it.

BTW IKB works great with mocap. Theres a couple of ways to use it with mocap. Both are pretty simple.:)

All I know is that if Newtek has arranged for you to demo IKB at Siggraph, they'll certainly help themselves dispell the the bad rap CA in LW has gotten. It deserves a second look for sure. In fact, I think I'll pick up a copy of your DVD after having seen the demo you held today. Thanks Larry.

SplineGod
07-13-2008, 12:52 AM
Im game if Newtek is but I dont think they are interested in dispelling that particular myth at least where IKB is concerned.

rakker16mm
07-13-2008, 01:03 AM
Rakker, Will,
Thanks for the comments. Im glad the short demo today was a bit of an eye opener. Its really a very small subset of what IKB is capable of.
As I mentioned in the presentation several of us have been using it on a show for Animal Planet called Untamed, Uncut. Weve been told that the show is #1 and the most popular show theyve had in 4 yrs.
The studio (www.creativecinergy.com) was a Max house until I had the chance to show how easy it is to rig and animate in LW. The show has a pretty insane production schedule and we have to do a ton of animation. We literally would not be able to pull this show off using anything else.

Don, The funny thing is that the owener of the studio Im working it is very proficient with Max and he said the same thing. He knows character studio and biped and said that setting up bones in LW and not having to use weight maps is a huge timesaver and that he is shocked at the power and ease of IKBoost. A day literally doesnt go by where he tells us how excited he is by LW.
The great news is everyone here already owns it.

BTW IKB works great with mocap. Theres a couple of ways to use it with mocap. Both are pretty simple.:)

I really enjoyed the demo and am looking forward to getting the DVD as soon as it is available. As you say it was a real eye opener. It's nice to know that some things about animation can be easier than expected.

inquisitive
07-13-2008, 01:25 AM
So there will be a new DVD? different from "LightWave 3D 9 IK Booster"
an updated version?

SplineGod
07-13-2008, 01:29 AM
No that DVD is the newest KURV has taken directly from the live online class. Anything new will be added as an addendum or covered in the support forum.
BTW that link to Cinergy was incorrect. Here it is:
http://www.cinergycreative.com/

Matt
07-13-2008, 04:41 AM
Have you seen Larry's tutorial on IKB yet?

I have the DVD! (I won it for designing the Kurv logo - which they never ended up using!?!)

But I've not really got into it as I don't do any CA animation.

My main problem with it is the way it feels kind of tacked on to LightWave, from what I remember it didn't feel 'fully integrated'. I'm sure once you get over that, it's very useful.

AbnRanger
07-13-2008, 04:49 AM
I have the DVD! (I won it for designing the Kurv logo - which they never ended up using!?!)

But I've not really got into it as I don't do any CA animation.

My main problem with it is the way it feels kind of tacked on to LightWave, from what I remember it didn't feel 'fully integrated'. I'm sure once you get over that, it's very useful.Larry's right (in his training session discussion), it's very well thought out from what I can see thus far. Instead of having a massive rollout or even floating dialogue boxes, everything's right there in right click menu's. Shame on Newtek for not shedding more light on this tool before.

UnCommonGrafx
07-13-2008, 05:05 AM
Larry, let us know if this happens. It would be a reason to look out for the siggraph stream.

May even be worth it to be there in conversatioin... this could get interesting.


Im game if Newtek is but I dont think they are interested in dispelling that particular myth at least where IKB is concerned.

JBT27
07-13-2008, 05:12 AM
Just to be extra clear - we are talking about Larry's 9+ hours DVD on Kurv:

http://www.kurvstudios.com/lightwave/ikbooster.php

Or not??!!!

Julian.

Matt
07-13-2008, 05:33 AM
Just to be extra clear - we are talking about Larry's 9+ hours DVD on Kurv:

http://www.kurvstudios.com/lightwave/ikbooster.php

Or not??!!!

Julian.

Oh, I have the LW8 one, but should still be the same beast, nothing has been added or changed to it since.

Matt
07-13-2008, 05:36 AM
Actually, Larry can I make a suggestion about your video tutorials ... not sure about the later ones, but on the LW8 IKB DVD, the screen capture is quite jerky due to the low frame rate, which makes LW look slow! I would up it!

:)

prospector
07-13-2008, 06:20 AM
Or not??!!!
Yea, that's what I am talking about.

SplineGod
07-13-2008, 08:54 AM
Matt if you have the old IKBoost DVD the difference between that and the current DVD is like night and day. The old one is more of an introduction to IKB and The current one covers it in far more detail and is about 9 hrs or so as opposed to maybe 3 on the old one. :)

dballesg
07-13-2008, 09:24 AM
Matt if you have the old IKBoost DVD the difference between that and the current DVD is like night and day. The old one is more of an introduction to IKB and The current one covers it in far more detail and is about 9 hrs or so as opposed to maybe 3 on the old one. :)

I bought your DVD last week I think. Only had enough free time to see the two first introduction videos.

And I spit all my coffe on the screen when I saw what you can do with IKB.

So thanks for document a very nice and not understood tool, I will bombard you with questions when I have time to see them and do my own test on the DVD support forum.

David

SplineGod
07-13-2008, 09:38 AM
LOL, Thanks Dave....hope it wasnt an expensive monitor ;)
I wish I was able to cover every aspect of IKB in that DVD but wasnt able to because of the time constraints on the class. We will be doing additional classes and adding that material. Ill be looking for you posts on the support forum :)
Also me and my coworkers will be doing a presentation at the next LA User group meeting next weeked on Untamed, Uncut. Its a show for animal planet that we were told is the highest rated show theyve had in 4 years. Its all LW and all the animations done with IKB. You might be interested in coming out to that mtg.

SplineGod
07-13-2008, 09:43 AM
Larry, let us know if this happens. It would be a reason to look out for the siggraph stream.

May even be worth it to be there in conversatioin... this could get interesting.

Ill be at siggy regardless. Hope to see you there as well :)

Matt
07-13-2008, 11:29 AM
What's the best resource for learning the basics of rigging and IK? I have Tim Albee's CA book too, but as I said, because I don't do any CA I've not had the need to pick it up and read it.

dballesg
07-13-2008, 11:36 AM
LOL, Thanks Dave....hope it wasnt an expensive monitor ;)
I wish I was able to cover every aspect of IKB in that DVD but wasnt able to because of the time constraints on the class. We will be doing additional classes and adding that material. Ill be looking for you posts on the support forum :)
Also me and my coworkers will be doing a presentation at the next LA User group meeting next weeked on Untamed, Uncut. Its a show for animal planet that we were told is the highest rated show theyve had in 4 years. Its all LW and all the animations done with IKB. You might be interested in coming out to that mtg.

A 3000 euros laptop Dell M90! :) And yes I spit the coffe, but cleaned it up and is still working! :)

L.A. It is a bit far away from where I live. That is Valencia (Spain) :)

I would love to go I've been on the States before and I like the people there.

David

SplineGod
07-13-2008, 11:57 AM
What's the best resource for learning the basics of rigging and IK? I have Tim Albee's CA book too, but as I said, because I don't do any CA I've not had the need to pick it up and read it.

I tend to look at rigging in the same way you might look at interface design. What makes a good rig? Plus you have two aspects of rigging generally...rigging for animating and rigging for deformations. You typically dont want to worry about both at the same time since they really dont have anything to do with each other.

Generally a good rig is one that is poseable, easy to pose and is stable in between poses. You typically create the rig based on requirements and those requirements would come from a combination of storyboards (which define what they rig needs to be able to do) and what the animator likes in the way of controls.

The standard way or rigging usually entails relying more and more on expressions, constraints etc to make a rig be able to do more. It can be a complex process.

The way IKB does it is give you a basic set of simple rigging tools and allows you to change your rig on the fly to hit pretty much any pose you want.

So basically you would either have to create a complex Uber rig to hopefully meet with most situations or use something like IKB which has an adaptive rig.

Having done both in LW I find IKB to be far more flexible, easy and spontaneous plus a whole lot more fun :)

SplineGod
07-13-2008, 11:58 AM
A 3000 euros laptop Dell M90! :) And yes I spit the coffe, but cleaned it up and is still working! :)

L.A. It is a bit far away from where I live. That is Valencia (Spain) :)

I would love to go I've been on the States before and I like the people there.

David

Well were trying to work something out where you might be able to see the meeting remotely :)

dballesg
07-13-2008, 12:16 PM
Well were trying to work something out where you might be able to see the meeting remotely :)

Oh! Thanks for the offer! :) Maybe Wes can record it on video and post a Quicktime or AVI of the meeting! :)

David

The Dommo
07-13-2008, 12:22 PM
Well, I wasn't in this class, but the IKB one a couple of weeks back. Glad to see other people have had their eyes opened. I personally really liked being a part of 'something bigger' with the live training, as I already expressed to Larry after that sesh - hopefully you all enjoyed yours jsut as much!

I think we'll be trying to get your second IKB DVD, Larry, here at our EESB studio when we can allocate some funds.

We can't make it to Siggraph either, a long way also from the UK, but look forward to hearing about everything from there. However, we're putting somethig together for the LW contest, so who knows, we may be there in spirit....! :D

lardbros
07-13-2008, 12:28 PM
Cool, larry at siggraph, i'll keep my eyes peeled. I spent quite some time at the newtek stand last year, but didn't see anyone i recognised. I hoep dick van dyke is going sometime in the future, would love to meet him too!

SplineGod
07-13-2008, 12:37 PM
Lardbros,
Have to see about getting a group together at siggy :)

Dommo,
Im really liking that format as well. I hope that youll be able
use IKB more in your workflow :)

lardbros
07-13-2008, 04:29 PM
Lardbros,
Have to see about getting a group together at siggy :)



Sounds like a good idea. Didn't get to chat to any wavers last year, but then my colleagues don't understand why i use Lightwave at home anyway, they usually want me checking out the latest developments at autodesk and 3ds. Although, that only took 5minutes last year, can't imagine it's any different this year.

KevinL
07-13-2008, 05:45 PM
After seeing IKB in action with a craftsman at the helm, those other program promoters don't know what they are missing.

:)
Kevin L.

Chris S. (Fez)
07-13-2008, 06:59 PM
Does IK Boost work with stretchy IK and scaling?

KevinL
07-13-2008, 07:14 PM
I am by no means an expert, having just been introduced to it in the demo today. My understanding is it is a very powerful posing tool, which gets treated by LW as Forward Kinematics (keyframed posing) so it shouldn't interfere with other things.

One big lesson I got today: Rig, animate and then worry the deformation tweaks.

Some more knowledgable folks might chime in. I'm just going on what I saw demo'd and spoken about.

Kevin L.

inquisitive
07-13-2008, 07:15 PM
LOL, Thanks Dave....hope it wasnt an expensive monitor ;)
I wish I was able to cover every aspect of IKB in that DVD but wasnt able to because of the time constraints on the class. We will be doing additional classes and adding that material. Ill be looking for you posts on the support forum :)
Also me and my coworkers will be doing a presentation at the next LA User group meeting next weeked on Untamed, Uncut. Its a show for animal planet that we were told is the highest rated show theyve had in 4 years. Its all LW and all the animations done with IKB. You might be interested in coming out to that mtg.

man i got to see a preview of Untamed, Uncut online, disturbing clip.. (not the whole program) some lady was being bitten by a polar bear who wouldnt let go, she walked across the barrier. (was hoping to see some animation but I didn't noticed any - unless the bear was CG lol)

SplineGod
07-13-2008, 07:41 PM
Yea the show could be called really stupid things people do with animals. :)

rakker16mm
07-13-2008, 07:59 PM
Yea the show could be called really stupid things people do with animals. :)

Larry,

I'm only checking the Uncut and Untamed to see your work. I normally wont watch shows like that because I just hate watching people do something that is obviously a bad idea, AND YOU KNOW IT'S GOING TO TURN OUT VERY BADLY.

Every once in a while I get supprised by a YouTube link some one sends me. Like the really tall guy who get his hands chopped off in the rotor blades of a Robinson R-22 helicopter when he tries to do a cheer and his wife catches it on her video camera. I still can't get that visual out of my head.

rakker16mm
07-14-2008, 02:31 AM
Yea the show could be called really stupid things people do with animals. :)

I'm watching it now. I just saw the two lions go after the zoo keeper. Bad day for him :(

The guys in the shark cage got a little more than they bargained for.

Now I'm just waiting to see if Tuffy the horse falls to her death. Doh!

voriax
07-14-2008, 03:07 AM
Every once in a while I get supprised by a YouTube link some one sends me. Like the really tall guy who get his hands chopped off in the rotor blades of a Robinson R-22 helicopter when he tries to do a cheer and his wife catches it on her video camera. I still can't get that visual out of my head.

You know thats fake, right?

cresshead
07-14-2008, 03:09 AM
dear rakker

If we combine BVH + motion mixer + IKBooster - baking process = we might have almost character studio...

I would really pay more for superIKBooster...

best


not 'quite' character studio...footstep animation,fig files, bip files, convert footstep to keys and back again....

but yeah...it would def be a start to have a 'biped lite' for lightwave
and no i'm not trolling, just that when i was looking at lightwave vs max for purchase back in 1999 character studio was instrumental in my purchase decision after i saw a demo of it on max 2.5...so i've been looking for a character studio for lightwave for years [8 years to be precise] as i also
have 2 seats of lightwave 9.

from what i've seen of ik booster it looks 'ish'...it can do some cool things
if your 'in the know' and have unraveled it's inner workings into something you can underdstand fully.

but it's not character studio.

safetyman
07-14-2008, 06:29 AM
Cool, larry at siggraph, i'll keep my eyes peeled. I spent quite some time at the newtek stand last year, but didn't see anyone i recognised. I hoep dick van dyke is going sometime in the future, would love to meet him too!

I was at Siggy a few years ago and saw Mr. Van Dyke. I stood with a group that was just standing around talking to him. He's much shorter than he looks on TV (of course, I'm 6'5 so a lot of people look shorter to me:) ) He was roaming around, collecting swag, buying software. He loves 3D and he loves Lighwave, so if he shows up he'll be seen around the LW booth.

Anyway -- I'm glad IKB is a part of LW and I hope they will keep improving on it. I have very little experience with it, but I haven't heard too many negative things.

ben martin
07-14-2008, 07:15 AM
BTW IKB works great with mocap. Theres a couple of ways to use it with mocap. Both are pretty simple.:)

Hey Larry, you never told me if this new 9-IKB DVD covers that mocap issue.
Does it?
If so, I'll get a copy today. :hey:

tyrot
07-14-2008, 07:23 AM
dear ben

goood :) point.....

Best

Thomas M.
07-14-2008, 07:56 AM
I think that is a selling point, eh?

Unfortunately NT failed or forgot to sell it to the users...

SplineGod
07-14-2008, 08:52 AM
Its actually kind of neat to be able to see all the footage before the show airs and then see how they edit all our stuff into it. We had a short week last week to do that whole episode, It all had to be done in 3 days.

Ben, we are organizing a class specifically on that topic :)

moc
07-14-2008, 09:17 AM
I always think that,
The IKB need you setting every bone's rotate limits firstly.
If the IKB combine with a built-in simple rig....and the rig can adjustable.
And then we can get into the IKB world happily and easily.
We just drop the rig here and there.^^..

rakker16mm
07-14-2008, 11:04 AM
You know thats fake, right?

Yeah I know rubber hand but it's still awful.

ben martin
07-14-2008, 12:11 PM
Ben, we are organizing a class specifically on that topic :)

Cool, I'm looking forward to see that happening! :)

tyrot, nice CAT... he is posing like I'm feeling today!

evenflcw
07-15-2008, 09:00 AM
I don't think most IKB antagonists dislike all of IKB. I suppose I'm one of them, and I like everything you like about IKB (except maybe the pinning workflow)! And I absolutely love the basic concept of it (IK/FK hybrid; non-fulltime IK workflow). Instead, it's rather how it's different features where "integrated" that I'm not so fond of.

IKB is a behemoth! It does alot of thing. This is why some like it. This is also why some dislike it. In order to use one feature you have to use all of IKB. If you want bone ghosting - you have to use IKB. If you want pinning - you have to use IKB. If you want to save and load poses - you have to use IKB. This list goes ON AND ON. And there is also other issues, such as not being able to assign hotkeys to any of these features. Context sensitive menus are great but hotkeys are faster! IKB is NOT integrated. It might work with some other functions, but it mearly layers ontop and from a 3rd party developer pov it is completely inaccessible.

That is great for those that like to use IKB and the workflow it dictates. But what about those that don't want or need that. _ALL_ of IKB features could have been implemented as separate modules and made available even outside the context of IKB. This would make them usable both within the context of a leaner IKB core, and _ANY_ other context. This would make no difference to current IKB users.

So if NT is to develop IKB further I think they should start by analysing what works and what doesn't, then brake it down into it's smallest constituents and implement each of these separatly.

SplineGod
07-15-2008, 09:38 AM
I guess we can say welcome to LW. :)
I think most IKB antangonists dont have a clue as to what its really capable of.
Most aspects of LW suffer from these issues. Nodal doesnt work everywhere except via DPKit, Motion Mixer, LWs greph editor expression system vs the motion modifier expression system, modeler vs layout etc etc. Yet despite all these shortcomings LW is fast and powerful. IKBoost is just another part of LW that allows LW to continue to be fast and powerful. Its benefits far outweight any of its shortcomings and we all own it. Its going to be awhile, IMO, before Newtek has anything remotely comparable from a feature/function standpoint. If Lw 10 doesnt at least have the same functionality that IKB provides I wont be upgrading until it does.

Lightwolf
07-15-2008, 10:32 AM
If Lw 10 doesnt at least have the same functionality that IKB provides I wont be upgrading until it does.
Well, if the docs don't end up being any better... you won't know until you do and play around with the app for a few years ;)

Cheers,
Mike

rakker16mm
07-15-2008, 10:44 AM
IKB is a behemoth! It does alot of thing. This is why some like it. This is also why some dislike it. In order to use one feature you have to use all of IKB. If you want bone ghosting - you have to use IKB. If you want pinning - you have to use IKB. If you want to save and load poses - you have to use IKB. This list goes ON AND ON.

These are all thing that IK doesn't have. Therefore you would not have if you didn't have IK...Booster. The fact that standard IK lacks these features is not the fault of the person that wrote IKBooster.


And there is also other issues, such as not being able to assign hotkeys to any of these features. Context sensitive menus are great but hotkeys are faster! IKB is NOT integrated. It might work with some other functions, but it mearly layers ontop and from a 3rd party developer pov it is completely inaccessible.

Hotkeys are great. I love them BUT I have also used up all the easy ones to type and remember. The great thing about contextual is my finger is always on that button and I don't have to remember anything. Contextual is very fast if it is well implemented.


That is great for those that like to use IKB and the workflow it dictates. But what about those that don't want or need that. _ALL_ of IKB features could have been implemented as separate modules and made available even outside the context of IKB. This would make them usable both within the context of a leaner IKB core, and _ANY_ other context. This would make no difference to current IKB users.

So if NT is to develop IKB further I think they should start by analysing what works and what doesn't, then brake it down into it's smallest constituents and implement each of these separatly.

It seems like LightWave has so many separate bits already with all the plugins and what not. On one hand it makes LW a very strong platform that can be expanded endlessly, but some additions don't always like the other additions. For me it is nice to see something that is fully thought out and well integrated system. When I am in IKB mode I know everything is going to work a certain way. Well pretty much anyway. I would hate to see LW break IKBooster down into its constituent parts for any reason.

If NT wanted to all the features could be added to IK separately separately, but this scenario means writing a lot of redundant features already handled by IKB. The other option would be to completely integrate IKB with IK to the extent that they are one in the same. If NewTek can do anything to make the standard IK system so powerful that I never have the need to use IKB then that works to, but the thing is I find the regular IK system difficult to work with. I have to add all those goals and click all those options, and all I really want to do is animate. With IKB and a very simple RIG I'm off to the races.

Paul Brunson
07-15-2008, 10:57 AM
Just watched some of the free recorded IKBooster classes from Larry and Kurv. All I can say is wow. I've been using Lightwave for years now and had no clue what I was missing!

I've got a seat of Messiah studio that I was just about to dust off and jump back into to do some character work. I've definitely reconsidered and going to give Lightwave + IKbooster a try.

Thanks Larry for taking the time to show the community what we've been missing.

Just a thought, in one of your videos you mentioned something like 'If Newtek were to announce Lightwave 9.5 had the character animation features of IKB people would be going nuts' (Pardon the paraphrase).

I'd be interested in seeing a list of IKBoost features. Perhaps we could start a separate thread and list them or something. Would help get the word out of all that IKBoost can do.

Example List (just what I've picked up so far)


True Hybrid FK & IK, use both on all or any channel at the same time.
Copy, Paste, Save and Load Character Poses.
No Goal objects to setup. Any bone can be used as the Goal at any point in the chain
Adaptive Rigging; IK stops, rotation limits, fix positions (pinning), goals all adjustable during animation
Animate "On Top" of motion capture
Apply Dynamics to bones

geothefaust
07-15-2008, 10:57 AM
I would agree with allowing IKB functions to be hotkeyed, I really prefer that over mouse clicking. For me, it's easier to hover my cursor over the item I want to effect and hit my hotkey. Integrating with normal LW IK would be great, or, some other kind of merger with the two tools. IKB is so much better and easier to use then traditional LW IK. I can't imagine using it for much at this point.

geothefaust
07-15-2008, 11:01 AM
Paul, that is a great idea! We should promote it to it's fullest. People who use LW should know about these tools, they are already there and ready for us to use!


Since you've pretty much covered all the points I can remember off the top of my head (still new to IKB), there is only one thing I can add at the moment.


Quick & Easy to setup, Animate in Minutes

Castius
07-15-2008, 11:02 AM
They should just rename IK Booster to FK toolkit. :)

cresshead
07-15-2008, 11:23 AM
or meta-k [remember metaburbs?]

or.....'ICEberg'
''you've only seen the tip of what lightwave can do so far with character rigging'''

[gotta get that xsi style naming in there!].....


http://www.southafricalogue.com/files/2007/10/iceberg.JPG

Paul Brunson
07-15-2008, 11:46 AM
Thanks for adding to the list GeotheFaust, here are a few more I just thought of.


Plays nice with other motion plugins. IKBooster's keyframe based approach allows it to work with virtually all motion plugins; including expressions.
Adjustable Control Handles; quickly drag control handles out from your rig for easier access.
Integrated with Dope Track for quick adjustments of keyframes.
Add Temporary "as needed" controls; Add nulls or additional control objects to your IK chain for more control over your rig then remove them later without losing the animation they applied to your character!
Never leave the main Lightwave interface, all controls accessible directly from your character rig.
Visual feedback on what parts of your rigs are currently receiving key frames.
Visually see when selecting a bone or item in the rig if it is being controlled by outside controls such as a motion plugin or expression.

adamredwoods
07-15-2008, 12:02 PM
I think most IKB antangonists dont have a clue as to what its really capable of.

I've watched your video and I've played around with IKBoost a bit. I think it's fine for some people, but the deal-breaker for me is the actual positioning and aiming of the bones. The results aren't so accurate in the perspective mode. I'd want to see the XYZ handle for best results, IMHO.

It's such a core problem for me, so I don't really use IKBoost.

SplineGod
07-15-2008, 12:22 PM
I agree. While those thing would be nice its still a fact that the advantages of the system far outweight the weaknesses.

Castius,
Or Characterfx, animfx :)

Paul,
Also being able to use IKB along with other IK systems. It can be used along with LWs native IK, PLG IK, PLG Spline IK etc.

IK also works with ANY heirarchy of items not just bones.

Any heirarchy that is parented into and IKB heirarchy also gets IKB applied.

Any expression, motion modifier etc that references a channel in the IKB heirarchy doesnt need to worry
about before or after IK settings. Any plugin that doesnt see LWs standard IK will see IKBs IK.

An IKB rig tells you visually whats applied to it. Standard rigs force you to either comment the heck out of it
or search bone by bone to see whats applied.

Since IKB uses no Fulltime IK etc. Once a rig is animated IKB can be removed and the mesh with animation
exported easily to shockwave, FBX or Collada with the new features in 9.5

Rigs could be imported that contain animation using FBX, Collada, BVH and have IKB applied and youre off and running.

IKB allows easy editing of large amounts of keyframe data on a whole or partial rig.

Whole poses or poses from any part of the rig can be easily slid in the timeline

KevinL
07-15-2008, 12:47 PM
I already bought your DVD :)

Actually, this is the first bone work I've really gotten into and enjoyed. Inspired by your demo. Thanks Larry.

Kevin L.

P.S. Your photo looks nothing like I imaged "SplineGod" Old man, flowing beard and wearing robes :)

Chris S. (Fez)
07-15-2008, 12:47 PM
I've watched your video and I've played around with IKBoost a bit. I think it's fine for some people, but the deal-breaker for me is the actual positioning and aiming of the bones. The results aren't so accurate in the perspective mode. I'd want to see the XYZ handle for best results, IMHO.

It's such a core problem for me, so I don't really use IKBoost.

I puttered around yesterday and came to the same conclusion. It is quick and dirty like most everything in Lightwave. You can get from A to B faster then any other application. But getting to C (often a point of finesse) is either impossible or takes too long, effectively nullifying the A to B jumpstart.

But hey, tons of potential. Too bad it took Larry's evangalism and like 3 years for the community to truly appreciate Ino's contribution.

SplineGod
07-15-2008, 01:01 PM
Kevin,
I had to give up the robes :)

Chris.
Animation should be quick and painless. Its pretty easy to finesse animation in IKB for many reasons. Ino is an amazing guy and was very helpful to me while I was figuring out how to use this system. Cant imagine where it would be with more development put into it.
Also LW has nothing and will have nothing better for quite awhile IMO. I think its worth learning and using since we all own it :)

Mr Rid
07-15-2008, 01:01 PM
I find all the drop/scroll down menus annoying. Would prefer the IKB menu to open at least optionally as a window with ready access to all options (with max Layout and dual monitor span it always splits across displays).

Need separate IKB Options for each item so can have separate groups. Current group does not remain displayed after selected (select group, click OK, reopen Options and 'default' displays again).

Would like possibility for bone dynamics to collide with bones of other objects and self collide. A workaround for self collision is possible if groups could be specified per object instead of per scene.

Collision properties of other items like friction, roughness, attract have no effect.

In dynamics edit, need numeric field for entering specific bone dynamic property values. Click-drag doesnt work for small increments.

With bone dynamics, would be nice to have an autosize for bones to fit to geometry.

Chris S. (Fez)
07-15-2008, 01:52 PM
Cant imagine where it would be with more development put into it.

It's a damn shame is what it is. A flexible bendy-bone, stretchyIK sytem seems like it could and should have been incorporated into a 2.0 IKBooster.

...though XYZ handles should be given priority.

calilifestyle
07-15-2008, 03:28 PM
what dvd are you guys talking about. i have had a lot of trouble with IKB

Dirk
07-15-2008, 03:51 PM
Finally, people begin to see the light ^^



The funny thing is that the owener of the studio Im working it is very proficient with Max and he said the same thing. He knows character studio and biped and said that setting up bones in LW and not having to use weight maps is a huge timesaver and that he is shocked at the power and ease of IKBoost. A day literally doesnt go by where he tells us how excited he is by LW.

Wow... that is telling.

adamredwoods
07-15-2008, 03:53 PM
what dvd are you guys talking about. i have had a lot of trouble with IKB

SplineGod did a very nice intro tutorial for IKBoost located at the beginning of this thread. You can view it at Kurv for free (register, its ok). Kurv also sells more advanced DVDs.
http://newtek.com/forums/showthread.php?t=85640

cresshead
07-15-2008, 04:05 PM
But hey, tons of potential. Too bad it took Larry's evangalism and like 3 years for the community to truly appreciate Ino's contribution.

yeah...also there is that chap with the free plugin> japanese rigging that's footstep driven..can't seemn to pin down the link right now but that also looked really cool...

you know what we need to learn japanese!...or get to be friends with a few so they can interpret for us!

i think adding angle driven lattice deformers in lightwave could go along way
to fix up deformations for characters...add in the ikboost 2.0 and some rendertime displacement capability for the renderer [bucket renderer PLEASE!] and lighwave's back in the character animation business and not waaay behind the curve...once we get the hair n fur upto pro level...we're set to kick butt!:D

AbnRanger
07-15-2008, 04:08 PM
They should just rename IK Booster to FK toolkit. :)I was just going to say the other day, that IK Booster doesn't apply describe what it is. I always thought it was just some minor enhancement (as the word Booster would suggest). Turns out to be a system, and therefore, as Larry suggested out to stick with the FX naming convention CharacterFX...or PersonalFX :D

AbnRanger
07-15-2008, 05:03 PM
I agree. While those thing would be nice its still a fact that the advantages of the system far outweight the weaknesses.

Castius,
Or Characterfx, animfx :)

Paul,
Also being able to use IKB along with other IK systems. It can be used along with LWs native IK, PLG IK, PLG Spline IK etc.

...Yeah...regardless of any current shortcomings, LW really has a gem here. I love this paradigm of keeping an uncluttered UI. Nobody else does that among the main competition. Plenty of control...it's just those "controls" are hanging in your face and getting in the way.

I think the quickest thing NT could do to vastly improve it (beyond the obvious Modeler/Layout integration) is to provide a quick and dirty envelope system. One that allows you to make super fast adjustments to correct the deformations during setup or on the fly...such as giving each control point a B-Spline-like (similar in function to edge weighting) handle that you can pull out to adjust the weighting levels on that specific control point's radius of influence. For example, you could leave the shoulder muscle area at a default level, and just grab the control point nearest the arm pit, and pull it out till the mesh deformed the way you want it. And you should be able to interactively see the weight colors change as you adjust the handles
B-Splines really speed up rotoscoping tasks in compositing, so I think this level of control can best take advantage of IKB's concept of get in and start animating fast. You can setup IKB, turn on envelopes...make your quick adjustments, and just start animating...while other systems would have you still rigging!

IMO, Newtek owes Larry a big thanks for bringing this to our attention :thumbsup:

AbnRanger
07-15-2008, 05:15 PM
I was just going to say the other day, that IK Booster doesn't apply describe what it is. I always thought it was just some minor enhancement (as the word Booster would suggest). Turns out to be a system, and therefore, as Larry suggested out to stick with the FX naming convention CharacterFX...or PersonalFX :DI have to do a better job of proof reading before I submit... I meant to say "aptly"...not "apply." And "...as Larry suggested earlier..."
Sorry :hey:

cresshead
07-15-2008, 05:19 PM
yeah def a big thank you to ''da splinegod''

he dug deep and went off to talk to the creator of the plugin...newtek could do well and ask larry to help 'boost' the profile of ik boost at siggy 2008 and beyond.

also of course a big thankyou to Kurv studios goes out there too for setting up the FREE sessions that hilight these tools and the people who want to share their workflows

:thumbsup:

and of course ino who created the tools we're talking about here!

and....
http://www.ikboost.com/

Dodgy
07-15-2008, 06:16 PM
http://www.lightwiki.com/IKBoost
Check that out for a reference guide to IKB.

The Dommo
07-15-2008, 07:07 PM
Berrrrrrrrrrrrrlimey - there's a wiki for it!!!!! :D :D

Dodgy
07-15-2008, 07:12 PM
Yeah, a lot of the docs really didn't help me much, they didn't seem to cover a lot of it, and they weren't updated as IKB was during 8's cycle. So I went through everything IKB and filled out a section on the wiki about it.

ericsmith
07-15-2008, 07:47 PM
I think most IKB antangonists dont have a clue as to what its really capable of.

No, most IKB antagonists want a tool that enables them to create good quality animation.

IKB is not that tool.

Please prove me wrong. Show me some good animation created with an all IKB rig.

At least, post the animation you did with IKB for the Untamed, Uncut show. That should spark some interesting discussion.

Eric

SplineGod
07-15-2008, 08:01 PM
Eric,
Ive seen some ppl produce some pretty bad animations with Maestro. Do I use that as my criteria for judging the product or that persons skills? :)

JVitale
07-15-2008, 08:06 PM
At least, post the animation you did with IKB for the Untamed, Uncut show. That should spark some interesting discussion.

Eric


That will be done at this weekend's LA LW Users Group Meeting..we are working something out so that the rest of the world can see it too...Stay tuned!!!...

AbnRanger
07-15-2008, 08:13 PM
No, most IKB antagonists want a tool that enables them to create good quality animation.

IKB is not that tool.

Please prove me wrong. Show me some good animation created with an all IKB rig.

At least, post the animation you did with IKB for the Untamed, Uncut show. That should spark some interesting discussion.

EricIn all fairness, Eric, I do remember Larry saying good things about Maestro in the past, so, please, let's not get personal here...he wasn't calling you out. His post said "MOST (not all) antagonists..."
That doesn't necessarily include you. And he's right...many times people, like a parrot, repeat other people's opinons or just make un-informed assumptions. I have to admit, I was uninformed myself...and am glad he has shown what it CAN do. If the artist wants more controls, then they have the option of buying a copy of Maestro, Messiah, or another competitors app altogether.

Seems to me that Larry's just showing folks...not merely espousing an opinion, but through practical demonstration that it's a lot more useful than most give it credit for. If Maestro were part of LW, and it was getting a bum rap, which he didn't believe it deserved, I'm sure he'd go to bat for it too.

ericsmith
07-15-2008, 09:00 PM
Eric,
Ive seen some ppl produce some pretty bad animations with Maestro. Do I use that as my criteria for judging the product or that persons skills?

That argument doesn't hold water. It's one thing if someone without the proper skills creates something less than professional with high end software. It's a completely different statement to say that no one, no matter how professional, has demonstrated good quality results from an application.

What would you think of a software company that created a render engine, and claimed it was the best renderer available, but never showed any renders?

When I think about it, I would say that the only leg any software package has to stand on is the best work that's been created with it. Otherwise, what's the point?


In all fairness, Eric, I do remember Larry saying good things about Maestro in the past, so, please, let's not get personal here...he wasn't calling you out. His post said "MOST (not all) antagonists..."
That doesn't necessarily include you.

I don't want this to be personal, but I sit squarely in the middle of the "most antagonists", and his comment was aimed right at me. He's also made disparaging comments about Newtek staff, which I find in poor taste.

And besides, all I did was state my view on his comment, and then ask to see examples. I didn't insult him personally or anything like that.

Eric

SplineGod
07-15-2008, 10:53 PM
Eric the bottom line is that seeing the final result of any animation gives zero information as to the process, tools, resources, budget, talent etc used to create it. Using that same arguement towards maestro is jus as valid or invalid.

Apparently you do want to take it personally when, as was pointed out, my comments werent directed at you PERSONALLY.

Show me examples of work done with maestro that couldnt be done anyway with LWs standard tools or to such a high degree of quality that I wouldnt have to use IKBoost or anything else.

Im intelligent enough to realize that things cant be judged simply by seeing the end result. I want to see the process, tools, time, resources that went into it.

Trying to judge it solely by the end result would be like buying Maya because it was used to create Gollum only to later find out that it was maya plus resources I could never muster to do a character at the same level.

If it were that simple you wouldnt have to show maestro demonstrated in videos but only have some high quality finished animations.
Thats why most companies who produce 3d software have demos so they a person can download and evaluate it hands on.
I would invite you to do the same with IKB.

rakker16mm
07-16-2008, 12:45 AM
Apologies in advance for this shop tool analogy.

Table saw, Radial saw, or hand saw.... which is best?

The table saw will always give you the best results... if you have room for it and know how to use it. The radial saw is a little quicker and dirtier but you can get a lot of work done very quickly. The hand saw works when you can't bring the radial saw of the table saw with you. So which is the best saw. It just depends on the job you need to do and how much time you have to do it.

Like other tools CG animation tools all have their strengths and weaknesses. Which too is best depends on your experience, budget, production schedule and expectations. In other words there really is no better authority than yourself for determining the answer to that question.

The point of starting this thread was not to say that IKB is the end all solution for every production but to point out that we do have a very effective CA tool in LightWave that a lot of people don't seem to understand. I just think IKB is misunderstood and under utilized. It isn't going to fulfill every single requirement of your pipeline but knowing it is there and knowing how to use it is going to save you a lot of time.

tyrot
07-16-2008, 01:00 AM
dear wavers

actually this is a typical IKBooster thread. It starts with Larry's or omeone's "Learn IKBooster and save your animation" posts..Then a very sincere response comes from community ....and then...some pro LW users and other 3rd party developers land on the thread and everything changes...

not THIS time please.. I ll buy Larry's IKbooster dvd asap and learn it till i get it all. I was a victim of classic "BASH IKBooster" threads. I gave up my learning process. Not anymore.. IF there is a power in there...if this can work with Mocap and with MotionMixer. If someone can show me this...I ll stay in LW...not go back and forth with other applications...

The importance of IKBooster can also effect LW's development. Ino can improve its code and who knows combines it with new bones...

But please just keep "Bashing IKBooster" out of this thread. Ok Noone used IKB in TV but "hell! because noone knows How to use it!" Because everyone who knows CA blocks IKBooster like a seed of antichrist. Guys please let us to access IKBooster based knowledge and clear discussion this time.

Larry i really wish you to not reply any of IKBooster Bashing posts.. Just ignore'em. Keep continue what you do best...

I hope INO listens you and develope more...at least he must do it as 3rd party. If it is powerful as you suggest he must be supported.

Best

"BTW..HDInstance rocks! Render without HDInstance at your own risk!"

Gui Lo
07-16-2008, 01:08 AM
It takes someone like Larry who has direct access to the developer, and can figure out what are the strengths and weakness' of the tool.

IKbooster is not and will not be for everyone. Accept it but try it just in case.

People normally dismiss a tool out of ignorance. With IKbooster, that ignorance came from a lack of documentation. That is why so many people who dismissed IKbooster have now had their eyes opened by a few hours of demoing.

I intend to use it for my competition entry. I may get only to block-in the animation but from that I hope to get some sense of the 'feel' of IKbooster. Then I guess I need the help of the DVD.

colkai
07-16-2008, 02:19 AM
IKbooster is not and will not be for everyone. Accept it but try it just in case.

People normally dismiss a tool out of ignorance. With IKbooster, that ignorance came from a lack of documentation. That is why so many people who dismissed IKbooster have now had their eyes opened by a few hours of demoing.

Just so, just so.
Let's be honest, anything that adds to LW's CA has to be a good thing and IKB is far more than Newtek seem able to grasp. Watching the free videos from Kurv on this, it doesn't take much to realise how much it simplifies workflow.

Plus, if Larry is using it on a weekly base it to churn out TV animation at speed, well surely that is an indicator of it's usefulness?

Not saying it doesn't have flaws, which most agree it does, but it als ohas deeply underused and under-publicised potential.

I wonder, if Larry could go back to when IKB was first introduced, knowing what he does about it now and promoting it, would we have seen Newtek develop it further and promote it and would we now consider it part N parcel of LW's essentials?

No docs worth talking of, no pushing of the feature, no development since inception and it is STILL being used in TV production? Does make you wonder what could of been.

Surrealist.
07-16-2008, 02:31 AM
This is the first entry in the manual. I posted it in the other thread but it is certainly on topic here.


IK Booster is not a replacement for the original Inverse Kinematics system, but, as the name implies, is a tool to enhance the IK system. The IK Boost Tool is located in the Modify>Tools section and provides advanced controls for an IK/FK chain directly in the Layout window, freeing you from the need to open additional panels. The chain is usually a set of connected Bones, but can also be other Objects that are parented together. Benefits of IK Booster include a speed-up of the IK system, advanced menus for editing IK chains, and allowing the user to define portions of a given rig as IK-driven and others as FK-driven on the fly during the course of an animation.

With an introduction like this it makes anyone who promotes it look like they have discovered some hidden secret. That it was never intended to be something to take over for LW's IK. But hey, what a fluke... it does! Imagine that?

I understand it could be interpreted another way, but Timothy Albee even promotes it the same way in his book. So I was aware of all of the features but I had this other idea stuck in my mind from that and other people echoing it online that - it is just an enhancement. Only use it now and then. Not as, Yep build a simple rig, use it. The way Larry and others have been saying for a while now. That is quite a contrast to how it was presented to me. And it took seeing the video to disabuse me of this sort of fixed idea that was planted about its use. Funny. :)

BTW what happened to that website that was dedicated to IKB? I can remember the name of it.

Surrealist.
07-16-2008, 02:37 AM
Duh....

http://ikboost.com/

AbnRanger
07-16-2008, 04:01 AM
Duh....

http://ikboost.com/Even though Larry was a bit critical at how aloof NT seemed to be regarding a tool in its own shed, he has done them a great service just in the manner that he teaches. Just saw some of Proton's videos covering IKB, which was nice...but what "made it click" was when Larry stressed emphatically that the lack of control panels doesn't mean it's light on control or features.

Rather, it was DESIGNED smartly with a focus to keep those floating dialogue boxes out of your face, and place them in right click menus instead, and down by the timeline.
Kudos again to Larry and Wes for providing the free demos...not just bite-sized samples.

Surrealist.
07-16-2008, 04:08 AM
Even though Larry was a bit critical at how aloof NT seemed to be regarding a tool in its own shed, he has done them a great service just in the manner that he teaches. Just saw some of Proton's videos covering IKB, which was nice...but what "made it click" was when Larry stressed emphatically that the lack of control panels doesn't mean it's light on control or features.

Rather, it was DESIGNED smartly with a focus to keep those floating dialogue boxes out of your face, and place them in right click menus instead, and down by the timeline.
Kudos again to Larry and Wes for providing the free demos...not just bite-sized samples.

:agree:

hub73
07-16-2008, 05:52 AM
Hi !
i'm newbie, is it more interesting for me to learn ikbooster from Larry dvd to animate a character than the IK 'classic' approach ? i'm searching the easiest method !

Is there another example than the dolphin inside the Kurv dvd ?

I've the Essential lw 9 book, there is a chapter about IK booster. i've not read it, but is it the same thing that explain Larry into the dvd ? (if the book explain the same think, perhaps i don't buy it).

Thanks !

Surrealist.
07-16-2008, 06:09 AM
Take a look at http://ikboost.com/

evenflcw
07-16-2008, 06:40 AM
Phew. I haven't read the last two pages, so these answers might be abit OT now... any case.


Hotkeys are great. I love them BUT I have also used up all the easy ones to type and remember. The great thing about contextual is my finger is always on that button and I don't have to remember anything. Contextual is very fast if it is well implemented.
I can press a hotkey in a split second. My mind can do it without a concious thought, as if by reflex. I don't get this with menus, contextual or otherwise. I have to read entries in a menu in order to assure I select the right command, even if I've seen that menu thousands of times. Especially LWs simple vertical ones.



These are all thing that IK doesn't have. Therefore you would not have if you didn't have IK...Booster. The fact that standard IK lacks these features is not the fault of the person that wrote IKBooster.
Standard IK lacks these features because many of them have little to do with IK. And that is exactly my point with IKB being a behemoth. You shouldn't implement feature A toghether with feature B unless they are (1) closely related to eachother and (2) not also related to anything else. If feature A and B where implemented separately, they could still be used together, aswell as with feature C, D and E. Having them in IKB makes them available, but not necessarily readily so or as useful as they could've been if implemented separately.



It seems like LightWave has so many separate bits already with all the plugins and what not. On one hand it makes LW a very strong platform that can be expanded endlessly, but some additions don't always like the other additions.For me it is nice to see something that is fully thought out and well integrated system. When I am in IKB mode I know everything is going to work a certain way. Well pretty much anyway. I would hate to see LW break IKBooster down into its constituent parts for any reason.
What makes LW feel like it is made up of many separate bits is not the fact that it is, but rather that all those bits are so very different from eachother. If all the bits where cast in the same base mould however they would feel like a very simple well thought out cohesive system. This system would also be flexible because each bit would fit into the other (, given that the base mould was designed well). This is why things don't always work that great together. It's all bits and pieces of different shapes and sizes. This is also quite possibly why Ino decided to sortof create his own system rather than add more bits and pieces. So I understand how using IKB can feel fresh. But this is imho mainly if you consider IKB as a system by itself, not as part of the bigger system (LW). To me, IKB is just a bigger than average oddly shaped piece. :)
I'd prefer it if NT started chopped everything into evenly sized squares (which could be composited into bigger squares) rather than add more pieces of different shapes and sizes.




If NT wanted to all the features could be added to IK separately separately, but this scenario means writing a lot of redundant features already handled by IKB. The other option would be to completely integrate IKB with IK to the extent that they are one in the same. If NewTek can do anything to make the standard IK system so powerful that I never have the need to use IKB then that works to, but the thing is I find the regular IK system difficult to work with. I have to add all those goals and click all those options, and all I really want to do is animate. With IKB and a very simple RIG I'm off to the races.
Your reasoning about redundancy is backwards. (Fact 1) Features implemented in IKB can't be used in LW outside the context of IKB. (Fact 2) Features implemented in LW can likely be used in IKB because it is within the context of LW. So if anything, IKB is the source of any redundancy as it has alot of features that would be very useful outside of the IKB context. But for that they have to be reimplemented in LW.

I don't like to think in terms of extending the current IK/animation system. It needs to be replaced as it was quite apparently crap to begin with and no amount of patching can save it. For the new system they should integrate what I consider to be at the core of IKB, the hybrid/non-fulltime system.

And yeah, thanks Larry for getting so many excited and concerned about animation in LW! :)

ericsmith
07-16-2008, 08:05 AM
Show me examples of work done with maestro that couldnt be done anyway with LWs standard tools or to such a high degree of quality that I wouldnt have to use IKBoost or anything else.

Maestro uses LW standard tools. The rigs it creates are all native LW rigs. So any animation "done with Maestro" is really demonstrating what LW's IK and rigging tools are capable of. And I HAVE shown examples. You, on the other hand, refuse to. I really have to wonder why.


Im intelligent enough to realize that things cant be judged simply by seeing the end result. I want to see the process, tools, time, resources that went into it.

Trying to judge it solely by the end result would be like buying Maya because it was used to create Gollum only to later find out that it was maya plus resources I could never muster to do a character at the same level.

If it were that simple you wouldnt have to show maestro demonstrated in videos but only have some high quality finished animations.
Thats why most companies who produce 3d software have demos so they a person can download and evaluate it hands on.
I would invite you to do the same with IKB.

But the reality is, you need to see BOTH sides of the equation. Just seeing demos of workflow without seeing the end result is just as ineffective as just seeing the end result and no workflow.

And this comes to the ultimate point I (and others) keep trying to make. IKB may make it easy to pose a character on a single frame, but it's flaws come out when you hit the "play" button. That's something you've don't show in your demo videos.


Let's be honest, anything that adds to LW's CA has to be a good thing and IKB is far more than Newtek seem able to grasp.

See, this kind of misunderstanding is why I finally got involved in this thread. Newtek (Jay Roth in particular) has a very clear understanding of IKB, both it's strengths and it's weaknesses.

So do I and others "detractors". I may not be aware of every tool hidden in all those pulldown menus, but I understand fundimentally how IKB works, and based on that, I have a clear understanding of why there's no high quality final animation to show for it.

If anyone thinks it's the best tool for them, I'm totally fine with that. And I'm all for discussion and exploration to see if there are ways of making it work. What bothers me is when Larry implies that the only reason that Newtek doesn't push IKB to the forefront is that the "don't understand it", and that the only reason the detractors don't like it is because the have no clue.

That said, I would encourage you to not hang all your hopes on IKB until you have used it to create a finished piece of animation that you are happy with.


Plus, if Larry is using it on a weekly base it to churn out TV animation at speed, well surely that is an indicator of it's usefulness?

You may want to watch the show before finalizing an opinion like that.

Eric

SplineGod
07-16-2008, 09:34 AM
Colkai,
I agree. How can anyone at Newtek really evaluate something like IKB when nobody there has any CA experience with LW in production? Thats always been a problem IMO.

Rich,
That impression of IKBoost as a 'boost' for the standard IK is a very old one and was my first impression too but is completely wrong. It can be used that way to compliment it but the real power comes from all the rest of the tools for managing motions.
BTW much of the documentation in the LW manual came from my old IKB video which, to be hhonest, doesnt come close to showing off IKBs true capabilities.

Don,
I watched the same vids way back when and while they showed a piece or two of IKBs features, they did nothing to give me any kind of impression of what the workflow was like or even a hint as to what its capable of. Also those videos or the supplied "IKB" rigs showed anything as simple as how to lock foot rotations etc. or even how to create the most basic of animation.

evenflcw,
While I can agree with some of what youre saying in theory, the reality for me at least is that none of those things is a problem in a practical sense. I can use IKB, mix it with expressions, motion modifiers etc with no problems. Ive used parenter for example to parent a surfer to a surfboard while IKB was applied to him and have him get knocked off his board by a shark at the right moment etc etc. I can still use motion mixer, though a lot less then I would otherwise need to because IKB has the ability to easily splice motions into the timeline anywhere I want to.
I look at IKB the way I do expressions, its something I can add to a simple bone setup or rig and make it to things I couldnt normally do. IKB can be dropped onto anything and give it the same capabilites, it can be a car or airplane rig, a robotic arm etc. We always use expressions, motion modifiers, set driven key etc etc to drop onto a rig to help simplify the task of animating. IKB is just another one of those tools. :)

Eric,
IKB uses LW standard tools. The motions created go the standard bone channels. The motions can be edited in the graph editor or dopesheet editor. It uses the dopetrack and makes it far more useful and powerful. It uses LW limits, it can use LWs goal object, match goal, expressions, motion modifiers etc.

IKB rigs are extremely flexible while standard IK rigs in LW are extremely limited by comparison. I think Maestro is great as a scene controller but poor as a CA tool and that comes from having used it. I also havent seen any animation done with it that couldnt be done without it using LWs standard tools. I find the whole autorigging thing to be more of a pain then its worth as well as very limiting without a lot of tinkering under the hood. Thats just my opinion and not meant in any way as a sleight.

As far as Newteks knowledge of iKB goes Im pretty intimately familiar with the whole history behind IKB, now they aquired it and the promoting of it. Im pretty comfortable with my comments in that regard. With all due respect to Jay he wasnt around when all this went down and Im pretty sure he hasnt spent the time to really dissect it and get into it. Im also pretty sure Jay hasnt used LW in any sort of production sense. Again, not a sleight on anyone, just stating facts. Thats why developers *should* rely on the opinions of those who use the software daily in production and hammer on these features. I also want ot point of that Newtek asked KURV and myself to give them copies of my original IKBoost video so that they could use it the help them derive documentation and to help train their support staff. Why would they need to ask if they have people on staff who were knowledgeable about IKBoost?
Eric, thinking you have a fundamental understanding of IKB based on looking at a few pulldown menus is a far cry from having a true understanding of it gleaned from actually hammering on it daily.
Last, in my demo on Sat and Sun this last weekend I did show animation using IKB. In that period of the demo I was able to take a simple 40 frame walkcycle of a lion that I did, extend it out to hundreds of rrames in a few seconds and then make it walk forward AUTOMATICALLY with feet locked etc and then was able to change its direction several times so it wasnt walking in a straight line. These sorts of features are built into IKB and I intentionally showed it using something that most people would consider a character that would be hard to rig and animate ( a quadruped).

That said, its difficult to take your comments about IKB serously when your knowledge of it doesnt come from personal use. I have used it to create quite a bit of animation and in a period of time far quicker then I could do with the old LW rigging tools or any 3rd party plugins. That demo of the lion should be up tonight. :)

dballesg
07-16-2008, 09:54 AM
That will be done at this weekend's LA LW Users Group Meeting..we are working something out so that the rest of the world can see it too...Stay tuned!!!...

Hi Jessica,

Larry was very kind to invite me on other thread to assist the reunion, but I live in Spain! :)

You are goin to record the meeting on video and post a later .mov or avi to download? That would be great.

Thanks in advance
David

animotion
07-16-2008, 11:13 AM
Larry,
just curious what made you dig into IKB after being led to think that it was pretty much insignificant?

I do want to start including IKB In my productions but the feet slippage is pretty important here. I'm sure there is a good and solid work around hidden, and I am going to focus on finding one.

dballesg
07-16-2008, 11:15 AM
TO Larry :)

Larry Maestro has really nice Dope Track on the interface, it allows you to animate without leave Maestros interface. You can even add any object from your scene to it and had a look to ALL your needed keyframes and edit them there. And I know you know that!! :)

One thing I DO NOT like of IKBoost it is lack of control with LScript. It is nonexistent. You cannot for example made a script that allows to toggle the fix option for example.

But I can see how it can helps with a few things, I really need to go more in depth with it. And that is why I got your DVD.

TO Eric :)

Eric come on, you know that the real strength of Maestro it is the rigs you provide with it. I learned LOT dissecting them. And I mean a LOT! :) :) :)

Aside I even created my own rigs and added as button on Maestros interface. My boss only needed to load a character, open Maestro click a button, and start animating, how fast is that?

This is an example that my boss made two years ago:


http://www.spinquad.com/forums/showpost.php?p=155547&postcount=17 (http://www.spinquad.com/forums/showpost.php?p=155547&postcount=17)

Of course you can animate that with the "traditional" tools on LW, and maybe IKBooster, I do not want to say you cant do it with IKB until I try IKB by myself.

But maestro saved us because I created custom rigs, and make them work with the touch of a button. It saved me hours, and hours of rigging the 4 different characters we got on that job. I made one and used on all of them. And much hours more saved avoiding the animator modifying or touching the rig. THat btw sometimes do, because they are simply curious! :)

Eric and Brian are really supportive about their child, I cannot count the times Eric has helped me and Brian as well until he had made maestro work on 64 bits.

I think both of you must agree that it is the tool that suits your needs the one that you are using. IKB for Larry, Mestro for Eric.

In fact I wouldn't mind that Maestro could be used along IKBooster, and maybe is possible.

If someone is to blame here, it is Newtek for not document properly a gem like IKBooster, and not made EVERYTHING accessible to LScript or the SDK.

But I am hoping they're learning this lessons and providing us with that access and new powerful tools.

David

Surrealist.
07-16-2008, 11:47 AM
Colkai,
That demo of the lion should be up tonight. :)

Thanks for your comments Larry. Looking foreword to seeing this next one.:)

StOuen
07-16-2008, 12:53 PM
Er... Sorry to be a dumb bunny here but where is the rebroadcast? Been looking on the kurv site and canay find it. Thanks!

calilifestyle
07-16-2008, 01:42 PM
Hey dballesg
very nice maestro work.

dwburman
07-16-2008, 02:19 PM
you can see clips of uncut, untamed here: http://animal.discovery.com/tv/untamed-uncut/untamed-uncut.html

Mr Rid
07-16-2008, 02:32 PM
...but what "made it click" was when Larry stressed emphatically that the lack of control panels doesn't mean it's light on control or features.

Rather, it was DESIGNED smartly with a focus to keep those floating dialogue boxes out of your face, and place them in right click menus instead, and down by the timeline.

Should be an option though like Ctrl+Shift+R(or L)-click in Layout. I find drop down menus a hassle when I have to access the tools in them regularly (Adobe interfaces goes out of their way to induce carpal tunnel). But then I always span 2 monitors and keep menus to one side. With Layout max on the left display, IKB menu dropdown annoyingly opens right in the middle of the split between my monitors.

JVitale
07-16-2008, 03:14 PM
Hi Jessica,

Larry was very kind to invite me on other thread to assist the reunion, but I live in Spain! :)

You are goin to record the meeting on video and post a later .mov or avi to download? That would be great.

Thanks in advance
David


Yes we will...we are hashing out those details...

Larry and I thought you lived in Valencia California...I forgot there is a Valencia, Spain...

We'll keep you posted

Lightwolf
07-16-2008, 03:20 PM
Larry and I thought you lived in Valencia California...I forgot there is a Valencia, Spain...
*grin* - just to make sure before anybody gets any fancy ideas, I com neither from Stuttgart, Kansas nor Stuttgart Ar(rrr?)kansas. :D

Cheers,
Mike - who now wonders if Arkansas is the place where the pirates from Kansas settled.

dballesg
07-16-2008, 04:22 PM
Yes we will...we are hashing out those details...

Larry and I thought you lived in Valencia California...I forgot there is a Valencia, Spain...

We'll keep you posted

Thank you Jessica :)

How you could forgot the last Americas Cup was done here last year! :) LOL

David

ericsmith
07-16-2008, 07:37 PM
IKB uses LW standard tools. The motions created go the standard bone channels. The motions can be edited in the graph editor or dopesheet editor. It uses the dopetrack and makes it far more useful and powerful. It uses LW limits, it can use LWs goal object, match goal, expressions, motion modifiers etc.

It's actually not accurate to say that IKB can use match goal, expressions, motion modifiers, etc. The fact is, if you apply anything to a bone that overides the basic channels, IKB will be bypassed for those channels. In other words, it won't work. It will still work for other bones in the hierarchy, but you can't use IKB to modify a bone that is being controlled by any other method.


I also havent seen any animation done with it that couldnt be done without it using LWs standard tools.

Considering the fact that Maestro's rigs are completely LW native, and the controller is just a more elegant way of moving, rotating or scaling items, that statement is pretty silly. It's like saying that you haven't seen any animation done with a wacom tablet that couldn't be done with a mouse.


With all due respect to Jay he wasnt around when all this went down and Im pretty sure he hasnt spent the time to really dissect it and get into it.

We both know that he has stated specifically that he has spend significant time working with IKB and with Ino. If you don't believe him, that's up to you.


Im also pretty sure Jay hasnt used LW in any sort of production sense.

That's a pretty big presumption. I do know for a fact that he's used XSI. I would imagine Newtek wouldn't have hired him to head up Lightwave development if he wasn't qualified.


Eric, thinking you have a fundamental understanding of IKB based on looking at a few pulldown menus is a far cry from having a true understanding of it gleaned from actually hammering on it daily.

You're twisting my words around again.

What I said was, I may not know every little tool in IKB, but I DO have a clear understanding of HOW it works from a structural point of view. I have a clear picture of both it's strengths and weaknesses.

Eric

Castius
07-16-2008, 08:03 PM
To be clear just because it doesn't modify the data from the motion modifer doesn't mean it doesn't work with them.

Castius
07-16-2008, 08:26 PM
Items that can't be directly edited with IKB can be layered. You have to do this in any applications. So if i wanted IKB control with PLG IK. I would put it on top of a PLG IK Leg. Then integrate the IK blend controller with the a null. All the Nulls that drive the PLG would be IKB controlled as well.

ericsmith
07-16-2008, 08:45 PM
Well, it is true that you can have both IKB applied to a rig as well as standard IK and other motion modifiers.

But what I wanted to clarify was that for any particular bone (or other object), it's an either/or situation.

Eric

Castius
07-16-2008, 08:48 PM
It's cool, I wasn't really correctly you. It was more for others that don't understand.

SplineGod
07-16-2008, 10:45 PM
It's actually not accurate to say that IKB can use match goal, expressions, motion modifiers, etc. The fact is, if you apply anything to a bone that overides the basic channels, IKB will be bypassed for those channels. In other words, it won't work. It will still work for other bones in the hierarchy, but you can't use IKB to modify a bone that is being controlled by any other method.

For the most part thats the same with any part of LW. If you are controlling a bone with expressions You cant hand key it etc. You cant even reference the motion channels by a bone with Match goal applied. Ino told me that there are two way that IKB supports to lock orientation. using two fixed controllers or use match goal. IKB can also be applied to the null or item that match goal is referencing.





Considering the fact that Maestro's rigs are completely LW native, and the controller is just a more elegant way of moving, rotating or scaling items, that statement is pretty silly. It's like saying that you haven't seen any animation done with a wacom tablet that couldn't be done with a mouse.

Whether its more elegant or not is a matter of opinion.
I know plenty of people who dont like maestro, feel its too clunky or the rigs are too clunky, hard to change, too hard to adapt to other types of characters and so on...



We both know that he has stated specifically that he has spend significant time working with IKB and with Ino. If you don't believe him, that's up to you.
I know hes also stated that it was obvious that the person who programmed IKBoost didnt understand animation/didnt know what he was doing. Im sorry but that sort of statement tells me otherwise.




That's a pretty big presumption. I do know for a fact that he's used XSI. I would imagine Newtek wouldn't have hired him to head up Lightwave development if he wasn't qualified.
So? Who hasnt made claims like that? So have I but how do you quantify that into something meaningful? Did he touch it once or use it for months in production? If he knows it then why does he ask others who use it for input?




You're twisting my words around again.

What I said was, I may not know every little tool in IKB, but I DO have a clear understanding of HOW it works from a structural point of view. I have a clear picture of both it's strengths and weaknesses.

Im taking your words the way you said it. I have a fairly clear structural view of several other apps but its a far cry from knowing how to use them in production. Youve either used them and know them or you havent. If you havent then youre not qualified to judge it.

SplineGod
07-16-2008, 10:56 PM
Larry,
just curious what made you dig into IKB after being led to think that it was pretty much insignificant?

I do want to start including IKB In my productions but the feet slippage is pretty important here. I'm sure there is a good and solid work around hidden, and I am going to focus on finding one.

I never did think IKB was insignificant. I knew it was powerful but at that time there was zero documentation on it. I found Inos site describing its use. Between that, talking to Ino, and talking to others who were having success with it I was able to finally figure it out.
Weve been using it in production quite sucessfully. The pace is extremely fast and were able to do a ton of character animation with it very quickly. I know how to rig in LW the 'standard' way. Ive done so for many years and probably much longer then the majority of people on this forum. I think that puts me in some kind of position to judge the difference between the old way and IKB. IKB IMO is simply the fastest animation system Ive seen.
The whole point of rigging is to create something that can be animated. Theres two ways to do this in LW....you can create an uber rig with all kind of expressions, controls etc ala maestro or with IKB you use simple tools to be able to hit any sort of pose you need. Theres no fancy rigs to look at and scratch my head over trying to figure them out. I can quickly and easily get to the point which is to animate.
I dont need to purchase any plugins etc. Believe me, if there was anything quickier and easier we would be using it. The owner of creative cinergy is also very adept at 3d. Hes a Max guy. He is the most driven, production savvy person Ive ever worked with. Hes familar with more then just Max as well. He is blown away with IKB and is extemely happy with simply because of the sheer volume of work we can get done and weve never been late. :)

What I find truely funny is that few to none of the naysayers are willing to really spend some time learning it but are very willing to throw rocks from the sidelines. They focus on a couple of things that they feel are weakness but are not because they are tools that are being looked at outside of their context. At the same time they ignore the myriad of other tools in IKB and never comment on those that LW simply doesnt have at all outside of IKB.

SplineGod
07-16-2008, 10:59 PM
Well, it is true that you can have both IKB applied to a rig as well as standard IK and other motion modifiers.

But what I wanted to clarify was that for any particular bone (or other object), it's an either/or situation.

Eric

No eric, for some plugins applied to a bone thats true. Expressions applied to a channel still allow IKB to work on the unused channels. If you have fulltime IK applied to a channel IKB will control the other channels.

animotion
07-16-2008, 11:39 PM
I can see a lot of potential with IKB, as we know it has its flaws but its amazing that it has been, and still is so under rated.

I played around with standard IK goals mixed with IKB and got a solid pin but lost some of the features that makes IKB so appealing. as I have time I will post any positive results.

SplineGod
07-17-2008, 12:07 AM
That is initially how I thought it was supposed to be used but since then Ive learned that its way more powerful and flexible when used by itself. :)

ericsmith
07-17-2008, 12:41 AM
Whether its more elegant or not is a matter of opinion.
I know plenty of people who dont like maestro, feel its too clunky or the rigs are too clunky, hard to change, too hard to adapt to other types of characters and so on...

Well, that's not what I generally hear from our userbase (in fact, the opposite), but that's fine. At least I don't state publically that the only reason those people feel that way is because they don't have a clue.


Im taking your words the way you said it. I have a fairly clear structural view of several other apps but its a far cry from knowing how to use them in production. Youve either used them and know them or you havent. If you havent then youre not qualified to judge it.

I HAVE spent time with IKB. And I'll admit that early on, I had some misconceptions. When certain tools that I was unaware of were demonstrated on threads like these, I went and tested them personally. But spending more time with it did not change my assessment of how the concept it's built on is fundimentally inadequate for producing good quality character animation. And the final animation I've seen produced by it greatly confirms that assessment.

How about this... Why don't you post some of the animation you've done in production for the animal planet show, and lets discuss it based on it's own merit. I know that NDAs are not applicable, because I have it sitting on my DVR. You've also shown assets from it on your Kurv demos, so you obviously have access to the scenes.

And I know, you had to do it very fast, so maybe there's something else you've done in the past two years that wasn't limited by an extremely tight deadline.

Eric

Mr Rid
07-17-2008, 12:45 AM
Believe me, if there was anything quickier and easier we would be using it.
So how about Maya? :)

BTW, this feature was done all with old school LW rigging.
http://www.themagistical.com/trailer.html
60760

StOuen
07-17-2008, 12:54 AM
thanks!

Castius
07-17-2008, 02:12 AM
IKB can't be scripted. This makes it basically unfinished for most productions. I'm sorry but it took me a few times to understand IKB. It's a great design but it has some flaws. But it does fill in many missing features in LW animation tool set. It's awesome for hands!

I don't think you can Judge IKB based on animation produced with it. Not till you find a good LW animator and a decent IKB rig. To be honest i don't see that many LW animators around here. Plus I haven't seen many riggs using IKB i would really consider to be a very good rig. I would barely consider the rigs I've created acceptable.

I also don't agree that you can say how complex a cheep TV show rig should be. There are to many different requirements. Who knows what they may need. LW is good at keeping it simple but not every situation needs that.

pooby
07-17-2008, 02:46 AM
How about this... Why don't you post some of the animation you've done in production for the animal planet show

Mr Rid posted a link earlier.. http://animal.discovery.com/tv/untam...med-uncut.html


I could only find the shark bit, but I didn't go through everything. I couldn't bear watching the Space Monkey trailer more than 3 times

ericsmith
07-17-2008, 08:45 AM
I don't think you can Judge IKB based on animation produced with it. Not till you find a good LW animator and a decent IKB rig. To be honest i don't see that many LW animators around here. Plus I haven't seen many riggs using IKB i would really consider to be a very good rig. I would barely consider the rigs I've created acceptable.

So on what criteria would it be appropriate to judge it? If I can't judge it based on the animation produced with it, and I can't judge it based on the rigs out there that have been created with it, what's left?

You're basically saying that in 3+ years, no good animators have come across a decent IKB rig?

What about Larry? Are you saying that he either isn't a good animator, or hasn't been able to put together a decent IKB rig? Or both?

Personally, I think there are many good animators that use LW. Enough that if IKB was a legitimate animation tool, at least one of them would have done something by now.

And what about the lack of good IKB rigs? I thought it was supposed to be so easy, and flexible, and uncomplicated.


Mr Rid posted a link earlier.. http://animal.discovery.com/tv/untam...med-uncut.html

I could only find the shark bit, but I didn't go through everything. I couldn't bear watching the Space Monkey trailer more than 3 times

Yeah, the shark was the only animation to be found on that page. But I caught the full broadcast last sunday night.

It was... revealing.

Eric

SplineGod
07-17-2008, 08:50 AM
So how about Maya? :)

BTW, this feature was done all with old school LW rigging.
http://www.themagistical.com/trailer.html
60760

Two of the people I work with are familiar with rigging and animating in maya. The studio has maya licenses. They both feel that this couldnt be done with maya.
Its been very easy to reuse rigs between various animals with differing proportions by using the standard bone tools. Once resized and reproportioned the IKBoost settings are still in place. I can reload poses, motions etc and use that as a starting point.
Chris Manabe and I will be doing a presentation on all of this at the next LA User group mtg. You should drop by. :)

SplineGod
07-17-2008, 09:02 AM
So on what criteria would it be appropriate to judge it? If I can't judge it based on the animation produced with it, and I can't judge it based on the rigs out there that have been created with it, what's left?

You're basically saying that in 3+ years, no good animators have come across a decent IKB rig?

What about Larry? Are you saying that he either isn't a good animator, or hasn't been able to put together a decent IKB rig? Or both?

Personally, I think there are many good animators that use LW. Enough that if IKB was a legitimate animation tool, at least one of them would have done something by now.

And what about the lack of good IKB rigs? I thought it was supposed to be so easy, and flexible, and uncomplicated.



Yeah, the shark was the only animation to be found on that page. But I caught the full broadcast last sunday night.

It was... revealing.

Eric

In the end the only valid criteria would be thru consistent use over some period of time. Thats why others such as Pooby , who do use XSI for example, recommend downloading it and giving it a go.
One t hing Ive learned is that watching a show or movie gives no clue as to the the process, tools, resources, time etc that a team was given to produce something. When ALL those things are taken into account and youve actually used the tools yourself in some meaningful way then its possible to really say something intelligent about the tools.
Like everyone else ive seen LOTR, Ironman, Hulk etc. I was impressed by many things in those. I read a few articles about the process. In the end for me to comment on how useful or not their tools, workflow, etc is amounts to little more then armchair quarterbacking.

As far as your own product goes. Show me how quickly it can rig differing characters, bipeds, quadruped, birds, snakes etc. Also show me what youve done with it that I cant do as easily using other methods. Show me that it gives me the same thing feature for feature IKB or better since maestro isnt free. What criteria do I use to adequetly judge maestro? What is the magic sweet spot that determines that it is a useful tool and not just fluff?

Dexter2999
07-17-2008, 09:34 AM
Well, I think there is a place for Maestro and a place for IKB in the market.

Some users don't want to dive into the menu processes and like a GUI. I have heard this a few times in the Animation Podcasts I listen to. I have no idea how much a program like Animation Mentor even stresses rigging. They only teach 3D on Maya though.

Some people may use Maestro to help with Arch Vis animations, corporate product demonstrations, court room graphic simulations, or even previs and they may prefer Maestro to just jump start their project. Click a button and away you go. The ideas of baking or pinning may strike them as perhaps convoluted.

Some people may prefer IKB because they love the ground up building of the rig. They are good at it and they have control of any beastie that pops up. They know by the shape and the mechanics where they may want/need some extra articulation. Best of all it's a free part of LightWave.

People are different. People learn better in different ways. People have different preferences in work processes. On a feature film, they have people who do rigging. Well, if you are a one person shop, and you don't like rigging you can get a piece of software to do it for you. I don't think that is a bad thing.

I think the argument of Maestro vs. IKB could turn into something like the arguments about which is the best martial art. The answer is in finding which works best for YOU.

Castius
07-17-2008, 10:11 AM
Thank you Dexter2999.

SplineGod
07-17-2008, 10:17 AM
Actually I think Maestro overall is a nice tool. I dont like autorigging in general regardless. I was trying to make a point that I can easily take the thought process Eric uses to judge IKB and use it on Maestro.

Pooby for example likes XSI. He can show examples of how many of the tools work and show examples of what he has done with it rather then pointing to other people finished work. I stress this again: It is impossible to properly judge a tool based on the end result. You cant determine that because we also dont know what time constraints the production was under, how many people they had, how knowledgable those people were and, very importantly, what exactly the client wanted in the end. Any and all productions have those constraints placed upon them. This makes it impossible to determine how useful a set of tools are whether it be IKBoost, Maestro, XSI, Maya etc.
In the end after seeing examples someone has posted including a description of the workflow etc hopefully its enough to persuade me to give the tools a go and I dont mean tinkering with something here or there but actually try and produce something over a sustained period of time.

In the case of Untamed, Uncut, we have to produce all the CGI for an hour episode once a week. We have 4 people on our team. In that period of time we have to:
1. Aquire all the assets. We model, buy, repurpose, reuse, pull off 3d warehouse or in short, get them as quickly as we can.
2. Surfacing and Texturing
3. Lighting
5. Rigging (greatly minimized due to IKB and avoiding weightmaps) This is reduced to almost no time plus we reuse
rigs all the time. Since the rigs are adaptive it makes it very easy to change a couple of things to make it behave better in various situations.
6. Fur
7. Additional VFX such as water, caustics, clouds, backgrounds waves, trees, plants, dust etc etc
8. Animation. IKB greatly speeds this up for us because of being able to animate quickly, copy/paste/save and reuse poses and motions. IKB can also automatically make a character walk forward and we can easily change the motion path, relock feet etc. Those of you who saw the demo last weekend understand what Im talking about.
9. Redos, fixes etc. All of the workflow includes having the client come back and ask for changes, most of which tend to be things that dont make what the animation is depicting any clearer or better...just different.

Bottom line, the work schedule is insane but this is the nature of this business. The show is their highest rated show in 4 years.
The level of stuff we are doing is far greater then other shows this same client has such as Shockwave. whose CGI is done using something else other then LW. We simply could not do this show if we werent using IKB to animate. :)

littlewaves
07-17-2008, 10:51 AM
AIKB can also automatically make a character walk forward and we can easily change the motion path, relock feet etc. Those of you who saw the demo last weekend understand what Im talking about.

is this one going to be available online like the previous free ones?

Paul Brunson
07-17-2008, 11:22 AM
Yes, is the weekend training up and available? I'm excited to learn more :)

moc
07-17-2008, 12:14 PM
Firstly,
I just want to see the end result of larry...
Where's the lion animation sample?
Can you upload it to youtube or others..?
Just the final sample clip..pls
thx.

tyrot
07-17-2008, 12:53 PM
dear larry

actually for being fair both side...

Ok Maestro is not free but also your videos. Only free thing is here is IKBooster thanks to NT. So i dont think you can use IKbooster is Free objection to Eric. If you give away your tutorials for free like colin did, then you have no weak spot for any kind of objection...from any kind of 3rd Party.

I think you are also a 3rd Party. So You and Eric in the same boat.. YOu are selling your video tutorials and he is selling his plugin...

BEST

colkai
07-17-2008, 01:13 PM
Then again,
Larry has put up some free videos showing the usage of IKB and selling training isn't really the same as selling a product.
Not that I am, in any way, disparaging Maestro as it's one of the few plugins for Lw I purchased.
I have to say, without Larry, how many of us here would even be looking at what IKB can and can't do?
He also, very graciously, has spent time one-on-one with people directly showing them how it works, not just through videos, but direct contact. That alone speaks volumes for me, I guess one could call him the IKB Evangelist. :)

SP00
07-17-2008, 01:13 PM
I think it is best that we stop doing comparison, I just want to see what each product can do, paid or not paid. BTW, what happen to the last free IKB demo, it hasn't been posted yet?

adamredwoods
07-17-2008, 01:17 PM
Pixar, ILM. Great animation.

Know what? They use their own, proprietary tools because there are so many differences in demands. TD's will go to the programmers, ask for something, just for a specific task.

So my solution is that every copy of Lightwave come with a programmer.

SplineGod
07-17-2008, 01:24 PM
Tyrot, Myself and others have figured out IKB without having to purchase training. I simply experimented, talked to others, talked to the programmer etc. People can do the same or take a shortcut by accessing someone elses experience. Everyone here already owns IKB. :)
The last demos from this weekend will be posted soon. Wes is getting them ready to post up.

prospector
07-17-2008, 01:36 PM
I can't even see free ones...wants a password
unless I am on wrong page..they say free tho

cresshead
07-17-2008, 01:38 PM
looking forward to the vids...sure has perked up the perception of lightwave as a character animation tool with actually NO additional plugins or update from newtek...now that's got to be a first in ANY 3d app!

sorta like finding out that someone made a hidden set of tools and larry found the treasure map leading to them!

siggy will be interesting if newtek take the opportunity to put ikbooster in the spotlight as well as the new lighting tools in the beta we have.

prospector
07-17-2008, 01:49 PM
I like the fact that you can save poses (still figuring out partials)
and re-use them.

It's becoming more of a matter of what pose do I want now rather than what the heII expression do I need to go here.

did the basic bone setup like Larry shows, but then took it to new heights by adding all sorts of muscle bones that are also posed correctly for the pose at hand.
And they auto move from pose to pose....correctly :D


It's like I want my girl to do this on this frame and this here, and this ending and it's done.

Up to vid 20 on DVD and already I can do simple animations in seconds that use to take hours.

I'm finding that the MOST important thing to remember (and I keep yelling at myself) is it is POSING...not animating.

And also, like everything else is..it's prep work
the more poses..the easier it is in long run.
the more poses saved, the less animating and faster it is to get to rendering.

CMT
07-17-2008, 02:06 PM
I got the video and watched the whole thing, but haven't had a whole lot of time yet to do any animations, though I've rigged and posed a couple things and it's incredibly easier than before.

But what's the difference between setting a few keyframed poses with IKB and "animating?" I don't quite understand the difference. It seems no matter if you're using IKB or not, it's the bones doing all the deforming so it's always "animating". Or am I not understanding it fully? I'm ignorant on the subject of animation for the most part so pardon me if that sounds like a stupid question...

dballesg
07-17-2008, 03:29 PM
Guys, there is a lot of tension here! :)

Next year I propose to do a LW world wide user meeting on Buņol! :) Near were I live. Great festival and you can get out the stress trowing tomatos to each other! :)

Tomatina (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IX0hNgUDXFM&feature=related)

David

Dexter2999
07-17-2008, 03:44 PM
So my solution is that every copy of Lightwave come with a programmer.

Make mine a hot Latina, please. :D

SplineGod
07-17-2008, 05:10 PM
Prospector,
If you change the keyframe mode to all items the whole rigs pose or motions will be copied. If you set to parent and select the foot for example the pose for just that leg will be saved based on where it encounters the first IK stop up the chain. Set to child and then select the shoulder and the pose for the arm is saved.

Mr Rid
07-17-2008, 06:25 PM
Two of the people I work with are familiar with rigging and animating in maya. The studio has maya licenses. They both feel that this couldnt be done with maya.
Its been very easy to reuse rigs between various animals with differing proportions by using the standard bone tools. Once resized and reproportioned the IKBoost settings are still in place. I can reload poses, motions etc and use that as a starting point.
Chris Manabe and I will be doing a presentation on all of this at the next LA User group mtg. You should drop by. :)


Well there you have it. LW now has better CA tools than Maya. :confused:

BTW, How to character rig-
http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=gxusrZiYzbw

Dexter2999
07-17-2008, 06:29 PM
Well there you have it. LW now has better CA tools than Maya. :confused:

How to character rig-
http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=gxusrZiYzbw

Oddly, I was just on a thread at CG Society where there were a number of MAYA users who are unhappy with it's progress under AutoDesk and were talking of bailing over to use XSI if the updates at SIGGRAPH weren't significant.

Honestly, I had never such.
http://forums.cgsociety.org/showthread.php?t=650607&textlink&utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=hot%2Bthreads&utm_term=650607&utm_content=textlink&utm_campaign=20080714

prospector
07-17-2008, 06:35 PM
AHHHhh
So I am again stuck in 'animation mode' DAG-NA-BIT
I'm thinking parent is only the next bone up the chain, and child is next bone down...and not going to the IKStop.
OK will pound the desk some more till this is impacted permenently.

Thanks


what's the difference between setting a few keyframed poses with IKB and "animating?"
From what I can gather (and I am no expert yet), animation is linear, IKBoost is more like motion miixer. In animation I have to go from frame 0 till scene is done. In IKBoost I can put my base in at 0 then go to last and put the finishing pose then at half way I can drop a pose that HAS to be in the middle and go on like that.

That's how I am working it.
right? wrong? dunno...it works tho.

prospector
07-17-2008, 06:47 PM
forgot the most important part.....
I only have to do it once.
set pose ..save pose....reuse pose somewhere else

animating is always setting poses each time you need it.
and now with partial poses partially imbedded in skull, it will go even faster as now I can just change partial movements :D and not even have to set FULL poses.

SplineGod
07-17-2008, 08:01 PM
Well there you have it. LW now has better CA tools than Maya. :confused:

BTW, How to character rig-
http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=gxusrZiYzbw

I wouldnt go so far as to say that. Its going to depend on the project. For ours and many like it where you have faster production schedules IKB is really nice. :)
Youve been at this long enough to know that 'better' is situation dependant:)

Surrealist.
07-17-2008, 08:21 PM
I got the video and watched the whole thing, but haven't had a whole lot of time yet to do any animations, though I've rigged and posed a couple things and it's incredibly easier than before.

But what's the difference between setting a few keyframed poses with IKB and "animating?" I don't quite understand the difference. It seems no matter if you're using IKB or not, it's the bones doing all the deforming so it's always "animating". Or am I not understanding it fully? I'm ignorant on the subject of animation for the most part so pardon me if that sounds like a stupid question...

It is like this:

Say you have a standard IK chain from the shoulder down to the hand. The hand is set up with a goal object. You move the goal and all of the bones up to the shoulder rotate to follow it solved by IK rather than a key for each bone. So when you are animating this way you can animate in what they call "Pose to Pose". This is how you block out your animation first. Set up you key poses that the actor has to hit. Lets say the hand is resting on the table and in 120 frames it is grasping a chair. So you would set the start and end pose first, then work on the motion between those two poses.

Now lets say you want to go back to the pose of the hand on the table.

You could move the hand goal back to where it was or even copy the key frame for that and paste it from the first pose frame to your target frame. But that would only copy that goal and the IK chain would follow of course. But the position of the fingers the angle of the shoulder if that had moved (lets say by rotating the spine) would all have to be copied by opening up the graph editor and selecting all of those bones and channels and pasting them to the new frame.

Now if I don't have this exactly right, please anyone jump in....

But with IKB you copy one frame and depending on the setting on the left menu it will copy the entire pose for all items to that new location in one simple step. And when you consider that you can do this from any part of your rig (based on the left menu setting) and the IK stop can be anywhere you want it on the fly, it makes it pretty powerful and quite a time saver.

That is pretty much how I understand it and again, I have only a very limited use of standard IK and IK Booster. So I may have it slightly off.

SplineGod
07-17-2008, 08:33 PM
Animation is just a series of poses playing back in a particular order and at particular times. As Rich pointed out being able to copy and reuse poses on the same character and between characters is a huge time saver. Outside
of IKB its not easy to do.

ericsmith
07-17-2008, 09:49 PM
In the end the only valid criteria would be thru consistent use over some period of time.

How much time? I feel confident that I've used it enough to understand that in the end, you're creating FK animation, and the interpolation between poses can be a real problem. I also understand that wrangling f-curves is one of the most critical aspects of good animation, and IKB makes that much more difficult than it should. The fact that many people trying to use it mention that they hardly ever, if at all, spend time with the curves is pretty revealing to someone with a good understanding of the fundimentals of animation.


As far as your own product goes. Show me how quickly it can rig differing characters, bipeds, quadruped, birds, snakes etc. Also show me what youve done with it that I cant do as easily using other methods. Show me that it gives me the same thing feature for feature IKB or better since maestro isnt free. What criteria do I use to adequetly judge maestro? What is the magic sweet spot that determines that it is a useful tool and not just fluff?

Obviously, rigging bipeds and quadrupeds is extremely easy. You just need to place the bones in your character, perhaps create a few weightmaps if necessary, load the character into layout, and hit a button. While I haven't created rigs for every possible creature, that doesn't mean a user couldn't create custom rig files. I converted the quadruped rig into a sextuped (no, that's not what it sounds like, its a creature with six legs) rig in less than an hour for Rob Powers several years ago.

The real point of Maestro is not the rigs that come with it, although they are good rigs, but rather a unique control interface that allows you to animate items much more intuitively. I can create a controller that will rotate an item when dragged left and right, and move it when dragged up and down. I can assign any axis, translation tool, and rate (negative will make it go the opposite direction relative to the mouse drag). The real rationale behind this is threefold:

First, selecting items in layout is often tricky, and it's very easy to miss the item you want and select something else instead. With Maestro, you click the hotspot and it selects the right item.

Second, the typical workflow in Layout (as well as most other 3d apps) is to select the item, then select the approprate translation tool, then click and drag to actually animate. That's three steps. With Maestro, when you click and drag on a hotspot, it does all three at once. You click and drag, and it selects the item and immediately begins moving/rotating/scaling based on how the hotspot has been setup.

Third, often times in layout, orientations can get counter-intuitive. When rotating an item, dragging left to right may make it rotate right to left, or even up and down. You get a little better control if you carefully click on the one pixel wide orbit widgets, but again, that's tricky, and they can be missed. With Maestro, as I mentioned before, you can assign horizontal and vertical mouse drags to do exactly what you want.

Additionally, you can create up to four different setups for each hotspot, accessable by hitting Ctrl, Alt and shift. This is actually really powerful. It means I can animate multiple items with one fluid motion. Posing arms is a really good example of this. With the traditional way of selecting items in layout, selecting the translation tool, and then animating, you may position the hand where you think you want it to be, but then when you go and pose the elbow, you realize the hand isn't actually in the right place. So you go back and tweak the position of the hand, and then go back and re-tweak the elbow, and it goes on and on. When you can toggle back and forth between these two items by hitting the Ctrl key mid drag, it speeds things up exponentially.

And one more thing. You can even move the timeslider mid-drag, and create entire passes of animation with one fluid mouse move.

Now on top of all that, you can create text files with lists of commands that you can execute by clicking on a hotspot. These can be simple macros or very complex operations (like rigging an entire character).

Then we move on to pose hotspots. More than just saving fixed poses, you can save a pose for any part or all of the character, tie that pose to a hotspot, and then when you drag, you animate from the character's current position towards (or even past) the saved pose. It works just like morph-mixer, but instead of displacing vertices, you're translating items.

And of course there's the keyframe editor, which gives you multiple, customizable dopetracks. It allows you to move keys around, create hold keys, edit TCB values, even modify the position, rotation and scale of selected keys. I'm greatly oversimplifying it, but I've gone into much more detail in other posts.

I've shown these features in action many times. But with all that said, I would say that it's all worthless if I couldn't get good final results from it.

However, in response to a debate with you a few years ago, I created an animation of a flying spinkick in around 30 minutes (that included rigging I think), and showed video of the animation process (not just creating poses at a single frame) and showed the final rendered results. I've also shown other samples of final rendered animation, as have others (David posted something very respectable in this thread).

Now you argue that you can't judge a tool based on the final results it produces. That may be somewhat true when looking at something really top notch, because you don't know if there were other aspects "helping" along the way, like a team of programmers in big movie productions, etc. But on the other side of the coin, when a tool has NEVER demonstrated quality results, after being around for years, I think that tells a different story. Especially in light of the fact that I can analyze it and clearly understand the conceptual deficiency in the tool that explains why there have been no quality results demonstrated.

Sheez, what a long post. But hopefully, a lucid one.

Eric

animotion
07-17-2008, 10:26 PM
Maybe we should all buy Maestro and sell IKB back to NewTek?

Sorry Eric it was just a joke, although a pretty cheap one at that.

SplineGod
07-17-2008, 10:41 PM
IKB also has a link function that allows channels on one item to be controlled by another.

jin choung
07-17-2008, 10:55 PM
You could move the hand goal back to where it was or even copy the key frame for that and paste it from the first pose frame to your target frame. But that would only copy that goal and the IK chain would follow of course. But the position of the fingers the angle of the shoulder if that had moved (lets say by rotating the spine) would all have to be copied by opening up the graph editor and selecting all of those bones and channels and pasting them to the new frame.

Now if I don't have this exactly right, please anyone jump in....

well i'm not sure you've not got it exactly right but i think you're presenting the non ikb side in way that's not as hard as described.

on the movie we're working on now, all the animators are using full rigs with ik/fk switching and controllers for finger curls and all that good stuff.

WE USE (re-use, copy) POSES ALL THE TIME.

-- as i wrote in my looooooooong post on the other ikb thread on my take on ikb after viewing larry's vid --

ALL YOU NEED IS A 'SELECT ALL CONTROLLERS BUTTON'.

basically, it's just a selection set that selects every controller object (for a given character) that is keyable - basically what we riggers are saying to animators - THESE ARE THE CONTROLLERS YOU CAN TOUCH.

then the animator works - poses the character using ik or fk or whatever.

when he's ready to set a key, hit the "SELECT ALL CONTROLLERS FOR CHARACTER X" button and then set keyframe. a keyframe at that point has been set on ALL CONTROLLERS THAT CAN BE USED TO MANIPULATE THAT CHARACTER. at that frame, exists the "pose".

if you need to copy that pose, you needn't open graph editor or anything. in maya, you can just MM drag on the timeline from the pose you want to copy - mm dragging will prevent scene evaluation - even though you've moved in time, everybody is still posed in the frame you started at... and then you set key at the new frame.

also in maya, or lw, you can go to your pose, hit your selallcontrollers4charx button and simply setkeyframe on a different frame number that you want it at.

that's arguably faster than the ikb method!

jin

p.s. not to mention we also have graphical uis to save and load poses that we got from highend3d..... saving/using/copying poses is trivial in this day and age.

SplineGod
07-17-2008, 11:12 PM
You can easily create selection sets of fingers or other items in any combination and pose them. The motions go directly to the bones just like IKB motions go directly to the bones. You arent in a situation where you have to use one or the other.
You hit the y key, select your finger selection set and rotate.
ctrl + b and youre back in IKB mode.

jin choung
07-17-2008, 11:15 PM
not saying that you can't of course...

just saying that "POSE MANIPULATION" is not a feature exclusive to ikb. almost any kind of animation workflow (from ik/fk advanced rigs to straight fk) can use poses like ikb.

jin

SplineGod
07-17-2008, 11:21 PM
Can you copy poses directly between characters without having to save them? What about copying a pose from any part of a character onto another such as an arm, leg, hand, face (if you have a facial rig) etc?
Some or all of this maybe available in other apps but then again if I can do it in LW along with all the other things I have to do then I save myself a bit of time and trouble.

Surrealist.
07-17-2008, 11:49 PM
Jin - certainly not my area of expertise. Thanks for the further info and explanation. The only thing I would add or ask is what about the ability to do so on parts of the rig and to set the IK stop on the fly? Do you see that as useful? Seems pretty powerful to me.

jin choung
07-17-2008, 11:53 PM
re: larry's last post

it's not something that we've needed (or anybody has wanted or asked) to do so i don't know.

but i can't imagine it would be difficult to locate something on highend to accommodate that. it's just copying keys from one group of entities to another. but with characters of different dimensions, any limb animated with IK controllers would have to be baked to the FK controllers (we have ik/fk switches) and the rotations on the FK controllers would have to be copied to the target's FK controllers.

you can get ik control back by switching to IK after you've used the copy of the animation you needed.

ikb DOES seem to have a slight advantage here. because it is basically FK with all keyframes only keyframing rotations on your bones (with "dynamic iks" popping on and off at need) , i would imagine copying anims from radically different scales is trivial because it's FK ROTATIONS ONLY for keyframes - scale or translation doesn't matter. and then instead of switching to ik, you just re-invoke your dynamic iks.

but again, because it is essentially FK, especially as it concerns keyframes, what is an advantage in copying to different scale characters, seems to incur... uhhhh .... tradeoffs....

usually, we copy entire animations either to identical (cloned) characters and in maya, there's zooTools which is a free plugin from highend3d and you can transfer animations from one character to another automatically if the controllers are named the same. if not, you can setup a "mapping" where you just associate one thing on one char to the equivalent thing on the other char and then save that mapping.

the animators have done a couple of cloned soldier dudes that way but usually it's just for rescuing animations when the stuff we get back from overseas used an outdated rig.

jin

jin choung
07-18-2008, 01:07 AM
The only thing I would add or ask is what about the ability to do so on parts of the rig and to set the IK stop on the fly? Do you see that as useful? Seems pretty powerful to me.

yeah, in maya lingo, that's part of the whole, "full body ik" philosophy. as i said in another thread, in terms of things like dynamic ik stops and stuff, maya has that in its fbik... set it up and you can change from your wrist ik dragging just your arm to the wrist ik dragging the character down to its feet...

it sounds good but as i said in another thread, nobody uses it. there seems to be enough tradeoffs that cause problems where it causes more issues than it solves.

anyway, i have not seen any kind of workflow that actually demonstrates the advantage in workflow that is claimed - where posing is drastically easier or faster. i think what would be illuminating is to see an identical character being animated simultaneously to create a "sneaking" walk cycle - one using ikb, another using a fully setup rig with controllers and ik/fk switches and all that.

if one of the rounds involve "rig setup", ikb wins hands down and instantly. ikb has no rig setup.

but would the animation round reveal ikb to be vastly (or even - at all) superior? could be but from what i've seen, i really doubt it.

but if it can be demonstrated, i'd love to see it.

jin

Surrealist.
07-18-2008, 01:14 AM
Thanks for the extra info and yeah, I'd like to see that too.

Oh and what I was referring to specially was dynamic Ik stop in conjunction with the left menu options. You know saving different parts of a pose on the fly more or less.

And also to Larry or anyone, so the argument was brought up about IKB as better than any other package - given the time and the particular constraints of the show. What about in other situations? Can IKB really produce in a higher demand for quality rather than doing great for less time?

jin choung
07-18-2008, 01:40 AM
Oh and what I was referring to specially was dynamic Ik stop in conjunction with the left menu options. You know saving different parts of a pose on the fly more or less.

ah.

well, as it concerns just using it on the same character, again, it's just a matter of creating a selection set for the part.

previously, i talked about a "full body" selection set to manipulate that pose.

if you needed say just a hand pose you want to be able to paste around (which is really useful), you just create your HAND SELECTION SET. then, anytime you need to copy your hand pose, you just go to the frame that has that hand pose, hit your "hand selection set" button and then setkeyframe onto the frame you want to copy it to.

again, arguably faster than ikb's methodology and no menus needed at all. and this applies again, whether you're using ik controllers or just straight vanilla fk.

so in context of a single character, the ikb method isn't better or faster per se imo.
------------------------------------------------------------------------

oh, actually, speaking of hands, we DID use body part pose copying from character to character - totally forgot - for the hands!

when anyone created a hand pose that they thought they or others would need, they just saved it into a GUI tool we got from highend 3d. you DID have to save the pose... but, you got a nice little gui bitmap of what the hand pose looked like and anyone can see the library and apply it to their character.

as mentioned, you DID have to save, but again not a great burden and the gui images seemed to make it really useful. and the character from which it came from did NOT have to be in your scene (or you didn't need to import from it or anything) just to get the pose.

the pose was in a library accessible to all.

jin

jin choung
07-18-2008, 01:45 AM
Can IKB really produce in a higher demand for quality rather than doing great for less time?

right. this is what many of us suspect against but is contested on.

from the video i saw, it really looks to me like ikb is great for "quick and dirty" - especially when you are unwilling or unable to spend time rigging... but it comes with tradeoffs in the resulting workflow.

and gives rise to the question of whether this system would be PREFERABLE to do animationmentor/pixar/disney/kungfupanda kinda stuff.

as i say, i suspect it's not but i'd love to see someone prove me wrong.

jin

Dodgy
07-18-2008, 02:30 AM
Okay jin, let me ask this. If you could pin any item down, without having to use IK goals, for any period along the time line, without baking to keys, and have that built in, so you didn't need to script anything, would that be useful to you?

Because that ultimately is where I see IKB headed, if NT put some dev time into it. It's possible because I've seen it working in Anime Studio, and the work is half way there in LW.

Even better would be a Fix to Item, so you don't have to add a constraint plugin, just select the item to pin, at the time you want to pin it, then hit a menu item, and select the goal item. When you want to unpin, just move to the time you want to unpin and select Unpin. You already have something like that built into IKB, called IKTarget, but again, it's pose only, but the seed is there.

But you'd have to support IKB to get it developed more. Seems like a lot of people would like something like that, but the lack of good info when IKB was revealed seem to have killed it's dev.

IKB is nice because you don't have to clutter up the scene with lots of helper nulls. It's trying to get past that, so that all you need is the hierarchy. With IKB, if your character is resting on his hands, and then you want him to lean on his elbows, you pin his elbows and unpin his hands. You don't need to add a new goal for his elbows which you then have to manage, it's just a click-click operation.

How does that sound?

colkai
07-18-2008, 02:39 AM
I think the problem is, as I see it, that as IKB is shown in a situation where speed is of the essence and as a consequence, the old "2 out of three" rule hits.
The problem then is, because that is what is shown, because that is the project, people are going, "ahh well look, Gollum it ain't".
The question to ask is, if you know the rules and the tool in question, would any of you take the time to develop a full quality, complex character and animation, simply to show it *could* be done?
I'm guessing, naturally, of course not.

I'd also say that, from my POV, No-one is touting IKB as the be all and end all here, what is being said is, by using it, the problems with LW CA that pretty much everyone agrees on, are somewhat abated.

Does it need developing & expanding, well of course, t'would be a joy.

But think on it, when LWCAD came out, many were saying "Oh, I don't do arch-viz so it's no use to me". Of course, now we know just how far it pushes modeller to be better for ANY sort of modelling, I personally think modeller is seriously hampered if you haven't got it.

We need to step away from these comparisons a bit and see that what is there already is something that is being under-used and most assuredly under documented, promoted and developed.
If you can't warp your head around it, or don't want to, hey, it's all good, I'm still comfier with layers than nodes, but not using it doesn't mean it is of no value to others and shouldn't be shown to be.

cresshead
07-18-2008, 02:59 AM
Okay jin, let me ask this. If you could pin any item down, without having to use IK goals, for any period along the time line, without baking to keys, and have that built in, so you didn't need to script anything, would that be useful to you?

Because that ultimately is where I see IKB headed, if NT put some dev time into it. It's possible because I've seen it working in Anime Studio, and the work is half way there in LW.

Even better would be a Fix to Item, so you don't have to add a constraint plugin, just select the item to pin, at the time you want to pin it, then hit a menu item, and select the goal item. When you want to unpin, just move to the time you want to unpin and select Unpin. You already have something like that built into IKB, called IKTarget, but again, it's pose only, but the seed is there.

But you'd have to support IKB to get it developed more. Seems like a lot of people would like something like that, but the lack of good info when IKB was revealed seem to have killed it's dev.

IKB is nice because you don't have to clutter up the scene with lots of helper nulls. It's trying to get past that, so that all you need is the hierarchy. With IKB, if your character is resting on his hands, and then you want him to lean on his elbows, you pin his elbows and unpin his hands. You don't need to add a new goal for his elbows which you then have to manage, it's just a click-click operation.

How does that sound?

you know what? that just about describes biped in 3dsmax....

Castius
07-18-2008, 03:07 AM
I put together some of my old IK Booster videos.

www.steelronin.com

I wanted to show that an IK Boost rig can be used for fairly standard rigging. It isn't limited to quick and dirty rigs. For the record I would probable redesign this rigs if i redid them now. But i hope it helps show it's more robust and stable than it might seen.

With the hair rig I also wanted to show how IKB can be used in non standard work flows. I would just style one peace, clone it and continue styling. In the end i could be working with as many as 900 bones. This was no where near a real hair styling tool. But IKB sure made my life a lot easier.

I will always admit IKB has flaws. This just mean it's not helpful in all situations. For example; one of it's flaws is that it stores object properties bases on item order. So if you insert a null somewhere at the top of your rig. every item below it will now have the wrong IK Booster specific properties applied. Thankfully there are only a small number of IK Booster properties. but it's a stupid design. Just like every tool has it's flaws. Sometimes it's worth dealing with.

jin choung
07-18-2008, 03:13 AM
hey castius,

thanks for the vids.

i'm starting to watch them now and i'm looking at the leg video.

the FIRST THING that jumps to mind is - nobody is questioning the ability to move stuff around well.

BUT - what does that workflow look like to actually keyframe animate a step animation!

going back to vids now...

jin

jin choung
07-18-2008, 03:16 AM
yikes,

at least for the hands, i could make a controller rig setup that would be MUCH easier to manipulate into a pose than that ikb example.

jin

pooby
07-18-2008, 03:23 AM
think the problem is, as I see it, that as IKB is shown in a situation where speed is of the essence and as a consequence, the old "2 out of three" rule hits.
The problem then is, because that is what is shown, because that is the project, people are going, "ahh well look, Gollum it ain't".
The question to ask is, if you know the rules and the tool in question, would any of you take the time to develop a full quality, complex character and animation, simply to show it *could* be done?
I'm guessing, naturally, of course not.



The reasons you couldn't create a gollum like character in LW is nothing to do with IK boost.
Ik boost 'helps' people rig and animate bones. Bones and the animation of such is the most basic building block of what goes into a gollum rig, but it is NOT what makes Gollum a great piece of work. It is all the rigging that sits on top of the bones that link into and drive the deformations.
This would consist of a great deal of constraints, curves, expressions, driven Morphs etc.

THIS IS WHERE LW IS VERY POOR

It is my opinion that Bone animation has never been the big problem in Lightwave.
But bone animation alone will only enable the CG equivalent of a bendy doll with wire in. Bending something about with bones is very basic, but the industry has moved WAY past that.

As to where and how much IK boost helps here. It is subjective to some degree. I cannot speak for others, that is why I have to look at the output and judge it on that. (to date I still hold my view)
For me, (and yes, after learning it) IK boost was no help at all. All my many years and experience of rigging have led me to believe that, (IK boost aside) FK alone, because of the nature of ONE WAY heirarchies, is not condusive to fluid actions. (IK boost ultimately is an FK maker)
But I can see that if you have no time and you just want to dive in and start keying some bones, then IK boost or FK is the most direct method. (IN LW)

But I think there is a whole lot of confusion about what IK boost will enable you to do.
You can Forget making a GOLLUM level character in LW. I had a good crack at it with my IMP and failed. Even if I found it to be great at making fluid animation, IK boost wouldn't have helped because it wasn't the 'bone animation' that was the problem.

THIS is the problem in LW and why people do not tend to use it in high profile productions involving character. WHY use something that only lets you get 20% of the way there. (the 20% that bone animation alone will get you)
To some, that 20% might be fine, but thats subjective.

jin choung
07-18-2008, 03:25 AM
as for the body,

again, after you have a "traditional rig" that's set up and ready to go, i don't see that there's any real advantage to this system.

my take on it is that you can do more with less but it also introduces more "noise" when you're pulling around a lot of stuff that has to be addressed.

but it spares you the rigging. it does indeed do that. and to many that can be a genuine value.

but it does come with cost during animation it seems.

jin

jin choung
07-18-2008, 03:41 AM
hey dodgy,

i was gonna start answering you in detail but i gotta get to sleep! lol...

i'll write tomorrow. my initial answer is that yes, that could be useful but i've never seen anything like that. i'm not sure how that would work and whether fatal tradeoffs are inherently unavoidable.

as for "support"... ehhhhhhhh.... i don't see that making a difference! : ) i highly support motion mixer but that hasn't been touched! has it been DECADES yet?

i highly support MTSE morphs in morph mixer but evidently, that's not doing any good.

essentially, if i could see the potential - if i could see a workflow that would demonstrate the potential, i would jump on board.

no feature in any app is perfect. but i've started waving flags for lots of them. in lw (ik pop damping) as well as others (ICE!!!). not because they're perfect but that they're genuinely good ideas where i can see the future for it.

the problem with ikb detractors is that we DON'T see the potential. we can't imagine what it COULD BE from what it IS.

but as i say, i'm open. if it can be demonstrated, i'd love to see it.

jin

p.s. detailed tomorrow.

dballesg
07-18-2008, 04:06 AM
David posted something very respectable in this thread

Eric

Oh! Thanks for those nice words Eric! :)

David

cresshead
07-18-2008, 04:11 AM
and that would be where exactly!

i searched back 4 pages so far....

pooby
07-18-2008, 04:42 AM
the problem with ikb detractors is that we DON'T see the potential. we can't imagine what it COULD BE from what it IS.


I think I can, and to me it's not particularly interesting.

colkai
07-18-2008, 05:50 AM
The reasons you couldn't create a gollum like character in LW is nothing to do with IK boost.

Yup, I know and whilst the whole "LW can't do good CA" debate rages on, I think it takes away from the point, IMO, that Larry is trying to make, IKB does improve what tools folks perceive that LW has.

Am I saying that it makes LW the best at CA? Of coure not, that'd would be silly.
I've used Motionbuilder enough to know just how far removed from easy LW CA is and how far it needs to go to be taken seriously by the likes of yourself.
That to me though, is a whole other subject to the one at hand, one which I think darn near everyone can agree on, LW needing a "proper" CA system that is powerful, flexible and easy to use.
That said, I have some reservations on MB too, but as I say, different topic that.

I think, the nature of these 'discussions' is such that people tend to wander across subjects as they are all linked, it muddies the waters sometimes.

For me, if someone is using a tool in production, it's saving them time and money and allows more scope than they would have without said tool, well, then surely that tool is worth using?
Now, the old "your mileage may vary" clause for sure comes into effect, but I would sincerely hope that people could at least agree on that. Though history being what it is, I ain't holding my breath.

I also kinda think that all the "Well in Maya" etc.. type comments aren't really relevant. After all, what good is "in Maya", if your not *using* Maya?
That's like saying, well if you lived in the USA, when you live in Blighty, not really much use to the task at hand. Which is *this* tool in *this* software package.

(Notice how I cunningly avoided using a car analogy there? ;) ).

Surrealist.
07-18-2008, 06:20 AM
Yes, but if you are driving a 1963 VW bus....

I wonder what the plans are for LW CA and if they really have plans to completely revamp it? If so, perhaps the plan is to replace IKB with a more integrated system that does the same thing.

This new serge of interest in IKB could complicate things if it would be difficult or impossible to he able to be backward compatible with IKB (saved poses, scenes etc) since the new system would not be built to support it as a plugin. I don't know, just a thought.

Dreaming?

dballesg
07-18-2008, 06:51 AM
and that would be where exactly!

i searched back 4 pages so far....

If you mean the little anim I posted it is on Spinquad, but I posted the link here:


Post 104 (http://www.newtek.com/forums/showpost.php?p=722743&postcount=104)

David

colkai
07-18-2008, 07:40 AM
This new serge of interest in IKB could complicate things if it would be difficult or impossible to he able to be backward compatible with IKB (saved poses, scenes etc) since the new system would not be built to support it as a plugin. I don't know, just a thought.

Dreaming?
A valid thought though.
Thing is, even if we lose IKB in the next LW version, at least taking some of the things IKB makes easier and running with them would be no bad thing.
As Larry has said, at lest those who use IKB have the option of firing up a prior version and using it. Thankfully, LW is "nice" like that, allowing mutliple versions to run side by side. :)

Castius
07-18-2008, 08:03 AM
Jin I can built hand rings that you can pose faster. But to make one more flexible that FK with no IK restrictions. That would be alot harder.. I didn't even show you pinning in that video.

If you are trying to be convinced that LW can string keyframes together to produce animation. When i think we are done here.

omeone
07-18-2008, 10:54 AM
Hey Larry, congrats on getting the new materials out... you took your sweet time ;) and where's my free copy you promised me :D :D

jin choung
07-18-2008, 02:05 PM
Jin I can built hand rings that you can pose faster. But to make one more flexible that FK with no IK restrictions. That would be alot harder..

yikes, i have never had to do an ik finger rig... i've never needed an ability to stick finger tips (yeah, haven't rigged or animated spider-man yet).

all the hand rigs i've built or used from other rigs were just nested finger rotation controllers - "finger curl" "finger spread" - and then individual knuckle rots for fine control.

oh and not to say that you couldn't build a much better rig... just the demonstration of how ikb works as a hand poser left something to be desired.

jin

SplineGod
07-18-2008, 07:27 PM
Thanks for the extra info and yeah, I'd like to see that too.

Oh and what I was referring to specially was dynamic Ik stop in conjunction with the left menu options. You know saving different parts of a pose on the fly more or less.

And also to Larry or anyone, so the argument was brought up about IKB as better than any other package - given the time and the particular constraints of the show. What about in other situations? Can IKB really produce in a higher demand for quality rather than doing great for less time?

Which CA software is best depends entirely on the situation. Most people here arent going to be working on Gollum. Those types of projects are large team efforts. LW with IKB is prefectly capable of handling most Character ANIMATION tasks. Thats all it does. Other rigging requirements not strictly related to CA that are needed also depend upon the project.

SplineGod
07-18-2008, 07:28 PM
Hey Larry, congrats on getting the new materials out... you took your sweet time ;) and where's my free copy you promised me :D :D

Thanks! Hey youve contributed a great deal and I refer ppl to your site all the time. Youve more then earned that free copy though I doubt youll need it :)

Surrealist.
07-18-2008, 09:22 PM
Which CA software is best depends entirely on the situation. Most people here arent going to be working on Gollum. Those types of projects are large team efforts. LW with IKB is prefectly capable of handling most Character ANIMATION tasks. Thats all it does. Other rigging requirements not strictly related to CA that are needed also depend upon the project.

OK so is there a confusion in definition then? CA, Character Animation, or live realistic character effects? what would you call it? If it is MOCAP is that animation? Monster House was all MOCAP. But then they have to go in and tweak it yes. So I think you have to define when you say CA, what are you talking about?

Me, I am talking about Dinsey Pixar quality as opposed to A Duffy the Dog pet food commercial on cable or a simulation of an accident injury for a deposition. There is several rages in there.

But what I am talking about when I say quality animation. I mean, out of the box, with IKB can you do something. I already know it is possible with LW standard Riggs. I know people will bash be for saying that and that is may be possible but it is a pain or any other thing. But I have seen it done. I mean for as you say ANIMATION. I can't speak to higher end effects.

What do you think?

Dexter2999
07-18-2008, 09:43 PM
I thought JIMMY NEUTRON was done with off the shelf LightWave. So was this done with the built in FK IK?

Instead of comparing to Golum should we be taking a closer look at this film and judging LW's CA by this work as a benchmark? Or is the style such that it is meant to be cartoony and as such nowhere near the realistic movements we are picturing in our minds when we keep making that Golum comparison?

SplineGod
07-18-2008, 09:47 PM
Good CA is more dependant upon the animator then the software these days. Give a good animator a decent set of tools, enough time etc and he will produce great animation.

The rest of the stuff thats stacked on top of the CA such , as cloth, fur, dynamics, deformations, expressions and so on are more technical issues and strictly speaking nothing to do with CA.
Jimmy Neutron was animated using Messiah at first then Maya.

pooby
07-19-2008, 03:12 AM
Take a look at this site.

http://www.hotheadfilms.co.uk/#/41_zombies/

It's by my Friend Olly Reid. We used to work together for about 8 years. Like myself, he's Directed and animated at Passion and Aardman, and he still uses LW only for character animation.

Like me, he learnt and discarded IK Boost, but that's beside the point. It goes to show that good animation is perfectly possible in LW. However, one thing you will notice from his work is that, although it is finely done and very slick, On the technical side there is little in the way of complex deformation going on. It is very much a product of having only bones and morphs to play with and he has made the best of working within that range, but now feels the need to expand that range hence he has just bought XSI.

jin choung
07-19-2008, 03:32 AM
cool, he worked on that robbie williams video?

saw that a while back... lots of great stuff there. love the dancing animation. lots of great stuff on the site.

jin

p.s. geez even the claymation horse is impressive!

cresshead
07-19-2008, 03:41 AM
jimmy neutron the film was animated with messiah and rendered in lightwave
jimmy neutron the tv show was animated in maya and rendered in maya for the VERY first show then they moved the rendering back to lightwave as maya results looked 'poo' in comparison...you can see the pilot on one of the dvd's....yukky!

as for lw in general for character animation i always compared to what 3dsmax has and i just hate the lack of geometric bones in lightwave and most other 3d apps...once you can have geometry for bones you can 'see' better for posing you don't even need the mesh in the viewport...so for me it's not all down to ikbooster or plg ik or lw ik but a basic 'want' for bones ot be '3d'...if you hide your mesh and try to animate with just the bones to speed up feedback in lw i find it like animating a 2d plane in a 3d space...really hard work for no real reason.

ikbooster is a help but there needs to be much more development for me to even start to think about character animation in lightwave as opposed to 3dsmax...and as limiting as the biped rig is in max [and it IS limited in what i can do] it's a drag out in the viewport done deal for me...

and not having deformation lattices in 2008 in lightwave is just bizarre really

i like easy options...i'm lazy and not great at animation...i need all the help i can get!

jin choung
07-19-2008, 03:41 AM
holy crap,

airheads is bizarre and impressive too. really awesome stuff.

jin

cresshead
07-19-2008, 03:45 AM
plus as great as it is with larry doing detective work on getting to understand ikbooster it really is not good that tools like this take 3 years to be understood...talk about un-intuative!....ouch!

i'd like to see newtek develop tools that when you look at the panels they ACTUALLY make sense...just by looking at them and not needing to dive into a pdf help menu just to get them 'running' or wait for a sell thru video to de-code their meanings..

one thing i'd PAY FOR is that everything in the u.i. shoudl have a zbrush like hover and help pop up over the top with the control key held down..

that would be THE BEST update for lightwave...just to make more sense of WHAT WE HAVE.

jin choung
07-19-2008, 03:48 AM
as for lw in general for character animation i always compared to what 3dsmax has and i just hate the lack of geometric bones in lightwave and most other 3d apps...once you can have geometry for bones you can 'see' better for posing you don't even need the mesh in the viewport...so for me it's not all down to ikbooster or plg ik or lw ik but a basic 'want' for bones ot be '3d'...if you hide your mesh and try to animate with just the bones to speed up feedback in lw i find it like animating a 2d plane in a 3d space...really hard work for no real reason.

well to be fair, that bone feature is pretty unique to 3dsmax... maya doesn't have it and i'm not sure what other app besides max does. blender has different draw styles but certainly not to the degree max does.

usually, even in 'huge' productions, they just slice up their skinned mesh and parent the parts to the bones for a proxy view. maya has several scripts to facilitate that (we used one of them from highend... it was called something doctor something...) and you can just run the script AFTER you skinned your character and it slices it up and parents AUTOMAGICALLY (according to how you weighted stuff)... really neat actually and gives you a REMARKABLY good approx. of your character... it even works on the FACE (!) if you're using joints for manip.

so yah, i don't consider this to be a dealbreaker for me. actually, personally, i'd prefer to have that maya script in lw!

jin

pooby
07-19-2008, 03:48 AM
cool, he worked on that robbie williams video?

It was his idea and he directed it. Olly's one of the most talented guys I know.

SP00
07-19-2008, 07:28 AM
I really like Airheads, I guess with some hard work, LW is a capable CA tool.

http://www.hotheadfilms.co.uk/#/64_airheads/

Castius
07-19-2008, 10:34 AM
Cresshead I was producing IKB rigs in 2004. And telling people how to use it. Not many people were listening. You can blame documentation but the reality is. People had a really hard time getting past the learning curve of the tool, Including myself. IK Booster works backwards to most standard rigging work-flows. Since you start with an unrestricted rig. Then you refine it's limitations.

I'm just stubborn and refused to let the tool get pushed to the wayside. Over time there have been a few others that have figured it out. IKB should have been script-able and been integrated into the preset system. If that had happened you would see a lot more third party tools for it.

ericsmith
07-19-2008, 10:57 AM
I would barely consider the rigs I've created acceptable.


Cresshead I was producing IKB rigs in 2004. And telling people how to use it. Not many people were listening. You can blame documentation but the reality is. People had a really hard time getting past the learning curve of the tool, Including myself. IK Booster works backwards to most standard rigging work-flows. Since you start with an unrestricted rig. Then you refine it's limitations.

I'm just stubborn and refused to let the tool get pushed to the wayside. Over time there have been a few others that have figured it out.

Based on these two comments, I'm curious where do you stand regarding IKB? It seems that in general, you think it's a good tool, but after four years of use, you're still not very happy with the rigs you created with it?

Please don't take this question as an attack. I'm genuously curious.

Eric

SplineGod
07-19-2008, 03:07 PM
Cresshead I was producing IKB rigs in 2004. And telling people how to use it. Not many people were listening. You can blame documentation but the reality is. People had a really hard time getting past the learning curve of the tool, Including myself. IK Booster works backwards to most standard rigging work-flows. Since you start with an unrestricted rig. Then you refine it's limitations.

I'm just stubborn and refused to let the tool get pushed to the wayside. Over time there have been a few others that have figured it out. IKB should have been script-able and been integrated into the preset system. If that had happened you would see a lot more third party tools for it.

I find that starting with an unrestricted rig, using a few IK stops to define the basic heirarchy and being able to do so without having to open up separate windows a lot faster then the old way. Far less time is spent fiddling with controls, nulls etc and more time is spent actually animating.

Once past that whole 30 seconds its easy to turn a simple basic cycle for example into hundreds of frames, make it walk forward automatically, change the direction several times etc in a fraction of the time it would take to do with the current tools using the older methods and all without ever having to resort to messing with lots of channels at one time in the graph editor.

I see some obsessing over the whole baking/binding thing in IKB. Most of the objections are based on not understanding the big picture IKB presents and its workflow. Manipulating large amounts of keys in iKB is simpler then adjusting far less channels in the graph editor and with IKB you dont have to go to the graph editor to do it. Obsessing on these simple parts ignores the powerful tools that allow me to copy/paste/save/load poses and motions from a whole or any part of a rig including the ability to do so directly between rigs.

From personal experience i can say that the big picture IKB presents more then makes up for any perceived weaknesses. Being able to alter a rig on the fly rather then ALWAYS being forced to rely on more complex methods allows a level of freedom that LW has never had in the area of CA. Maybe some IKB features are found in other apps but then again I dont need to get those other apps. :)

jayroth
07-19-2008, 03:56 PM
If someone is to blame here, it is Newtek for not document properly a gem like IKBooster, and not made EVERYTHING accessible to LScript or the SDK.

David

With all due respect to you and to everyone else who has cared enough to comment about all of this, the above characterization is not really fair. The assumption that Larry and others have put forth is that NewTek did nothing to document IK Booster beyond what you see. While I cannot speak to the efforts that occurred prior to my time here at NewTek, I can tell you that we went to great lengths to get Ino-san to assist us with documenting IKB. We even hired a technically-oriented translator to assist us in this process. This effort took place over several months, and resulted in virtually no improvement; due in large part because Ino could not convey many of the functions or benefits beyond the simplistic explanations contained within the documentation. I agree, the documentation should have been better, which is why we went to the trouble of working with Ino to make that happen.

Second, regarding the ability of Ino-san to make improvements in IKB, he was given free reign to do so; he instead pursued other areas that interested him at the time. So, any notion that IKB was not a priority lies more at the feet of the engineer in this case, than NewTek.

We learned many lessons throughout this process, and I am endeavoring to make sure that this doesn't happen anymore.

richdj
07-19-2008, 04:15 PM
With all due respect to you and to everyone else who has cared enough to comment about all of this, the above characterization is not really fair. The assumption that Larry and others have put forth is that NewTek did nothing to document IK Booster beyond what you see. While I cannot speak to the efforts that occurred prior to my time here at NewTek, I can tell you that we went to great lengths to get Ino-san to assist us with documenting IKB. We even hired a technically-oriented translator to assist us in this process. This effort took place over several months, and resulted in virtually no improvement; due in large part because Ino could not convey many of the functions or benefits beyond the simplistic explanations contained within the documentation. I agree, the documentation should have been better, which is why we went to the trouble of working with Ino to make that happen.

Second, regarding the ability of Ino-san to make improvements in IKB, he was given free reign to do so; he instead pursued other areas that interested him at the time. So, any notion that IKB was not a priority lies more at the feet of the engineer in this case, than NewTek.

We learned many lessons throughout this process, and I am endeavoring to make sure that this doesn't happen anymore.

Jayroth, firstly thankyou for a NT reply here. I initially got the impression (as I think did a number of others) that IKB was a 'booster' to IK and not a usefull tool in it's own right, as Larry has shown (some may disagree, but its my opinion). As this is clearly causing some debate, can NT confirm if it is looking to improve, upgrade or replace with something similar or completely different to IKB? Also, as the docs are not as you and the LW community would like, why not take utilize the information Larry is providing to upgrade them. Also, why not take Larry up on his offer of demo-ing IKB at siggraph?

Rich

cresshead
07-19-2008, 04:16 PM
good to see some 'balance' to the history of ikbooster...i think 'lost in translation' covers this particular chapter in ikbooster..still no doubt newtek do have plans for imporved character tools for lw10 and beyond.

i think ikbooster has someting to offer but really when all is considered the way forward for character tools is not really to stick with ikbooster and progrss it further but to finally re write the tools for character animation from the ground up and get deformation lattices into layout and bone weighting into layout too...

currently ikbooster appears to offer good results for time critical medium res character animations, but as pooby has already noted lightwave can do this with ikbooster or the base tools...for lw to start to be able to go that extra step for hi res characters we need new tools.

SplineGod
07-19-2008, 04:31 PM
Jay, I dont feel there are many assumptions in my comments.Ino was a big help to me in understanding how various part of IKB work and I dont speak japanese.

I was also told by a friend of mine who was invited to visit Newtek during a dev meeting there that Ino was also there and people were having trouble communicating with him, especially when it came to the more technical things. He told me that there was no translator present and when he suggested that newtek get one, they went to a local college rather then bring in a translator who also had a technical background.

I also know that Ino was very responsive when it came to fixing bugs in the dynamics part of LW and IKB.

Im also somewhat familiar with some of the efforts made by Newtek to document IKB. I was asked by Newtek to contribute to that documentation and was asked to donate copies of my old IKB DVD to "help train newtek support staff and use to derive documentation from". Since that time I havent seen the docs with regard to IKB change much or at all. I havent been contacted about it since and nobody else that I know that uses IKB has mentioned it either. Maybe Newtek did make some effort butm, IMO, not enough.

jayroth
07-19-2008, 04:36 PM
I was also told by a friend of mine who was invited to visit Newtek during a dev meeting there that Ino was also there and people were having trouble communicating with him, especially when it came to the more technical things. He told me that there was no translator present and when he suggested that newtek get one, they went to a local college rather then bring in a translator who also had a technical background.


Not during my watch, Larry. The person I hired has quite a significant technical background, lives and teaches in Japan, and is an avid 3D user with a desire to see our efforts with Ino succeed.

pooby
07-19-2008, 04:37 PM
There are some good ideas in IK boost. I dont see it as a complete pile of junk but I would try and dissuade someone serious about learning character animation from using it, because I think that it will discourage people as they wont get great results and will think it's their own fault.

It's like making a microwaved meal. It's easy and fast, but it tastes like crap to a decent cook. But it's still subjective. Not everyone can tell the difference to the same degree. It's about what you're expecting.

IK boost has it's uses, although I think I only used it once in production and certainly not on the limbs of a character. I'd like to see it taken out, but the good ideas put into a more cohesive system across the board on a more atomic level.
In other words, the right clicking to access a menu.. Good idea, but if you could also do that on anything (such as lights) and edit what you want that menu to show in different modes, such as Set-up and Animation, and you could set keys and access them in that menu if you liked. - that would be taking a good concept from IK boost and making it into something truly useful.

SplineGod
07-19-2008, 04:46 PM
good to see some 'balance' to the history of ikbooster...i think 'lost in translation' covers this particular chapter in ikbooster..still no doubt newtek do have plans for imporved character tools for lw10 and beyond.

i think ikbooster has someting to offer but really when all is considered the way forward for character tools is not really to stick with ikbooster and progrss it further but to finally re write the tools for character animation from the ground up and get deformation lattices into layout and bone weighting into layout too...

currently ikbooster appears to offer good results for time critical medium res character animations, but as pooby has already noted lightwave can do this with ikbooster or the base tools...for lw to start to be able to go that extra step for hi res characters we need new tools.


Going to have to disagree somewhat here :)
IKB offers great animation tools regardless of the time frame involved. Its a tribute to its power that we get good results under very tight deadlines.
Yes its possible to get good animation out of LW regardless of the method. THe fact remains that IKB offers far more then basic animation tools. If you saw the demo where I used the lion I demonstrated several aspects that just cannot be done in LW either at all or not without a great deal of time and effort.
The example I showed last weeked was making a simple walk cycle on a lion. Extending that out to hundreds of frames, making the lion walk forward automatically and then being able to, at any point, change his directon and still keep the feet locked and all in a very easy effortless way.

All I ever here from the naysayers are concering the whole baking/binding thing which is a non issue simply because the tools provide a simple and effective way to deal with those. In fact its easier to change or edit baked frames in IKB then it is to do the same thing to IK goals in the graph editor.

At work we use IKB daily for many hours. Most of the shots average 25 seconds or so and we do several shots a week. IKB has been very reliable and solid.
We also been trying to incorporate some mocap and weve found that IKB provides some tools to allow us to very easily manipulate mocap in ways that the standard LW tools simply cannot do. :)

cresshead
07-19-2008, 04:55 PM
i look forward top seeing the lion vid soon once it's available to see on kurv

SplineGod
07-19-2008, 04:56 PM
There are some good ideas in IK boost. I dont see it as a complete pile of junk but I would try and dissuade someone serious about learning character animation from using it, because I think that it will discourage people as they wont get great results and will think it's their own fault.

It's like making a microwaved meal. It's easy and fast, but it tastes like crap to a decent cook. But it's still subjective. Not everyone can tell the difference to the same degree. It's about what you're expecting.

IK boost has it's uses, although I think I only used it once in production and certainly not on the limbs of a character. I'd like to see it taken out, but the good ideas put into a more cohesive system across the board on a more atomic level.
In other words, the right clicking to access a menu.. Good idea, but if you could also do that on anything (such as lights) and edit what you want that menu to show in different modes, such as Set-up and Animation, and you could set keys and access them in that menu if you liked. - that would be taking a good concept from IK boost and making it into something truly useful.

The funny thing is that we do have experience animators who are experience with using other apps for CA work. They are able to use IKB with no problems and actually enjoy using it and produce good results with it.

Implementing those ideas to include lights and such is a good idea but were talking mainly about CA here.

IKB has a lot of other ideas then simply right clicking on things. Its whole workflow and non cluttered way of presenting things as opposed to having good tools but with lots of windows and menus youre forced to wade thru.

How about the fact that a single tick mark in the dopetrack can represent a single item, a heirarchy or a complete rig with a simple mouse click. It makes editing poses, deleting or adding keyframes immensely easier and faster.

How about copying/mirroring poses directly between rigs on a whole character or any parts?

What about being able to save/load poses and motions from a whole rig or parts of that rig?

I can also paste those into the timeline into an already existing animation with options to blend with the previous frames and post frames.

Theres also the dynamics. Sure it bakes motions on every bone but there are simple tools to easily allow an animator to alter the animation, add to it, remove keys etc. In fact its those same tools that allow easy editing of mocap data in ways that again would be very very diffcult in LW using any other method.

I never see the detractors mention ANY of this.

SplineGod
07-19-2008, 04:57 PM
i look forward top seeing the lion vid soon once it's available to see on kurv

Me too! Wes has it in the que behind a couple of others that are being converted to quicktime :)

dballesg
07-19-2008, 04:57 PM
With all due respect to you and to everyone else who has cared enough to comment about all of this, the above characterization is not really fair. The assumption that Larry and others have put forth is that NewTek did nothing to document IK Booster beyond what you see. While I cannot speak to the efforts that occurred prior to my time here at NewTek, I can tell you that we went to great lengths to get Ino-san to assist us with documenting IKB. We even hired a technically-oriented translator to assist us in this process. This effort took place over several months, and resulted in virtually no improvement; due in large part because Ino could not convey many of the functions or benefits beyond the simplistic explanations contained within the documentation. I agree, the documentation should have been better, which is why we went to the trouble of working with Ino to make that happen.

Second, regarding the ability of Ino-san to make improvements in IKB, he was given free reign to do so; he instead pursued other areas that interested him at the time. So, any notion that IKB was not a priority lies more at the feet of the engineer in this case, than NewTek.

Hi Jay,

I didn't pretend to offend you, I am quite aware that you are dealing with lot of "old rotten stinking stuff" (or I must say code) on your plate.

But is clear that LW docs are not the best:

Page 260 Layout.pdf (the one that 9.0 installs):

"and IK Booster, which can be used to augment normal IK, as a separate IK system, and even have dynamics applied to your rig."

I could quote many parts of the manual that suffer from a lack of descriptions of the tools, and much more important, lack of examples. Someone named Nodes?

But for me one thing is the development team. And another one it is Newtek as an entity. I am sure you cannot be over the head of the dev team, the documentation tem and the marketing team, and designing new things all at the same time.

Sometimes I have the impression that the left hand of Newtek doesn't know what the right hand is doing.

I only want that my tools of choice are the best ones I can use and that they make my life a bit easier.

I was writing this when I saw Larry answered. I got his DVD, and today I've been looking the first 10 videos, after what I learned on those first 10 videos I hope you can dissect IK Booster and integrate its bests parts on the new CA Tools.


We learned many lessons throughout this process, and I am endeavoring to make sure that this doesn't happen anymore.

And I thank you deeply and the new team for that.

David

SplineGod
07-19-2008, 05:05 PM
Not during my watch, Larry. The person I hired has quite a significant technical background, lives and teaches in Japan, and is an avid 3D user with a desire to see our efforts with Ino succeed.

I understand that some of this wasnt on your watch but some of it does overlap. My point though is I dont posses a gene allowing me to pick up IKB more or less then anyone else. My coworkers picked it up enough to run with it in 3-4 days. I was able to communicate well enough with Ino to get my questions answered which assisted greatly in my understanding of IKB. I would assume that if I could do it that Newtek, with greater resources could as well. Like I said, Ive contributed time and talent to documenting it, teacing it etc. I just havent seen much since then to convince me that Newtek had any more interest. I think its obvious that many people are interested in IKB. When we started doing free demos we literally had several hundred people signing up. That says something. It would be a shame IMO to let such a great tool go to waste. Newtek could certainly sell a few copies of LW if IKB/LW were properly demoed. IKB may not fit everyones personal workflow or preference but it sure shocks the hell out of those who dont really know what it can do (which is most people).

BTW Dave that comment in the manual about IKB augmenting the current IK system sadly was based on my OLD IKB DVD and my understanding of IKB at THAT time. Since then Ive come to learn that this is an incorrect statment. While IKB can be used in conjuction with Standard IK, PLG etc. Its true power happens on its own. :)

cresshead
07-19-2008, 05:15 PM
seems to be that newtek and splinegod ARE pulling for the same goals> that of a better, improved lightwave..maybe they should get together on a skype conference and talk thru some stuff to help newtek and lightwave move forward rather than re-state what happened when..history is just that..'history' time to use that knowledge to move forward and not just look backwards at what 'might have been'...if you know what i mean!

stee+cats

dballesg
07-19-2008, 05:16 PM
That says something. It would be a shame IMO to let such a great tool go to waste. Newtek could certainly sell a few copies of LW if IKB/LW were properly demoed. IKB may not fit everyones personal workflow or preference but it sure shocks the hell out of those who dont really know what it can do (which is most people).

BTW Dave that comment in the manual about IKB augmenting the current IK system sadly was based on my OLD IKB DVD and my understanding of IKB at THAT time. Since then Ive come to learn that this is an incorrect statment. While IKB can be used in conjuction with Standard IK, PLG etc. Its true power happens on its own. :)

Oh I didn't know that Larry.

The manual sometimes confuse you more. Even when I have a good grasp of English: spoken, written and read. Being Spanish my main language there are ways in which the things are expressed in the manual that sometimes makes me wonder if I readed it well! :)

And after watching more videos I can see the power of IKB, but I can see its defects, and it has a few. That is why I agree that Newtek must not waste it, they would do better looking which parts can be moved over the traditional Rigging and IK system and improve it from there.

David

pooby
07-19-2008, 05:26 PM
IKB has a lot of other ideas then simply right clicking on things. Its whole workflow and non cluttered way of presenting things as opposed to having good tools but with lots of windows and menus youre forced to wade thru.

How about the fact that a single tick mark in the dopetrack can represent a single item, a heirarchy or a complete rig with a simple mouse click. It makes editing poses, deleting or adding keyframes immensely easier and faster.

How about copying/mirroring poses directly between rigs on a whole character or any parts?

What about being able to save/load poses and motions from a whole rig or parts of that rig?

I can also paste those into the timeline into an already existing animation with options to blend with the previous frames and post frames.

Theres also the dynamics.

Again. all good ideas. I don't have a problem with IK boost's concepts. It all SOUNDS great.
Its just the reliance on a vanilla FK heirarchy and all that brings along that is what I dont like. I have never seen a piece of IK boost animation, (including my own attempts), that shows nice flowing follow through secondary movement. It's all Post shift pose shift pose shift basic stuff and rather rigid looking and mechanical. I know why it ends up like that too. Its no mystery to me. It's the nature of the interpolation of keys over a one way simple heirarchy.
To take a clear example, its not going to be easy to make a long necked bird dance around whilst keeping its head bobbing up and down in the same position, but having full control over the waves of motion travelling up his neck from the body with a 2D heirarchy. It doesnt make any difference how easy that is to pose. it's not about going from one pose to another- it's a continuous flow of motion that needs something designed to cope with it. With IK boost, that's going to be hidden in hundreds of keys on multiple items all counteracting each other.
It would be so much easier to have a curve based solution.

I use that example not because it's something you'd commonly do, but because it illustrates the point I'm trying to make. And this goes for every aspect of a character even if it's not as obvious as that example. animation is about designing the flow of motion, not just making somethign move about.

If I can see something wondefully fluid and characterful, and not mechanical and rigid and someone can explain how they achieved it easily, then I'm willing to eat my words. I'm not in the business of poo pooing things for my own amusement.

geothefaust
07-19-2008, 05:30 PM
Well, as a relative newbie to character animation, I'd like to say that I think IKB has been a pleasure to learn with. I tried the normal LW IK, and found it so damn cumbersome. I've messed around with XSI and Maya rigging/animation toolsets, and I like them a lot. I think IKB is the closest thing LW has in getting to the point of XSI/Maya type rigging and character animation. Yeah, it's not as great, that's for sure, but it's a pretty good start.

But hey, that's probably just me. It's taken me a while to learn rigging, but thanks to IKB, I feel like I've progressed much in the last couple of weeks.

ericsmith
07-19-2008, 05:46 PM
All I ever here from the naysayers are concering the whole baking/binding thing which is a non issue simply because the tools provide a simple and effective way to deal with those. In fact its easier to change or edit baked frames in IKB then it is to do the same thing to IK goals in the graph editor.

Then you've misread/misunderstood just about every post I've made on the subject this time around.


The funny thing is that we do have experience animators who are experience with using other apps for CA work. They are able to use IKB with no problems and actually enjoy using it and produce good results with it.

Are you going on record as saying that the animation done on "Untamed and Uncut" is good animation?

If we have such radically different understandings of the word "good", then that might explain why we have such different opinions regarding IKB.


At work we use IKB daily for many hours. Most of the shots average 25 seconds or so and we do several shots a week. IKB has been very reliable and solid.

Just for comparison (since you keep bringing Maestro into this), here's some animation work I did that was around 40 seconds or so in one day (around 8 - 10 hours), including rigging:

http://www.thepixelfarm.com/Anim/WBKPromo.html

It is true that trying to get that much animation done on such a short schedule means it's not going to match Pixar levels, but I would consider this animation to be acceptable at a professional level. And there's more going on there than just a simple walk cycle.

What I saw on "Untamed and Uncut" was rough pre-vis at best. Considering the fact that every character in that show except for the shark (which barely moved) was either a biped or standard quadruped, I think I could have delivered the same quality as I posted above for all the animation I saw in your show within the 3 day deadline, assuming I had one person to help assist with the other aspects of aquiring assets, texturing, etc. It would be a long, hard 3 days, but if the team was four instead of two, That would be a walk in the park.

If you want to post the animation you did on that show, we can compare and contrast.

Eric

ericsmith
07-19-2008, 05:52 PM
Again. all good ideas. I don't have a problem with IK boost's concepts. It all SOUNDS great.
Its just the reliance on a vanilla FK heirarchy and all that brings along that is what I dont like. I have never seen a piece of IK boost animation, (including my own attempts), that shows nice flowing follow through secondary movement. It's all Post shift pose shift pose shift basic stuff and rather rigid looking and mechanical. I know why it ends up like that too. Its no mystery to me. It's the nature of the interpolation of keys over a one way simple heirarchy.
To take a clear example, its not going to be easy to make a long necked bird dance around whilst keeping its head bobbing up and down in the same position, but having full control over the waves of motion travelling up his neck from the body with a 2D heirarchy. It doesnt make any difference how easy that is to pose. it's not about going from one pose to another- it's a continuous flow of motion that needs something designed to cope with it. With IK boost, that's going to be hidden in hundreds of keys on multiple items all counteracting each other.
It would be so much easier to have a curve based solution.

I use that example not because it's something you'd commonly do, but because it illustrates the point I'm trying to make. And this goes for every aspect of a character even if it's not as obvious as that example. animation is about designing the flow of motion, not just making somethign move about.

If I can see something wondefully fluid and characterful, and not mechanical and rigid and someone can explain how they achieved it easily, then I'm willing to eat my words. I'm not in the business of poo pooing things for my own amusement.

Paul, that was extremely well said. Thank you.

For anyone still wondering why we're still making such a fuss, please re-read Paul's post until you have a clear comprehension of what he's saying.

Eric

SplineGod
07-19-2008, 05:59 PM
Pooby, you make it sound like achieving decent animaton using poses is somehow alien to the concept of CA. Funny how lots of cel animation was done using static poses and yet good stuff looked good and fluid. Mechanical looking animation is a animator problem not a tool issue. Ive seen plenty of bad looking animaton done with pretty much every package and its almost always without question due to the animator and not the tools.

IKB doesnt simply allow posing but you have direct control over when the pose occurs and you can easily tweak parts of a rig to do all the nice things good animation demands. The quality of the end result as with any method used is going to depend upon the time constraints and the experience of the animator.

I think IKB is perfectly capable of animating a bird scuh as you describe. Keep in mind something. I think LW 10 is far enough away that I dont even think about it. I have to use what tools I have that work NOW. To be honest I will be very (and pleasantly) surprised if LW10 hits the ground with anything that has at minimum the same functionality as IKB.

Geofaust
See the problem is that apparently those of us who agree are in the wrong simply because the naysayers say we are despite the fact that we are very successfully using it on our show. We also found out friday that Animal Planet wants another season of the show and are planning others. A big factor has been the CGI.
Call me crazy but you would think Newtek would want to capitalize on that and sell some seats of LW. Somehow all the "IKB sucks, get XSI" talk wont sell one seat of LW Im afraid. More and more places out here are looking for Generalists and are looking to get the work done faster and at a high quality. LW fits very well into that paradigm.
What I also find interesting is that lack of use of XSI out here. If its so great why isnt it used more? If I had to rely on XSI to earn I living Id be dead in a week. Very few places use it. Id be interested in knowing why. On the other hand Ive always been able to use LW consistently to earn a living. The last two places Ive worked went from using something else to using LW. Two of the reasons both studios switched were because of IKBoost. Again, I would think Newtek would be interested in why.

SplineGod
07-19-2008, 06:04 PM
Eric the animation looks fine for what it is.
I dont see anything that couldnt be done with a simple STANDARD LW rig without having to use Maestro. In IKB it would be a piece of cake to do.
I think Maestro is a far better scene controller/orchestrator then as simply a CA tool.

richdj
07-19-2008, 06:19 PM
What I saw in Larrys demo was an introduction for those like me (who aren't animators) to use a simple enough rig and get it animated. I don't believe it to be the be-all and end-all of a rig / animation solution, but it's a very good start. Eric, I think it was a cheap shot making reference to the quality of Larrys animation. If you think it's not up to the standard then thats fine, but this thread is about promoting LW and using part of it which is not overly promoted. As a side note: I have Maestro and I like it, the only problem I have come across with it is that my system runs slow. Which before anyone says it, is down to my system. I will try a scene with IKB that I used with maestro as a comparison. What I would ask though, "Is there not enough room in the world for both?" Please keep this on track, as a thread to NT to promote / improve LW's toolset.

Rich

ericsmith
07-19-2008, 06:32 PM
I dont see anything that couldnt be done with a simple STANDARD LW rig without having to use Maestro.

I keep telling you, it IS a standard LW rig. Using Maestro just meant a lot less mouse-clicks and selection frustration. And yes, that means getting it done a lot faster.


In IKB it would be a piece of cake to do.

If that were true, then you would have done so in Untamed and Uncut.


Eric, I think it was a cheap shot making reference to the quality of Larrys animation. If you think it's not up to the standard then thats fine, but this thread is about promoting LW and using part of it which is not overly promoted.

You know, I didn't do it lightly. But I think it needed to be clarified that when Larry claims to be using IKB in production, and that other animators with alternate app experience are creating "good" animation with it, we know exactly what that looks like.

Larry isn't some newbie here. He's been in this industry long enough to know what quality animation looks like.


I will try a scene with IKB that I used with maestro as a comparison. What I would ask though, "Is there not enough room in the world for both?"

I never wanted to drag Maestro into this. It's typically Larry that throws it up as a smokescreen whenever I ask to see the results of IKB.

Eric

rakker16mm
07-19-2008, 06:33 PM
I started this thread hoping to get people to take a second look at IKB, and I think that a lot of people have. So in that respect I regard this a successful thread.

[ From here on I am going to be going a slightly off topic ]

A few other useful bits of information came out of the thread as well. For one thing, it is clear clear that a lot of people have very strong feelings about IKB and CA in general. Some people are never going to like IKB while others feel it's just the best darn thing since sliced bread. Of course this is just what you would expect. After all if you asked 100 animators what the best way to animate is, you are probably going to get at least 99 different answers.

The trick is to take all of of the opinions expressed and build a useful picture out of it. Fortunately most of the people who responded to this thread, did so in a very thoughtful and useful way. It is clear that the people who don't like IKB have very specific reasons why they feel it is not all that great a tool. The very same can be said for the proponents of IKB.

Unfortunately all those great points are interspersed with a bit of mutual recrimination here and there throughout the entirety thread. So it is very difficult to gain a clear understanding of what needs to be done to make IKB and CA in LightWave better, and by better I mean CA tools that are flexible enough to meet the needs of most Lightwavers. Clearly it is as impossible task to make a perfect CA toolset which works perfectly for every one on every production, just as it is impossible to make one Rig which will work for every model.

A survey would produce a much more accurate and useful picture.


Do you use IKB? yes/no

If no, why not? _________

What are IKB's strengths? _________

What are IKB's weaknesses?_________

What other CA tools do you use and why? _________

Obviously there are a lot more useful questions to be asked. As we LightWavers approach the 10.X cycle with NewTek, it is up to us to make sure that NT understands what is working for us and why. That of course would be a much broader survey than just issues surrounding IKB.

I also want to thank Larry Shultz for introducing me to IKBooster as well as Jay Roth for responding to this thread. Each have in their own way contributed to a much clearer picture regarding IKBooster.

I do hope that NT will keep IKBooster and keep developing it. As far as the past difficulties with documentation go, IMOHO they are solved by Larry's DVD. If NewTek could consider purchasing rights to that material from Larry and Kurv, and make that available to the Lightwave community, it would go a long way toward producing a more positive view of IKBooster and LightWave in general. While IKBooster is not the be all and end all CA tool I suspect that a lot of people gave up on it for lack of documentation. From the perspective the customer it doesn't really matter who dropped the ball. All that matters is moving being able to make use of a great tool.

Best regards to all

richdj
07-19-2008, 06:46 PM
I started this thread hoping to get people to take a second look at IKB, and I think that a lot of people have. So in that respect I regard this a successful thread.

[ From here on I am going to be going a slightly off topic ]

A few other useful bits of information came out of the thread as well. For one thing, it is clear clear that a lot of people have very strong feelings about IKB and CA in general. Some people are never going to like IKB while others feel it's just the best darn thing since sliced bread. Of course this is just what you would expect. After all if you asked 100 animators what the best way to animate is, you are probably going to get at least 99 different answers.

The trick is to take all of of the opinions expressed and build a useful picture out of it. Fortunately most of the people who responded to this thread, did so in a very thoughtful and useful way. It is clear that the people who don't like IKB have very specific reasons why they feel it is not all that great a tool. The very same can be said for the proponents of IKB.

Unfortunately all those great points are interspersed with a bit of mutual recrimination here and there throughout the entirety thread. So it is very difficult to gain a clear understanding of what needs to be done to make IKB and CA in LightWave better, and by better I mean CA tools that are flexible enough to meet the needs of most Lightwavers. Clearly it is as impossible task to make a perfect CA toolset which works perfectly for every one on every production, just as it is impossible to make one Rig which will work for every model.

A survey would produce a much more accurate and useful picture.



Obviously there are a lot more useful questions to be asked. As we LightWavers approach the 10.X cycle with NewTek, it is up to us to make sure that NT understands what is working for us and why. That of course would be a much broader survey than just issues surrounding IKB.

I also want to thank Larry Shultz for introducing me to IKBooster as well as Jay Roth for responding to this thread. Each have in their own way contributed to a much clearer picture regarding IKBooster.

I do hope that NT will keep IKBooster and keep developing it. As far as the past difficulties with documentation go, IMOHO they are solved by Larry's DVD. If NewTek could consider purchasing rights to that material from Larry and Kurv, and make that available to the Lightwave community, it would go a long way toward producing a more positive view of IKBooster and LightWave in general. While IKBooster is not the be all and end all CA tool I suspect that a lot of people gave up on it for lack of documentation. From the perspective the customer it doesn't really matter who dropped the ball. All that matters is moving being able to make use of a great tool.

Best regards to all


I was with you from the start and I'm still there.. I hope NT take up the thread as a positive request, and update / improve IKB (and rename it so it doesn't sound like an add-on). CA in LW is bashed regularly, and I'd like to see that changed....

Newtek please let us know CA is an improvement coming....

Rich

SP00
07-19-2008, 07:06 PM
The difficulty in learning IKboost is partially documentation, but I also think that it is a completely foreign system. Therefore inherently unintuitive. When the next CA system comes into LW, I hope they understand the importance of keeping it intuitive, so that we wouldn't need great documentation to figure it out. It took 4 years to figure out IKB by trial and error, its just not intuitive enough. Once you get it, it is easy, but the next CA system should help you get it easily. It should be a standard development philosophy.

SplineGod
07-19-2008, 07:39 PM
What I saw on "Untamed and Uncut" was rough pre-vis at best. Considering the fact that every character in that show except for the shark (which barely moved) was either a biped or standard quadruped, I think I could have delivered the same quality as I posted above for all the animation I saw in your show within the 3 day deadline, assuming I had one person to help assist with the other aspects of aquiring assets, texturing, etc. It would be a long, hard 3 days, but if the team was four instead of two, That would be a walk in the park.

If you want to post the animation you did on that show, we can compare and contrast.

Eric

Eric,
Leave it you to show how a real professional can take it to an all time low. If youre going to be critical of other peoples work and/or tools then you leave yourself and your tools of choice open to the same scrutiny.

That dog was modeled in what, 10 minuts and textured in 5? Im sure you were paid to do it so I guess it qualifies as a professional job. Theres not anything in there that couldnt be done with the most basic LW tools with no additional plugins. As far as doing it in IKB it would be a piece of cake.

Not sure which episodes you watched. The first two were basically in the works when I came on board. We werent using IKBoost at that time except in a limited way.
I also didnt do much animation on those two...mostly lighting, texturing and modeling, bone setup etc.
We also have no control over how its cut together etc, they do that.

Heres some of the shots Ive done. On top of any animation I have to model/aquire assets. They have to be surfaced and textured. When possible I also apply fur. I also do any water, castics, dust and other effects. I also have to create any environments as well. All characters have to be boned and weight maps applied etc if needed. I also have to setup camera moves etc etc which tend to be somewhat complicated. On top of all this I have to animate and redo/fix/change whatever the client wants after that. Also factor in render times. My average shot length is anywhere from 22 - 35 seconds.
Im sorry Eric but theres no comparison between your doggy and what we have to do. You dont have any difficult modeling, no difficult texturing, no difficult lighing, no difficult camera work and no environments. Youve also got no difficult visual fx of any kind. On top of all that the animation is very basic and simple. In the end what we did was what the client wanted. In some cases they asked us to make things less real because they wanted it to look more 'illustrative'. Each shot here was COMPLETELY done includng rendering anywhere from a day to day and a half.
Heres the links to some of my shots:
http://www.3dtrainingonline.com/anims/sharkcage1.wmv
http://www.3dtrainingonline.com/anims/bullrider1.wmv
http://www.3dtrainingonline.com/anims/bullrider2.wmv
http://www.3dtrainingonline.com/anims/surfer1.wmv
http://www.3dtrainingonline.com/anims/surfer2.wmv

SPOO,
Intuitive is usually in the eyes of the beholder. LW has had rigging tools for years and years as well as other
apps. You still see tons of questions on forums and you see tons of educational material on it.
IKB is the most easy streamlined process Ive seen. I also have the added experience of having taught this
for a very long time, done it in production under some very stressful circumstances. Using IKB gives me
the chance to compare the two approaches and IKB is far easier. Ive also taught IKB and have seen people
pick it up far quicker then other methods. As you pointed out, documentation and examples are the key. :)

PS. Thanks Rakker! :)

roboanarchy
07-19-2008, 08:03 PM
Firstly,
I just want to see the end result of larry...
Where's the lion animation sample?
Can you upload it to youtube or others..?
Just the final sample clip..pls
thx.

I don't understand why so many people want to see end results. It must be that the people asking do not understand that the point Larry is making is how transparent IKB really is to the animation process.

The things you see as end products from it are going to represent the skill of the operator and the effort spent much more than the limitations of the software because it allows you full control over the rig.

Its like asking to see a wax carving in order to judge the tools I used to create it.

ericsmith
07-19-2008, 09:02 PM
Leave it you to show how a real professional can take it to an all time low. If youre going to be critical of other peoples work and/or tools then you leave yourself and your tools of choice open to the same scrutiny.

That dog was modeled in what, 10 minuts and textured in 5? Im sure you were paid to do it so I guess it qualifies as a professional job. Theres not anything in there that couldnt be done with the most basic LW tools with no additional plugins. As far as doing it in IKB it would be a piece of cake.

I didn't model the dog. That was done by Mitch Rosefelt (Pixelfarmer), and I assume it was done to the specifications of the client. I just rigged and animated it.

I've posted my modeling demoreel recently in the gallery section, so if you want to tear that apart, feel free.


Not sure which episodes you watched. The first two were basically in the works when I came on board. We werent using IKBoost at that time except in a limited way.
I also didnt do much animation on those two...mostly lighting, texturing and modeling, bone setup etc.
We also have no control over how its cut together etc, they do that.

I saw the one with the shark cage, lion attacking the trainer, bull jumping into the stands, the horse falling through the bridge, etc.


Im sorry Eric but theres no comparison between your doggy and what we have to do. You dont have any difficult modeling, no difficult texturing, no difficult lighing, no difficult camera work and no environments. Youve also got no difficult visual fx of any kind. On top of all that the animation is very basic and simple. In the end what we did was what the client wanted. In some cases they asked us to make things less real because they wanted it to look more 'illustrative'. Each shot here was COMPLETELY done includng rendering anywhere from a day to day and a half.
Heres the links to some of my shots:

The fact is, the modeling, texturing, sfx and rendering aren't at issue here (and they're perfectly acceptable for the nature of the show and the limited timeframe - although it is my understanding that you've purchased most of the models, is that correct?). This is about animation.

And now that you've finally posted something, I'll leave it to others to draw their own conclusions.

Eric

P.S. One more thing. As I read back through my own previous post, I don't think what I said was partucularly "low". My main point was to demonstrate that decent quality animation was possible with standard IK rigging methods within a very tight timeline (40 seconds in 8 hours, including rigging). What I said about the animation done in the Untamed and Uncut show was that it was more along the lines of rough previs, which is not an innaccurate appraisal in my opinion. For most of the shots, a majority of the time the characters are either frozen or only barely moving. The dog animation I posted had A LOT more in terms of the actual animation.

ericsmith
07-19-2008, 09:05 PM
By the way, if we can just take off the gloves for a moment, I just have to ask...

In the "sharkcage1" shot, what happened to the one diver's left forarm? It looks like another shark had a go at him earlier.

Eric

hrgiger
07-19-2008, 09:25 PM
In the "sharkcage1" shot, what happened to the one diver's left forarm? It looks like another shark had a go at him earlier.

Eric

Yeah, I noticed that too.

Maybe it's just me but perhaps if we had some decent examples of what IKB was capable of, there might have been more interest from the start. Going from Larry's examples above, it doesn't make me want to learn IKB. Animation is more then just being able to pose a character easily, it has a lot to do with how those poses are interpolated. The examples above show no sense of timing, weight or secondary motion so it's hard to say at this point if the problem with the motion is IKB or a problem between the seat and the monitor or maybe a little bit of both?

Chuck
07-19-2008, 09:40 PM
But is clear that LW docs are not the best:

Page 260 Layout.pdf (the one that 9.0 installs):

"and IK Booster, which can be used to augment normal IK, as a separate IK system, and even have dynamics applied to your rig."



David, you cite this as an example of a fault in the manual, but you don't make it clear to me why you are critical of the sentence. What is it that you think this sentence says? How are you parsing this sentence?

From the emphasis you've added and from earlier discussions on this thread (not necessarily just from you) expressing that some folks feel NewTek portrayed IKB as only a "booster" for the existing IK system, I can only guess that you think this sentence somehow confirms that notion. Parsed correctly, however, it says that NewTek understood that IKB could be used in conjunction with native IK, could be used on its own, and is used to apply dynamics to bones, which latter can only be done via IKB. Taking the words as they stand and just making a bullet list rather than a sentence, you get this:


and IK Booster, which can be used to

augment normal IK,
as a separate IK system,
and even have dynamics applied to your rig.


Am I wrong, or aren't the docs saying here precisely what some are claiming that they don't say, and showing a clear understanding of precisely what some are claiming that NewTek didn't understand about IKB? All in one simple declarative sentence.

If I am misunderstanding your intent, please let me know. I'd really like to understand why that sentence in particular is something you would cite as problematical.

rakker16mm
07-19-2008, 09:52 PM
Yeah, I noticed that too.

Maybe it's just me but perhaps if we had some decent examples of what IKB was capable of, there might have been more interest from the start. Going from Larry's examples above, it doesn't make me want to learn IKB. Animation is more then just being able to pose a character easily, it has a lot to do with how those poses are interpolated. The examples above show no sense of timing, weight or secondary motion so it's hard to say at this point if the problem with the motion is IKB or a problem between the seat and the monitor or maybe a little bit of both?

I think the pose to pose look in Uncut and Untamed is more a product of a tight production schedule than the tool set. If I am not mistaken you can shut off IKB at anytime and finesse the animation to add those nuances with IK or FK.

SplineGod
07-19-2008, 09:56 PM
Roboanarchy,
Thats been my point this whole time. You have people wanting to see some kind of result without taking into account all the other factors that go into REAL production work. There are 4 - 5 people here who consistently pull up that same tired arguement.
Some of them talk about how wonderful XSI is and want to tell us of the marvels its capable of only after 2 weeks of useage and have nothing to show either from XSI or from LW.
Others will show something done using another 3rd party app claiming its a better way to go and only show something that could be done using LW 3. Its the same old tired arguement from either those who really havent spent the time to REALLY put the tools to the test or simply armchair quaterbacks who paint themselves up for a game but in the end produce only a lot of racket and nothing useful or concrete.
Im proud of the work weve been able to do on this show under some serious time constraints. Its nice to be told by the network that because of the CGI (we did all the titles for the intro as well) that its the highest rated show theyve had in 4 years and theyve signed up for a 2nd season. Id say mission accomplished and we did it all with native LW. :)

SplineGod
07-19-2008, 09:59 PM
I think the pose to pose look in Uncut and Untamed is more a product of a tight production schedule than the tool set. If I am not mistaken you can shut off IKB at anytime and finesse the animation to add those nuances with IK or FK.

The problem is that you have a hobbyist trying to critique real production without having a clue what real production entails. Adding those nuances are a matter of having more time to do it rather then the toolset preventing one from doing it. Ill be looking for Steve to produce something really killer in a couple of days using that superior XSI package.
Also dont you notice that is ALWAYS the same 4-5 ppl that drop into these threads saying the same thing.
Some ppl just cant leave will enough alone.

rakker16mm
07-19-2008, 10:10 PM
Id say mission accomplished and we did it all with native LW. :)

I think taking into account all the factors that go into a production is a must when looking at any one's work. I feel this applies to all creative endeavors, and not just animation. Higher production values always require more time, effort and people.

Surrealist.
07-19-2008, 10:10 PM
I think the time and constraints of this project do make a difference. It clearly shows that the limitations in the animation have nothing to do with IK booster.

Making all of the extra secondary motions that you would want and all the little tweaking you could do to give it more fluid motion in all the places you would want is just more poses more key frames more time and more money. That as a given, there was plenty of action and reaction and the cadge sequence was excellent in that regard. Very realistic motions.

I think the illustrative nature of the shots were very appropriate and fit well within the format of the show.

And within this same context I thought the Bull sequence was great.

EDIT: Just saw all the other threads since steve...

SplineGod
07-19-2008, 10:16 PM
rakker, surrealist,
Nice to have some people who understand those concepts.
Most CA work is not going to be King Kong, Gollum etc.
The vast majority of it ranges from Eric showed to what weve had to do for this show. Its all over the place and its CGI work. This show, despite the insane schedule is the most fun Ive had on a show. We wouldnt be able to do this if, on top of everything else we have to do, stop and rig the old way or with a 3rd party plugin.
That bull shot was fun but then again some here would say that realistic bulls down stop in mid air, have neck muscles show and hit some refridgerators, ...but hey...waddayado? :)

BTW Rich, I ran hardfx on the fridges and used editfx to make the one hit the camera.

rakker16mm
07-19-2008, 10:21 PM
I think the time and constraints of this project do make a difference. It clearly shows that the limitations in the animation have nothing to do with IK booster.

Making all of the extra secondary motions that you would want and all the little tweaking you could do to give it more fluid motion in all the places you would want is just more poses more key frames more time and more money. That as a given, there was plenty of action and reaction and the cadge sequence was excellent in that regard. Very realistic motions.

I think the illustrative nature of the shots were very appropriate and fit well within the format of the show.

And within this same context I thought the Bull sequence was great.

Yes I think you've got it exactly, and this issue goes back to the days of master animators handing off drawings to the other artists to do the in-betweens. Where the motion was more critical the master animator would always do more drawings. I would say in this respect at least animation really hasn't changed all that much from the early days. I've seen this issue referenced again and again, in books and interviews.

Still some tools do lend themselves to nuance better than others, but I haven't seen anything in IKB that stops you from doing "Old School"

rakker16mm
07-19-2008, 10:30 PM
That bull shot was fun but then again some here would say that realistic bulls down stop in mid air, have neck muscles show and hit some refridgerators, ...but hey...waddayado? :)

BTW Rich, I ran hardfx on the fridges and used editfx to make the one hit the camera.

I really liked that segment too.


Note to self: Never name a fighting bull "Little Bird"

Surrealist.
07-19-2008, 10:41 PM
- Chuck

This is the first para in the online manual.


IK Booster is not a replacement for the original Inverse Kinematics system, but, as the name implies, is a tool to enhance the IK system. The IK Boost Tool is located in the Modify>Tools section and provides advanced controls for an IK/FK chain directly in the Layout window, freeing you from the need to open additional panels. The chain is usually a set of connected Bones, but can also be other Objects that are parented together. Benefits of IK Booster include a speed-up of the IK system, advanced menus for editing IK chains, and allowing the user to define portions of a given rig as IK-driven and others as FK-driven on the fly during the course of an animation.

Depending on your technical understanding of the term IK System, this could be interpreted 2 ways:

1) That the IK system means setting up goal objects, and IK in the Motions Options panel etc.

or it could mean...

2) There is an "IK system" that is at the core of LightWave that all these tools access. Something that we can't use until a tool access it. In which case you could mean that you either can use goal objects and so on or apply IKbooster.

A quote from Timothy Ablee's book on LW8 Character Animation sheds a little light on what this term means to us.


What is IK Booster? It is a whole lot of things all wrapped up in a neat little package - but with respect to character rigging, it's best to think of it as something that can be used to add even more ease, power, functionality and stability to the IK systems we've been talking about already.


And he was not talking about #2 in the book he was talking about #1.

Also note that he and the manual then agree - along with Larry's and everyone else's opinion of IK booster when it was first released. IKB is an enhancement not a replacement.

This is the reality. Or it was the reality. And in the current documents I have that is how it is stated. I am not sure where you got the other quote from but if it is not in concert with the first paragraph in the IKB docs then the IKB docs should be at the very least updated to clarify.

In the online manual I have it is pretty extensive in documenting all of the controls it looks like from first glance. So that is a good start. What to do with them is another subject and that is where the improvement needs to be made.


So if you a) Changed the first paragraph and b) then take some of the information Larry and has given to sprinkle some practical application into that section of the manual you would be doing a great service not only to the current customers but also prepare for the new people that come along due to the new surge in interest with IKB which it does not look like will stop now even if you have other plans for CA in LW. Because it is now not a promise.

And on that note, we sure would like to know that you have more in mind besides what is in 9.5 and what you are planning for the future specifically.

rakker16mm
07-19-2008, 10:49 PM
I really liked that segment too.


Note to self: Never name a fighting bull "Little Bird"

Ah, I just realized I was thinking of a different episode of Untamed and Uncut. Sheesh... these bulls are a bit dangerous eh?

SplineGod
07-19-2008, 10:59 PM
Rich when I first was using IKB it seemed to make sense that it was designed to enhance the current system. That seemed to be the case because if you drop IKB onto a standard rig youll notice that the channels that have LWs fulltime IK, match goal, etc that these will show up in those channels in IKB tell you what has predominent control over those channels. IKB will control channels not controlled already by fulltime IK, Match goal, expressions, plugins etc. Those were the impressions that went into the docs at that time with little if any updates since then.
Later, as I said, Ive come to understand that IKB does best when used on its own, meaning that all the editing, pose save and loading features etc etc. Ive followed IKB obviously quite closely for a long time and have seen no progress in the docs for it and nothing in the way of actually useable tutorials or help files for that matter.

rakker,
some of those episodes blow my mind. That bull went nuts and out of thousands in the crowd he somehow managed to almost kill the trainers family.

Surrealist.
07-19-2008, 11:44 PM
Rich when I first was using IKB it seemed to make sense that it was designed to enhance the current system. That seemed to be the case because if you drop IKB onto a standard rig youll notice that the channels that have LWs fulltime IK, match goal, etc that these will show up in those channels in IKB tell you what has predominent control over those channels. IKB will control channels not controlled already by fulltime IK, Match goal, expressions, plugins etc. Those were the impressions that went into the docs at that time with little if any updates since then.
Later, as I said, Ive come to understand that IKB does best when used on its own, meaning that all the editing, pose save and loading features etc etc. Ive followed IKB obviously quite closely for a long time and have seen no progress in the docs for it and nothing in the way of actually useable tutorials or help files for that matter.


Yeah, that is actually quite a wild thing. Did Ino specifically say that is what he was doing? I have to wonder because clearly if it works that way, that is now he intended it. And do yo know who is responsible for calling it IKB?

My own experience was that I learned rigging from Timoty Ablee's book. He does go into IKB a bit as well there. IKB came up a few times on the forum and I was trying to figure it out and do stuff with it. The prevailing opinion was that it was an enhancement not a replacement. And this sentiment was echoed anytime somebody had an issue with it that they could not solve. It was like, "well don't try to use IKB alone it is best used in conjunction...."

But I do have to say my initial impression was that it was pretty powerful. But not knowing any better I just sort of accepted the current thinking.

So personally I find it refreshing to have this come to light and I am looking forward to getting into it more to see what I can do with it.

jin choung
07-20-2008, 12:55 AM
Thats been my point this whole time. You have people wanting to see some kind of result without taking into account all the other factors that go into REAL production work. There are 4 - 5 people here who consistently pull up that same tired arguement.


we keep bringing up that "old tired argument" cuz it's relevant unfortunately.



"it's the best sports car in the world! it can totally blow away even ferraris i'm tellin' ya! it keeps me from having to resort to ferraris in fact.

oh yeah, it can totally beat the top speed of any car out there. bar NONE! read my lips - BAR NONE!

what? how fast have i driven it?

35 mph. BUT! i've never had opportunity to drive it faster... i don't go on freeways and all the speed limits in my neighborhood are clearly posted "35 mph". so guess what? i drive it 35 mph!

no i've never SEEN it go past 35 mph. no. not by anyone. no it's never been recorded going over 35 mph under any circumstances whatsoever. what's your point?

listen, if it can do 35 mph (and let me tell ya, it does it EASY - doesn't even break a sweat!), why WOULDN'T it do 200 mph?"

...

so alas... that's why the "tired old argument" keeps coming up. no doubt, the point of the analogy will be missed by the usual suspects and at some point, the argument will be called tired again and some other analogy will have to be made (we've tried scalpels and sports cars.... on deck is bombs!).

anyway, if it's great, i still haven't seen anything that shows it to me.

jin

meatycheesyboy
07-20-2008, 01:22 AM
"it's the best sports car in the world! it can totally blow away even ferraris i'm tellin' ya! it keeps me from having to resort to ferraris in fact.

oh yeah, it can totally beat the top speed of any car out there. bar NONE! read my lips - BAR NONE!

what? how fast have i driven it?

35 mph. BUT! i've never had opportunity to drive it faster... i don't go on freeways and all the speed limits in my neighborhood are clearly posted "35 mph". so guess what? i drive it 35 mph!

no i've never SEEN it go past 35 mph. no. not by anyone. no it's never been recorded going over 35 mph under any circumstances whatsoever. what's your point?

listen, if it can do 35 mph (and let me tell ya, it does it EASY - doesn't even break a sweat!), why WOULDN'T it do 200 mph?"

... (we've tried scalpels and sports cars.... on deck is bombs!).

jin

I'll give the bombs a shot...

it's the best bomb in the world! it can totally blow up entire planets i'm tellin' ya! it keeps me from having to resort to nukes in fact.

oh yeah, it can totally beat the destructive capacity of any bomb out there. bar NONE! read my lips - BAR NONE!

what? have I ever blown it up?

Nope. BUT! i've never had opportunity to blow it up... i don't like to blow stuff up. so guess what? i've never detonated it!

no i've never SEEN it blown up. no. not by anyone. no it's never been blown up under any circumstances whatsoever. what's your point?

listen, if it can destroy planets (and let me tell ya, it does it EASY - doesn't even break a sweat!), why WOULDN'T it blowup a planet?

How's that Jin, if bombs come into play I've got you covered. :)

jin choung
07-20-2008, 01:25 AM
: )

nice! you totally do!

jin

jin choung
07-20-2008, 01:27 AM
oh and to be clear,

for the fans of this... if not "untested"... then at least, un-exerted car or bomb, we're not at all talking about your ability to drive fast or make bombs go boom.

just in the capability of the car and bomb in question.

thank you.

jin