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Thread: TAFA 2 - not yet...

  1. #1

    TAFA 2 - not yet...


    is there going to be a TAFA 2 ... ?

    ...perhaps, some of you might find this interesting.




    copied from > http://www.macreitercreations.com

    (Long overdue) Update June 6, 2019:

    Maybe I'm slow, but I just now found out about Emscripten. C++ to Javascript compilation with OpenGL and OpenAL support, and near-native speed. Has been used to port various things, including both Unity and Unreal Engine to the web. Hmmm... So, TAFA is written in (ancient) C++ and OpenGL.

    Its audio handling is finely tweaked Win32 multimedia code, so that would all have to be redone (I looked briefly at OpenAL back in the day, so I'm not opposed).
    Possibly more problematic is that all of the non-3D windows are currently Win32 GDI code, which would require a lot of rework.
    And, of course, there's the whole issue of 'files'. How would I load or save them? Would I have to require cloud storage? Don't want to force storage on my servers... And the resulting code would all be running locally in your browser anyway. Just have to see how the file system inside Emscripten works with local files and browser sandboxing.

    If I can recover some of my earliest morphing code via an archaeological expedition into old hard drives, I might be able to find a simple OpenGL-only morphing codebase that I could used to test just that core against Emscripten...

    Not sure if any of this is worthwhile. I mean, it would be cool to see TAFA running under Linux, on a Mac, and on phones/tablets. But as time marches into the future, I keep seeing so much more advanced technology for facial animation -- automatic face tracking to match a performer's behavior, or engines that can take text and generate both natural speech audio and natural facial expressions. Very cool, but I can easily see how these kinds of tools could render traditional facial animation tools irrelevant within the next few years.

    And, clearly, I'm not so speedy at creating products in my 'free' time these days. But I'm still curious. If I come up with anything, I'll make sure to put it up here for others to play with.

    -----

    Hello everyone.

    A recent malware scan noticed that my MediaWiki had been compromised and malware installed. I've needed to do something with the site for a long time, anyway, so rather than just trying to clean up and go back to my stale old style, I thought I'd take this opportunity to experiment with some newer website techniques and systems. Hopefully, if I stick with stuff that my hosting provider sets up, their auto-update systems will keep me protected In the interim, this low-key placeholder will have to do.

    I guess this also serves as a way -- not a great way, admittedly -- to show that I (and TAFA) are still here. No real news at this time, which is part of why the website got so dusty. 1.2.2.8 still works, though I've heard that the new Object file format in LW2018 isn't supported. Fortunately, saving as the older style still works. Just another impetus to find a way to make something happen with TAFA 2, I guess.

    As always, thanks for your interest! I'll try not to let the garden get so weed-covered again.

    Mac

    P.S. Wow, has this trivial exercise reminded me how much I hate HTML. Pointed two different mobile browsers at this page. One has unreadably small text, even after I jumped the font size to 4 (mid-range), and if I zoom in it won't re-wrap the text. But at least the paragraph breaks are visible. On the other, the text is nice and big, but didn't change when I set the font size. Unfortunately, it barely shows any paragraph break at all, making the text hard to read in a different way. Hopefully whatever browser you're using isn't choking too badly.
    Last edited by erikals; 12-14-2019 at 07:13 AM.
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  2. #2
    Although it requires scripting or programming knowledge to use outside of Unity/Unreal, i'm using Oculus's lipsync tech for character animation work now (it does not require a headset at all... and its free). It gets ~90% of the work done with just an audio clip and computes instantly.



    Typically the main issue with things like these is the unnatural "stutter lip" effect, yet if you smooth things out too much you lose detail that's required to make it work. So, right now there are still some things you just have to hand-animate in terms of lip syncing, but the amount of that work is shrinking.

    So, the competition Tafa2 has makes things increasingly difficult in terms of marketability.
    Last edited by Ryan Roye; 12-14-2019 at 08:25 AM.
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  3. #3
    Registered User ianr's Avatar
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    i like Mac he's a charming guy in my dealings with him.


    If your getting this thread Mr.Mac, sell it to LW3DG it makes sense

    It was built for LW morphs & has the best morphing Joystick after

    Joe's Lipservice. Approach Chuck B.

    good luck!

  4. #4
    Registered User tyrot's Avatar
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    TAFA is the ONLY software makes sense in a second - i still use it daily.. .. and i would sell my kidney for TAFA 2

  5. #5

    for semi-realism i just don't feel there are any good alternatives...

    i'm also checking out Papagoyo now, but it's a whole other story, since for "Project X" i'm looking into more of a Stop motion style.


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  6. #6

    here, example from another Application, but same principle for Papagoyo (LW) applies >



    ... additional tweaks necessary.
    Last edited by erikals; 12-14-2019 at 07:37 PM.
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  7. #7

    adding, found an old TAFA example by coincidence >

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  8. #8
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    Same deal, shown with the base software head but apparently does have an export path to Lightwave, mentioned here.



  9. #9
    Registered User tyrot's Avatar
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    think about - adding IphoneX features - plus adding cartoonize effects - FBX export - there you go - a perfect solution for everything- I hope he could consider TAFA2 for lightwave or even Unity - It would be an awesome asset...

  10. #10

    Same deal, shown with the base software head but apparently does have an export path to Lightwave,..
    yes, but,... couldn't find the cost.

    that said, Papagoyo is free.

    think about - adding IphoneX features
    looked alot into it, but not there yet.  (imo)
    [yet]
    Last edited by erikals; 12-14-2019 at 08:25 PM.
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  11. #11
    Registered User Rayek's Avatar
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    P.S. Wow, has this trivial exercise reminded me how much I hate HTML. Pointed two different mobile browsers at this page. One has unreadably small text, even after I jumped the font size to 4 (mid-range), and if I zoom in it won't re-wrap the text. But at least the paragraph breaks are visible. On the other, the text is nice and big, but didn't change when I set the font size. Unfortunately, it barely shows any paragraph break at all, making the text hard to read in a different way. Hopefully whatever browser you're using isn't choking too badly.
    Well, duh: he didn't declare a viewport meta, so mobile browsers on small screens render it full size. That's really basic.
    It shows he has been out of the loop of web dev for a long, LONG time.

    Anyway....

    I for one would love to see a new version of Tafa, but upgraded to integrate with modern facial motion capture, and or though the use of a simple web cam tracing your hand movements and/or facial expressions. I think Tafa 2 could then be used to polish the acting, add additional movements, and then export for use in any 3d software.

    But I agree with Ryan. I am unsure if there's still a viable market for Tafa 2. Things are progressing quite fast.

    By the way, what the heck happened to Thirdwishsoftware and Magpie Pro? Does anyone know? I attempted to contact them a few years ago, but never got any response. The site was pulled offline a while ago as well.
    I was hoping they'd open source it, but seeing they were a small company run by two people (I think), the software seems now forever lost. A shame.
    Win10 64 - i7 [email protected], p6t Deluxe v1, 48gb, Nvidia GTX 1080 8GB, Revodrive X2 240gb, e-mu 1820. Screens: 2 x Samsung s27a850ds 2560x1440, HP 1920x1200 in portrait mode

  12. #12
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    But in practice when we talk about face capture, not being Weta Digital we are actually talking about our own faces aren't we ? Which presents a problem because we are not exactly Laurence Olivier, or are we talking about exaggerated theatrical or cartoon style perfomances ? My real question is to ask if a workflow using audio track analysis alone is obsolete going into 2020, or is more sophisticated audio extraction possible to allow an automated emotional range ? A bit like Mimic Pro using AI. Is such a thing possible ?

  13. #13
    Founding member raymondtrace's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rayek View Post
    By the way, what the heck happened to Thirdwishsoftware and Magpie Pro? Does anyone know? I attempted to contact them a few years ago, but never got any response. The site was pulled offline a while ago as well.
    I was hoping they'd open source it, but seeing they were a small company run by two people (I think), the software seems now forever lost. A shame.
    I believe they offered an early version as freeware. Maybe that's still lingering out there on the internet.

    However, we are definitely heading toward puppetry (mocap and audio interpretation) over keyframed animation.
    LW4, 7.5D, 2015, 2018, 2019, 2020 running portably on a USB drive on an Amiga 2500 running Wine.

  14. #14
    Eat your peas. Greenlaw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rayek View Post
    By the way, what the heck happened to Thirdwishsoftware and Magpie Pro? Does anyone know? I attempted to contact them a few years ago, but never got any response. The site was pulled offline a while ago as well.
    I was hoping they'd open source it, but seeing they were a small company run by two people (I think), the software seems now forever lost. A shame.
    Magpie has been gone for many years and, yeah, I wish it went open-source too.

    I own two licenses of the Pro version but at the moment, only the license on my old Wacom tablet computer is still active, and I haven't used that computer for a couple of years. I can't activate Magpie Pro on my newer computers because the activation server is gone.

    I used Magpie Pro for some of my short films. I had a good workflow in place but, TBH, Magpie's UI was very dated and there was very little development being done in the last years Third Wish was still active.

    Compared to the other programs mentioned here, Papagayo is closer to how Magpie worked but it's has only a small subset of Magpie Pro's features.

    I'm looking forward to TAFA 2 whenever it comes out. TAFA doesn't really do the same thing Magpie did but it's a cool program. Thanks for posting the updated info about TAFA 2. I haven't visited Mac's website since shortly after the hack. Glad to see some activity there, even if the message is from last June. (I hope somebody can help him with the website.)

  15. #15

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