Bryn Fields November 4, 2010 English Comp II The Strangers Guide to 3D Modeling In the Fields of Industry 3D modeling, in its broadest and most common sense is the act of taking simple geometric shapes such as boxes or spheres and meshing them into a complex creations of any magnitude. This paper will not be fully about the artistic side or the technical side of these programs. This paper will not be fully focused on one topic but several. Finally, some of these parts you might find fascinating and others dull. The range that I will be writing about will include 4 different fields of industry and will describe how 3D modeling and 3D imaging technology have improved key areas within them. The access to freedom of creativity has given birth to many academic, scientific, commercial, and medical achievements throughout the years. I will write about some of those achievements and their impact of how they have helped for better procedures with other methodologies on the way things are done. Before we dive straight into the many different fields where 3D modeling and 3D imagining are used, I feel that I should explain more about how objects are made using the commercial modeling programs. The process of making 3D models is rather simple, so long as you can understand the tools. I have quickly made a short montage of pictures to help show the process of taking a box and meshing it into a gremlin looking character. 2 3D Modeling Academic Comprehensive Essay In Fg1, the total amount of time this took me to model the final image was about 15 minutes, which in modeling terms is relatively quick. I would like to apologize for the chaotic order onto where the images are placed; the images came out a bit too large during the rendering of each step and I had to resize them as I went along in photoshop. Most projects in 3D modeling take hours to days to complete and are usually comprised with such finite detail, that takes just as long if not longer to render out (render means for the computer to create the image or movie with full details in it such as lighting, shadows, effects, etc...) For further example of rendering time, the movie, Toy Story 1, took an incredibly long time both to make and render. A quote from an unknown columnist who works at Entertainment Weekly Online 3 3D Modeling Academic Comprehensive Essay who had a chance for to interview the producer stated that the movie took “A whopping 114,240 frames, 600 billion bytes (1,000 CD-ROMs hold the film's data), 160 billion pixels, and 800,000 machine hours…“ (EW1) The important bit of information here is the number of machine hours it took for Pixar to render out the movie. Machine hour in technical circumstances is a term used to state how many hours a computer has been left on to continuously work on a task. To further detail, a frame is like a picture. Each frame shows about a seconds worth of imagery before moving onto the next frame, as in the case of movies. As for still frames, the picture example I placed above is a perfect example of still frames. Each picture within it is a still frame which I used to show the progression of making an object. Now that we have gone over some examples of what 3D modeling is and how it is done I want to also explain that for some fields of study such as Medicine, 3D modeling is labeled in a different term and is vastly different from what you have seen and I will explain further once we get to the subject. Since so far I have been talking mainly about the commercial side of the topic, let us dive further into how the commercial industry feels about how it applies the use of 3D modeling. - Commercial The easiest topic to see the achievements of modern 3D creativity and ingenuity is from commercially based entertainment. Top class movies like Avatar and Iron Man were all made possible thanks to the prowess of 3D programs. James Cameron’s co-producer for Avatar, Jon Landau, stated: “Avatar would not be possible, but for Autodesk. It made the impossible, 4 3D Modeling Academic Comprehensive Essay possible and for that, James Cameron and I are eternally grateful.” (AD1) Autodesk is the leading company for innovative 3D modeling software in the world. It is evident how popular and powerful their tools are, in that their top 2 modeling programs, 3ds Max and Maya, generate the most competition between themselves, and are the top selling 3D modeling programs in the world. The reason why Autodesk has become so popular and renowned as a mainstream producer for 3D modeling software is mainly due to the fact of how old their company truly is. Autodesk was started up in 1982 which in tech years is relatively old. They started out with the release of the program AutoCAD, which is an architectural program allowing users to make detailed and accurate blueprints. They quickly rose in the ranks of industrial software designers. Each year Autodesk makes an expansion onto their already existing products, fixing bugs and adding in new features that make new things possible and old things easier and less time consuming. Having 20 years of experience in designing software and gaining customers trust, Autodesk has become the ideal group with whom to work and buy products. Another reason people prefer Autodesk over the many other companies and groups who offer efficient and at times free software, is the fact of just how expensive Autodesk products cost. I know this may sound odd or off to you but the items you purchase from them are not toys or simple play things, even if they are fun to play with. They are tools in which one can invest. The current price for 3ds Max with a lifetime license is $3,495. Due to the significant price for this piece of software, Autodesk makes sure that it’s as bug-free as possible and provides extensive additional content. They provide tutorials for all levels of experience and ensure that these can be easily accessed. New versions are available each year or two. There 5 3D Modeling Academic Comprehensive Essay are many other 3D modeling programs that each have their own abilities and specifications, and most of these programs are made to work with each other. A quick list of other programs that work along with 3ds Max and Maya includes: Zbrush (sculpting and detail adding program), MudBox (sculpting and detail adding program), Blender (free 3D modeling program), Softimage (free 3D modeling program). Most of these programs are used commercially and have sorts of Terms and Conditions of what can and cannot be done or used when a project becomes ready to sell on the open market. A video interview with a cinematic company called Blur, which does many of the cinematic scenes for video games, gave much insight of how far the program and community of 3D modeling and game production has come. A quote from the interview that really stood out to me: If you look at 20 years of evolution of the products, the amount of flexibility that we have to create. Character, worlds, effects that no one has dreamed of. With 3ds Max anything is possible… We always have had a partnership with Autodesk. They have been very attentive to what we need and they really realize that it’s not about selling software, as much as it is about creating a great product that artists can use. (AD2) 6 3D Modeling Academic Comprehensive Essay It is through here that we gain some insight of the freedom that these products give to the commercial world. The ability to be able to create a powerful message, story, or product through visual art is something that helps build trust between companies and their customers. Crysis, acclaimed to be one of the greatest 3D graphic games for the PC has always been on the number one list to make people awe over the cinematic style scenery. The picture above is a screenshot someone took while in the game to show just how breathtaking the landscape was. Crysis was released in 2007 and to this day is still regarded as one of the 7 3D Modeling Academic Comprehensive Essay highest quality graphical games out on the market. This is relevant to 3D modeling because not only did it allow consumers to own and create completely beautiful virtual worlds but also forced the commercial companies to compete with this immense leap in graphic design that game offered. Within 6 months of Crysis being released, 4 or 5 other games with close or similar quality of graphics were placed on the market. Some used the same game engine – an extensive program that runs all the behind-the-scene information for the game - and others used engines that were made from the ground up, since previous models could not compete. Nearly 4 years have passed since the release of Crysis; a few games have been released where the in-game cinematics may beat those of Crysis, but not many have gone beyond what it has to offer with respect to in-game graphics. The closest that comes to mind would be Final Fantasy 13 (FFXII). While Crysis stunned people with its geographical marvels, FFXIII excelled in very detailed and realistic character design. And while the growth of 3D modeling industry has exploded in the last 20 years, we still see more and more improvements being implemented. I find myself asking how much further can we go? If we can achieve this level of design already using these programs, how much more realistic will it be in another 20 years? This is already become a norm in society and is used greatly in the all commercials we take for granted. We see it in television, movies, music videos, video games, and all other sorts of media. As to how far it eventually goes, I 8 3D Modeling Academic Comprehensive Essay have no idea, but the pattern so far shows that it has come far and is not going to stop for anyone. - Medicine The study of medicine is always changing; advancements in procedures to help those who are in need are being introduced regularly. Within the last 100 years, new procedures have allowed us to see patients bones (x-ray discovered 1895), view lymphatic nodes, ultrasound, and so much more. Thanks to these advances, medical practitioners can now get accurate scans of patients and be able to generate 3D models, referred to as 3D imagining, of whatever was scanned to help doctors examine issues with their patients. Unfortunately most of this technology is reserved for extreme concerns such as intense bone fractures, problems with internal organs, and other issues. A quote from the academic article, A Survey of Medical Image Registration by J. B. Antoine Maintz and Max A. Viergever; The imaging modalities employed can be divided into two global categories: anatomical and functional. Anatomical modalities, i.e. depicting primarily morphology, include X-ray, CT (computed tomography a), MRI (magnetic resonance imaging b), US (ultrasound c), portal images and video sequences obtained by various catheter’ scopes’, e.g. by laparoscopy or laryngoscopy. (M&V) 9 3D Modeling Academic Comprehensive Essay For the purpose of this paper, we will focus on the anatomical modalities. The procedures listed in the quote have 3 different spatial dimensions onto which the data can be viewed and transcribed by the computer; 2D-2D, 3D-3D, and 2D-3D. In the simplest terms that spatial dimensions can be described as follows: Spatial (infrequently spelled spacial) dimensions are those which we normally associate with the characteristics of height, length, width. It would be correct to say that a cube has three equal spatial dimensions. The term dimension is used to refer to the size of something, so spatial dimension is the aspect of the physical extent, or spatial extend, of an object. One may also speak of other measurements of size … A person's age is a size in the time dimension. The universe is known to have three spatial dimensions and one time dimension … The concept of dimensions is not limited to space and time … The concept of size or extent, hence the concept of dimension, goes beyond physics and mathematics and one can, for example, speak of the color dimensions something may have. In short, a spatial dimension refers to physical size in one direction in space and there are three spatial dimensions and one temporal dimension that are intrinsic to the universe in which we live. (Answers.com) I will try to ‘translate’ what I believe in much easier terms. In this world there are 3 spatial dimensions (2d-2d, 2d-3d,-3d-3d), from what I understand 2d-2d images are the equivalent of a standard picture that you would find in a picture frame or what you would see on TV or in a movie - a flat non popping out surface. 2d-3d is what I believe would be considered what you would see in movies and TV, things that are really flat but with technology, whether it be special glasses or whatever, it projects a 3d image to the human brain. And as for 3d-3d this is where the image would actually have to be projected in a way 10 3D Modeling Academic Comprehensive Essay where it can be viewed in a manner where the user could move around it and see it in multiple angles and views. At the current stage, 3D imaging is used more in a study-based case instead of what can be called action-oriented case into where the technology is issued on the spot. One of the lead areas of 3D imaging is Stanford’s department of radiology, sub department 3D Radiology. “Using the 3D imaging lab has allowed us in pediatric urology to identify and assess renal scarring and damage that has not been recognized by any other imaging means, and has changed my management and thinking about children with vesicoureteral reflux.” (SF1) Thanks to many universities, like Stanford, achievements in 3D imaging have allowed practitioners to be able to apply 3D imaging to the following Surgery (general, vascular, cardiothoracic, neuro, plastic, and orthopedics) Pulmonology Gastroenterology Cardiology Urology/Nephrology Pediatrics Medicine Neurology Emergency/Trauma (SF2) With (…) - Academics The study of 3D modeling in academics is still relatively new but has been steadily growing over the years. 3D modeling application in academia started off by the use of awful looking (self opinion) instructional videos and it wasn’t till the commercial industry started to 11 3D Modeling Academic Comprehensive Essay use 3D effects that students took more of an interest in the topic. Today you can apply to schools dedicated strictly to the subject, such as Full Sail University. Full Sail is a pure multimedia college located in Winter Park, Florida. The reason I chose to discuss this university instead of others is because of the number of the distinguished achievements that their alumni have made as a result of their education. One grad is has been nominated for an award for doing the special effects for Lady Gaga’s music video Bad Romance. “We offer prospective 3D artists a complete program of study through a combination of fine art and high technology,” says Bandstra, director of the computer animation and game art programs. “When students emerge from Full Sail University, they will be 3D content developers capable of creating content for the film, television, games, architecture, medical, and all manner of other industries.” 3D modeling in schools has allowed freedom and creativity to flow freely within the students who attends them, giving them the tools and power to innovate, impacting their own lives and the work and lives of many others. Another academic center with a focus on 3D modeling (commercially at least) is an online school called The Game Institute. While focusing mainly on gaming they do offer courses on Robotics, Physics Emulation in programs, AI Path-finding and much more. Even though this school does not really have any significant “achievements”, it helps its students by using working professionals in their faculty who have practical experience working in industries that use 3D modeling. I personally can vouch for the method and have been happy with their lessons on programming and do wish to do their 3D modeling course one day. Due to the fact 12 3D Modeling Academic Comprehensive Essay that it is online, students can take as long as they need to complete the work and once finished they can go to a specific testing location to take a true paper final to get college credits. (…) - Scientific 3D modeling in the field of science has greatly increased the ability with which scientists can create accurate recreations of they are studying. A short article from NASA shows how they used 3D modeling to recreate the landscape of Mars by using the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter to gather data. NASA used this data to recreate the terrain. The image is a bit exaggerated due to the lack of complete and accurate data. Such digital terrain models are superior to standard stereo images viewed with blue-red glasses, which show only relative changes in elevation instead of absolute numerical data. Digital terrain models can be used for rendering perspective views from any angle or even fly-by movies. More importantly, they can be used for detailed quantitative analysis, such as profiles, slopes, morphometry, numeric modeling, etc. (NASA1) Another person thought up of a very similar idea using both a combination of 3D modeling, aerial photography, and GIS to be able to create accurate and detailed scenes of cities and rural areas. 3D urban models provide a better visual representation of urban space and urban features than 2D maps (Ranzinger and Gleixner 1995). The importance of 3D urban models with multiple levels of detail has been evidenced by a wide range of applications, such as urban planning, architecture, navigation, public safety studies, 13 3D Modeling Academic Comprehensive Essay transmitter placement for telecommunication, and flight simulation.”(GIS-BASED 3D URBAN MODEL1) WEI-MING, LIN, the author of the article, CONSTRUCTING A GIS-BASED 3D URBAN MODEL USING LIDAR AND AERIAL PHOTOGRAPHS, and the quote above, believes that with his hypothesis of using 2 different data gathering sources and importing it into a 3D generating program we will be able to gain highly detailed models onto which people of all fields of work will be able to use. Wei-Ming also goes into greater detail of the multiple tools which he wishes to try to combine. The panoramic imaging method allows the user to look around an urban scene with a full 360° view… Virtual reality modeling language (VRML) is a computer language that can be used as a framework to create a virtual 3D view for a small urban scene… The computer-aided design (CAD) technique is a very sophisticated and powerful tool. CAD technique has strong capabilities in storing and managing large amounts of geometric information about urban objects, and it is an efficient tool for designing and creating urban objects. (GIS-BASED 3D URBAN MODEL2) (…) 14 3D Modeling Academic Comprehensive Essay Works Cited "Autodesk - Autodesk 3ds Max Products - Customer Showcase." Autodesk - 3D Design & Engineering Software for Architecture, Manufacturing, and Entertainment. Blur Studios. Web. 30 Nov. 2010. <http://usa.autodesk.com/adsk/servlet/pc/index?siteID=123112&id=14838218>. "Autodesk - Film - AVATAR." Autodesk - 3D Design & Engineering Software for Architecture, Manufacturing, and Entertainment. 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