Wednesday, February 27, 2013


Have you seen green profile pictures lately? If you have, you are seeing a protest. As a sign of solidarity to fellow VFX artists, we change the color of our profile page to green.

The company behind the Life of Pi’s stunning visual effects, which made the movie possible, Rhythm & Hues, went bankrupt as the film just passed the billion dollar mark in global ticket sales. The 3D & VFX (visual effects) companies that make the Hollywood blockbuster movies possible, sign on to bad deals typically at a loss, the Hollywood production companies walk away with profits, and artists who dedicate their lives to their craft get short changed on salary, over-time and eventually job security. The green is a form of solidarity and protest for change in our industry.

Rhythm & Hues has worked on several blockbuster movies. Their showreels are living proof that they can do magic, as so many other VFX companies.

At the Oscars, there was a protest, a way of raising awareness to this problem of the industry. Why VFX studios go bankrupt as the film studios are paid billions?

To show your support, change your profile picture to green.

Friday, February 22, 2013

PS4: Gaming Engines and Creative Ideas

Square Enix did not leave his reputation for creating stunning graphics in the wrong hands. They presented its Luminous Studio Engine with Agni's Philosophy: Final Fantasy Realtime Tech Demo. They pointing out, too, that it was the quality they hoped to achieve with their games.

Yoshinori Ono, producer of Capcom, also introduced their new gaming engine, code named "Panta Rhei". To demonstrate the capabilities of this new engine, showed the video of the new project, with the provisional name, Deep Down, a medieval fantasy RPG.

This one, I'll just post the video. It blows me away everytime I see it... Good job Quantic Dream!

When the guys at Media Molecule took the stage, it was time to talk about the Move. And how they used it as a tool for sculpting objects in the air. Yes. 3D sculpting made ​​easy. In the living room of our house! The presentation ended with a video with brilliant people to be puppeteers of virtual dolls. But despite the crazy video, they didn't show what it is and how to use it, but just the idea of using the Move controller as a tool for 3D is something that pleases me.

PS4: Social and Cloud Ideas

Sony presented the idea of creating a social gaming network, focused on "real people", without aliases to mask identity. The "share" button of the new controller is living proof that Sony paid attention to what was happening around them. There is no doubt that social networks have taken hold of modern life. This social concern extends beyond the console.

With this network, gamers can share video clips of 10 seconds of the game thei're playing, stream gaming sessions and "keep in touch with the evolving world of your game, regardless of your location." The system will be able to evaluate, based on what the user likes and dislikes, what content will be most suitable for each user. There is also the possibility of offering control of the game to a friend, remotely, so that he can help in a tricky part, for example.

As for the store, Dave Perry, founder of Gaikai, says it will be possible for players to experience the game before purchasing. That's right. Free of charge, we suppose? And when you download a game, you can play immediately while the download is done in the background. Pretty cool huh?

With the "PlaystationApp", for iOS and Android, smartphones and tablets become second screens of the game. One example of the use of this system is to see a map while playing an adventure game, buy games while we're away from home and download it directly to your console, remotely see players playing on their consoles.

The idea is to make a smartphone, tablet or a PS Vita a companion, taking the game beyond the living room, beyond the console. The system will be "tuned" to our preferences, making the service more personalized and focused on the content you want. Personalization.

The PS Vita will become an important part of this new concept. It's possible to play on the portable console remotely, using Gaikai game streaming technology. This functionality was demonstrated on stage with the new game Knack. Of course we can not think that this will be a novelty available in every game, but still, it's an interesting feature and can help the PS Vita to find a market.

Regarding the format of games, I was a bit confused. I did not understand, I confess, if there will be physical media for games. It seemed to me that they spoke a lot of cloud, streaming and online services.

PS4: Hardware, Peripherials and some more

The new console will have an AMD eight-core and 64 bit Jaguar processor, combined with a Radeon GPU that can deliver 1.84 TFLOPS of pure visual beauty. There's a Blu-ray drive 6x and 8x for DVDs and 8GB RAM DDR5. PS4 will support Wi-Fi 802.11n, USB 3.0, Bluetooth 2.1, optical audio inputs, HDMI and analog AV outputs. Concerning the internal storage, Sony did not disclose the options that the PS4 will bring.

The console itself was not presented for still being in the final design and specifications development. That and they need to bring something for E3...

But the new DualShock 4 was there ​​and could be seen by all. It was redesigned, it's more rounded, has a touchpad, a headphone jack, the share button and a colored LED to identify the players. However, the controller may also undergo minor changes until a final version. Alongside the new controller, was a new version of the Playstation Eye The new version will have two cameras of 1280 x 800, four microphones and a 85-degree field of view. This system promises facial recognition, player positioning and depth sensing and improved support for the Playstation Move. It's designed to recognize each player depending on the color of the LED in the controller. Sony says it will be possible to make face login and voice control as well. Basically, it will be a version of Kinect for Playstation.

With the power of this console, the new features are also a must. There will be a new "Suspend mode". If you press the power button on the console, when you return, the game will continue at the exact spot where you were.

We can say goodbye to loadings. The promise is that there will be stops in the game. There's a new update? It will be done in the background while we enjoy our game normally. Loading screens are a thing of the past, there will be no breaks in the rhythm game.

One of the biggest fears of the players was the possibility of Sony blocking the use of used games.
Sony Worldwide Studios boss Shuhei Yoshida said that used games will still play on the PlayStation 4. He clearly stated that "used can play games on the PS4."

Given that the used game market has become quite popular in recent years, is also a relief for the players to know this.

However, Gaikai's Dave Perry revealed that the PlayStation 4 will not natively support PlayStation 3 games, and that Sony's next-gen console will instead stream PS1, PS2 and PS3 games.

PS4: The Games

The news concerning games available on the console's launch phase were a lot and many were very applauded. The graphic capabilities of the new console were really put to the test and the new titles look pretty good.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Goodbye, Hotmail!


Bring the tissues! Soon, like Windows Messenger, Hotmail will bid us farewell! Microsoft decided all user must change to the new service until this Summer. The interface is similar to Windows 8 and Windows Phone systems, so it shouldn’t be a shock to many people. The information, folders, password and all data from the Hotmail service remains the same on It can be used to receive and send emails from other services, including Gmail.

This new service is part of Microsoft’s strategy to offer online productivity tools.

In July 2011, Microsoft stated that the service was used by 350 million people, but no new data was released ever since. Guess the competition was fierce, and Gmail took the crown… Let’s see how this new revival will come out.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Can’t Wait For Tomorrow!

Sony made an announcement these days for a meeting they will make tomorrow. There are rumors that the next gen console will be presented. Could it be? A photo of a controller leaked too, which adds up to the suspicions. We sure have to wait, but I’m kinda itching for more information! To add more to this, Playstation has been releasing videos portraying the history of its gaming consoles. Calling PS3 as a part of history, may be last clue to get in this mystery.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Holy Meteorite!


Concerning astronomy news, today is a full day! Early this morning, a meteorite struck on Russia, causing a big scare to the folks around there. There’s a bunch of YouTube videos of the incident (thanks to all the cameras in Russian cars). Nearly 1000 people reported injuries due to the shockwave and traffic accidents.

But that’s not the only asteroid that hits the news! The asteroid 2012 DA14, with a length of 45 meters and 130 thousand tons, grazed the Earth’s surface, at a distance of 28 thousand kilometers to be more precise. It’s the biggest space object that was that close to the Earth’s surface since NASA as kept track. If another big ass space rock gets too close, call Ben Affleck and Bruce Willis! They’ll get the job done!
(news here and videos here)

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Rest in Peace, he may!

Yesterday, the world bid farewell to the artist behind the beloved character Yoda. Stuart Freeborn was a British make-up artist, famous for his work in 2001: A Space Odyssey and Star Wars. He was 98 years old.

Yoda was one of his most famous creations. He based Yoda’s look on Albert Einstein… and himself!

Star Wars creator George Lucas paid tribute to Freeborn, saying he was "a makeup legend" before he began working with him.

He helped to create not only Yoda, but Chewbacca and Jabba the Hutt as well.

"He brought with him not only decades of experience, but boundless creative energy. His artistry and craftsmanship will live on forever in the characters he created. His Star Wars creatures may be reinterpreted in new forms by new generations, but at their heart, they continue to be what Stuart created for the original films."

Nick Dudman, who worked with Freeborn on The Empire Strikes Back, remembered him as "a Renaissance man capable of doing absolutely anything".

"He was a Nutty Professor," he told the BBC News website. "He wanted to push boundaries and had the most inquiring mind I'd ever encountered."
(saw it here. images from Buzzfeed)

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Super Bowl: The Ads

I love commercials... always did. And this time of the year is really special: Super Bowl ads are here!

So, strolling around Facebook, I found this list from CG Meetup with all the Super Bowl ads for this year. As per usual, they are great!