Version 5 ups the ante by offering real-time NURBS-based modeling for the first time, complete with tools such as sweeps, rails, lofts, skinning, and cross sections. NURBS can be combined with stitching, blending, and filleting, and cut with trimming curves. Other new features include NURBS geometry paint; real-time subdivision surfaces; layers and advanced 2D drawing tools; fully parameterized primitives; snapping tools such as snap to vertex, grid, edge or face; and real-time UV mapping for texturing on an object's surface.
TrueSpace5 also offers more accurate rendering, with support for nonlinear tone mapping, which is designed to generate more realistic radiosity images. The radiosity mesh can also be converted to a texture for realtime walkthroughs or use in games and real-time interactive applications. The program also offers image-based rendering, which allows users to insert 3D models into a real-world environment, and 10 additional shaders.
TrueSpace 5 is scheduled for availability in the fourth quarter of this year. The program runs on a Pentium II-based machine (Pentium III is recommended), Windows 95/98/NT/2000, 64mb of RAM, and 50mb of hard disk space. For optimal performance, 128mb of RAM and a 3D accelerator are recommended The price has yet to be announced.
(Caligari Corp.; Mountain View, CA; 650-390-9600; www.caligari.com) -JD