|Perhaps I have just been in this game a long time, but I worry about the message that might result from your using research examples such as our own work, but mainly the Oxygen project at MIT, to illustrate your point. I fear that the perceived message might be that investing in this area is something that is just at the stage of academic research. I can already hear readers from industry saying, "OK, great! Let MIT do the research, and then let me know when it is ready for prime time. Then we will see how it might apply to us."
While down the road it is hoped that we will all be able to benefit from the insights gained from the excellent academic work of the Oxygen project, I feel very strongly that this is an area that is relevant to business today (yesterday, in fact). This belief is one of the core values of Alias|Wavefront, as shown by its eight-year investment in research in this area—significantly, research that is reflected in the product agenda. It is one of the areas of investment to which we attribute our position in the industry.
In order to put some "meat on the bones," and help illustrate how the concepts discussed in your Editor's Note can translate to new product concepts that are relevant to today's computer graphics industry, may I offer the following URL: http://www.aliaswavefront. com/research.
If your readers follow the "videos" link, they will find a number of clips that illustrate different forms of this approach that exploit the potential of 3D graphics for customers that have derived directly from our attention to the concerns outlined in your Editor's Note.
There is research to be done, and we certainly need more endeavors like the Oxygen project. But these are issues that are relevant to industry today, and I believe, attention to them will provide the key to revitalizing our industry.
At the same time, I hope that providing some concrete, industry-relevant examples from the private sector will keep people from thinking, "Here goes another academic/researcher trying to tell us how to do things." In essence, I hope that our research Web site gives concrete proof that we put our money where our (my) mouth is.
Chief Scientist, Alias|Wavefront
We would like to welcome back Stephen Porter to the pages of this magazine. Steve served as our editor-in-chief from 1991 to 1997, and as managing editor for six years prior to that. During the past five years, he was chief editor for both Video Systems and Netmedia magazines. Steve's Viewpoint column will debut this month on pg. 22 and will look at the convergence of digital video and computer graphics—one of the most exciting trends in our industry. We can think of no one better qualified to provide us with a clear picture of this rapidly changing landscape.
I wanted to let you know that I enjoyed reading the article "Virtual Course, Real Sweat" on pg. 48 of the July 2001 issue of Computer Graphics World. I noticed that there was never any mention of the persons who actually created the courses and graphics for the "NetAthlon" software. My company, Dry Heat Studios, created all of the courses for the "NetAthlon" virtual trainer. Since the time of your article, there have been many changes and improvements in the graphics, with many new courses.
I was diagnosed at the age of three with sickle cell anemia and have been restricted from all types of physical activities since then. I took out my frustration in art at an early age and now am able to be somewhat involved in the athletic world in another form... 3D art.
Philip Rauso, Jr.
Dry Heat Studios
Gold Canyon, AZ
The "Bodies in Motion" caption under the collision simulation images on pg. 16 of the December 2001 issue refers to London researchers, but should refer to Miami researchers.
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