June 28, 2007

Gobelins, l'école de l'image in France Taps SGI Technology to Render Files for Animation Festival

Sunnyvale, Calif. - Gobelins, l'école de l'image (“school of the image”) used a combination of servers, cluster management software, and render management software from SGI and SGI partners to render millions of high-definition image files for opening night festivities of the Annecy 2007 International Animation Festival, held June 11-16 in Annecy, France.    
Introduced by SGI at NAB 2007 as a high-performance package for media production and other rendering application segments, the SGI Altix XE cluster systems are based on Dual-Core Intel Xeon 5000 processors and run Microsoft Windows Compute Cluster Server (CCS) 2003 and PipelineFX Qube! render farm management software.
Gobelins chose to render student animations in full HD for the first time, making this combination of technology a necessity. PipelineFX Qube! is render farm management software for film production, game development, and digital media education. SGI Altix XE clusters leverage SGI's expertise in high-performance computing to provide solutions that are transparent across mixed workflows. Windows CCS provides an enterprise-class, high-performance computing operating environment.
Gobelins, l'école de l'image, is a school of visual communication operated by the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Paris. It offers basic and professional training in multimedia (Web design, interactive projects), photography, graphic arts, industrial graphics (traditional and digital printing), video, and animation (hand-drawn, digital and 3D).   
The animation department was founded more than 30 years ago to prepare artists for the needs of the emerging French animation film industry. Numerous Gobelins graduates of the animation course currently work in major studios around the world and are prized for their creative and technical excellence as well as their professional level.    
The Annecy International Animation Festival, held June 11-16, 2007, is the number one international competitive festival. For over 45 years the town has been showing off the very best in the art during six days of animated festivities. Annecy is one of the high points of studies at Gobelins. For more than 20 years, the school’s animation students have created curtain-raisers for this worldwide gathering. The animated shorts from prior years are available for viewing on the Web at http://www.gobelins.fr/galerie/animation/.
Gobelins, l’école de l’image, utilized a four node SGI Altix XE cluster with Dual-Core Intel Xeon processors (32 processors total) to process animations running on Microsoft Windows Compute Cluster Server 2003 (64-bit processing), and PipelineFX Qube! 5.1 render farm management software. The solution was set up in association with the informatics teams from the school, systems integrator Caliséo IDF of France and SGI France.