November 12, 2008

The Foundry Releases Ocula Plug-ins

London - The Foundry visual effects software developer is shipping Ocula, a collection of plug-in tools that solve common problems with stereoscopic imagery, boost productivity in postproduction, and help deliver a more rewarding stereoscopic viewing experience.
Ocula plug-ins are designed to automatically replicate key processes on left and right channels and help artists polish and refine stereoscopic material, removing headaches from the final viewing experience.
Ocula's tool set is based on new disparity-mapping algorithms, created by The Foundry's Academy Award-winning R&D team. Disparity maps track and correlate the differences in positional space and movement betweencorresponding pixels in the left and right cameras, delivering pixel-level control over images.
Knowing where disparities occur, Ocula tools apply corrections by warping, stretching, and squeezing only the areas of an image that require treatment. Image manipulation using disparity maps is different to the X, Y, or Z-axis shifting of images, where only whole image planes are being shifted.
Ocula plug-ins allow artists to apply a multitude of adjustments to stereoimage pairs. All corrections can be made to the left and right eye channelseither together or separately, minimizing, or eliminating discomfort from the stereo viewing experience.
Ocula plug-ins include:
INTEROCULAR SHIFTER allows users to reduce camera interaxial separation in postproduction. Using disparity map data, two new virtual views arecreated between the original left and right eye positions, resulting in objects of different fore, mid, and background depths being given a more gentle depth effect. This is different to an X-axis shift to adjust convergence, where only the image plane is moved.
VERTICAL ALIGNER automatically attempts to vertically align correspondingimage features in each view to minimise or eliminate camera misalignment and key-stoning. This is not a single Y-shift for the whole image ­the correction varies across the entire image.
NEW VIEW allows the creation of a single view from a stereo pair of images. Users can create this new view at any position between the original views using one or both of the original views. The new view then replaces both of the existing views.
CORRELATE dramatically reduces the amount of manual labor required by artists undertaking paint or rotoscoping work. Many position-dependent image manipulations, such as paint/roto, can be automatically propagated from one eye to the other, substantially improving productivity.
COLOURMATCH lets you match the colors of one view with those of another. It has been designed to deal with the subtle color differences that are sometimes present between stereo views.
Nuke 5.1 is currently the only visual effects compositing system with an embedded 3D stereoscopic workflow where left and right eye channels can be manipulated separately or together.
Now shipping, Ocula is priced at $10,000 / £5,000. Also shipping, Nuke 5.1 is priced at $3,500 / £1,750 with render nodes priced at: $250 / £125, withthe annual maintenance and support contract prices at $1,000 / £500 per GUIlicense. Nuke 5.1 is available for existing customers with valid maintenanceat no extra cost, customers can download now from The FoundryWeb site