Issue: Volume: 23 Issue: 8 (August 2000)

Products - 8/00

Design Engineering

Win/Unix AdvantEdge software from Third Wave Systems provides predictive 3D modeling of metal cutting for a wide range of machining processes. A menu-driven interface allows the user to choose the process to be modeled; select from more than 34 standard materials; choose the tooling from libraries or define desired geometry, grade, edge hone, and coatings; and define speeds, feeds, cut depths, and other parameters. In addition, AdvantEdge allows the prediction of cutting and feed forces, as well as the modeling of temperature, stresses, and heat dissipation that can affect part quality and overall tool life. The price for AdvantEdge is unavailable. (Minneapolis, MN; 888-891-1225;

Win GS-Design Version 1.0 from CollabWare Corp. is available for Web download and has a new graphical user interface that replaces the text-based one used at Lockheed, where the collaborative CAD system was originally developed. The software is integrated with the company's Web portal. Model data is securely stored on Oracle database servers, while access is controlled from within a project page, allowing designers and engineers to collaborate from any local or remote location. Monthly subscriptions include 20 hours of use and 100MB of storage. The price is from $29.95 per month. (Idaho Falls, ID; 208-552-4701;

Win Mechanical engineering software developer Algor has released PV/Designer, which works in conjunction with Algor products such as the finite-element analysis program Accupak to provide easy generation of intersecting piping or cylindrical structures. The program is designed especially for the generation of FEA models for pressure vessel and piping component analysis. Once generated, the FEA model can be used in any Algor finite element analysis or mechanical event simulation. Designers and engineers can export a model as a trimmed surface IGES file, which can then be imported into the Algor CAD Solid Model Interface or into another CAD solid modeling system for additional modifications. The price is not available. (Pittsburgh, PA; 412-967-2700;

Win/Unix Version 4.5 of Altia Design, Altia's simulation graphics program for engineers, features a new proprietary graphics technology that allows large bitmap files to retain a photorealistic appearance even after engineers have scaled and animated them. Engineering prototypes created with Altia Design 4.5 will therefore resemble actual instrumentation more than those created with previous versions. The new version also includes a configurable tick mark component that enables users to adjust the size, shape, frequency, and spacing of tick marks on various dials and gauges in Altia Design 4.5. The price is $6900. (Colorado Springs, CO; 719-598-4299;


Win/Mac Composite Suite 1.0 from Digital Film Tools offers a set of special effects plug-ins for Avid's Media Composer, Xpress, and Symphony systems, and Adobe Systems' After Effects.The product includes color correct, grain, matte generator, matte repair, non-additive mix, paste color, selective color correct, selective soft focus, and light, holdout, and math composite. The sale price is $695 for the Avid-compatible version and $345 for the Adobe version. (Los Angeles; 323-874-2330;

Mac A Final Cut Pro 1.2.5 update from Apple Computer offers support for the 16:9 wide-screen format, allowing users to capture, edit, add effects, composite, and export video in wide-screen mode. It also offers native YUV processing to preserve the color fidelity of source material; and a feature that saves rendering time and disk space by minimizing file size. The price of the update (for existing Final Cut Pro owners) is $19.95. (800-293-6617;

Win/Mac Boris Continuum from Boris FX provides more than 20 unique filters for Adobe Systems' After Effects. Continuum has a flexible Z-space compositor, where each layer comes with full 3D rotation capabilities, including global 3D capabilities for hierarchical animation. Filters such as Advanced Composite speed the blending of frames, and new natural effects include snow, rain, star fields, comet, and fire. The price is $395. (Boston; 888-772-6747;

Win/Mac MovingPicture is a plug-in for nonlinear editing systems from StageTools that allows filmmakers to pan and zoom on high-resolution images. The plug-in is able to position a virtual camera viewfinder over the digital image in real time. A series of keyframes can be set, specifying what the camera will see at a given point in time, and MovingPicture will smoothly flow from one keyframe to the next in real time. The plug-in works with Adobe Systems' Premiere as well as with other nonlinear editors, with a Macintosh version for Avid and Premiere systems available this fall. The price is $199. (Middleburg, VA; 540-592-7001;

Win 5D Cyborg from 5D Solutions provides a media workflow environment for post-production facilities that works with editing and compositing systems from Avid, Discreet, and Quantel. 5D Cyborg can convert between a range of common file formats and includes a versatile painting system and a motion analyzer. Batch processing, I/O for various audio formats, basic editing tools, and EDL loading and conforming are also included. The price is unavailable. (London, UK; 44 1483 862 700;

Win/Mac Combustion from Discreet provides a unified paint, animation, and 3D compositing environment for visual effects creation. Tools include keying, motion tracking, color correction, vector-based non-destructive paint animation, true 3D compositing, and network rendering. Combustion supports Adobe Systems' Photoshop and After Effects plug-ins and integrates with the company's other animation and nonlinear systems. The price is $3495. (Montreal; 800-869-3504;


Win/Mac Nozzles Pack 2 from Sapphire Innovations comes with 200 new nozzle files for Painter-related products. The set offers a variety of shapes, styles, and colors and can be used for effects within Corel's (formerly MetaCreations') Painter as well as in the brushes or as a template for a user's own brush effects, patterns, or textures. The price is $20. (London, UK; 44-020 7 795 2714;

Web Authoring

Linux Hypercosm 3D Studio from Hypercosm for creating Internet content includes an object-oriented modeling, animation, and rendering compiler that creates applets containing geometric information and coded instructions. The software uses a general purpose programming language that allows users to create sophisticated animation and simulation applications. Linux Hypercosm 3D Studio is free. (San Jose, CA; 408-938-5725;

Win/Mac Hotmedia 3.0 from IBM adds video and 3D effects capabilities to earlier versions of the software for creating special effects on Web sites. The software also allows users to add animations, panoramas, zooms, scrolling, and streaming audio synchronized with HTML or Javascript. The program determines the minimal code and data content and downloads it progressively. The software is free. (Armonk, NY; 888-746-7426;

Win/Mac LiveMotion 1.0 from Adobe Systems is a graphics and animation tool for professional Web designers and developers. It allows users to draw or import vector images, independently animate an object's attributes, use named labels to cue events, and assign interactive behaviors to various kinds of objects. It works with time-based animation and supports Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator files. The price is $299. (San Jose, CA; 800-833-6687;

Win/Mac Beatware has introduced eZ-Motion to provide Web animation for the small office, home office, and virtual office market. The program allows users to create advertising banners and animation. It lets them input and animate 3D objects and create 3D Web graphics in flash, scalable vector graphics, animated GIF, Apple QuickTime, Real Video, and Windows Media formats. The price is $99. (Redwood City, CA; 650-556-7900;

Win PowerMovie from Beatware helps compose special effects and movies for Microsoft PowerPoint slide shows and is designed for corporate and enterprise PC users. PowerMovie also allows users to create and export animations for Web sites as animated GIF or JPG files, as well as in Apple QuickTime or Windows Media format. It includes a library of browsable templates. The price is $49. (Redwood City, CA; 650-556-7900;


Win/Mac Canvas 7 Standard Edition from Deneba Software provides small businesses, educators, students, and home users with the ability to edit photos, draw logos and diagrams, create brochures and newsletters, and design fliers and posters. The drawing tools have built-in shadow, warp, extrude, and other effects. Web graphics, image editing, and page layout are included. The price is $85. (Miami, FL; 305-596-5644;

Win Gsharp PC from Advanced Visual Systems allows users to create 2D and 3D graphs and publish them on the Internet or print high-resolution copies. The user interface, automatic scripting capabilities, and data manager automate the process of working with ASCII, binary, and SQL data from a variety of file formats and sources. The software provides hundreds of graph types, a mathematical library of 147 functions, batch-mode graphics production, and the creation of multiple graphs and axes from a single plot. The price is unavailable. (Waltham, MA; 781-890-4300;

Win/Linux/Unix Geomatica from PCI Geomatics provides geospatial data capabilities in remote sensing, GIS, cartography, and photogrammetry. It provides support for Oracle 8i Spatial, including Oracle GeoImage. A FreeView version, for working with imagery, vectors, and ancillary data is now available, to be followed by GeoGateway, a smart data-translation tool, and Geomatica Prime, for multi-resolution data handling and automation. The price is unavailable. (Richmond Hill, Ontario, Canada; 905-764-0614;

Win/Unix ArcIMS 3 from ESRI is an Internet mapping program that enables the distribution of geographic information system capabilities via the Internet. The product includes HTML and Java clients and support for other company software such as ArcExplorer and ArcPad. ArcIMS 3 also allows Internet data sources to be integrated with local sources for display, query, and analysis. Custom Visual Basic and Visual C++ applications can be built. The price is unavailable. (Redlands, CA; 800-447-9778;


Virtual Reality

Irix The SGI Reality Center 3300W from SGI is a flexible, high-resolution, multiprojector, 13- by 4-foot wall display that can display engineering, design, and technical data, 3D graphics, video sources, and PC laptop applications with up to 5 million pixels across a single seamless screen. Intended for use in conference rooms, laboratories, and trade show exhibits, it incorporates rear projection. Options include stereo, video switching, transport cases, and audio. The price is $150,000. (Mountain View, CA; 650-960-1980;


Mac Jeronimo 2000 from Appian Graphics is a single-slot, dual-monitor graphics card for the Macintosh with an AGP bus interface, 32MB of on-board SGRAM, and two Permedia accelerators. Designed for audio and video engineers, Web designers, and desktop publishers, it allows Power Mac G4 users to extend their desktops across two monitors with resolutions up to 1920 by 1080 on each, leaving the other slots inside the machine open for expansion tools. The price is $749. (Redmond, WA; 800-727-7426;