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LIQUID DEMOCRACY new free and open source kit prototype to rig fitted mesh


Astrid Kaufmat
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Few months ago I talked about the Free EXPERIMENTAL fbx addon for blender that finally was a big step to let different 3d programs work together. The plugin has been finally upgraded and it has got some bug fixed, as I showed to the bug report that there were some iussue with importing leaf bones. Now Blender has got also a new collada exporter that allows people to automatically convert blender bones to joints when you jump from a program to another using collada dae.After all the positive thing about blender is just this: It's not a complete but you may hope that they dd new features from more complete softwares.

But, but, but this is not the reason of this new thread. I have been working in my spare time on a rigging kit for  making things faster  for all. Free and open source for everybody who wants to try and keep developing it. You can also see and download it from the blog that I opened for this project. https://astridkaufmathq.wordpress.com/2015/01/12/liquid-democracy-prototype/

 

 

pirate.jpg

In this post I’ll try to show you how to use a prototype of rigging kit for blender for fitted mesh (aka liquid mesh, the previous name) that should also help you to use blender as a converter to rig in your own program of choice and then upload things in second life or if you prefer just use it in blender to rig there.This because now thanks to improvements in the EXPERIMENTAL fbx exporter that is now official and into the dae expoter you can easier bring into blender rigged avatars from other softwares and viceversa. Read here for more details about blender 2.73 addons.

 

 Before we move on let’s spend a few words about riggging and then about the logic that I followed to make this kit, with the hope that this will make everybody able to modify this kit or build kits like this. This is just a conceptual guide, maybe I’ll write more detailed ones, it’s just meant to show the method to those who are already familiar with rigging and stuff. However I’ll try to talk easy and make concepts understandable for everyone.

When I rig with classic mbones (the standard deform bones, the way that blender would call them) I use to follow a pipeline that I call pose/break-pose. I’ll make an example to let you understand better. Imagine that you’re rigging a leg, the most sensible part is the one where the joint is or said into blender language where the tip of a bone meet the head of the next bone. This happens because those  vertices in that area are driven by two bones and  you must balance well the weight to make the mesh deform properly when the avatar moves. Here comes the big help that pose/break-pose pipeline gives. You make a serie o poses one for leg extension and one for leg flexion in other words a pose and its opposite trying to stress the mesh and see how the vertices behave. In this way you can easy find out where are vertices whose weight needs to be better balanced.

pose-breakpose.jpg

Above you can see an example of what I mean when I talk about pose/break-pose:it’s all about making a serie of poses and their opposite like this on timeline that will help you finding out where the vertices could have wrong weight.

The following image shows you what could happen when there is wrong weignt on a vertex and you use to play poses to rig.

pose balance weight.png

Ok so to rig it’s a good thing using poses, this makes things easier and much more logic. Now your question would be: what have poses to do with fitted mesh?

I’ll answer to this question with an experiment that you can easy do in second  life. Go to your advanced menu and turn on the display collision bones, then edit your apparenceand try to watch how those bones get deformed when you move the slider related with collision bones.You can see that they scale, move rotate, but mostly they scale.Scaling a collision bone is a pose in blender as in any other 3d program.

Rigging without poses and doing it randomly is like weight painting blindfolded, it’s like a black night when all the cows are black (as Hegel would say).That’s why it’s important to have an avatar with right weight, that can deform properly with the right poses.So when you balance weight on vertices moving the mesh between a fat and a thin opposite pose you can do it with logic and properly. Keeping going on I’ll show you the reasons what I don’t like secondlife avatars that you find on that silly wiki page that says all and nothing, let’s say it better it just says nothing that can really help you.

Now, how can I scale properly the collision bones using the avatar downloaded from second life wiki, to make my serie of pose/break-pose” poses  to rig my clothes for fitted mesh with logic?

This is not an easy thing to do for several reasons that we’re going to see together. Attenton, please, I said not easy I didn’t say impossible.

First of all for each  edit apparence slider of second life you need to create a couple of obj avatars one at 0% of the slider and one at 100% of the slider.you will do this for male and female avatar, creating your achive of obj size of second life avatar. To do this you needphoenix 1.5 or inworldz viewer (second life keeps disabling things that are so far useful for makers).

When you have created that collection of obj referal meshes you can start  creating in blender your pose library, scaling only the collision bones controlled by second life sliders linked to collision bones (you find the list here), eventually moving or rotating them too, where it’s needed. See here to understand better the pose library, if you’re not familiar with its concept. The avatar will needs also weight painting editing to allow the mesh to deform approximately  like in secondlife, scaling collision bones to match the obj that you imported in blender as referal. The weight painting  is needed to make the  avatar in the blend file deform like in secondlife, because those weights are the most crazy things ever. An emblematic example of all this is when you try to scale BELLY bone and PELVIS bone,you’d get that the butt is pushed out too or if you try to scale LEFT_PECand RIGT_PEC to change the breast size you could see a strange behaviour of the belly area. I won’t hide either that those avatar that you download from second life wiki page if uploaded would somehow work good with inworld sliders. This is not the only thing that I’ve been testing: if you use those weight  moved from those avatar to your cothes using some tools like the excelent V.A.M.P built in cinema 4d or the weight transfer tool built in blender you can get that almost the clothes work fine. However rigging clothes in this way, even if  you could get quite nicely working results, is dumb, the most stupid thing to do; you may want to properly balance weights, and customize them good to work with the shape of your clothes.

What I said above about BELLY, PELVIS and PEC bones is also the big difference between those avatars that you get on second life wiki page and other addons/plugins/tools meant to let you rig for fitted mesh like avastar. Let’s analize avastar  you could watch any video about it and see that when they use the sliders to deform the the belly you can see that the butt is not oddly distorced like it happens when you scale BELLY and PELVIS bone in the second life fitted mesh avatars from wiki. As simple deduction  avastar avatar has been re-weighted. Of course a logical objection to all this could be someone popping up from the bunch and saying ” yes but on avastar blog you can download the free avastar avatar”. Have you analized and compared that avastar free avatar with secondlife  free avatar for fitted mesh from wiki? Ok let’s see it. Download it from here version 270 (in case after this blogging they have fixed it :P). Avastar free avatar and the secondlife avatar from second life wiki are just the same thing. What avastar free avatar has got is is the male and female shape merged together and bound to the same bone. You can obtain the same result by opening the secondlife avatar female from wiki (or the male if you prefer) then go to file append and select from the folder secondlife male, you’ll see in blender now a menu with a list of folder, pick the one named objects and from it select base male, then “append from library” in the upper  right corner; then go in the outliner and delete the armature.001. Now in object mode select the base male mesh, then the armature then by the shortcut ctrl p you get the binding menu, select from it “armature deform“. Now if you want you  create two bones group and assign your mbones to a group and your collision bones to another (just to help yourself with selecting them or hiding one group and showing another) and you’ve got avastar free avatar re-built or saying it better made by you. This is not the only analogy that shows you that avastar free avatar is just the same thing like secondlife avatars from wiki but merged together. The second evidence is a bad bone roll of some bones that you can find in secondlife avatar as in avastar free avatar 270. But hey wait in some videos of avastar you see that they use a feature that we all know and that is available in blender too, which is  copy paste flipped pose. Well that thing works only if the bones are well oriented with a right bone roll in blender and fail as it fails in second life avatars and in avastar free avatar if the bone roll is not well done (this is well evident when you try to do the paste flipped pose on legs bones).

Below you can see the proof that avastar free avatar and second life free avatar are the same thing, with same “bugginess”: I have applied the same scale values to BELLY and PELVIS bone and you can see that butt gets oddly distorced.

avastar vs sl.jpg

Well now after I have said this you might ask: “why hasn’t second life given us the avatar with the weights that they use in the game and maybe also with  some nice pose library to help us?”

My guess (it is more than a guess) is that in second life the avatars are not rigged on collision bones as  you might think after seeing those avatar on second life wiki. This is a deduction that I got studing SLAV plugin made by Georgy Angelov (get it here) and using it to bring into blender my secondlife avatar xml saved from secondlife. Opening that avatar that you can download from here (I made one for you) you can see some interesting things. First thing you can see that each vertex is associated to more groupsand for each group you find as value “1” (because there seems to be no  normalizing). This is not the only oddity that you can see: you can also see that there are more groups than the bones in that file and many of them are not named like the bones but like the area that they’re going to control. So when you click those groups you can see that they show you several area that  match more and less those areas involved by deformations that you get using sliders in second life. This brings you to an interesting guess/deduction: probably secondlife to make the avatar deform uses some complicated shapekey system or morph system and the collision bones work like a sort of driver, the way that you’d build also in blender a sort of deforming system working in that way. Here you can see some picks of what I mean.

Below you can see a snapshot of my second life avatar saved as xml and converted into a blend file using slav plugin. Look at the vertex groups panel see how each second life  deformation of the avatar is driven by a group that will paint  the deformed area when you select it. In this case I used muscular torso. You can do the same with love handles and all the others.

slav example 1.png

All this  can tell you that rigging on fitted mesh is not an easy task at all and that there will never be any addon, plugin, tool that can fully satisfy you. Of course some can do it better than others.

This is what I’ve been doing to build the liquid democracy kit.

Now what is the difference between a kit built in this way and an addon with sliders to deform meshes. Pratically nothing. An addon will just make things easier grouping a bunch of buttons and sliders in one panel to allow people that are few familiar with blender to keep everything handy. Liquid democracy is meant to get that scripted panel too and to work as addon as soon as I have finished to find out what is bugging it. you can get more news about this here and if you want send me your feedback about how it could be fixed.

To build your sliders and the fk/ik buttons it’s the easiest thing you could ever imagine. Any plugin/addon that they could make for you is built in this way more or less. When you’ve created your poses then you’ll use datasheet to create your animations (stored with fake user) to use later in your action constraint, then make your custom property slider that will help you to create your sliders for your ui panel if you want, using few lines of python. If you don’t know enough python to build your own sliders and buttons to put in the gui panel you can help yourself using  a program made by BLanvis VisualBPY that you can download from here, see also the video tutorials here. This program will turn the “blondest”  python coder into a pro allowing you  to build any panel you want for blender ui. After all if you’re familiar with the purpose of using scripts to rig, you might know that scripts can be easilymade in maya as in blender as in cinema 4d as in any other program to bunch together a serie of repetitive actions, to speed up your workflow. What else do you need? Ah ah  a script to make you import a scene right from blender rather than opening clicking on the file but fom the blender file menu. Well you have that too now, thanks to the help given by blender community I wrote it. :B and now the blender addons are dissected for you. Download the import scene python script from here. This script allows you to open your blender scene the way that avastar scene works: after all if you watch their videos they let you go in file menu then click on avastar then make you click on the new importede shene from the blender outliner; which is what this script does. This is not all. If you want to have more fun you can download from here a script that turns any ofyour rigs where you’ve applied custom property sliders ( the same custom property that we also need to make a panel with sliders) into floating sliders, so when you click the  fk handlers for istance you can make appear  floating sliders related to that area of the body.

Now let’s see the known iussues with liquid democracy prototype.

  • It’s a prototype so try it at your risk,using betagrid or opengrid: it might be a total flop.
  • there are iussues reproducing the exact body fat shape, for now as general advice that will help you for tests with every other pose stay lose and try to balance weight not  betasurfacing your mesh but making bridges between ridges. What I mean is try to add weights not making the dress following the surface of the avatar, but like when you sculpt for a realistic effect and like it happens in real life make the dress behave like a bridge between ridge (look at how your tight shirt would stay on **bleep** right on your cleavage to understand what I mean:P)
  • The knees using the leg muscles pose 0% are not deformed like in SL. This because to make them appear like in second life in the knee area where  the joint is (in maya or other 3d programs) or where the tip and the head of the bones meet in blender you should assign an high % of weight of those vertices in that area to mbones, but this would screw then the  knee angle poses. You can test and see yourself. After all also the avatar from second life wiki have that kind of behaviour in blender and once in world the area match the leg muscles slider extreme values. Just to be complete for those who need it for a modeling purpose, for instance in case even for fitted mesh you might want to make more sizes.
  • I have had to make for torso muscles two poses for male versions and two for female version, hence the female really has a lil bit scale of the arms ,while  the man becomes hulk,this has been my work around.
  • I am trying to figure out what is making action constraint in blender  to complete the work and give you it working with a python panel and buttons for ik/fk switch and sliders like in second life.

Rather than those for now I don’t know other “iussues” and as said above it might work good as long as you follow the general rule “stay lose on the avatar and make bridges between the avatar ridges avoiding to betasurface it”:P

Fixes

  • I have been rotating  in edit mode the clavicles and the arms  collision bones, this in blender 2.72 bypasses the “bug” in the EXPERIMENTAL fbx addon”.By the way this is no more an iussue with blender 2.73 because  luckly the community after I pointed that out has fixed it, it seems.Plus they have added now a very nice feature in the collada dae exporter that now allows you to convert automatically blender bones into a joint system when you make a dae file to bring in maya or any other 3d software.
  • re-weighting process for male and female mesh,to let it fit as much as possible the secondlife deformations.Let’s hope that it works in blender for now it seems so, but I haven’t had time for enough tests in world in second life due to my real life “bugginess”
  • Given better rotation to some “extra”mbones like skull and toes.This should help especially when rigging stuff around head to avoid to get skull bugging you,giving you unwanted mskull weight on face.

If you find any iussue or find out any possible fix just send me in world a notecard (it’s better, hence being offline a lot I always get “message capped” error when I login). Or if you think that it’s better either way just take all this like a methodic talk and propose your own kit made from scratch.

This kit is free and it’s meant to be free. You can modify it, redistribute it, credits would be apreciated. Even if it was the most perfect thing of the world I would set it free. As activist of the Zeitgeist movement I care to share culture, that belongs to mankind.

Now let me write a very few lines that will guide you through the file ( liquid democracy  prototype) once that you’ve opened it by double click.

liquid_democracy.jpg

Here you can see on the lower menu bar several layers.You can activate each layer by Shift Rmb click on it, holding down Shift you can activate more layers just keeping Rmb clicking on them.For instance turn on  base female mesh,then turn on the armature layer to display the armature (all the bones).Then go to the armature property panel on the right and there you have two other layers that you can use to turn on only mbones or only collision bones or both kind of bones by shift click and Rmb clicking those layers.

Next picture is shows you how to use the pose library and the poses that I put inside to help you with rigging process.

pose-library2.jpg

  1. Always in armature tab see also the picture above, enable just collision bones.
  2. Now scrolling down the side bar in armature tab you can see the pose library that I created, which is named "fitted mesh”.There from the list select one fo the poses you want( I suggest you to follow a precise pattern selecting which one to put on timeline). Notice that I have enabled fake user: this is very important thing in many things also for materials for instance in blender to avoid that you lose what you’ve been creating when you close the program.
  3. Move the mouse cursor in 3d space and hit A from keyboard to select all the bones.Then click on the button with the magnifying glass icon as showed in the picture.This will apply to the bones the selected pose from pose library.
  4. Show where to place your keyframe on your timeline:I suggest you to use a precise ordr setting keyframes: for istance 0, 10, 20… By this way you can  not only jump from a pose to another using up and down arrow from keyboard, but if needed using the mouse or left and right arrow also gradually  change the body state from the minimum value pose to the maximum one.
  5. Be sure to have enabled LocRotScale That will allow you to store location rotation scale for each bone.
  6. Hit from keyboard I key or the button insert keyframe as showed in the picture.

This is all I can do for now in my little. I’ll keep working on the project and once figured out what is making the action constraint misbehave I’ll upgrade this also with a python scripted panel with sliders.You can see what is bugging  me here and if you want get on the piraten ship and work with me to complete the project. Of course the project is open source and we’ll work for free.

To contact me telling me about bugs that you find or propose fixes drop me a notecard in second life, because I always get messages capped.

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Question: How can I deform collision bones,without doing it just randomly?

Turn on in second life the collision bones from advanced menu and watch with big attention. To help you I leave here a little note that I wrote down by then for myself (I’ll keep editing it to make it as much understandable as possible for you). To interpret better my scratches here look at this imagine:

BodyPlanes2.jpg

Head Stretch: HEAD for 0% smaller sagittal plane z bigger trasversal plane y & coronal x
but less on coronal plane,for 100% the opposite.

Head Lenght: HEAD modify along the frontal axes only (saggital axe) 0% & 100%

Torso Muscles (BELLY, UPPER_BACK, CHEST, L_CLAVICLE, L_UPPER_ARM, L_LOWER_ARM, R_CLAVICLE, R_UPPER_ARM,
R_LOWER_ARM) : -BELLY is scaled along coronal plane but few
-CHEST coronal & sagittal plane
-UPPER_BACK coronal plane and saggital plane

-CLAVICLE(L&R) coronal plane and saggital (coronal more); the transverse plane seems not modified

-UPPER_ARM saggital plane & transversal plane (the most) minimum coronal plane

-LOWER_ARM saggital plane (transversal maybe but minimum)
For upper arm and lower arm the shape in the middle changes from romboidal to quadrate
Breast Size : LEFT_PECK & RIGHT_PECK from 50% (ruth’s size) to 100% scale all axes; from 50%
to 0% just scale the transversal plane (move the bone a bit backward too).

Breast Buoyancy: Move the LEFT_PECK & RIGHT_PECK bones up and down without scaling.The effect is similar to an oject moved within a lattice cage

Breast Cleavage: LEFT_PECK & RIGHT PECK move along the coronal plane without scale

Pectorals : No scale for LEFT_PECK & RIGHT_PECK at 100% they meet in the middle at 0% they move to sides on saggital plane
Love handles: LEFT_HANDLE & RIGHT_HANDLE are not scaled they just move along the coronal plane

BELLY is scaled in the coronal plane onlyfollowing the movement of the L&RHandle.

Leg Muscles: LEFT_UPPER_LEG, LEFT_LOWER_LEG, RIGHT_UPPER_LEG, RIGHT_LOWER_LEG are just scaled in the trasversal and coronal plane not saggital ( no vertical scale)

Butt Size: PELVIS & BUTT are scaled with an inverse proportionality.

BUTT is scaled only in the coronal plane , when butt size is 0% it gets the biggest size, when butt size is 100% it gets the smallest size

PELVIS is scaled in the saggital plane (vertical) mostly and also in the transversal plane back to forward less

Saddle Bags: PELVIS is scaled in the coronal plane only

Knee Angle: LEFT_UPPER_LEG,lEFT_LOWER_LEG, RIGHT_UPPER_LEG, RIGHT_LOWER_LEG are not scaled but just moved in the coronal plane.At 100% theyìre moved to sides and in the middle at 0%
Foot Size: L_FOOT & R_FOOT are scaled on the coronal plane ( side to side) and in the transversal plane back to forward

Body Fat: – CHEST all the 3 planes
– PELVIS 3 planes
– UPPER_BACK 3 planes
– LOWER_BACK 3 planes
-LEFT_HANDLE & RIGHT_HANDLE don’t scale but just move in the coronal plane following belly
-LEFT_PECK & RIGHT_PECK scale in 3 planes
-BELLY 3 planes
– L_CLAVIVLE, R_CLAVIVLE are scaled only in saggital (vertical) plane,
– L_UPPER_ARM,L_LOWER_ARM,R_UPPER_ARM,R_LOWER_ARM are scaled only in trasversal and sagittal plane (no vertical/lenght scale).
– HEAD is scaled only in saggital plane ( vertical only)
– NECK is scaled only horizontal ( transversal & coronal plane).

And remember that, even if it’s not said  in the wiki (see here), when you make your body fat poses the R_UPPER_LEG, R_LOWER_LEG, L_UPPER_LEG and L_LOWER_LEG are scaled as well just into saggital and coronal plane. You can see this watching what heppens to those bones in world, when you move the body fat slider.

Remember also that scaling on a single axe is smilar to grab the bone and move it along that axe, make your tests in blender or your 3d program of choice and see. Ergo careful when or if you move the bones along axes.

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Hi;

First of all thank you for your huge effort to uncover the bits and pieces of Fitted Mesh development. From your post it becomes very clear that fitted mesh is a complex thing. However, since you also mention Avastar as a comparison to your tool, please let me add some information to clarify a few points:

The Avastar free Avatar 270 ...

is one of our Avatar workbench downloads. Your document is a bit unclear about how this relates to Avastar. So here is clarification: The Avatar Workbench is not directly comparable to Avastar. The only similarity is that both tools use the same Skeleton, namely the Skeleton provided by Linden Lab.

The weights ...

Avastar uses the exact same weights as the Second Life Avatar. Indeed we use the Avatar definition files from the SL Viewer as reference. These weights have never been meant to be useful for fitted mesh. Indeed we do not (yet) provide any weights for fitted mesh because there are no such weights defined.

Actually these "fitted mesh weights" depend highly on the users mesh creations. Using weight copy tools can only provide some "starting point" which needs more or less tweeking and the final weight maps must always be optimized for the particular mesh attachment.

Relation between the Avatar appearance sliders and mesh.

This is complex, however it can be broken down to this:

 

  • The SL Avatar uses 130 appearance sliders
  • About 100 of these sliders control "Blend Shapes" (Shape keys in Blender)
  • about 30 of these sliders control the Skeletal animation.
  • The SL Avatar uses all 130 sliders for appearrance settings
  • Mesh items can only use about 30 of these sliders

Fitted Mesh tries to simulate the 100 blend shape sliders which can never be precise. Note that Avastar handles all of this exactly as it is handled in the SL Viewer. Hence we can provide a true What you see is what you get tool. However, it can still be very easy to break things because of the sheer complexity of the system.

A tool is just a tool

Of course any tool based on Blender will make use of what Blender offers. And then it will add its own improvements to this. In most cases these tools are meant for making things easier. Looking from this perspective, any Addon is just a set of helper functions which aim to make creator's life easier. And of course you would not need any of those tools in order to get your tasks done. At the end its more a question of time and efficiency. So you can use pure Blender and get perfect Meshes, but it might be easier and/or faster to use dedicated Addons as well.

Blender Optimizations

Thank you for mentioning that we have improved the Collada Importer. Indeed we wanted this to work exactly for making it easier to import collada files from other sources like Maya for example :matte-motes-grin:

The FBX Addon is still moving a bit as well. But overall it looks pretty good meanwhile.

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Gaia Clary wrote:

The Avastar free Avatar 270 ... is one of our Avatar workbench downloads. Your document is a bit unclear about how this relates to Avastar. So here is clarification: The Avatar Workbench is not directly comparable to Avastar. The only similarity is that both tools use the same Skeleton, namely the Skeleton provided by Linden Lab.

 

"Unclear?" well I take as reference what I get for free now on the machinamatrix blog it was called avastar avatar. At least now thanks my "unclearness &/or mistake" its well known that there are seria A kits and serie B kits. Blah sl start getting similar to the American Hospitals where if you pay insurance then you have right to be healed or you can just go to the voodoo wizard and hope to heal.


Gaia Clary wrote:

The weights ... Avastar uses the exact same weights as the Second Life Avatar
. Indeed we use the Avatar definition files from the SL Viewer as reference. These weights have never been meant to be useful for fitted mesh.
Indeed we do not (yet) provide any weights for fitted mesh because there are no such weights
defined. Actually these "fitted mesh weights" depend highly on the users mesh creations. Using weight copy tools can only provide some "starting point" which needs more or less tweeking and the final weight maps must always be optimized for the particular mesh attachment.

 Although I am sure that I've read on machinamatrix that new versions of avastar have been fixed in the weight. So it's not a weight paint fix but a coding fix to interpret the xml files a way like wizdaxter tool does!?

Ergo do  you  mean that this or any other tool that has been built in this way will never allow tus to rig the same way that avastar allows its users?

But if the avastar  weights  and avatars from wiki are so different how can a common user hope to use them,,having the same chance to rig with same weapons that avastar users use? We should all code first a program like SLAV plugin. Geez haha

Fitted mesh becomes always more a scientific thing. observe phenomonous, study it in a lab, write down a law to describe it and allow anybody to reproduce it. It's so easy to reproduce by us all common N0obs, if I interpret well what is written above.

I can't check maya and mayastar for now. Say I am Tesla's and Majorana's fan and I love free energy, but taking free energy makes electrical wiring risky so the old powerful pc is boom kaboom haha. As consequence since last may/june I am hooked with a pc made cannibalizing other old ones and I'll stay sticking with it until intel stops a_ssling us pretending to sell a-ss-well processors & co ( still few months of patience). A good chance to be in xubuntu and get more into blender but :P Switching is  not that hard thing using maya settings for blender,just memory task focusing on the new gui and some different tools and of course different way they work.


Gaia Clary wrote:

.

Relation between the Avatar appearance sliders and mesh.

This is complex, however it can be broken down to this:

 
  • The SL Avatar uses 130 appearance sliders
  • About 100 of these sliders control "Blend Shapes" (Shape keys in Blender)
  • about 30 of these sliders control the Skeletal animation.
  • The SL Avatar uses all 130 sliders for appearrance settings
  • Mesh items can only use about 30 of these sliders

Fitted Mesh tries to simulate the 100 blend shape sliders which can never be precise. Note that Avastar handles all of this exactly as it is handled in the SL Viewer. Hence we can provide a true What you see is what you get tool. However, it can still be very easy to break things because of the sheer complexity of the system.

 

  • Well not that to rig I'd need all the avastar sliders. I don't need to rebuild also the morphs for elf ears and stuff. just the few poses that are controlled by the sliders that in sl affect collision bones.
  • If this and all the other things above are as you say. Then my work or anybody's work with this kit or any other kit is just wasted time if made in this way.
  • Then rigging with logic rebuilding a pose/break-pose system using the avatar given to us from wiki or even the avastar free avatar 270 is impossible to use a prosopopoeia, not so easy to use litotes, very hard to be optimist.

Astrid Kaufmat Mason has no more questions. At this point if I interpret well,  it's better that I go back to the f... hell of open grid and stay in there and RIP

 

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Somehow you sound a bit like you dislike what we do. I am not entirely sure about what makes Avastar an inconvenient tool for you. However...

 

  • I apologize if i made a mistake. But please can you tell me where on our website we name this "The free Avastar Avatar" ? Then i will correct that document.
  • what are "Seria A" and "Seria B" Kits ?
  • Regarding SLAV: We do not know how Wiz interprets the Data. I guess that he does it the same way as we do. We have verified dozens of times that our system behaves just like SL behaves except some parts on the lower legs where we see very small deviations from what we expect.
  • The weights provided in the SL Wiki are made as an example for a fitted Mesh character. Those weights are no definition of any officially to be used weights. it is just an example.
  • The weights we use in Avastar and in the Workbench are the official weights coming from the Avatar definition files and those weights are meant to be used for the SL Avatar itself.
  • Our recent fixes do not affect the weights. They affect how the Avastar sliders interpet the weights on custom meshes. So we have fixed Avastar's slider system and not the Avastar weights. The weights used by Avastar have never changed.
  • About the implementation of the Slider system: Avastar's main purpose is creating precise animations for Second Life. In order to get this supported we must implement the entire slider system. This comes to benefit for Avastar's fitted mesh support. Because now you can use Avastar as a test tool for your fitted meshes.

I also do not say that you MUST get Avastar to make fitted Mesh.It is just a huge time saver. I also do not say your tool is bad or whatever. And for sure i am all positive about supporting Blender and the Blender Community.

Actually we put a lot of effort into Blender itself. Since 2 Years we (the makers of Avastar) also take care that Blender's Collada Exporter is capable to export for SL. Last year we added the important fix for Second Life fitted Mesh in Blender 2.70. And the recent improvement in 2.73 for Importing foreign rigs was my idea and i even implemented this part.

So we do all that we can do to provide SL support right in Blender. And it is not our fault that fitted Mesh is complex. We try to make it easier. And again i am not so sure about where we do wrong.

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Gaia Clary wrote:

 
I also do not say that you MUST get Avastar to make fitted Mesh.It is just a huge time saver. I also do not say your tool is bad or whatever. And for sure i am all positive about supporting Blender and the Blender Community.

Ergo seria A and serie B riggers. One who can build the pose-Breakpose pipeline in few minutes and other who can just hope to make it properly.

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Astrid,

I'm having trouble following you, but I do think that you need to make sure you understand what you are looking at and what you call things.

The Fitted Mesh Survival Kit, which you propose is wrong, is not Avastar, and it's only real association is that we supplied it.  It is merely provided to give users, who do not have Avastar, a way to use the mesh and rig, provided by Linden Labs, for Fitted within Blender.

As Gaia stated on the Fitted Mesh Survival Kit page:

"All previous versions of blender can not create Collada Files that work with fitted Mesh, because Blender does not support a customizable restpose matrix (or bind pose matrix) as it is available in Maya. We have added a workaround which allows to export the data so that the SL Importer is happy again."

Statements you made, such as "Below you can see the proof that avastar free avatar and second life free avatar are the same thing, with same “bugginess”: I have applied the same scale values to BELLY and PELVIS bone and you can see that butt gets oddly distorced." would thus be incorrect.  It isn't "proof" when we've already stated that it's based on LL's work.

What you are calling "avastar free avatar" is a misnomer.  I am guessing you are calling it that because we mention that the file is provided for those without Avastar; that doesn't make it "avastar free" or free of avastar.  The more accurate reference would be, "The fitted mesh survival kit".

You are making quite a few assumptions.  We always welcome comments and questions.  We only ask that you be clear and, rather than assume, ask us and we'd be happy to explain.  

Thank you,

Eleanora

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First, let me say that I love both the new collada work, and FBX work. Both, are a huge help to someone like myself. On a side note, does anyone know if Blender can use the embeded textures in FBX files, cause I'm not getting those to work.

 

Anyways.......

I'll just say a few things about creating for SL, and the tools. I create fulltime, for many different platforms. Most of the time, I make my own rigs or change the rigs I'm provided, to suit my workflow. It's not easy being a freelance artist. Many times, I'm asked to do things that I have to figure out, and develop ways to do it. Time, is always of the utmost importance. Anything I can get or buy to make my time more efficient, is more than worth it in the end, especially when I can trust the creators or suppliers.

This is why I love Avastar! It makes things easy for me, in every aspect. I not only use Avastar for SL, and all the similar platforms, but also for other game engines. I actually rig characters to my modified version of Avastar's rig, and sell them for other game engines, and it works with those engine's default human rigs. I create anything and everything that has to do with avatars, but I'm primarily an animator. I use Avastar whenever possible, not just for the many features, but especially for the animation work that I do. It allows me to use that 1 rig across multiple unique game engines, and have quick access to the thousands of animations that I've made over the years. I really could go on and on. To me, Avastar is priceless.

I'll just point out, that most people know that I can be a very harsh critic. When I see something that is blatantly wrong, I'm not afraid to say it. If you ask me, I think the Machinimatrix group is extremely generous is putting out a free option for Blender users. Economically, that can only hurt their sales of their own product, but obviously, the Machinimatrix groups isn't concerned with that as much. I applaud them.

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Astrid all i read in your posts here is "my sh*t is better than yours" rants!

You are not qualified to say is your product better or not!!!

That is for consumer to decide!!!

All you do at this moment is spitting at other ppls products and nothing else!

And for that reason I and i think manny others wont even try your cookies!

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