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posted by LaminatorX on Thursday March 20 2014, @10:30AM   Printer-friendly
from the will-it-blend? dept.

chromas writes:

From the release page:

New features include initial support for volumetrics in Cycles, and faster rendering of hair and textures. The motion tracker now supports weighted tracks and has improved planar tracking. For mesh modeling there are new Laplacian deform and wireframe modifiers, along with more control in the bevel tool. The game engine now supports object levels of detail.

The first results from the new user interface project are also in this release, with dozens of changes to make the interface more consistent and powerful. This is also the first release of the multithreaded dependency graph, which makes modifier and constraint evaluation faster in scenes with multiple objects.

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  • (Score: 5, Informative) by chromas on Thursday March 20 2014, @10:33AM

    by chromas (34) Subscriber Badge on Thursday March 20 2014, @10:33AM (#18832) Journal

    I submitted a fixed one with a link and spellcheck but the wrong submission was deleted. That's bad communication on my part. The release page [].

  • (Score: 5, Interesting) by Vanderhoth on Thursday March 20 2014, @11:14AM

    by Vanderhoth (61) on Thursday March 20 2014, @11:14AM (#18839)

    I use blender for just hobby stuff off and on for well over six years and it's really fantastic for a free tool. I modeled my house with it and used it to get an idea of what things might look like if I tore down some walls, design my kitchen, my daughter's crib (which converted into a double bed), tables and cabinets with hidden drawers and a lot of other things.

    My current project is a wooden clock, which I've already started building. There's a gear plug-in for Blender I was able to use to figure out teeth ratios and gear sizes. Initially I tried using just the physics engine to drive the 3D clock model. It somewhat worked, but was really glitching. The biggest problem was the timing chain, it'd work fine for two or three seconds, then the chain would just pass through the cog and fall off into infinity.

    I'm not trying to sell anyone on it, but if you can't afford the big name tools, like AutoCAD, or just want to experiment with 3D modeling this is for you. It can be quite daunting at first, if you don't know the keyboard short cuts it's extremely hard to use. It's really hard to find anything just using the menus. After you've memorized most of the short cuts, or know how to look them up in the user preferences view, it's a great program for quick prototyping or just messing around with.

    "Now we know", "And knowing is half the battle". -G.I. Joooooe
    • (Score: 5, Funny) by Vanderhoth on Thursday March 20 2014, @11:53AM

      by Vanderhoth (61) on Thursday March 20 2014, @11:53AM (#18847)

      I should have also mentioned if you're a python programmer you can write scripts to procedurally generate models. I "grew" a tree with a python script once, it was a pretty ugly tree. Actually it was more of a shrub... without leaves... and some of the branches tried to stab me through the monitor. I think it might have been begging to die. I guess not having a green thumb in real life translate into digital space as well.

      "Now we know", "And knowing is half the battle". -G.I. Joooooe
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 20 2014, @03:21PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 20 2014, @03:21PM (#18915)

      I'm glad to hear that Blender has matured into a useful product. I remember a few years back a friend showed me an animation made with the launch version of Blender. Having a small background in animation myself it was just... awful. The characters had no weight, the textures were entirely flat, etc. It could have been that the animation was put together too quickly, rather than any fault of the tool, but it turned me off Blender entirely.

      It's good to hear more positive feedback from someone who's used the tool. I should give it another try.

      • (Score: 4, Interesting) by Vanderhoth on Thursday March 20 2014, @04:03PM

        by Vanderhoth (61) on Thursday March 20 2014, @04:03PM (#18932)

        Here's a page that has a number of "open" animation projects that were all done using blender. It gives a good idea what you could do with the tool if you were well versed in it. []

        I'm personally still an armature with it (LOL, I made a punny), modeling is about as far as I can go. Texturing/Lighting/Animation are all things I've played with, but I really suck at, I'm not an artist. I have had pretty good results modeling & rigging a human, but couldn't get clothing/hair (soft/rigid body physics) or texturing to work right. My work with Blender is really more with designing and rigging furniture so I can play around with neat ideas for hidden compartments or my daughters crib that became a double bed.

        Interesting note, the length of a toddler mattress is almost exactly the width of a double bed, so the cribs side rails can easily become the head and foot broad of a bed. I used blender to get an idea of how to transform the crib to a bed so all the parts were used or easily stored in either state. So if someday my daughter wants to turn it back to a crib for her child it's easily doable. It's sturdy enough that my wife and I can both jump on it in either state with out breaking it, way better than the crap plywood/MDF cribs you get at walmart that are just death traps waiting to happen. It also turned out to be cheaper for me to build, well since I already have all the necessary tools anyway.

        I don't know what kind of animation features a program like AutoCAD would have, but it would probably be a better product for what I do than Blender, given you can't print out blueprints with blender (As far as I'm aware). It's tricky to keep things to scale so when you click on an edge or point you get an accurate measurement, but I've gotten pretty good at that anyway. Although I don't like having my laptop in the wood shop with me because of sawdust.

        "Now we know", "And knowing is half the battle". -G.I. Joooooe