iPi DMC Community Technology Preview released
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Author:  Michael Nikonov [ Sat Apr 18, 2009 4:33 am ]
Post subject:  iPi DMC Community Technology Preview released

Change History

Latest version:
• Added support for new clothing model – T-shirt over long-sleeve shirt.
• COLLADA export.
• Improved tracking quality.
• Improved visualization of ground markers.
• Fixed missing images in User Guide.
Version Community Technology Preview:
• Enabled file saving during 30 days trial period. Previous version incorrectly disabled it.
Version Community Technology Preview:
• The 30 days trial period now correctly starts from the time when user actually was able to run the system. In previous version, users with incompatible hardware could not run the system but their trial period started anyway.
Version Community Technology Preview:
• Minor UI improvements.
Version Alpha:
• Improved reliability of video seeking.
• Minor improvement in tracking quality.
• Balance option now defaults to ON for 1 and 2 cameras and to OFF for 3 and more cameras.
Version Alpha:
• Improved tracking quality.
• Improved joint limits.
• Fixed recently introduced problem with incorrect actor model shape.
• Improved reliability of video seeking.
Version Alpha:
• Speed optimizations (up to 40% faster in multi-camera configurations). Tracking speed now depends on actor size and pose in particular frame.
Version Alpha:
• Fixed bugs in Rotate Tool.
• Fixed bugs in viewport navigation.
• Added “move view” feature (middle mouse button).
• Improved joint limits.
• Minor improvements in motion tracking quality.
• Improved motion tracking speed with Foot Tracking enabled (no improvement with Foot Tracking disabled).
• Adjustable strobe interval.
• Minor UI improvements and bug fixes.
Version Alpha:
• New skeleton and model
• Fine tracking of foot position (optional)
• Fixed bug with 4-camera system calibration
Version Alpha:
• New actor model for more reliable motion tracking
• Improved hands color configuration
• Improved multi-camera system calibration
Version Alpha:
• Fixed critical bug with scene loading that could cause incorrect operation of multi-camera system.
• Fixed critical bug that caused incorrect torso orientation recognition
• Added “Auto detect initial camera positions” and “Auto adjust camera FOV” options
• Added “Enable balance” option
Version Alpha:
• Up to 4 cameras supported. For 3- and 4- camera configurations, all cameras must be of the same model.
• Fixed minor bug with project file saving and loading.
• Added video export options dialog.
Version Alpha:
• Improved multi-camera system calibration.
• Fixed bug with incorrect frame rate in iPiRecorder. Video could be recorded with incorrect frame rate if camera could not provide desired frame rate. This typically happened when camera exposure was too long (inconsistent with target frame rate).
• Minor improvement in recognition quality at the expense of additional 50% computation time.
Version Alpha:
• Multi-camera system calibration is now automatic. You only need to adjust Region of Interest on timeline and click “Calibrate…”
• Improved documentation on multi-camera calibration.
• Fixed playback timing for imported animation.
Version Alpha:
• Improved marker tracking.

Limitations of this release:

• This release is only compatible with DirectX 10 and newer video cards (NVIDIA GeForce 8-series and newer and ATI Radeon HD 2000-series and newer video cards).
• Only 4:3 aspect ratio cameras are supported in this release.
• Only male actors are supported. This release cannot correctly process videos of female actresses.
• Black shirt for actor clothing is recommended. Other shirt colors can cause problems with self-shadows. We are working to remove this limitation in future releases. Pants/shoes/hair can be any color.
• Only long-sleeve shirts supported in this release.
• Up to 4 cameras supported.
• Head tracking is not supported in this in this release. Head tracking will be added in subsequent releases.
• There are no fingers in default iPi MoCap skeleton.
• Single-camera version can only track upper-body. Leg tracking is not yet supported in single-camera version.
• This release is designed to work with videos at 320x240 resolution. Higher resolution does not improve accuracy.
• This release cannot handle camera lens distortion. This can be a problem for fish-eye lens. However, most consumer video cameras have negligible lens distortion.
• MoCap Project format is not guaranteed to be compatible with next release of iPi Studio.

Known problems in this release:

• Motion tracking is not very reliable. In particular, left and right legs can be confused occasionally. Manual intervention is required in case of problems.
• Single-camera version is inaccurate and suffers from depth errors and reflective ambiguities. Significant manual clean-up is required for single-camera videos.
• Importing animation clip into a project that already contains a video may lead to crash of iPi Studio application.
• ZReflect tool may violate joint limits.
• Editing (using Rotate, ZCorrect or ZReflect tools) many frames at ones may violate joint limits. (Editing many frames at ones happens when more then one frame is selected using strobe control).
• Joint limits for lower arms and lower legs are implemented as ball-and-socket joints while they should be hinge joints. This looks confusing but does not prevent motion tracking from working correctly. Hinge joints will be added in future releases.
• Motion tracking is slow, especially on less powerful video cards. There is a huge potential for speed optimizations.

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