Trimensions adds virtual office on its website

 

Expert in designing Virtual Worlds, within SecondLife since a few years, and now with 3DXplorer, Trimensions has developped highly skilled ressources for designing and building Virtual Worlds with 3DXplorer. The comapny based in New Delhi, India, offers these content creation services to the 3DXplorer users community.

A new version of Trimensions website is available since a few days, including its new virtual offices, built with 3DXPlorer.

Have a tour there now: http://trioff.trimensions.org

 

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How to create your own panoramas simply

 

 

Following our post on April 21st , some of 3DXPlorer users wrote to us to ask how to create their own quality images , to be used with the « open sky » scene.

 

You can find several methods and even tools to automatically generate spherical or hemispherical images. Some of them are quite complex though. We wanted to share a simple method here , which is sufficient for many of your projects.

 

You can find easily, a royalty free image, that  you like. But these images are usually of low resolution, and not spherical. Take one of those low resolution images, like the one below:

 

 

 

Resolution: 512 x 256

 

Crop the image in a way that the bottom line fits with the ground surface of the landscape, perfectly horizontal, and that the sky is as high as possible. Duplicate and mirror this surface, and juxtapose the copy on the same side as the axis of symmetry used for mirroring the original image. You’ll obtain this:

 

 

 

Resolution: 1024 x 256

 

 

 

If you need a higher resolution, you can repeat this operation once again :

 

 

 

Resolution: 2048 x 512

 

Through this simple method, you can « generate » quality pixels, by using the image’s own pixels ! The result is a cylindrical image (the two extreme lines join smoothly, thanks to the symmetry).

But in some scenes like the « open sky » , they can be used instead of a hemispherical one, if the buildings are not too high, thanks to the big size of the whole scene, the vertical deformation is not perceptible.

 

Have fun with these simple handmade special effects!

 

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Using “render-to-texture” & “texture baking” techniques

 

In order to enhance the realism of a scene, very often, we just need to improve lighting conditions and add shadows and other lighting effects. Obviously, in this fiend, real time engines are not supposed to go as far as most off-line rendering calculations. But sometimes, we may be able to use a pre-rendered scene inside 3DXplorer for a real time visualization.

This type of scenes can simply be generated by using “render to texture” or “texture baking” features in 3DSMax or in Maya.

These features enable 3DXPlorer designers to integrate the lighting and the shadows directly into texture files. By leaving the texture files of such a scene in the same folder than the file to be imported, they will be imported inside 3DXplorer together with the scene.

Once the scene is in 3DXPlorer, the texture materials property has to be set to “self illumination” in order to avoid rendering them twice.

Example: The scene called “Show-room” under “buildings” in the 3DXplorer objects library has some pre-rendered textures.

New Java for Mac users

Those Mac users under Leopard Mac OS X 10.5, are invited to update their Java machine by downloading the latest release from Apple here:

http://www.apple.com/downloads/macosx/apple/application_updates/javaformacosx105update1.html

To read more about this release:

http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=307403

 

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