“It’s a maker…”

Status update: I’ve just started a non-Blender-related job as a developer at a company called MakerBot that sells 3D printers. What with moving from South Carolina to Brooklyn and the usual getting-up-to-speed at the new job I’ve been a bit busy. I’m still working on dyntopo as time allows, and I expect that as I settle in, my Blender projects will pick up steam again.

My current focus is on finalizing parts of dyntopo that could be committed separately. The largest such component is the BMLog, which is what dyntopo is using for undo/redo. Rather than making full copies of the BMesh, it keeps track of the Euler operators applied to the mesh (and their inputs), and undoing simply applies the inverse operator.

If necessary, BMLog could be added as an optional system that is only enabled for dyntopo, but if possible I’d like it to handle undo in editmode as well. This will ensure it gets proper testing, and should generally be advantageous in terms of memory usage as well. I’m currently making the necessary changes to use BMLog for editmesh undo so that I can give it some better testing.

BMLog also needs thorough developer documentation and various code cleanups to meet my own standards. I’ll be going through each commit to do my own code review as well, before proposing it for inclusion in Blender (at which point, if there is interest from other developers, it will get additional review before being included in Blender.)

The 2.64 release is still planned for sometime in September. It’ll be nice to see that code finally get out the door; it’ll be the first official release with sculpt masking and the skin modifier. I’m hopeful that BMLog can be proposed for inclusion in 2.65, but that will depend on my schedule and feedback from other developers (who may be busy with GSoC merges.)

11 thoughts on ““It’s a maker…””

  1. Congratulations on a new job.
    MakerBot is a cool company and they are lucky to have you onboard

    On a selfish level: I hope you will be back on track on dyntopo as soon as possible. It´s a feature that is so very needed in Blender!

  2. Hi Nicholas,
    Congrats on the job, sounds like a great place to work
    hmmm, you gonna crank out a few dynamesh sculpts in print, while test driving your code? ( ô¿ô )
    Would be awesome on getting a 3d printer setup, maybe one day :)
    We get blender -N- law deals? :p

    Cheers Bro,
    ~Tung

  3. Hi NIcholas,any change dynamic topology will have also an “hole” and “merge”operator?
    As more as I test,I found it really good to sculpt the overal shape,but it current lacks the possibility to carve holes and to merge distinct portion of the mesh(for example you can’t transform a cruved tube shape in a torus,creating a cyclic surface).
    In my opinion,with such topology operations this tool can be really revolutionary,you could finally start sculpting shapes without thinking to a base mesh.

  4. Hi Nicholas, congratulations for the new job!
    Your Dyntopo branch is awesome, testing it is lot of fun.

    Regarding the mask feature, as I understand it, works on vertex colors, right?
    Would it be hard to add an option to save an load masks as vertex color layers in object data?
    It would be really useful to quickly hide and show predefined parts of a mesh (like head, torso, arms, ecc.) speeding up the work (less time spent on redrawing the same masks for tweaking part of a mesh, faster hiding for who struggle with viewport slowdowns, ecc.)
    Your masking feature is way faster and usable than vertex paint mode (it supports symmetry, you can actually see the model surface, better behavior of the brush tool) so it would be useful to paint masks that can be later used to mix materials.
    Eg: I have sculpted a wolf head with Dyntopo and now I want to render the hi-poly model in cycles mixing a fur material with a skin material for the nose, lips and eyelids. But painting a mask of an hi-poly model in vertex paint mode is nearly impossible.

  5. cool!, what are you doing at Maker bot?, are you gonna do compatibility between blender an the 3D printer or something along those lines?., that’d be awesome!.
    Congrats on the new job, and great job on the new implementations !

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