May 2009

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Cascade ACM SIGGRAPH Presents From Toys to Technology - Stereoscopic Display

As a child, would you have guessed that one of your favorite toys would influence the future of 3-D imaging technology? Cascade ACM SIGGRAPH, Oregon and Southwest Washington’s local SIGGRAPH chapter, announced the From Toys to Technology - Stereoscopic Display event, scheduled to take place Monday, May 18, 2009 at 6:30 p.m. at the Portland Community College Cascade Campus. Highlighting Oregon engineered stereoscopic display systems, the evening will discuss stereoscopic terms and concepts, and will offer an inside look at Oregon’s very own youth phenomenon, the View-Master®.

The evening‘s program will include insight from:
• Kathleen O’Reilly, Cascade SIGGRAPH Vice-chair
• Ron Kriesel of 3-D Center for Art and Photography and Cascade SIGGRAPH Board Member (Portland, Ore.)
• Pat Green, Director of Research and Development for Planar Systems (Beaverton, Ore.)
• Tom Woody, Program Manager of Perceiva 3-D LCD Stereo Displays, MacNaughton Inc. (Beaverton, Ore.)
• Herc Silverstein, Product Manager/ Project Lead for Schrodinger (Portland, Ore.)

Products and technologies on display at the event will include the original View-Master®, StereoMirror technology, a Perceiva 19” LCD-based display, a Zalman ZM-M220 interlaced stereo using passive polarized glasses and NVIDIA quad-buffered OpenGL using shuttered LCD glasses.

Event Location, Registration and Parking
The Cascade ACM SIGGRAPH From Toys to Technology - Stereoscopic Display event will take place Monday, May 18, 2009 at 6:30 p.m. at the PCC Cascade Campus, Moriarty Arts and Humanities Building Auditorium (room 104); located at 705 N. Killingsworth Street, Portland, Ore. Registration and a social networking session, featuring light refreshments, will begin at 6:30 p.m. in the auditorium lobby. The presentation will begin promptly at 7 p.m.

For planning purposes, all attendees are asked to register prior to the event via http://cascadesiggraphmay2009.eventbrite.com.

This and other Cascade ACM SIGGRAPH meetings are free to Cascade ACM SIGGRAPH Chapter members. Non-members are asked to pay a $5 admission fee at the door. Annual local memberships can be purchased at the door for $25 a year for professionals and $18 for students. Checks or cash only, no credit cards accepted.

The PCC Cascade Campus is close-in to downtown Portland. Street parking is available on a first-come, first-served basis, and across the street in the PCC parking lot for a minimal fee. Carpooling is recommended as parking availability is limited. Directions to the PCC Cascade Campus are available here: http://www.pcc.edu/about/locations/cascade/.

Event Sponsors
The Cascade ACM SIGGRAPH Chapter would like to thank the PCC Multimedia Department for their generous sponsorship of this event.

About Cascade ACM SIGGRAPH
With a theme of collaborative community for our 2008–2009 program season, the Cascade ACM SIGGRAPH Chapter exists to serve the needs of the Oregon and Southwest Washington computer graphics industry and students. Through meetings, workshops, conferences and other activities, the Cascade ACM SIGGRAPH Chapter works to promote an increased knowledge of, and greater interest in, the educational, artistic, and scientific aspects and applications of modern technology to graphics, enhancing communication between persons in Oregon and Southwest Washington that have an interest in any aspect of computer graphics.

For more information about Cascade ACM SIGGRAPH and to obtain membership registration, please visit the Cascade ACM SIGGRAPH Web site at http://www.cascade.siggraph.org.

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Pharmaceutical Executive Magazine Features 3-D Cover

The May issue of Pharmaceutical Executive from Advanstar Communications will sport a 3-D cover celebrating the top 50 companies in the field. The requisite 3-D glasses for viewing the eye-popping stereoscopic artwork will be polybagged with the issue. The sponsor of this cover scheme is CRM provider Cegedim-Dendrite, whose message will appear on the glasses themselves.

Publisher Jay Berfas is a reportedly fan of 3-D and a collector of its paraphernalia. The classic visual trick is not unrelated to the medical field. 3-D imaging is a new growth area of medical procedures and analysis. The cover art is being created by a medical illustrator, Craig Foster, who created a 3-D mailer for a cancer drug.

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Elisabeth Shue Confirmed for Piranha 3-D and Casting Calls in Arizona

Moviehole.net announced that Elisabeth Shue has officially joined Alex Aja’s Piranha 3-D.

Shue is reportedly playing the role of Sherrif Julie Forester, a take-charge authority figure in the community of Lake Victoria, where the action/ankle-biting takes place. She’s the mother of Jake, one of the central characters in the film - the shy teenager who gets to prove his worth when human-eating fish threaten his family and friends, Laura and Zane.

Aja’s remake will be shooting in Arizona with a planned March 19, 2010 release date.

Lake Havasu City, Arizona citizens will have the opportunity to be cast as extras in Pirahna 3-D, which will begin filming on Lake Havasu in the near future. The film’s official Arizona casting crew warns the public of casting scams circulating the community. Good Faith Casting LLC is the official authorized Pirahna 3-D casting company.

Chris Davis, casting associate for Good Faith Casting and casting assistant Travis McAfee arrived in Lake Havasu City only to confront rumors of a casting scam already in full swing. They would like to squash rumors of the casting scams by alerting the public to a few red flags surrounding the scams.

"Reportedly people are paying $40 for a head shot for casting. Good Faith Casting does not require anyone to pay to be cast,” Davis said. Davis and McAfee heard rumors of movie extras pay being in the range of $100 to $400 a day. Davis said,“That isn’t the case. Extras will be paid at the Arizona minimum wage of $7.25 per hour and time-and-a-half after eight hours. There will be catering on location providing meals,” he said.

The Lake Havasu City casting office is set up primarily for casting extras but a few one-liners could be cast from the Lake Havasu office. The one-liners or other featured extras are paid more, but that is not determined until the casting process has been completed.

Other rumors include the casting of children from local schools. Davis said there are few if any child parts being cast in Piranha 3-D.

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Hairspray 2 may be in 3-D

Hairspray 2 director Adam Shankman, who said John Waters' had written a crazy script treatment that they were going to borrow ideas from says the project doesn't seem to have moved too far along. "There are some really funny ideas, but we don't have a writer for it yet." New Line was hoping to have Hairspray 2 ready for release in July 2010, but they probably won't make that date. The most interesting news is that Hairspray 2 may end up in 3-D.

Shankman is producing Step Up 3-D, which the third sequel in that series, and being shot in 3-D. "We were blown away with the tests we just did for Step Up 3-D and seeing the dance in 3-D, and an arm coming out and flips that are going by your head. It was such an incredible experience."

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Could Spider-Man 4 be in 3-D?

Spider-Man 3-D artwork.

Amy Pascal and Michael Lynton are the current co-chairs of Sony Pictures Entertainment and Forbes interviewed them about the future of the motion picture business. Pascal suggests that Sam Raimi’s next Spider-Man could be shot in 3-D.

It sounds more than an idle suggestion, it sounds like a real, solid possibility, if not tentative plan… though Lynton also offers a reason why the idea might be controversial.

Forbes asked is they see 3-D as the future of the industry. Pascal replied, "For sure. You’re not going to see a lot of animated movies that aren’t in 3-D any more. I think Jeffrey Katzenberg preached that and he was right. I didn’t understand what he was talking about until I saw Monsters vs. Aliens. It’s a very immersive experience. It’s like seeing perspective for the first time. I think it is something different and terrific and a new group of directors will have to figure out how to do it."

Pascal added, "I think James Cameron’s new movie, Avatar, could change the world. I think everyone is in anticipation thinking it’s going to be like Star Wars. It’s going to change the way you consume entertainment. I don’t know that it will ever be the way you see dramas, but I can’t say anymore that it won’t be."

What about Spider-Man 4? Pascal says two words, "Could be." Lynton adds, "People are paying a premium to see 3-D movies and that’s a very big deal. It’s never been done before that someone says you have to pay more to see Spider-Man than a romantic comedy."

The next question is whether or not Sam Raimi would want to make the film in 3-D and whether or not the studio would let him make it in plain old 2-D anyway.

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Panasonic's Concept HD 3-D Stereoscopic Video Camcorder

Panasonic HD 3-D videocamera.

Panasonic Corporation, a world leader in High Definition technology, announced it will start developing a professional 3-D Full HD production system. The system, which is expected to be the first of its kind in the industry, consists of a twin-lens P2 professional camera recorder and a 3-D-compatible High Definition Plasma display. Panasonic exhibited concept models of the 3-D system at its booth (Central Hall #3712) at NAB 2009 to be held in Las Vegas, Nevada April 20, 2009.

Panasonic exhibited a conceptual model of a 3-D Full HD Camera Recorder at the 2009 NAB Show where it announced it would start development of a 3-D Full HD Production System.

With Hollywood studios moving towards creation of more 3-D entertainment content, Panasonic successfully debuted the world's first 3-D Full HD Plasma Home Theater System based on Plasma display and Blu-ray Disc technologies at the CEATEC trade show in Japan in September 2008. More recently, the company also established the Advanced Authoring Center within Panasonic Hollywood Laboratory in February 2009 to support Hollywood studios in developing 3-D Full HD Blu-ray Disc titles.

Production of 3-D movies requires a great deal of time and effort. With the new 3-D production system, which can enable an easier and more efficient 3-D production process and environment, Panasonic will contribute to accelerating the realization of easier high-quality 3-D content production.

At present, 3-D content producers have to hand-build their own 3-D production systems by physically connecting multiple 2-D production devices. Panasonic is now starting to work on developing a twin-lens, 3-D camera system. Also, Panasonic's Plasma displays have been used in many post-production facilities in Hollywood, thanks to their high-quality imaging performance, which has been endorsed by leading Hollywood professionals. Technologies and expertise obtained from their use in post-production has enabled Panasonic to further develop high-quality 3-D viewing performance in its Plasma technologies. As a result of this process, Panasonic's 3-D Plasma display system will help 3-D content producers to quickly and easily evaluate the image quality of 3-D content.

Each component of Panasonic's innovative 3-D Full HD production system has unique features. The twin-lens P2 camera recorder enables the capturing of natural and high-quality live 3-D images. Thanks to the non-mechanical solid-state construction of the P2 system, the camera recorder will be compact enough to allow more flexible 3-D shooting, thereby maximizing the creativity of the filmmakers by eliminating the stress factor from the use of the equipment.

3-D Full HD recording using Panasonic's proprietary P2 system also enables recording of two channels of Full HD images on the P2 card. P2's non-mechanical construction and compactness will also be incorporated into the company's 3-D image recording and editing equipment to make production in the field highly flexible and efficient.

Panasonic's 3-D Drive System enables the display of Full HD moving pictures for the left and the right eyes, so large screen 3-D viewing will become possible. The excellent moving picture performance and accurate color reproduction characteristics achieved by Plasma's self-illuminating technology enables the realization of high-quality 3-D image evaluation capabilities required in the professional content production field

"Panasonic is continuing its efforts to enable consumers to enjoy 3-D movies in the comfort of their own living rooms with its 3-D Full HD Plasma Home Theater System, which incorporates a Plasma HDTV and a Blu-ray Disc player," said Dr. Paul Liao, Chief Technology Officer of Panasonic Corporation of North America. "The professional 3-D Full HD image production system we are going to develop will improve the 3-D production environment and accelerate creation of 3-D titles."

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May Events at the 3-D Center of Art and Photography

3-D Center logoThe program schedule at the 3-D Center of Art and Photography in Portland, Oregon is now more regularized. The center will be opening either a new gallery exhibition or a new Stereo Theatre show each first Thursday.

In the Gallery
Continuing through May 3, 2009
History of the Stereo Card organized by the 3-D Center

Large 3-D anaglyph prints made from vintage stereo cards depicting a range of subjects from Gandhi to Mount Hood.

May 7 - June 28, 2009
A Rose is a Rose is a Rose in 3-D!
by Abe Fagenson
Boldly colorful stereo acrylic paintings of roses and fanciful abstractions.

In the Stereo Theatre
Extended run in the Stereo Theatre through May 3
Unseen Ellis Island
by Sheldon Aronowitz and Gary Schacker

May 7 - May 31, 2009
The City Quakes: The San Francisco Earthquakes of 1906 and 1989 by Robert Bloomberg

Stereo card images of the 1906 quake are combined with stereo photos shot by Bloomberg in 1989 following the Loma Prieta quake.

The 3-D Center of Art and Photography is located at 1928 NW Lovejoy in Portland, Oregon. Call (503) 227-6667.

The 3-D Center of Art and Photography has regular monthly Stereo Theatre and 3-D Art Exhibitions. Open Thursday - Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from 1 to 5 p.m. First Thursday (Free), 6 to 9 p.m. Admission for adults (over 15) is $5.

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Jaw Dropping News - Matt Hooper Cameo in Piranha 3-D

Dimension Films has confirmed rumors that swirled about regarding Richard Dreyfuss' cameo in Piranha 3-D.

The actor's part in the film will reportedly tip a hat to his Matt Hooper role in Jaws.

The New York Post's Page Six is reporting Ving Rhames is also set to star alongside Elisabeth Shue and Adam Scott.

Shooting begins next month in Arizona with Alex Aja directing.

 

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Humpty Dumpty 3-D: First News

Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall, Humpty Dumpty had a great fall, right? Apparently not. If you thought that there weren't any more wild and crazy concepts out there, just wait until you hear this.

Final Destination 2 and Snakes on a Plane director David R. Ellis has been hired to direct a high concept 3-D horror film called Humpy Dumpty. Here's how the story begins... When an alien mother is "abused" by two rednecks in the deep south, she gives birth to a a half-human, half-alien creature that eventually goes on a murderous rampage.

Believe it or not, they're actually making this. The script was written by newcomer Billy Majestic.

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Flanimals 3-D

Ricky Gervais’s children-book series, Flanimals, will soon literally pop off the page, according to Variety. Universal-based Illumination Entertainment will create a 3-D animated feature based on Gervais' four-volume series about a world of ugly but adorable creatures.

Gervais will voice a pudgy, perspiring purple creature, who goes on a mission to change the world. "It will be great to play a short, fat, sweaty loser for a change," Gervais said. "A real stretch."

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Consumer Electronics Association to Set 3-D TV Glasses Standards

The Consumer Electronics Association plans to set standards for stereo 3-D glasses. The move is one of many efforts aimed at paving the road to interoperable 3DTV products for the digital home, a concept some see as the next big thing in television.

"Almost every stereo 3-D device comes with its own set of glasses and almost none of them are compatible," said Chris Chinnock, president of Insight Media, a market research company focused on display technology.

The 3D@Home industry group will draft a list of existing 3-D glasses and their attributes to help the CEA identify compatibility issues. It will also draft a document on user requirements for 3-D glasses, said Chinnock who sits on the board of the year-old group which now has 40 members.

The CEA aims to set separate standards for active and passive glasses. It has scheduled a May 12 meeting to take up the issue.

"Whether work is approved to start on 3-D glasses remains to be seen," said Brian Markwalter, vice president of standards and technology at CEA.

Last fall, the CEA started exploring standards for 3DTV and kicked off an effort to update for stereo 3-D the CEA 861 standard that defines an uncompressed video interconnect at the heart of HDMI.

"They are trying to move things along as quickly as possible," said Chinnock.

Standards for glasses are just one small piece of the puzzle needed to deliver interoperable 3DTVs. The Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers said earlier this year it will kick off in June an effort to set standards for a master file for stereo 3-D content.

For its part, the 3D@Home group is working on document that will map out the many different technical approaches to rendering stereo 3-D content on consumer systems. It will also draft a list describing the various encoding techniques used to compress stereo 3-D content.

"We're asking standards bodies and industry groups what they need," said Chinnock. "There are a lot of moving parts here."

Interest in stereo 3-D continues to rise, led by Hollywood studios who are finding success selling premium tickets for 3-D movies at theaters. For example, the Dreamworks animated 3-D feature "Monsters vs. Aliens" earned more than $318 million in its first 32 days, according to one Web site.
Consumer electronics companies are keen to find a next-big-thing beyond today's big screen digital LCD TVs and think stereo 3-D could be it. A Panasonic chief technology officer called for a 3DTV standard this year at the CES show in January.

The drumbeat on 3DTV is continuing at industry events. As many as 53 sessions addressed aspects of 3-D at the recent National Association of Broadcasters annual conference. A high profile 3DTV panel is planned at next week's Digital Hollywood event in Santa Monica, Calif.

"The big take away for me was the level of activity in 3-D at NAB," said Chinnock. "Almost everyone has a product or program, and everyone in the whole NAB infrastructure chain is engaged in it—that's a sea change from last year," he said.

Plenty of roadblocks are still ahead. They range from efforts to set standards for rendering content in the home to how the content is created at the studio.

"The average engineer going to the NAB show realized there were twice as many issues that they thought going in," said Richard Doherty, principal of consulting firm Envisioneering (Seaford, NY). "You do 3-D wrong and you don't just give people headaches, you make them sick," he said.

Delivering good 3-D content in the cinema requires careful attention to a variety of issues in human perception. Translating that content to a 47-inch home TV has its own set of complex issues, Doherty said

"A lot of [OEMs] were saying, 'cripes this is more complex that we thought,'" he said. "That was the great awakening that came out of this show."

"It's easy to create 3-D, but it's hard to create good 3-D," said Chinnock, a fact he said movie producers made clear in NAB sessions. "So called pros were putting up stuff that hurt my eyes," he said.

"There will be a lot of subpar material that comes out, and it could give the sector another black eye," Chinnock said referring to the fast rise and fall of 3-D movies in the 1950's.

"There is a handful of stereographers that know what they are doing," he added.

The 3D@Home group will put together a primer on creating good stereo 3-D based on interviews with some of the top filmmakers, he added.

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Auction Results

12" x 12" View-Master advertising posters.

A set of View-Master® advertising signs were sold in separate auctions.. Measuring 24" long, folded in half at the top, so each side is 12"x12". The signs could be hung over an easel or wire to display each side. The signs came from a Butler, Missouri business where the owner had saved displays for many years. The seller says there are hundreds of unopened boxes with contents yet to be discovered. The combinations included:

  • Micky Mouse Club Circus Visits Disneyland/Aircraft Carrier in Action at Sea sold for $119.36 with eight bids.
  • Bambi/Mickey Mouse Club Mouseketeers sold for $77.01 with five bids.
  • The Lone Ranger in Mystery Rustler/A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens sold for $119.36 with 12 bids.

36" View-Master advertising posters.

A set of View-Master® advertising signs were sold in separate auctions. Measuring 36" long and 15" tall, these signs feature three different reel packet designs on each poster. The combinations included:

  • Casper's Ghostland/New York City at Night/Snoopy and the Red Baron sold for $57.56 with four bids.
  • Walt Disney Productions presents The Love Bug/The True Story of Smokey the Bear/Viewmaster Science Series Physics Matter and Energy sold for $118.51 with four bids.

View-Master Theatre Marketing Kit

A 1967 View-Master® Theater Marketing Kit sold for $57.52 with six bids. The sale included a vinyl advertising mat for printing out flyers, a two-sided sheet of paper showing the ads featured on the advertising mat, a four-page brochure showing various marketing ideas for the theater and a 18¼"x 12" cardboard easel sign advertising the View-Master® Theater.

According to the sellers, "We purchased an existing retail store that had been in business since 1949, and found a treasure trove of old stock, advertising, catalogs and decorations. The previous owner never threw anything away. If it couldn't be sold it got stuck upstairs. We have five rooms floor to ceiling full of items, most in excellent to very good condition. However, we are in the midst of a massive rebuilding/remodelling and have to clean this out in order to make repairs. If an item doesn't sell, we will most likely have to pitch the item in a dumpster."

View-Master® Display Suggestions Brochure

View-Master® Display Suggestions Brochure

View-Master® Display Suggestions Brochure

View-Master® Display Suggestions Brochure

A View-Master® Display Suggestions brochure sold for $38.77 with three bids. The vintage display suggestions brochure contains suggestions on how to display products in store windows and use items contained in a View-Master® What in the World Do You Want to See advertising kit.

GAF Open House brochure

GAF Open House brochure

GAF Open House brochure

 

A vintage GAF Open House brochure promoting their May, 1977 event sold for $27.77 with four bids. The brochure consists of eight pages including View-Master® plant photos and artwork of View-Master® products available in 1977.

South American McDonalds View-Master folding viewer and reel

A South American McDonald's View-Master® reel and folding viewer came up for auction. This was a special promotion with the set consisting of one folding viewer and one printed custom reel of Disney characters. This was a McDonald promotion that never materialized in the USA. The viewer and reel were never commercially available.

View-Master funhouse poster

A View-Master® Fun House advertising poster was listed for sale but received no bids. The full color poster measures 11"x19". The funhouses pop up in auctions from time to time.

View-Master window display.

A View-Master® Stick-on Window, Look-in Display sold for $260.55 with five bids. Made of white plastic, 11" wide by 7½" high, Kleen-Stik tape on back, you placed a View-Master® into the plastic display, mounted the display on a window, and allowed your customer to sample a View-Master® prior to purchase. In fair condition, slightly bent on one corner, some discoloration and stains. Instructions were included. The item is View-Master® Stock # 9144.

Fisher-Price View-Master® pack

A custom made Fisher-Price View-Master® pack sold for $19.99 with one bid.

View-Master Tomy press conference reel.

A View-Master® Tomy Press Conference reel sold for $19.99 with one bid. This is a custom produce reel featuring a press conference to announce View-Master®'s new relationship with Tomy Toys. In 1982 Tomy entered into a partnership with View-Master® to produce reels for the Japanese Market. This reel shows pictures taken of the press conference and features View-Master® advertising. Custom Reel from the View-Master® factory.

Hillary Clinton View-Master reel.

A View-Master® Mary Green test reel sold for $22.50 with two bids. This reel was produced as a commercial advertising reel for Mary Green. The reel features Hillary Clinton and Diane Feinstein - circa 1995.

View-Master dealer decal.

A rare Sawyer's View-Master® Dealer decal sold for $14.99 with one bid. The vintage Sawyers Dealer decal was unused. These decals were used by stores selling View-Master® products in the late 1950's

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