SIGGRAPHITTI Issue 4 - June 2014

Register Now Through 20 June for Maximum Savings

As more and more content is being announced, we bet you can't wait to register to attend SIGGRAPH 2014 — that's why we're encouraging you to do so now before early registration closes! Register by Friday, 20 June to ensure you save up to $200 and get the biggest bang for your buck.

With more than 173 Technical Papers; 150+ exhibitors; numerous Courses, Panels, and Talks on industry hot topics; and the thrilling, Academy Award qualifying Computer Animation Festival, SIGGRAPH 2014 is the computer graphics and interactive techniques event of the year. Plus, this year we're back in beautiful Vancouver with a gorgeous view of the Pacific and content from top studios. It's a win-win.

Click for an overview of registration categories and to register today. 

Inside the Magical World of  Disney’s “Maleficent” © 2014 Carey Villegas, David Seager, Kelly Port, Disney

Production Sessions

SIGGRAPH Production Sessions are the place where the world's most elite and talented computer graphic experts and creative geniuses explain their processes and techniques for creating compelling content. Following each presentation, attendees are able to ask questions about the challenges and issues associated with complex productions — a can't-miss Q&A opportunity!

At SIGGRAPH 2014, we're offering production sessions that go behind-the-scenes of some of the year's biggest films. For the complete list of sessions, check back in early July. In the meantime, read through a sampling of sessions in the SIGGRAPH 2014 Advance Program, including the list below (sessions start on page 22).

  • Inside the Magical World of Disney's "Maleficent"
  • Building Blocks for "The LEGO Movie"
  • Industrial Light & Magic Presents: Capturing the "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles"
  • The Production and Visual Effects of "Killzone Shadow Fall"
  • Making "Gravity" at Framestore 

Arduino Drawing Machines © 2014 Erik Brunvand, Paul Stout, University of Utah;  Ginger Alford, Trinity Valley School and Fort Worth Museum of Science and History

SIGGRAPH 2014 Studio Preview

Experience a collaborative working environment with the SIGGRAPH 2014 Studio program where we bring together the latest technologies and brightest minds to learn, experiment, and create. The Studio allows you to try out a wide range of new techniques and media with help from experienced hands through Courses, Talks, and Projects.

For a sneak peek at this year's Studio content, watch the Studio preview trailer. For all SIGGRAPH 2014 preview trailers, click here.

Prepare to play with the latest in 3D printing, modeling, and animation software, and bring your ideas to life 10-14 August!

High Resolution 3D Printing: Design for Stereolithography
Personal 3D printing is rapidly becoming a high impact tool for the artist. This short studio introduces design for 3D printing on the Stereolighography-based Form 1 printer. The first 15 students will have continued access to printers during the conference exhibition to test several iterations of their designs.
Presenter: Will Walker, Formlabs, Inc.
Creating Next-Gen 3D Interactive Apps with Motion Control and Unity3D
Through a series of live-coded examples, this course introduces attendees to the fundamentals of using the Unity3D engine for game and applicaiton development, integrating the Leap Motion Controller into an application, and designing and developing a next-generation 3D interactive application with motion control.
Presenters: David Holz, Daniel Plemmons, Leap Motion, Inc.
Emotion of Colors: Synesthetic Fross-Model Key Modulation
Using scientific synesthetic cross-modal mapping, this paper shows how cross-modal key modulations are adopted in some Japanese animations to very effectively invoke or enhance intended emotions in the story.
Presenters: DongSheng Cai, University of Tsukuba; Nobuyoshi Asai, University of Aizu; Noriko Nagata, Kwansei Gakuin University
Exploring Board Game Design Using Digital Technologies
This talk presents results of an educational case study from a course called History of Games and discusses how new technologies, such as digital prototyping, laser cutting and 3D-printing, sensors, and microcontroller technologies, can help in developing new types of physical board games by altering various existing game structures.
Presenter: Taro Narahara, New Jersey Institute of Technology

NVIDIA FlameWorks - Real-Time fire Simulation © 2014 Simon Green, Nuttapong Chentanez, Aron Zoellner, Johnny Costello, Kevin Newkirk, Dane Johnston, NVIDIA Corporation

Real-Time Live!

An interactive extravaganza that celebrates the real-time achievements of evil geniuses, mad scientists, and creative computer gods! Real-Time Live! shows off the latest trends and techniques for pushing the boundaries of interactive visuals. As part of the Computer Animation Festival, an international jury selects submissions from a diverse array of industries to create a fast-paced, 90-minute show of cutting-edge, aesthetically stimulating real-time work.
Find a sampling of what you'll see during the SIGGRAPH 2014 Real-Time Live! program below.
Fantasia: Music Evolved © 2014 Mike Fitzgerald, David Battilana, Harmonix Music Systems, Inc.Fantasia: Music Evolved
This demonstration creatively merges art, audio, and interactivity to show how players can interact in three dimensions with virtual environments, how they can transform music in tandem with their physical motions, and how the developers married art and audio in non-photorealistic settings.
Presenters: Mike Fitzgerald, David Battilana, Harmonix Music Systems, Inc.
NVIDIA FlameWorks - Real-Time fire Simulation
FlameWorks is the first system to bring cinema-quality volumetric fire, smoke, and explosion effects to real-time graphics. The demo stimulates and renders more than 32 million voxels per frame, at around 30 frames per second. The system includes an advanced combustion model and is highly customizable, supporting user-defined emitters, force fields, and collision objects.
Presenters: Simon Green, Nuttapong Chentanez, Aron Zoellner, Johnny Costello, Kevin Newkirk, Dane Johnston, NVIDIA Corporation
Real-Time Animation of Cartoon Character Faces © 2014 Emiliano Gambaretto, Charles Piña, Mixamo, Inc.Real-Time Animation of Cartoon Character Faces
This live demo allows a viewer to stand in front of a webcam and animate a 3D character in real time. The video stream is processed in real time by Mixamo Face Plus proprietary technology, the facial expression of the user is extracted, and the emotional facial information is transferred to the 3D character. The non-linear nature of the mapping is designed to push typical features of cartoon characters such as exaggeration, squash, and stretch.
The technology leverages machine learning and compter vision, and it does not require calibration, as it uses extensive training to set to recognize facial shapes, appearances, and illumination levels.
Presenters: Emiliano Gambaretto, Charles Piña, Mixamo, Inc.
SIGGRAPH 2014 AR/VR Contest Finalists
Real-Time Live! is proud to showcase the top three finalists of the first-ever AR/VR contest. Be part of our real-time vote and join us to determine the ultimate winner as well as listen to the inspiration behind the amazing pieces. (Submissions to the AR/VR contest are being accepted through 20 June.)

Modern Video Processor © 2014 Yunsil Heo, Hyunwoo Bang, Everyware

Art Gallery

The theme of this year's Art Gallery is "Acting in Translation." In the sea of ever-changing conditions of multiple realities, there is no single or homogenous approach, but a diversity of resisting mechanisms and artistic strategies. Therefore translation, as a term and as a tool, generates plenty of potential fields for art production in disconnected trajectories. Furthermore, these fields have the capability to cover and merge with other fields of knowledge.
Highlights from SIGGRAPH 2014 Art Gallery content include:

The Evolution of Silence © 2014 Rachele Riley




The Evolution of Silence

The Evolution of Silence addresses the scale of damage brought about by 41 years of nuclear testing at the Nevada Test Site. The Web-based archive presents a non-linear map and interpretation of the area's destruction, and an opportunity to explore this restricted desert landscape. The project translates official government data of nuclear testing into artistic, reflective experience and presents an imaging of a landscape symbolic of war's aftermath and silence. In mapping the location of the 828 individual detonations that occurred in Yucca Flat alone, I focus on the 'before and after' of transformation, and on the traces that remain.
Artist: Rachele Riley
Looking Glass Time © 2014 Yoichi Ochiai, The University of Tokyo
Looking Glass Time
If recording devices had not been invented, duplication of objects would have been required to produce movies. Social media is an artificial timeline that reflects the real world. This work aims to represent social media activities and their timelines with physical clock animation, without any recording media.
Artist: Yoichi Ochiai, The University of Tokyo
Mother © 2014 Inmi Lee, Kutztown University; Kyle McDonald, ITP/New York University
Mother is a series of generative sculptures that explore synesthetic connections between language and form by analyzing hand gestures that represent the participants' interpretations of unfamiliar spoken words. The gestures of the participants were captured in 3D using a Kinect, interpreted with openFrameworks, and printed with a rapid prototyping machine
Artists: Inmi Lee, Kutztown University; Kyle McDonald, ITP/New York University
Points of View © 2014 Zohar Kfir, Independent New Media Artist
Points of View
This piece is an interactive web documentary based on video footage shot by Palestinians working with B'Tselem's Camera Distribution Project. It offers an intimate and situated look at life under the Israeli occupation. This project brings these materials to the international public in a manner that is respectful of their content yet innovative enough to provoke a more nuanced form of engagement than conventional documentary; it is an artisitic exploration of a complex political issue that raises questions of community engagement, social awareness, and the social and phenomenological shaping narrative. 
Artist: Zohar Kfir, Independent New Media Artist

Branching Support Structures for 3D Printing © 2014 Ryan Schmidt & Nobuyuki Umetani, Autodesk Research

Tips for First-Timers

Whether you're new to SIGGRAPH or just need a refresher on how best to tackle the biggest five days in computer graphics and interactive techniques, we're here for you. The SIGGRAPH experience can be daunting with the breadth of content available throughout the week and we want you to be prepared.  

While planning your time, be sure follow the "First-Timers Focus" call-outs through the Advance Program and coming soon to our website. In addition, check out our top five tips from a veteran attendee below!

  1. Attend the first-time attendee Panel: Ready, Steady ... SIGGRAPH
  2. If you really, really want to get into a session GET THERE EARLY. Due to fire codes, we are only permitted a certain number of bodies to every room so if you arrive too close to start time, you may be out of luck.
  3. Collaborate with other attendees, whether that is in the Studio, at networking events, or anywhere else that people gather throughout the week.
  4. Plan ahead using the Schedule at a Glance and try to stay for more than one day — packing the full experience in such a short time can be maddening.
  5. When in doubt, ask a volunteer! An easy spot to find volunteers will be at the SIGGRAPH 2015 booth in the West Building, Ballroom A Lobby where they will be happy to point you in the right direction. You can also find the wonderful student volunteers spread throughout the convention center (with "Ask Me" buttons on their shirts).
For more tips, tricks and exclusives visit the Official SIGGRAPH 2014 Blog.

Become the SIGGRAPH 2017 Conference Chair

The annual SIGGRAPH conference and its year-round initiatives provide unique crossroads for a diverse community of researchers, developers, creators, educators, and practitioners. Our continuing mission is to be the premier annual conference on theory and practice of computer graphics and interactive techniques, inspiring progress through education, excellence, and interaction. 

The SIGGRAPH Conference Chair has a rare opportunity to inspire and lead a highly energized, multi-talented, and deeply committed team of volunteers and professional service contractors in delivering the world's greatest conference on computer graphics and interactive techniques. SIGGRAPH Conference Chairs work in close conjunction with the Chief Staff Executive (CSE), Conference Advisory Group (CAG), ACM SIGGRAPH Executive Committee (EC), and many others to create and implement the conference. The role normally begins two years before their conference and continues until the January after. For more information on requirements and qualifications, click here

Apply to become the SIGGRAPH 2017 Conference Chair.

Book Your SIGGRAPH 2014 Accommodations

With discounts to several hotels in the Vancouver area, negotiated for SIGGRAPH 2014 attendees only, it's easier than ever to choose where to stay. Reservations made after 14 July are based on availability only and rates may increase. Be sure to book your hotel reservations soon as rooms are running out!
As a reminder, SIGGRAPH 2014 hotel rates can only be booked through Experient, the official SIGGRAPH 2014 housing provider. If you are contacted by any other companies to make hotel reservations for SIGGRAPH 2014, be aware they may not be reputable companies nor are they endorsed by SIGGRAPH 2014.
Why Stay in an Official SIGGRAPH 2014 Hotel?
If you have friends or family in Vancouver, and they're willing to host you for five or more days, that might be your best option; however, your second-best option is definitely choosing an official SIGGRAPH 2014 hotel. Here's why: 
  1. Official hotels have been inspected and carefully selected by SIGGRAPH. They’re SIGGRAPH-endorsed. They're cool, comfortable, and convenient.
  2. In the official hotels, you're closer to SIGGRAPH friends and colleagues. It's much easier to connect in real life over breakfast, lunch, coffee, drinks, or dinner.
  3. Most official hotels are within walking distance of the Vancouver Convention Centre or near quick, easy transportation links.
  4. You can discuss questions or concerns directly with the helpful people at SIGGRAPH 2014's official hotel desk in the convention center. 
  5. Booking terms are very reasonable when you use the official online reservation system: No change fees. No full prepayment.
  6. The official discounted rates are guaranteed until 14 July 2014.
  7. If you use other hotel-reservation systems, you have to live with their way-too-complicated terms and conditions. And if you have a reservation or room problem, SIGGRAPH 2014 can't help you negotiate with the hotel.
  8. Future hotel rates and registration fees will remain reasonable, because SIGGRAPH's negotiating position with host cities and hotel companies will be stronger. 
  9. It's the right thing to do, for yourself, the SIGGRAPH community, and your favorite conference. 
  10. SIGGRAPH room blocks will sell out and you won’t find a more reasonable downtown rate out there.

To book your room today, click here

Mentor Students at SIGGRAPH 2014

SIGGRAPH is looking for 20 mentors for high school students at SIGGRAPH 2014 in Vancouver, Canada.If you’ll be at the conference for a significant amount of time from Sunday, 10 August through Thursday, 14 August, please continue reading.

There's a growing concern about the lack of young people interested in careers in technology. Being a mentor won’t cost you a lot of time (each mentor averages about 30 minutes a day), and the personal rewards are significant. It has been a treat for us to walk around with our students and find out what graphics technology is exciting to someone in high school.

Each student will be a full-fledged SIGGRAPH attendee with access to all of the venues thanks to the Spend a Week at SIGGRAPH Student Program. Your role as a mentor will be to provide on-site guidance during the conference.

The idea is simple: Let each student experience computer graphics up-close-and-personal and have an expert (you!) as consultant and guide. Click here for more detail on the Pioneers mentor program.

To apply to become one of this year's mentors, please email Kathleen Milnes at