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Talkin' Smack: There and Back Again

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More good stuff
But Apple wasn't the only company at the show succeeding at giving my life meaning. How can I relate every single piece of divine goodness that happened last week? Well, I can't. But here are some highlights.

I mention Shake from Nothing Real first because it's one of those programs that really used to get my blood boiling owing to the fact that it was only available on SGI, Linux and, worst of all, Windows NT. I like SGI. I won't begrudge them their high-end compositing suites. But Linux? NT? Well, having met with Nothing Real, it all makes sense now. It's the code. They had a working version of Shake (albeit pre-alpha) running on OS X after only two solid weeks of coding. That's the portability of Unix at work there, my friends, and it bodes well for anything else I like that I've seen on Irix machines.

In the same booth we got to see Maya for OS X. Actually, we got to see a whole lot of 3D. Aside from Maya, there were new versions of Amapi (6.0) and Form•Z (3.8), the resurgence of Carrara (formerly of MetaCreations fame), the announcement of Kaydara's FilmBox (motion capture) and the demonstration of Electric Image's Universe. Electric Image also had its new Amorphium Pro, a 3D suite targeted toward graphic designers; and Pixologic finally debuted their Z Brush, a highly anticipated 3D painting application.

On the video side, we got a good, long look at the RTMac system from Matrox and found out it actually has a G400 built in, so it can power a second monitor as well as handle dual-stream, uncompressed video with real-time effects in Final Cut Pro. Sound too good to be true? At an asking price of $995, it sure does. And, so far, it has been untrue. But, despite the delay since its previously announced October 2000 ship date, Matrox assures us the system will be on its way to resellers in the near future. We also got a gander at Digital Voodoo's D1 Desktop 128HD system, designed for uncompressed, high-definition capture etc. only on the Mac. (It's expected soon, as is support for OS X.) We also got to see Aurora's awesome video boards; and, nearby, Pinnacle Systems was demonstrating its CineWave high-definition capture and editing system for Final Cut Pro. And, on the software side, Adobe, of course, shipped Premiere 6.

So it looks like this Mac thing just might catch on. I'm skipping over an awful lot of stuff here, but there was so much substance at this show there would be no way for me to write about it and still get my proper sleepies tonight. We'll bring you our awards for the best stuff at the show later this week. In the meantime, keep reading our news as we attempt to catch up with all the stuff our busy Macworld schedule kept us from reporting on until now.

Dave Nagel is the producer of Creative Mac and Digital Media Designer; host of the Creative Mac, Adobe InDesign, Adobe LiveMotion and Synthetik Studio Artist WWUGs; and executive producer of Creative Mac, Digital Media Designer, Digital Pro Sound, Digital Webcast, Plug-in Central, Presentation Master, and Video Systems sites. All are part of the Digital Media Net family of online industry hubs.

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