Friday, February 20, 2009

Software Review: Kubota AutoAlbum V3 From Kubota Image Tools


One of the hotter trends in wedding albums is what is called the magazine style. It is a digital photo album that is flush mount and is constructed of a hard bound cover and ridged pages. The flush mount album doesn’t have matted pages and is much like a cross between a traditional wedding album and a coffee table book.

Kubota AutoAlbum V3 is a software program that assists you in creating a magazine style album easily and elegantly. The product consists of software and a layout book. The software contains over 500 different layouts and the Kubota Dashboard for interfacing with the product and automating the process of creating your pages. The layout book gives examples of the layouts.

Kubota Pro PakThe program is pretty simple and easy to use. You first activate the Kubota Dashboard for the AutoAlbum. This brings up the selector tools. As you can see in the image you are given a selection of formats.

You have square pages which are created as 10"x10" and can be resized anywhere from 5"x5" to 12"x12". You have square panoramas that are created as 10"x20" and can be resized from 5"x10" to 12"x24". Finally you have 11"x14" rectangle pages.

To get an idea of what the finished pages will look like you can look into the book that contains the page designs. You can also look on the dashboard at each of the codes and as you highlight a code, the layout is displayed in the dashboard as well. The one that I have highlighted is 2010-H0V4RV which translates to 0 horizontal images, 4 vertical images and the template is a rectangle format and vertical in position.

Now before you begin your album, the images need to be prepared properly in Photoshop. They should be color corrected, any retouching or enhancing should be complete as well as any sharpening done.

You then need to take you finished images and make sure that you have a copy because the Kubota AutoAlbum will place each image as a Smart Object on the page and therefore it still remains editable in the page layout.

Once you select your layout and click apply, you will then be prompted to select the images for the pagKubota Pro Pake one at a time. In the page illustrated here, the three small images were selected and then the lager one. When the larger one was selected, I was prompted to crop the image for it to fit below the smaller ones. Once done, you are prompted to save it as a .PSD file.

It really was that simple. There is a link to see what some of the page layouts look like on the Kubota site, and although it is for version two, it does give an idea of what you can accomplish with Kubota AutoAlbum V3. It sells for $399 and can be purchased at the Kubota Store.

If you are a professional photographer, especially one who does weddings, portraits, or graduations, you really owe it to yourself to check into the Kubota AutoAlbum, or any of the Kubota products for the photographer. They will allow you to get the maximum productivity with the least amount of effort. I think that the Kubota AutoAlbum will pay for itself in time savings and customer satisfaction over and over again. I highly recommend this product.


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Thursday, February 19, 2009

Software Review: Kubota Pro Pak from Kubota Image Tools, Part 2

The Kubota Pro Pak is a bundled package of products that contains six of the most popular tools from Kevin Kubota's professional image enhancing tools for Adobe Photoshop. This package includes the four Artistic Series of actions, his Production Tools, as well as his Formula Book which contains 42 separate recipes to get just the look you want.

Kubota Pro PakIn part one, I looked at the four paks that are called the Artistic Tools. In part two, I will look at actions the Production Pak and the Formula Book. In case you are not familiar, a Photoshop action is an automated series of steps that have been recorded to provide an effect or series of effects. Some of these actions are totally automated, others have stopping points that request you to perform some action, usually to paint in where you want some sharpening to occur. In all cases there is a pop-up window that tells you what you need to do.

Production Tools Volume 2

In this Production Tools you will find a variety tools that are geared to getting your images back to your clients much faster through the automation nature of Photoshop actions. There are a variety of tools that come with this pack including ones for making adjustments, retouching, finishing, sharpening, and logo placement.

Like with the other tools, everything here is run from the DASHBOARD. This is a separate panel that contains everything you need to work with all of the Kubota tools. You can filter based on the Pak, or you can use the search facility to find an action based on the name or type of action. This can be very helpful when you are using the Formula Book and are not sure from which Pak particular action exists. They have a video on their Web site if you want to see the DASHBOARD in action.

Kubota Pro PakThe Production tools are set up in sections so as to help facilitate your workflow from beginning to end. The first area is the Adjustments section. Here you are told to make any tonal adjustments and basic color corrections to your image. In this section, you can use actions to reduce noise, lighten your overall image, remove magenta casting from skin tones, paint out shadows, and an action to bring out shadow detail.

There is a retouching action that prepares the necessary layers for retouching portraits. There are instructions for what to do with the layers are displayed as sticky notes. As you can see in the image, when the portrait action is run, the layers are created, and a note explaining what you need to on each one is provided.

There is a section that focuses on finishing your images by creating borders around your image. There is a section that will help you interpolate your image by sizing your image up or down; there are ones that will place your image (either horizontal or vertical) into a matted 8x10 (both 250 DPI and 300 DPI).

There is an action in which you can embed the image filename in onto the image, as well as one that will let you place your logo on to various positions one the image. Finally there is a selection of sharpening actions that automates various levels of sharpening to your image.

Kubota Formula Book

Kubota Formula Book is a spiral bound book of 42 recipes from Kevin Kubota's magic bag of tricks. Included with this book is a companion DVD that contains a video tutorial for each of the formulas that will walk you through the creation of the final image in Photoshop.

Each page contains a before and after image so you can see the results. There is a story behind the image. Many of these are interesting in how the shot was captured and the reason why. I personally liked the one where Kubota is sitting on the trunk of a moving car to capture the image with his feet strapped in the rear passenger seat belts, while the bride and groom are in the middle of a kiss. Oh, and the groom is driving.

All of the metadata on the exposure, ISO, lens type, etc. is provided along with the steps and actions needed to create the image. Another interesting point about this book is that it is set up in such a way that future "add-on Paks" are planned for the future and you will be able to add these to the book. The image below was created using formula number three which is called "Daisy Duke."

Kubota Pro PakWhile the biggest problem with having all of these actions is learning when to use what combination of actions and tools, the Formula book is an enormous help. I like the way it is laid out and professionally done. With the DVD tutorials, it makes learning these tools a cinch. The Power tools, like the Artistic tools, are very easy to use and make a lot of mundane chores automatic.

If you are a professional photographer, especially one who does weddings, portraits, or graduations, you really owe it to yourself to check into the Kubota Pro Pak, or any of the Kubota products for the photographer. They will allow you to get the maximum productivity with the least amount of effort. Even if you only use a small portion of the effects, they will pay for themselves in time savings and customer satisfaction over and over again. I highly recommend this product.


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Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Software Review: Kubota Pro Pak - Part 1 From Kubota Image Tools

The Kubota Pro Pak is a bundled package of products that contains six of the most popular tools from Kevin Kubota's professional image enhancing tools for Adobe Photoshop. This package includes the four Artistic Series of actions, his Production Tools, as well as his Formula Book which contains 42 separate recipes to get just the look you want.

Who is Kevin Kubota and what makes his actions so special? Well first off he was named one of the top ten wedding photographers of 2007 by Popular Photography Magazine for giving his customers more than they expect by capturing fresh, expressive images. He has now taken that philosophy to Photoshop processing by providing the same techniques to you via his image tools.

Today Kubota Pro PakI will look at the four actions sets known as the Artistic Tools. In case you are not familiar, a Photoshop action is an automated series of steps that have been recorded to provide an effect or series of effects. Some of these actions are totally automated, while others have stopping points that request you to perform some action, usually to paint in where you want some sharpening to occur. In all cases there is a pop-up window that tells you what you need to do.

Artistic Tools Vol. One: The "Classic Film Effects" Pak
In this pak you will find a variety of Black & White Actions, organic film grain, cross-processing effects, sepia effects, and monochrome toning. This set contains over 40 Actions and it includes Skin Cream, Fuji Snappit, Vignette, as well as Eye and Teeth Enhancer.

The black and white effects include conversions that give nice film grain effects without introducing digital noise. In this way they look much more organic and have a better feel. There is not a loss of sharpness and in fact many times the sharpness appears enhanced. There are actions that smooth skin, add glow to the image, add a Hollywood effect, as well as other creative effects for a vignette, giving a romantic feel, and adding vibrancy to the image.

There are color actions that can add a bright sunny effect, a cross processed look, and a contrasty Fugi Velvia film look. There are also image correction actions that raise the shadow values, lower contrasts and saturations, adding warming gel filters to add mood to an image, as well as a mid-tone brightener. There are even actions that will attempt to fix images shot with the wrong white balance. There are examples of "Classic Film Effects" Pak on the Kubota Image Site.

Artistic Tools Vol. Two: The "Modern Chic" Pak
This pak includes what has been known as Lord of the Rings series and is one of the most popular of the Kubota Actions and is what helped make it a HOT ONE award winner. Also it also contains enhancements that give your images color pop, colorful toning, soft glowing and innovative black and white effects. This pak contains over 50 enhancements including Daily Multi Vitamin, Radiant People, Radiance Landscape, Edge Burner, Digital Fill Flash and Smokeless Burn.

Kubota Pro PakThese actions under Black and White will give you the ability to work with a modern antique look that will have the user wondering if it is really black and white or color. There are some that will tone your black and white to blue, green, red, and other tones as well as ones to create a more traditional black and white image.

The color effects will help you add 'Life' to everyday images. The Lord of the Rings series aims to mimic the deep, romantic feel of the movie by adding color richness, a soft glowing effect, and contrast. There are several variations on this one.

The Creative effects include one that gives a painterly effect, another with a canvas texture, one that gives an angel glow, one that burns the edges, and one that performs an edge blur. The Image corrections include one to eliminate posterization problems, one that adds digital fill flash, a smokeless burn that works just the opposite of flash fill, one to work details, one to reduce noise, and one that works skin tones.

There are also a set of image bordering actions that will create 4x6 images with borders for printing proofs. There are examples of "Modern Chic" Pak on the Kubota Image Site.

Kubota Pro PakArtistic Tools Vol. Three: The "High Fashion-Edgy" Pak
In this pak while there are a lot of enhancement tools that can be used to work on "everyday" images, you will also find a series funky high fashion looks, glowing and deeply romantic black and white effects, and color styles. This pak contains over 45 enhancements, including Fashion Passion, Kiyoko Punch, Tea Stained, Anime Soft, Anime Bold, Doll Face, Skin Powder Genie and Eye Color Enhancer.

The black and white actions include ones that lighten up the skin tones, add rich warmth to the shadows, have some bronze toning and combine velveteen with a black satin look.

Color effects include a Hollywood glow effect is works for fashion and outdoor scenes, a cross processed look that has more pleasing skin tones than the traditional, a dramatic old world look, a high key contrast that is bold and sassy, a tea-stained look, and a 'Look' that is gentle enough to use every day, but has the punch to make your images pop.

Creative effects include a glow that is made for children, graduates, and fashion images, a look that emulates half photo, half painting, a rich and moody forest look, a soft wash, and a wash-out look. The image corrections include a dark line eraser to remove things like shadows from eyes, an eye color enhancer, a skin powder genie to get that cover girl smoothness, as well as an overall helper to restore detail on a slightly overexposed image.

Again there are also a set of new image bordering actions that will create 4x6 images with borders for printing proofs. There are examples of "High Fashion-Edgy" Pak on the Kubota Image Site.

Kubota Pro PakArtistic Tools Vol. Four: The "Cutting-Edge" Pak
This is a collection of modern image enhancing tools for producing unique looks in the marketplace. There is a three-dimensional "Enter the Dragon" all the way to a cinematic "300-esque." Also, there are new interactive B&W converters for the attempting the perfect tonal blend and richness within your images. This pak contains over 50 enhancements, including BW Full Moon, Highlight Enhancer, Dark Darkener, Popsickle, Punch Drunk, China Doll, Comic Relief, Vignette 2 Auto and Ragged Edges.

The black and white effects include ones with an infrared feel, one with deep blacks, one that allows you to fine tune the tonality of different colors before conversion, one gives a more edgy bold look, and one that you can give a subtle hint of color.

The color effects include "Enter the Dragon" series that gives a three-dimensional, edgy, bold look with lots of texture; one that is more soft and romantic; one that enhances details and removes haziness from your image; the "300-esque" series that attempts to capture the movie's warm perpetual sunset and soft film grain look; and there is one that gives an old London town look.

The image corrections include a contrast brush to paint contrast into areas that need that oomph, highlight rescue where you paint to bring out the highlights that are not there, a Dark Darkener for painting on areas that need to be darker, and a Luminizer for opening up the shadows.

In this pack you also get a series of edges and vignettes for darkening edges and bringing out the focus of your image. There are examples of "Cutting-Edge" Pak on the Kubota Image Site.

Obviously there are too many actions to do more than highlight what each pak contains here. You can get online to evaluate everything for yourself, but with the fact that you have over 40 actions per pak and you can combine them with each other, using multiple actions to create different looks, you really have a limitless array of effects that you can create.

The biggest problem I see with having all of these effects is knowing what to use and when to use it. Obviously, the final results will come from experimentation and trial and error. One thing that helps is that the samples from the Kubota site are a great starting point. It appears that there will eventually be tutorials as well, which will be even better. In part two, along with looking at the Production Tools, I will look at the Kubota Formula Book that gives you 42 step-by-step recipes for getting that certain look and, to me, that is something else that will help the learning curve tremendously as well.

If you are a professional photographer, especially one who does weddings, portraits, or graduations, you really owe it to yourself to check into the Kubota Pro Pak, or any of the Kubota products for the photographer. They will allow you to get the maximum productivity with the least amount of effort. Even if you only use a small portion of the effects, they will pay for themselves in time savings and customer satisfaction over and over again. I highly recommend this product.


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Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Book Review: The Photoshop Lightroom Workbook - Workflow Not Workslow in Lightroom 2 by Seth Resnick And Jamie Spritzer

As co-founders of the photography training and consultancy company D-65, the authors Seth Resnick and Jamie Spritzer understand the importance in the use of Adobe Lightroom 2, and especially in how to manage its workflow. In The Photoshop Lightroom Workbook, they will attempt to present a well tested workflow that photographers can implement exactly as they do at D-65.

What's more is that in The Photoshop Lightroom Workbook the workflow can be adapted to a specific photographers job requirements, or changed on a job by job basis. As being alpha testers of the product, they have worked with the product for a long time and through insider knowledge, tips, and tricks they plan to take you from before you shoot to out to output in an effective and efficient manner.

Chapter one, "Before You Shoot," begins by examining the importance some of the key elements that you need to consider before shooting digital. In this section you will look at memory cards, ISO, white balance, using a color checker, working with histograms, filters, and other important concepts in the digital world.

Chapter two, "Understanding File Formats," looks in to the various file formats that can be used while shooting digital and what some of the pros and cons of each are. Chapter three, "Color Space for Digital" digs down into the four main color spaces that you can work with when dealing with digital; sRGB, Adobe98, ColorMatch, and ProPhoto. Here you will examine why you would or would not want to use each one of them.

Chapter four, "The Lightroom Catalog," now explains the catalog system. One of the main reasons you would want to use Lightroom is for its powerful cataloging and file management system. Chapter five, "Lightroom's Preferences," calls into question the viability of default preferences. Here you will see what the D-65 group uses.

Chapter six, "Lightroom's Architecture," defines how, while Lightroom is an application, it is modular by nature, and how this makes it not only more flexible, but will make it more expandable in the future. Chapter seven, "The Lightroom Library Module," describes the main asset management module and how it can be used to catalog and manage your assets as well as doing some quick corrections.

Chapter eight, "The Develop Module," contains all of the controls that you need to adjust images. In this chapter you will see why D-65 calls this their "tweaking command central" and how you can use it to edit your images nondestructively. Chapter nine, "Global Corrections and Synchronizing Develop Settings," now takes development further by showing you how to apply the changes learned in the previous chapter to your images either individually or in groups.

Chapter 10, "The Slideshow Module," examines that how now that you have adjusted your images, you can put them into a slideshow presentation as a method to deliver to your clients, family, or friends. Chapter 11, "The Print Module," makes printing a breeze with all of the new features in version 2. In this chapter you will see how to print layouts, print to PDF, print to a JPEG and attach a profile, and create contact sheets.

Chapter 12, "The Web Module," gives you the ability to create web galleries from RAW images. Here you will see how it is done and all with little effort and no knowledge of programming. Chapter 13, "D-65's Lightroom Workflow," is all about putting what you have learned thus far, into action. This chapter covers the D-65 workflow that they have developed over the course of working with Lightroom. Starting with a memory card of images, you will be taken all the way through editing, adding metadata and keywords, correcting, presentation, final product, and preparation to archive.

Chapter 14, "Archiving," has the goal of preservation of your catalog. This is not just backing up, but rather assuring that you have an exact duplicate of your catalog and all of your image files in multiple locations.

Chapter 15, "Importing and Exporting Catalogs and Synchronizing Your Laptop and Desktop," answers the question of how you keep your laptop synchronized with your desktop computer and any other computers that you work with. While this may appear confusing at times, D-65 has found a way that works for them, and here they share with you.

Chapter 16, "Taking it up a Notch – Advanced Lightroom," gets into working outside the box. This chapter shows you how to integrate your Lightroom with Photoshop to work with techniques like panoramas and work with actions, and then bring it back into Lightroom.

The Photoshop Lightroom Workbook provides a firm understanding of establishing an end-to-end digital workflow and for anyone who is working at this understanding, this can be a daunting task. This alone makes this a great book to own.

Add to that, The Photoshop Lightroom Workbook also gives you a solid understanding of digital photographic technology as well. You can get a good understanding of how to set everything up and how to move everything for an efficient workflow.

Pleasantly, the authors don't confound by trying to throw everything at you at, only what you need to know to get the job done. It is very systematically done, and very easy to understand from any level of user. If you want to truly become efficient in your digital workflow, then you really need The Photoshop Lightroom Workbook.


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Thursday, February 12, 2009

Software Review: Vue 7 Infinite from E-on Software

Written by T. Michael Testi

Vue 7 Infinite is one of the professional versions of E-on Software’s Vue 3D product line. Vue is the software product line which is used to create realistic 3D environments. In total, there are seven versions of Vue. Pioneer is the entry-level version for newcomers to 3D graphics. Esprit is designed for artists and illustrators. Pro Studio is geared for the advanced artist, and Complete is for the small studio. Vue Infinite is designed for the professional 3D animator and production studio. Finally, xStream is the integrated solution; this is a version of Infinite that can integrate directly into other 3D applications such as Maya, 3DS, Lightwave, and Cinema 4D. There is also a product called Ozone 3.0 which is an atmospheric plug-in that is used to create skies and atmospheres in a variety of 3D product. To see all of the differences, you can check out the comparative matrix from E-on Software.

Vue 7 InfiniteVue Infinite contains all of the features that the other product lines contain; the main difference between Vue 7 Infinite and xStream is that Vue 7 Infinite is meant to run as a standalone product and xStream is built to run in other products.  Other than that difference, the features are the same.

Vue 7 Infinite runs on Windows (2000 or greater), or Mac (OS X 10.4 or later) with 2 GHz or faster processor recommended, 1 GB RAM (2 GB or more recommended), an OpenGL enabled graphics card is not required but highly recommended with 1024x768 in 65K colors/16 bits (24+ bits recommended), and 200 MB free hard-disk space. Multi-processor rendering is only available on all multi-processor OS X, 2000, XP Pro and Vista systems.

E-on Software was founded in 1997 with the release of Vue d'Esprit 2. Embraced initially by artists and animators, it has now become a staple in Hollywood and has been used to create scenes in such movies as Pirates of the Caribbean II and The Spiderwick Chronicles as well as for television shows produced by the Discovery Channel. It is also finding its way into advertising and the fine art industry.

So, what's new with Vue 7 Infinite?

• EcoSystem Generation III is the third generation of E-on's technology for creating landscape images. The creation of real world natural environments is extremely complex. With this latest incarnation of EcoSystem, Vue has made it even easier to populate your scenes with millions of plants, trees and other objects to achieve a new level of natural complexity and detail. With automated Smart Scattering and Dynamic Population, you get better detail along with a more natural look. The EcoSystem painter lets you paint over your objects with four different kinds of painting tools. What's more is that you can save your creations and build a whole library that can be used for other scenes and objects.

• The Scene Graph approach lets you manipulate the elements of your scene in the standard way, but you now have a new way to handle your scene that lets you focus on the interactions between elements of the scene. The Scene Graph lets you define custom relationships that let you create elaborate scripts to control terrain, material, or animation properties based on the other items in the scene.

• MetaNodes will give you the ability to group several noVue 7 Infinitedes or links into a single node. These MetaNodes will greatly simplify the readability of your graphs by letting you organize your graph into functional modules. Vue 7 ships with a library of preset MetaNodes to help you build your own graphs. You can continue this library by saving your own MetaNodes for future use.

• Spectral II Cloud Technology is the next generation of the Spectral atmosphere engine and is capable of even more realistic volumetric clouds. There is a new set of algorithms that are capable of rendering much more detailed volume clouds at a much faster rendering time. It is also capable of creating stand-alone "MetaClouds" that can be moved around, scaled, and rotated.

• Indoor and outdoor radiosity is now capable of handling with much more ease the generation of indoor and outdoor renderings with greater realism. In addition, it can do it four to six times faster than the prior version

• Natural Algorithms is a new set of algorithms that are designed to produce more natural-looking terrain geometry and materials. By combining dedicated terrain-production fractal algorithms with specific natural color production nodes, you can create more elaborate and natural-looking scenery.

• Lifelike animations are easier to create because of new technology that adds to the Dynamic Motion Reaction functionalities in Vue. Many times motion can look unnatural and jerky, but now Vue 7 can simulate a more natural movement by introducing loose tracking and linking algorithms. You can even introduce hesitation and approximation in to your animation scripts.
• Improved SolidGrowth 4 and new plant species give you more complex and detailed foliage. Vue 7 ships with over 160 editable SolidGrowth plant species among which includes almost 100 you could have only acquired via, and another 20 that are brand new. AThe plant generation technology in SolidGrowth has been enhanced as well.

• Water editor now lets you easily create and adjust infinite bodies of water. Switch from still water to stormy weather with a single slider, control the amount of foam at the peak of waves, switch to a more realistic "displaced" water surface, etc

• Faster rendering will have you creating your renders four to six times faster and, on top of that, you will have cleaner images as well.

• New OpenGL preview engine of Vue 7 has been entirely redesigned. Built around a new, robust multi-threaded architecture, it maximizes efficiency on high-end GPUs as well as multi-core systems.

• Macro autoVue 7 Infinitemation will have you automating repetitive tasks in Vue without having to delve into the intricacies of Python scripting. Vue 7's Macro recording is as easy as pressing the Record Macro button to start recording a set of operations, and save it to disk as a macro. Then you just press the Play Macro button to playback any pre-recorded macros.

• Procedural terrain style presets will let you pick a style of terrain and Vue will create an each-time-different terrain of the corresponding style, complete with all associated materials. This includes both regular and pseudo-infinite procedural terrains.

• Collada file import now gives you the ability to use this new open-source standard for 3D file exchanges in Vue 7. Collada support includes the ability to import fully textured and animated objects.

• Redesigned architecture now takes advantage of the best of multi-core/multi-CPU systems as well as improving overall performance, memory management, and OpenGL stability.

• Bucket rendering is a new way of organizing the rendering process that maximizes spacial correlation of scene geometry. This provides significant improvements when handling billion-polygon scenes, and results in a better optimization of memory resources as well as improved rendering speed.

• Redesigned network services has enhanced the entire handling of network related services and was entirely redesigned in order to provide better performance and improved tolerance to network collisions or faults.

• New license server on top of being able to run as a service, the new License Server offers improved usability features such as automatic detection by Vue seats, easy management of installed licenses via a remotely accessible Web interface as well as hardened network operations.

Vue 7 InfiniteAs with the prior version, Vue 7 Infinite is nothing short of incredible! At first blush, one might look at this product and say that this is really only useful for animation and film production, but that would not be taking into account all of the other industries that could benefit from its use.

For example, if you are a builder, architect, landscape designer, or other professional that needs to simulate an environment, Vue 7 is the perfect application to model your design and/or prototype as a proof of concept design. If you are in advertising, what better way to provide backgrounds and other layout art without having to go on location or pay a high-dollar firm to do equivalent work. The uses are endless.
With seven different version of Vue 7 ranging from $49.95 to $1495 USD, there truly is a version for everyone, and considering what this product can do, each are well worth the price.

I think that while there may not be a "blow me away" single feature in this version, there are so many upgrades that make it a much more improved program. The enhanced render speeds, the multi-processor/multi-core abilities, the painting features and everything else really make it worth the upgrade.

If you want to see what some have done with Vue 7 Infinite, you can check out the gallery that is located on the E-on Software Web site. There is also a pretty active community forum available as well.

If you are still not sure, there are a couple of things that may tip the scale. First is that right now, you can get a public beta version of Pioneer for no money down. It is a free public beta that you should try. Second is that you can get a Personal Learning Edition (PLE) of either Vue 7 Infinite or xStream that are full versions that never expire. The only restrictions are 1) that it is not to be used in commercial products, and 2) that the renders will contain a logo and a watermark for sizes over 800x600 after 30 days. However, if you want to learn the software, everything else works.

From a personal point of (pardon the pun) view, this is a fun product. Really, very easy to use, and if you are fearful of how hard it is to learn, just Google "Vue Tutorial" and you will find all sorts of cool things that you can do with it. I very highly recommend the Vue 7 product line, and especially Vue 7 Infinite.


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Monday, February 09, 2009

Monday News of Note

  • Second Mac Trojan Attacks Pirated PhotoShop CS4 - source PC Magazine:

    Security firm Intego said this week that it has discovered a second version of the Trojan hiding within a pirated version of iLife '09. The new variant is being distributed via BitTorrent within Adobe Photoshop CS4 for the Mac.

    According to Intego, the new Trojan is named OSX.Trojan.iServices.B. The PhotoShop installer being distributed is clean, Intego said; however, the accompanying serial-number generator contains the Trojan. Read it all...

  • Want to try something hard? Try voice drawing - zeFrank Blog is working on a voice based drawing system that uses sounds to generate drawings. Check it out here.

  • Strange story -  Amtrak police arrest man for taking photos of trains for Amtrak photography contest. The Colbert Report ran this segment about the photographer Duane Kerzic who while taking photos for Amtrak’s annual 'Picture our Trains' photography contest, was arrested by Amtrak police for taking photos of their trains. Check it out.

  • The Unfinished Swan - Source 

  •   The Unfinished Swan is a maze game set in an entirely white world and you use a gun that shoots black paint balls to navigate your way around. Check out the demo video: