See Adobe’s physics-aware layout system Physics Whiz
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See Adobe's physics-conscious Physics Whiz layout system

Monday, October 26, 2020 | Written by Jim Thacker

Adobe unveiled Physics Whiz, an experimental new physics-conscious tool for creating 3D scenes that allows users to place objects with realistic collisions, inertia, and gravity of rigid bodies in real time.

The system, which contrasted with the existing layout workflow in Adobe Dimension, was featured at Sneaks, the company's annual preview of its current R&D projects, at Adobe MAX 2020.

Other technologies in the works that were shown during the event were the mobile photogrammetry tool Scantastic and the AI-controlled material acquisition system Material World.

Lay out 3D scenes in real time with precise gravity and object collisions
Adobe describes Physics Whiz as a faster way to realistically render 3D scenes by combining "the intuitive feel of a user's physical manipulation with the precision of digital tools."

It allows a user to move 3D objects around the viewport and then make them react to simple physical properties, such as falling under gravity or colliding with other objects, rather than having to place everything by hand.

In the demo, it was used for a number of layout tasks, from stacking books to putting pens in a pot.

A simple semi-automated layout workflow for users of 3D apps like Dimension?
Physics Whiz isn't a revolutionary idea: many other DCC applications have physics-based layout or scattering tools – either natively, as in the case of the Houdinis Solaris toolset, or as third-party plugins.

Project Whiz, however, appears to be aimed at a less tech-minded audience.

In the demo, the existing manual scene layout workflow in Dimension, Adobe's 3D layout and rendering software for graphic designers, was compared.

And while it's not guaranteed to become a commercial version, Adobe Sneaks often moves from prototype to production pretty quickly: last year's Project Sweet Talk just made it into Character Animator 3.4.

Also in the preview: New reality capture systems Scantastic and Material World
Of the other technical previews shown at this year's Sneaks session, the two most relevant to 3D artists were the Scantastic mobile photogrammetry system and the Material World material collection toolset.

Scantastic, displayed as a prototype in Adobe's Capture app, generates 3D models from phone material.

Instead of users having to take a series of still images, the system works in real time: you simply move your phone around the scanned object until Scantastic indicates that it has enough data.

The corresponding 3D model is then generated in the cloud on Adobe's servers.

Material World converts photos from a source into 3D materials, automatically removes highlights and shadows from the color texture, and generates normal and elevation maps.

Adobe is already using similar technologies in its commercial tools: Substance Alchemist material creation software received a new AI-trained image-to-material system earlier this year.

However, Material World also runs in a web browser, which opens up the possibility of it being available as a service to any Adobe user.

You can read about the sneaks preview from the link below: Our own favorites were the motion blur removal system Sharp Shots and On the Beat, which automatically edits dance videos to sync with the music.

For more information on the Adobe MAX 2020 Sneaks session, visit the Adobe Blog

Tags: 3D layout, 3D scanning, Adobe, Adobe Capture, Adobe Dimension, Adobe Labs, Adobe Max, Adobe MAX 2020, Adobe Sneaks, browser-based, Dimension, image to material, materia, material acquisition, Material World, mobile app, movement Blur removal, On the Beat, Photogrammetry, Phyics-based, Physics Whiz, Physics-Aware, Project Physics Whiz, R & D, Reality-Capture, Scantastic, Sharp Shots, Shot-Layout, Sneak Peek, Substance Alchemist, Tech Preview

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