The Oscars just did a little segment on their Scientific and Technical Awards. Among the the winners of the Technical Achievement Award this year was Rhythm & Hues for its proprietary Voodoo software. The Academy presented the award to Peter Huang and Chris Perry for their architectural contributions to the application framework of Voodoo, and to Hans Rijpkema and Joe Mancewicz for the core engineering of the software.
So what exactly is Voodoo? Rhythm & Hues recently posted this incredible video on their website that gives a sense of the robust character animation toolset they’ve developed since the mid-1990s. As explained in the video, one of Voodoo’s unique attributes is its tools that streamline artists’ workflows and enable work to happen across departmants in parallel.
Rhythm & Hues has always placed great value on creating its own tools and workflows. When they declared bankruptcy last year, a list of all their proprietary software applications was made public in court documents. Here is that list:
Voodoo – Animation, Rigging, Matchmove, Crowds, Fur grooming, Computer Vision.
Icy – Rotoscoping, Paint and Compositing.
Wren – Renderer.
Rampage – Environment projection system.
Crom – Light Comp, Lighting Workflow and next generation VFX software platform.
Eve – Multi-resolution, collaborative digital dailies and review system.
Anvil – R&H’s oranizational tool for plugins for Crom (and potentially other software platforms).
AHAB – Academy award winning fluid simulation technology.
Ocean Tools – Proprietary tools for generating water and fluid effects.
Jobtracker – Distributed production management system.
Snarf – Global trouble ticketing.
LoUIE – Global information distribution system.
Merlin – Online media reference library and archive.
Scheduler – Online room and video conference scheduling system.
TaskTrack – Timesheet management system.
HRIS – Human Resources Information System.
Node/Asset System – Artist Workspace and digital asset system.
Queue – Academy award winning render farm management software.
Wired – Asset distribution technology.
Unibrowser – Software to manage this asset system.
PTS – Replicated production tracking database.
PTSFS – Database driven POSIX-like global namespace.
CacheFS – Proprietary version of CacheFS
DDR/HSM – Custom storage system that contains all reviewable material submitted since 1996.
Delorean – R&H version of time machine – backup system.
Swamp – Proprietary storage system for 2K playback solution.
(list via VFX-tech.com>)