POV-Ray : Newsgroups : irtc.general : Looking to the future : Re: Looking to the future Server Time
21 Jun 2024 10:46:36 EDT (-0400)
  Re: Looking to the future  
From: Jim Charter
Date: 31 Jan 2007 12:30:57
Message: <45c0d251@news.povray.org>
Chris Cason wrote:
> Having seen the amount of comments regarding the IRTC's current pause, it's
> clear that there is a real spirit of competition amongst many users who are
> now looking for a productive outlet for that.
> I've been associated with the IRTC since it was the 'RTC' and run by Matt
> Kruse. However irtc.org has always been 'the' IRTC, and honestly I don't
> expect this to change a lot. IMO the admins have done a fantastic job in
> keeping the competition rolling for more than ten years. Even if the current
> situation is not resolved there is no technical reason for the site to be
> closed down (though of course it would be wise to modify any parts that refer
> to accepting submissions and so forth).
> However this is not the primary point I want to make in this post.
> My point I think is that the IRTC can operate in parallel with whatever might
> come up to serve as an outlet for this creative spirit of yours. It is not a
> case of 'replacing' the IRTC, or even having a successor to it. Just for
> there to be something suitable (and preferably fairly automated) that can
> operate as your virtual sounding stage.
> I can provide the POVCOMP site source code and web hosting for a new
> competition. Long-time POV user Lance Birch, a professional web designer, is
> willing to supervise and assist with the coding stage. We would need some
> additional help there, as well as at least three trusted people who are
> willing to make a long term commitment to supervising the operation of the
> contest.
> Going on, to me, the question is: what would pique your interest and keep it
> long term? A clone of the IRTC? Or something quite different, but with a
> similar flavor? Or something else entirely? Or even a competition that has no
> set flavor - one that changes according to the times?
> I would like to suggest one possibility. It would be interesting to be able
> to conduct a series of competitions - of variable length according to
> difficulty - that I would perhaps describe as the "POV-Team's Challenge".
> This would involve us coming up with interesting or intriguing ideas for
> renderings - either stills or animations - and challenging you guys to show
> us what y'all can do. It need not be limited to POV-Ray, though of course
> that's our primary focus.
> I've no opinion how voting would work. But the winner(s) of each round would
> get a nice virtual medal rendered in 100% recycled electrons and a spiffy
> title of some sort. Possibly I could even tweak the news server web view to
> auto-append an award JPG of some sort to the bottom of all their posts whilst
> they hold the title (i.e. the badge stays there permanently, but only gets
> added to posts they make whilst title-holder. Or something like that.)
> Anyhow: what sort of ideas might we pitch? Here's a few that come to mind:
>   1. Challenge: make us laugh. No cliches! Be original.
>   2. Challenge: using http://www.deviantart.com/deviation/28710584/ as your
>      inspiration, come up with something different (no copies!) but that
>      invokes a similar sense (of, perhaps, anticipation?*) in viewers minds.
>      * this word makes me think of the RHPS. Anyone for a Rocky Horror round?
>   3. You are provided with a photograph of an equipment room of some sort
>      (perhaps a server room). It has plenty of electronic/computer gear/
>      wiring in it. You also get measurements of the room and of the larger
>      bits of furniture within it, sufficient to re-create a reasonable
>      facsimile of it.
>      Challenge: steampunk it. Photorealism is encouraged.
>   4. You are supplied a music track in mp3 format and a data file in text
>      format, suitable for parsing by POV-Ray's SDL.
>      Prior to the start of the competition, a group of you would have created
>      a set of SDL routines to manipulate, interpolate, and otherwise use this
>      raw data in order to be able to perform the below task (if you're not
>      using POV, you will have to find your own way to deal with it).
>      The data file contains sufficient information that the audio can be
>      matched to each of the 3 or 4 instruments used to record it, such that
>      an instrument or scene could be animated in time with it.
>      Challenge: create an animation using the above. It is not required that
>      you animate instruments. You may choose to make something trippy or
>      cool coupled with the beat. It's up to you. Length should be at least
>      20 seconds, but would preferably be the same as that of the audio file.
>      To be reasonably feasible I would expect that most of the animation
>      would have to be automated - but SDL is one of POV's strengths.
>      [This challenge was inspired by Animusic*, LOR**, the 'Wizards of
>       Winter' video***, and similar items over the years].
>       *   http://www.animusic.com/
>       **  http://www.lotsofrobots.com/
>       *** http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IK90Ys2LhSo
>   5. You are supplied with a set of images that, if put together, form a
>      short film (in the region of 300 seconds or so). This movie is shot
>      using a real video camera and consists of a defined room or outdoor
>      area, the measurements of which are supplied to you, along with the
>      details and locations of one or two of the major items of furniture
>      present. You are additionally provided with camera tracking data* in
>      a form suitable to be used in SDL, plus some macros to deal with it.
>      The actual details of the video, where it is shot, and what it contains
>      (e.g. if there are people present, and if so, what they are doing/saying
>      etc) will be determined by reasonable consensus in advance.
>      Challenge: render something into this scene such that the finished
>      result appears seamless. You can choose any part of the supplied data,
>      including non-sequential portions, but the result should be at least 20
>      seconds long.
>      [Obviously, http://runevision.com/3d/anims/hologram.asp inspired this].
>      * If possible this will be high-accuracy date captured from the physical
>        camera motion, if we can get access to the equipment required. If not
>        then it would be derived.
> 4 and 5 would obviously be longer-term projects and may run in parallel with
> shorter ones. Participants in all of these challenges would be encouraged to
> share WIP's, techniques, and macros with others if they so choose. The spirit
> of the challenges to experiment, learn, enjoy, do new things, and most of all
> create neat stuff with POV.
> So. Anyone interested?
> -- Chris
Yes I think variable lengths is a good idea, allowing the "bar" to be 
"raised" while making simpler contests available and immediate.

Didn't know you were a Rocky Horror fan.  I was just invited to 
Robbins'/Sarandon's ranch on Sunday.  Their son is goalie on the hockey 
team my daughter plays on.  Tim Robbins LOVES hockey, got the whole team 
out to his little natural ice rink so HE could play a game.  He plays 
full out.

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