My Technical Search engine is now at 82 sites or pages, now with greatly enhanced coverage of motion-capture relating to Poser / DAZ.
Expanded coverage of the Renderosity forum, on my Technical Search Engine.
Had been indexing just…
Now also indexing…
Note the subtle difference in the URL. No / but a ? in the second URL. Such things matter to Google.
Now indexing 58 sites, pages and forums.
This blog’s Python scripts for Poser 11 page and guide has had its annual link-check (by hand), and has also been updated and clarified a bit. Please update any local copies you may have been keeping.
All sidebar links on the blog have had their annual check by hand, and have been updated or deleted if necessary. A half-dozen more of the many old freebie site links now go to an archive at Archive.org, and I cannot guarantee that the .ZIP files will also still be accessible via Archive.org.
Smith Micro links are now fixed, among others. The MotionArtist link still goes to Smith Micro, because the download links for the final version are still hot — if you dig into the ‘farewell’ page.
Vue link also fixed.
3D&D’s wealth of free Poser D&D monsters and fanart is gone, but many of these are now starting to turn up on ShareCG.
The greatest loss is Nursoda’s older freestuff at klopfholz .de. His newer freebies are all at Renderosity, but his older freebies are gone. The Free page was never saved by Archive.org (I checked). Or, almost gone… as the cunning multi-search-engine wrangler (eTools is your friend there…) can find at klopfholz…
If you like Nursoda’s figures, get the .ZIPs while they’re hot. The front page is ‘domain parking’, but the freebies are still there. For now. Sadly Archive.org still refuses to capture the Free pages, so I’m assuming a robots.txt file is still also active somewhere.
At summer 2021 we have also lost the software Topaz Clean 3.x, the best solution for de-grunging renders. Especially useful with Poser 11 for comics work… degrunge a colour flats render with Clean and then lay the pure lineart on top in Photoshop. It appears to have been taken off the market, so that Topaz can focus on their AI line of software. The last version is at Softpedia and was 3.1 (not 3.3, caused by Softpedia misunderstanding “3 3.1.0”; or 3.2, caused by a misunderstanding of “3.0.2”). Redirects at the Topaz site give the impression 3.x could be bundled in the $99 Topaz Studio 2, but there’s no mention of Clean on the Studio 2 page. Studio 2 does have an ‘AI Clear’ (not Clean) but the forums suggests it is weaker than Clean and aimed at RAW photographers and is not comparable. The old Clean 3 does appear to have been in the partly-free early editions of Topaz Studio 1.x (where the standalone version could do batch, interestingly) but was removed in the later Topaz Studio 2 and perhaps before. Topaz Studio 2 was a paid upgrade from a free Studio 1, to something not comparable. Sadly the free 1.x is no longer viable (installer stub only, modules, online log-in barriers after install) and there appears to be no viable replacement for Clean 3.x, just stuff for pro photographers with 48-megapixel SLR camera RAWs to process. As if they don’t already have enough tools to do that.
Added to the sidebar:
Mandelbulb3D. Can’t think why this was not on already. But it is now.
Several printed Poser books, now scanned and on Archive.org to ‘borrow’ as if from a public library.
Poser 2014 Reference Manual. Only a stub was installed with the software, you then had to get the full 950-page manual from Smith Micro.
Added to my Technical Search engine, the new dedicated Krita Scripting site for Python. The Technical Search now indexes 45 useful technical pages, sites and forums likely to interest Poser and DAZ scripters and seekers of technical tips. To be used in conjunction with a local keyword search of an unpacking of the Smith Micro Forums complete and the archive of the old Runtime DNA forums.
More or less back to normal, now with this blog’s wayward template. The sidebar is still too narrow, compared to how it used to be. Sadly the WordPress theme’s old “make a wide sidebar” toggle no longer seems to work.
I’ve tweaked the post font-size to 14.8pt, so posts should be a little more readable now. This partly compensates for the newly added width of posts.
But otherwise it all works as before. I’ve also tweaked it so that sidebar text-padding looks more acceptable on the Pale Moon browser (Firefox-based), compared to the Chrome-based browsers it’s targeted at.
A jammed WordPress theme had caused the blog to fail for a few hours. For the time being, I’ve switched to an updated theme which has no such problems. The blog now seems to be working again at the level of the front page and individual posts, albeit not quite so prettily and with links and sidebar widgets missing. Expect a few ‘speed bumps’ over the next few days, as the design and other things are fixed up again.
Some highlights from 2020. I’ve probably missed a few, but here we go…
NVIDIA Studio Drivers for DAZ Studio.
Significantly faster CPU-only rendering in DAZ Studio, via an iRay update. Useful for those with 12+ fast CPU cores to run iRay.
Free Bridge plugins for DAZ Studio export.
The Poser 11.3 patch added support for the NVIDIA RTX 20 series graphics cards.
The official Smith Micro 2016 training DVD for Poser 11 was placed on YouTube, free in HD.
For much of the year, NeoWin Deals had the full Poser Pro 11 discounted at just $80.
Poser 12 Early Access appeared, with upgraded photoreal capabilities and speed. At a reasonable upgrade price too.
The PoserWorld store returned and added a lot of legacy content, and also opened its buffet membership scheme again.
A new heavyweight Scatter Tool for Poser. And the P.A.S.S. Watercolour Shaders for Poser turned up again, for free, at ArtStation.
Store discounting became more or less “all year round”, and software deals too. But the downside it it takes time to keep up with it all.
Another year of free Digital Art Live magazines.
Even more superb DAZ and Poser content.
The G’MIC filters were made into a Photoshop .8BF plugin.
Keyshot 10 released with (at last, apparently) proper transmap handling, re: hair and eyelashes.
“Draw on the screen” pen-monitors were bigger, abundantly available and far more affordable than a few years ago.
Smith Micro abruptly removed their Poser forums and recorded webinars. But the full Forums were uploaded to Archive.org in a .ZIP, including the “safe for work” technical screenshots. The service packs and patches were also archived in public, but not (as yet) the PoserFusion plugins. (Update: the PoserFusion can be had via the Renderosity forums, where ‘Structure’ keeps an archive).
The unique MotionArtist motion-comics software was discontinued by Smith Micro, but at least they unlocked it before they went, re: the software “phoning home”.
The Poser 11.3 update apparently bjorked the DSON importer (thankfully I never upgraded to 11.3). (Update: Apparently fixed now, at summer 2021. But the DSON plugin is now no longer available)
DAZ Studio totally stopped working on the new Mac OS. So did Vue.
The DAZ Decimator plugin was being sold at $100.
Vue content/scene production comes to a halt. But Vue continues to very easily and effectively import Poser scenes, inc. in the latest subscription version.
The big HiveWire store is to close (closing sale is now on). But most of it will be moving to Renderosity. The lively forums remain.
The latest Blender 2.9.1 locks out a lot of users with low-end graphics cards (e.g. AMD with TeraScale 2 and 3) and refuses to load… until you buy a ‘worthy’ card.
A graphics-card drought, and massive price-gouging on eBay.
SketchUp desktop went subscription-only.
DeviantArt’s new ‘Eclipse’ UI. Ugh.
Wacom officially runs spyware on your PC… “”Wacom tablet drivers phone home with names, times of every app opened on your computer”.
Too many nice software upgrades to mention, but especially notable…
MALT/BEER for Blender reached version 1.0 beta, bringing a proper NPR base to Blender.
Realistic Paint Studio 1.2, which has to be the best and friendliest desktop painting software yet.
A new version of the free Meshlab utility.
Comic Life continued its slow-but-sure regular upgrades for the desktop version.
AKVIS Decorator 7.0 appeared, no longer sluggish and with a 3x speed boost.
And of course… the marvel that is GigaPixel AI 5.3.
My new Technical search engine for Poser and DAZ information. Google Search, but without the spam and scams. Also useful for “where can I find…” searches.
Various working solutions were found and documented, here on this blog. Including Magic Billboards, Poser to Clip Studio in a script, detect and extract skin from a render, toggle all ‘light wires’ off for a Preview render in Poser, and much else.
A big overhaul of the links and other site things, in summer 2020.
Lots of cool new software was found or acquired, much of it free or budget-priced. MotionArtist was bagged from eBay, PhotoLine along with the free Paint.NET and its marvellous free plugin ecosystem, Atangeo Balancer, the free Microsoft ICE, Clip Studio (a $25 mis-fire, but useful for vectorising), GigaPixel AI, and numerous tools for correcting the warp on old postcards and colourising them. And of course numerous scripts and addons and plugins for Poser and DAZ, Photoshop and others.
I’ve updated and corrected my recent post “Christmas is on the (graphics) cards” post, re: Octane and AMD graphics cards. I had thought this was fixed up now, but no. Apparently it’s still only on the Mac that Octane-AMD is possible, not Windows…
“Octane X on Mac Pro Features. Completely rewritten mesh geometry engine optimized for AMD GPUs”
I’ve also added note about the NVIDIA driver problems. I’m about done with covering this tedious “Mac stuff” I think. Windows only from now on, on this blog.
A gig on Fiverr offers to Download an entire website from the Internet Archive Wayback Machine. I’ve put in a test order for the vanished Runtime DNA Forum, as partly archived at late 2015, and I’ll see what he can provide in a .ZIP for $6. You have to specify the capture date and time, he won’t just get all dates from a URL across several years and then put them into a massive mega-bundle. The Wayback Machine shows 100,000 pages archived across 108 sessions with the RDNA Forum.
While it is possible to do what he’s offering for free, the only options are Linux, command-line, or a couple of subscription/paid Cloud services — yuk. There appears to be no Windows freeware solution as yet that has a graphical UI front-end rather than bare command-lines.
Update: Got an archive with 3,000 forum threads, and many more individual posts, which is pretty good.
Update: Community archive of the old Runtime DNA forums at the Internet Archive.
My new Technical Search engine now has “image search” enabled.
It’s excellent compared to the regular Google Search, because it is Google Search just constrained to 42 URLs. It’s also a little scary that just 42 sites, forums and pages hold the totality of published community knowledge, bar a few books and manuals on Poser and DAZ. And that so much knowledge has been wiped out, by the un-archived closure of forums/stores at Cornucopia, Runtime DNA etc, and by decay or closure of third-party image hosting sites (which leads to broken images on forums).
You can use the search just like Google. For instance if my blog appears too verbose, knock it out with -www.jurn.org or if you only want Firefly then knock out SuperFly with a -superfly modifier.
Phew! I’ve just added to final touches to the update and refresh of this blog, checking and fixing this blog’s pages titled “Poser: the missing training DVD” and “DAZ Studio : the missing training DVD”, which have video and other vital tutorial links for newcomers.
The whole blog has thus now been overhauled and link-checked. The Technical Search and another page have also been newly added. The blog should now be good for another 18 months or so, before it needs another check-up, though of course the links in the many posts can’t be checked. You may still find broken links in old posts. And of course, a release of Poser 12 (September 2020, for the back-to-school crowd?) might require a whole new Poser 12 scripts page relatively soon.
Don’t forget, I’m on Patreon and am happy to see any new patrons there.
This blog’s “Stuff for free” page has had its download links updated. The three main free models are now together in a master .ZIP file, which is on Dropbox. This .ZIP should be operating in ‘shared’ mode, and thus be downloadable for anyone who follows the link.
My ‘Technical search’ Google Custom Search Engine is now complete, in terms of both interface and coverage. It’s especially useful for PoserPython.