I have a feeling that with the Active Connections Bongo steps into a totally different approach of animation. Away from the painstakingly and meticulous analyzing and unraveling of structures and their motions. Instead a mechanical structure can be assembled with Connection (the passive ones) closely matching the real mechanics. Then the Active Connections allow to put the action (the driver, the motor, the piston) faithfully at the exact spot it would be in reality. Hence the structure of the model to be animated is very close to the real world.
The tricycle in this video is an excellent illustration. The trike contains 5 elements:
- Main beam with seat
- Steering fork
- Front wheel
- 2 Rear wheels
- 2 Pedals
They are all united in a coherent structure with Spindles (rotational connections) in straight forward combinations (e.g. steering fork to main beam, front wheel to fork etc….)
To make the tricycle move forwards and backwards the Spindle connecting the front wheel and the steering fork is animated by means of keyframes.
The trajectory of the tricycle is solely defined by animating the Spindle connecting the handlebar to the main beam.
Physic’s Gravity and Friction take care of everything else.
Active connections make animating a completely different experience. I’m thrilled.