Stonewalling on Flamingo nXt bugs


#1

I have found about 40 bugs and flaws in Flamingo nXt and its plant editor:



…but nobody paid attention to my bug reports.

Someone (maybe Scott Davidson) should post official list of Flamingo nXt bugs and deadline for fixing the bugs.


(Steve Baer) #2

@scottd can you take a look a this post? Thanks


(Scott Davidson) #3

Andrew -

Lets take these issues one at a time. I do not think posting 40 at the same time is going to help us work though any of the issues.

Your first one is:

All HDR images bundled with Flamingo are grossly distorted when they
are used as planar HDR background, regardless of projection (planar,
cylindrical or spherical). Planar and spherical projections produce
identical, grossly distorted background images.

You are correct that the included HDR images can be very low resolution when used as a visible background. Normally, I would use a much higher resolution background. A technique used in many cases is to use a standard planar image as a visible background and the HDRI for lighting.

What kind of rendering are you doing, perhaps we can see put together an example.


(Scott Davidson) #4

Since and HDRI environments wrap completely around the scene, they need to be very large to keep up with a high resolution rendering. Another trick we can use is to use a wider angle lens in the view to capture a wider area of the HDRI. This effectively increases the resolution of the HDRI.


#5

I have numbered the bugs so that you can respond to every bug in a separate post.

BUG 1: All HDR images bundled with Flamingo are grossly distorted when
they are used as planar HDR background, regardless of projection
(planar, cylindrical or spherical). Planar and spherical projections
produce identical, grossly distorted background images.

My description of this bug is not precise. It seems that Flamingo Control Panel does not position the HDR image correctly. This bug is illustrated in the following screenshots. (Drawing is empty.)
Flamingo, bug1.1.gif

BUG 2: When the HDR images are used as non-planar HDR backgrounds,
there is no distortion, but the background has extremely low
resolution - it is made of very large, jagged pixels.

There are five HDR files bundled with Flamingo. Three of them have resolution of 640x640. One has resolution of 900x900. One has resolution of 1000x1000. What I see in Flamingo has much lower resolution and is out control. Elevation in Flamingo Control Panel does not work. This bug is illustrated in the following screenshots. (Drawing is empty.)

(I have seen much lower resolution in the past.)

I have found all these bugs in a few days when I was learning Flamingo. My long-term goal was to make animations of newly invented, mobile robots in outdoor environment, among trees and shrubs. The purpose of this animation is to explain how these robots work, so the trees and shrubs are not essential. I can do all animations in Rhino and Bongo.

Flamingo nXt is open beta - it has lots of severe bugs.


(Scott Davidson) #6

Andrew -

It is not possible to use a Spherical HDR as a planar HDR. The projection is very different and the results are expected. This is not a bug.

To use a Planar HDRI, it must start as a planar HDRI. The HDRI environments are spherical maps and must be applied that way.

HDRIs come in three different projections. Spherical, like the defaults library in Flamingo. They look like a sphere. The problem with spherical is that they are pinched at the top and bottom, leaving very few pixels.

Another, very popular format is the 2:1 format. This is a better format for much of the work since it does not include the piched top and bottom of the spherical projection. Brian James’ HDRIs are formatted this way. I use Brian’s HDRIs a lot. You may be looking for HDRIs that have resolutions of 3000 x 1500 or higher. As they get stretched around the environment, they can look low res.

The third way HDRI images come is as planar images. This is nothing more then a standard image with HDR encoded in the pixels. This is the projection to use for a HDRI as a planar visible background. Normally these images are classified under HDRI photographs, not HDRI environments.

Here is more information about the HDRI: What is an HDRI?


(Brian Gillespie) #7

Even better would be to start a new Topic here in Discourse for each bug - that keeps the discussions separated out and easier to follow.

I everybody kept adding their favorite bug to this thread, it would be nearly impossible to track.

If it’s OK with you, I can split your questions and Scott’s replies into separate topics. Give me the go-ahead and I’ll do it (but I wanted to warn you because it’s not totally obvious what happens when I do the splitting out).


#8

HDRShop V1 can convert between projections and can be downloaded here:


#9

Even better would be to start a new Topic here in Discourse for each
bug - that keeps the discussions separated out and easier to follow.

I agree, and I mentioned similar idea already:

“Rhino for Windows” category is very broad. I believe that it should
be split into 4 categories: 1. Bugs, flaws, wishes, and suggestions.
2. Gossip about hardware, software, and best ways of using them.
3. Help for new, inexperienced Rhino users (newbies).
4. Edicts from McNeel & Associates.


#10

No thanks. Categories 1,2 and 3 often overlap, it’s hard to tell what’s a bug and what’s just user inexperience and/or misunderstanding. What’s the precise definition of a newbie? How long do you have to wait until you’re not? How does hardware influence software use…? Etc… Category 4 is already there.

We got along fine for 15 years without dividing up the “Rhino” category.

Now see, I had to write all the above because there’s no “dislike” button… :wink:

----H


(Willem Derks) #11

If you would have had enough Likes in the past you could have moderated it as well :wink:.

@Andrew_Nowicki I understand how broad and dispersed the topics are that fall within the “Rhino for Windows” category. However the holistic approach is in my opinion better for now. If in the future the amount of posts get too much, a division is better, or a way to tag topics as a means of sorting.

-Willem


#12

There is no information in the HDR files bundled with Flamingo that they are spherical HDRs. Flamingo can theoretically use the planar HDRs, so at least one planar HDR should be bundled with Flamingo and marked as planar HDR.

There is another problem, which I already mentioned in this thread: elevation in Flamingo Control Panel does not work. In other words, the elevation value has no influence on the rendered image.

2 bugs clarified, about 38 bugs to go.


(Scott Davidson) #13

Is this the location of the Elevation control?

elevation.jpg

This elevation control only affects the height of the Groundplane when enabled.

I did some testing and it does seem to be working.

Am I referecncing the wrong elevation control here?


#14

yes yes (Discourse bug)


(Brian Gillespie) #15

Can you please send an example file where the elevation control doesn’t actually work?


#16

Scott is right. The elevation control only affects the height of the groundplane. This fact does not provide solution for the bug. All five HDR files bundled with Flamingo are unusable because all spherical HDRs are unusable. They are unusable either because their renditions are grossly distorted (as shown in the above image), or they have extremely low resolution. (In my opinion, the low resolution of the HDRs is not the cause of this bug.) I am using the latest version of Flamingo nXt (2013-6-13).


(Andrew le Bihan) #17

Andrew

What you have shown in the above images is that you have both misunderstood the use of spherical backgrounds (by setting the HDR as a “Planar HDR”) or have zoomed in extremely close to one of the singularities and claimed that this makes it “unusable”.

Clearly your statement that “All spherical HDRs are unusable” is rubbish. What you mean is “I have no idea how to use them”.

Now - I would agree with you that the free HDRs that are bundled with Flamingo are not great - in fact, you are right - there are fundamental errors with them in that their detail at the poles is poor and distorted. But the point is that when you are using a spherical images as a background or light source, you’re generally not looking at the poles. You’re generally looking at the horizon - and these areas appear fine to me.

How about you show a simple rendering, looking in a reasonable direction, with a reasonable zoom level using one of those HDRs. If we can then see actual problems with the HDRs, then we’ll have something to discuss.

  • Andy

(Andrew le Bihan) #18

Here’s an image made using the beach probe supplied with Flamingo. The image was actually renderedf using Neon, but it uses the exact same source.


(Andrew le Bihan) #19

And here’s the exact same model and view using the rnl_probe supplied using Flamingo nXt. Again rendered using Neon.

Notice how the lighting and reflections have changed. This is exactly what spherical HDRs are for.

  • Andy


(Andrew le Bihan) #20

Incidently, the HDRs that are provided are the classic light probes used in the original Siggraph presentation of Paul Debevec’s image based lighting paper. From here:

http://www.pauldebevec.com/Probes/

When we release AccuRender 4.0 and Flamingo 2.0, we asked Paul if we could supply them with the product, just so people would be able to get started with something. Paul very kindly agreed.

The original paper is available from here. It’s incredibly interesting stuff, and frankly - its the foundation of all modern rendering:

http://www.pauldebevec.com/Research/IBL/

I would advise you to read it.