CGOverdrive 2008 – Day 1

I finally get to meet Sacha and Andy today at CGOverdrive 2008 in Singapore Expo Hall9.

I arrived there around 11:00hr and started checking out the booths. (I apologize to my viewers as these pictures are badly taken.)

Upon entering, there is Ubisoft.
Ubisoft Recruiting Booth

Moving inside I see CodeMaster showcasing their latest game called GRID.
CodeMaster Booth

And to my left there is Lucas Arts recruiting mainly Singaporeans as part of their agreement with the Singapore government to boost local talents experience.
Lucas Art recruitment booth.

Then there is Double Negative which is also recruiting and once again mainly Singaporeans.
Double Negative recruiting booth

There is even a Shanghai, China company doing recruitment called 2K Games China. The latest BioShock and Civilization was done by them.
2K Games China recruitment booth

There are a bunch of schools there as well but the most interesting one is Nanyang Polytechnic showcasing their F1 simulation. From what I gather, the simulation is based on roads of Singapore that will be used later this year for its first F1 racing.
Nanyang Polytechnic showcasing their F1 Simulation

Finally, the conference is about to start. I enter the conference hall and see Sacha on stage. While he is busy talking to the host, I took a snapshot as no photography is allowed during the presentation. The no media recording rules is highly and strictly enforced. I have people around me being told to erase what they have secretly recorded during the presentation.

Sacha talking to host before the conference starts.

As the host ended his conversation, I went up to Sacha and introduced myself as the coordinator for Blender Birds of a Feather session in Siggraph Asia 2008. Just as I finished introducing myself, Andy popped right behind me. My heart just flipped three loops seeing the “Gods” of Blender and shaking their hands. I wanted to take pictures with them and of them but was politely decline as Sacha is having technical problems (stress) with getting his notebook to work with the projector and Andy is feeling like a zombie as he had just arrive this morning at 06:30hr and has not sleep (trying to beat jet lag and time differences) nor eat (I only found that out much later).

For some reason, there are still technical difficulties even though they changed notebooks and operating systems plus there is something about internet kept breaking up. Upon hearing that, I offered my Dad’s notebook that I have been lugging around. As I am an Open Source advocate, I have all the necessary software installed and just yesterday I just upgraded everything to the latest version. Sacha do a quick test of all his files on my Dad’s computer and everything worked flawlessly ( I was praying really hard!!).

Sacha first showed Big Buck Bunny and moved on to explaining ( from his personal experience) Open Source, Open Content, Creative Commons and how the Ton fits all these pieces together. I was surprise to learn from him that Singapore would finally include Creative Commons as part of the law come end of July this year. Malaysia which is a more backward country already have Creative Commons in their law a few years back.

After the presentation, there were quite a few questions for him during the Q&A session. Many audience were awed by the fact that the entire animation production is done in Blender from modeling all the way to compositing and video editing. More intriguing to the audience is that the entire BBB visual production uses only free software like GIMP and Inkscape. The only visual stuff that is not open source is the DVD creation and mastering.

After Sacha presentation, he was interviewed by a reporter from Animation Xpress and subsequently vaporized as Andy and me could not find him no matter how hard we try. It is during the search that I found out that Andy has not eaten a thing since 04:00hr. So in the end, Andy and me have lunch together at cafe that serves food from Macau. After that we hang out watching some professionally made short film back at CGOverdrive which were terribly slip sync. Finally Andy could not take it anymore and I accompany him to his shuttle bus that brings him back to his hotel.

Once he is up the bus, I work my way back to the MRT and go home. It has been a great day!

— 2008/June/17.

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