cubelight gfx

Art Out

Buy Stuff

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Some Sort of Scribbly _Pachyrhinosaurus_

I'ven't posted my art lately. I haven't been doing much. But here's a little:

Very busy now. I'll try to put more up later, after I get some stuff done (most primarily, invoicing some work I've done that will actually enable me to go to SVP this year).

Monday, July 7, 2008

The Failed Reunification of Gondwanaland

Yesterday I assembled the two nodes on my Origin 200, and discovered something annoying. One of them was very dead. Since the logic appears to be getting power (even if it doesn't completely power up), and the cable is probably not suspect (each node independently confirms that one node runs perfectly fine), I'm ruling out everything but the logic carrier, which appears to be hosed.

This leaves me with a dual-processor Origin 200, and a fifty-pound doorstop for parts. Not great, but not a total loss, either. And I think it just sort of emphasizes the necessity of obtaining more current iron for an IRIX-based renderfarm. The Origin200 is 1996 vintage, and, on reflection, none of my IRIX machines break the 2001 mark.

Why don't I go to the PC? It's not a jump I'm willing to make. It will involve learning a new OS (Linux), and I feel I sacrifice far too much of my creative time to technical endeavors as it is. Migrating over to the PC therefore makes no sense to me.

Friday, July 4, 2008

On Computer Renderfarms

My recent animation experience has taught me that I need every scrap of CPU time I can get my hands on, and it needs to be MIPS-based (it has to do with the different ways different CPU vendors do floating-point calculations--believe me, there is a reason there are no mixed-cpu render farms, where some CPUs are Intel, some are IBM/Motorola, and some are Sun SPARC--those differences can add up to peculiar flicker in procedural textures ).

So even as I relax this weekend, I am taking my Origin 200 server, Gondwanaland apart from the state of storage it's essentially been in for the past two or three years. At this point, I have no idea whether it will even power on. But I can't say no to 4x180 MHz R10000s. This system is positively ancient, certainly no more recent than 1997.

But it is still useful.

Additional adds: an R4400 Indigo2 (Carcharodon), another Octane and possibly an R5000-based Indy. If my living situation were different, I'm certain the electricity costs alone would not be worthwhile. But it might be interesting to see if systems from 1994 can still be used in this environment.

If I'm successful, I may write about the composition of the network later.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

This Weekend's Results...

I'll talk more about this project soon, but I wanted to post these now.

These movies were the actual deliverables. They are somewhat rough, primarily because of the level of haste required by the deadline (Monday, in fact).

More later.