updated 09:35 am EDT, Fri September 23, 2005
Maya, MotionBuilder PLE
Alias today began shipping , special versions of Maya Complete and Alias MotionBuilder Standard that provide free access to the software for non-commercial use. "With the Personal Learning Editions, industry professionals and those interested in breaking into the world of 3D have an opportunity to learn with the same industry-leading tools found in professional production studios around the world." MotionBuilder 7 PLE software offers almost every feature found in the commercial version of MotionBuilder 7 Standard including: advanced real-time animation tools, unique story timeline performance environment, auto rigging, motion editing, motion layering and storytelling tools. MotionBuilder 7 PLE also allows artists using any commercial 3D software that supports the FBX file format.
"Since we started offering the Maya Personal Learning Edition, hundreds of thousands of people ranging from those new to 3D to experienced 3D artists looking to expand their skills have been able to take advantage of a free and valuable learning experience," says Jill Ramsay, senior product manager for Maya at Alias. "The skills gained with Maya 7 PLE are highly desired in the industry and for many people, downloading the free software and the learning materials that are specially designed to go with it is the first step in breaking into the exciting world of computer graphics."
In addition, Maya 7 PLE software offers virtually every new feature found in the commercial version of Maya Complete 7 including: Alias MotionBuilder full-body IK technology, new polygonal modeling and UV tools, specialized visual effects tools such as a new Toon Shader, advanced render layers technology, and faster, more seamless connections between Maya and other key production software such as Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator. Maya 7 PLE users can also take advantage of four separate renderers: Maya software, hardware, vector and the award-winning mental rayŽ for Maya renderer.
New this year, PLE users will have the ability to import and export files between the Personal Learning Edition of Alias MotionBuilder 7, a leading realtime 3D character animation productivity suite for game, film, broadcast and multimedia production, and the Personal Learning Edition of Maya 7, its modeling, animation, visual effects and rendering software. This ability allows artists to evaluate a simulated production pipeline.
"Artists can accelerate their Maya learning and ensure they get the most out of Maya 7 PLE through Silver Membership," said Cristi Hawtin, product manager, memberships at Alias. "Silver members get access to online learning resources, Maya expert weblogs, discussion forums and more." Maya Silver Membership is available for a fixed monthly fee or a cost-saving annual subscription.