French software company Kinetix has won the € 10,000 ($ 11,800) Startup Challenge award from this year’s San Sebastian Ginmaldia & Technology sidebar, held in partnership with and in conjunction with Tabacalera, the international center for contemporary culture and technology in the Spanish city.
In addition to the cash prize, the company was given access to an incubator for one year in one of the BIC (Business Innovation Centers) of the Basque Technology Park Network, as well as access to funds of up to € 500,000 ($ 590,000) for development.
Kinetics has developed a set of AI-powered tools that allow 3D animators to speed up the animation process by allowing users to upload a live-action video, create an animated 3D character, and edit the resulting animation.
“For us, your technological innovation was very hampered,” the jury explained after the announcement. “Facilities for sector, speed and automation [of the process] Was very interesting. And also, the possibility of coordination with our Basque technology centers in the development of future projects and services. We wish you the best cooperation for the future and with the Basque Country here. ”
“3D animation is often one of the most time-consuming and expensive parts of a production studio,” claimed Pitchman of Kinetics. “But it’s very important, because it allows producers to tell their stories.”
After explaining the two main ways to create 3D animation today, slow and labor-intensive key frame animation and fast but technically forbidden and much more expensive motion capture, the Kinetix team explained how their proprietary software allows anyone with camera access to own a Create 3D animated videos.
Before rendering as a 3D model in virtual settings, Kinetix uses artificial intelligence to watch uploaded videos and speed up a character on the screen. The character can then be placed directly into video games, movies and VFX production. Kinetix is currently building an end-to-end platform that will automate the entire workflow.
In its first year of operation, Kinetix has already amassed a user base in partnership with more than 3,000 animators and several original French animation studios. Kinetix 15 employs a full-time staff of engineers, researchers and developers who are currently working to improve the software’s AI by feeding it more data. According to the team, the next step is to add hand and face animations to their models.
One of the most surprising aspects of Kinetix’s power is the amount of time required for a single render. According to the technical team, in response to a question from the judges, the one-minute live-action video took just one minute to render.
The other four finalists were Clipworks, a Danish company that uses AWS web service technology to allow broadcasters to upload videos for video content and users to download related videos without downloading anything; And three Spanish projects: OWO Entertainment, designer and developer of a programmable haptic vest that reproduces physical sensations while watching movies, playing video games or listening to music; A service for shooting easily and clearly with a degree0 degree moving background for panoramic plates, movies and television; And Recorder, a mobile app for script supervisors that connects all the teams working on a movie or TV production, increases productivity and reduces errors between sections.
While the jury discussed the winning pitch, a roundtable was held on the advantages and limitations of virtual production. MediaPro Innovation Head Pere Perez, Welab Director Pedro Fernandez and Antaviana Films Editor and VFX Supervisor Bernat Aragoni were present.
Virtual production, defined as a combination – of course the buzz of the day – is the technique and workflow of creating 2D and 3D content. Methods discussed include greenscreen, motion capture, pre-visualization and virtual, augmented and augmented reality.
According to the three panelists, there are still virtual productions, as Barnett said, the “Stone Age”.
“This technology was in the very early stages of being mentioned,” Perez said. “We are going to see a breakthrough every year. Things like Mo-Cap and more sophisticated AI will take many of these technologies to the next level, and as the hardware improves we will see innovation at every level.
Fernandez said, “Here’s the intersection, to pipe everything into a single production line. At the moment, there are two different types of human and technology teams. One for regular production and one for virtual, another for virtual, one for art director and one for traditional theatrical.”
To that end, it was suggested that training and education could prove to be a barrier to progress but that this was the key to moving forward.
“It’s the biggest challenge,” Perez said. “There is a huge shortage of skills now. There is a demand for real time content production and skilled people to do it. It’s about training, acquiring talents, helping people understand new ways of working from traditional theories, and helping virtual natives understand how traditional theories work.