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Submission + - Flight Of The Navigator: When CGI was HARD! (

An anonymous reader writes: Jeff Kleiser brought cinema its first photo-real, reflection-mapped CGI in 1986. A full five years before James Cameron's apparently ground-breaking 'metallic' visual effects in Terminator 2, Kleiser was trying to make a silver spaceship out of pixels for Walt Disney's Flight Of The Navigator.

Kleiser tells Den Of Geek just how hard it was to render CGI back when the 'jumping lamp' seemed like a landmark:

"To render the spaceship and get it onto film (along with a matte for the optical printing department), they had their own rendering software running on a prototype supercomputer called the Foonly F-1, which had formerly been used by Information International, Inc to drive their film recorders. The Foonly had very little disk space, so we had to render on the fly and send the data directly to the film recorder as it was being computed. That meant we had no way of reshooting a scene other than re-rendering it from scratch each time..."


Submission + - Linux Vendor Pays Off Microsoft

An anonymous reader writes: A vendor of Linux-based networking products has "settled" patent claims by Microsoft, Infoweek reports. Melco Group, which markets the Buffalo brand NAS devices and routers, will pay an undisclosed fee to Redmond. In return (reading between the lines), Microsoft won't sue Melco or its customers for using Linux code that supposedly contains Microsft IP. The problem, of course, is that Microsoft won't publicly state which parts of Linux allegedly infringe its patents. With vendors like Melco apparently willing to settle, Microsoft is undoubtedly motivated to chase down other so-called "offenders." A while back, Steve Ballmer said the company was even ready to go after Red Hat users.

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