Softimage, Co. /ˌsɒftɪˈmɑːʒ/ was a company located in Montreal, Quebec, Canada that produced 3D animation software. A subsidiary of Microsoft in the 1990s, it was sold to Avid Technology, who would eventually sell the name and assets of Softimage's 3D-animation business to Autodesk.

Its first product, Softimage 3D, was used in the creation of special effects for movies such as Jurassic Park, Terminator 2, Titanic and The Fifth Element. Its successor, Softimage XSI, was used in the production of the Academy Award-winning feature film Happy Feet, 300 and Charlotte's Web (2006) and the production of games such as Konami's Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots.[1]

In 1997, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences awarded Softimage a Scientific and Engineering Award for the development of the 'Actor' component of Softimage|3D.[2]

During the Microsoft years, Softimage also developed a non-linear video-editing and compositing suite named Softimage|DS, which was available from Avid Technology under the name Avid DS, until its EOL on September 30, 2013.

History

Softimage was founded in 1986 [3] by National Film Board of Canada filmmaker Daniel Langlois and with founding director, Char Davies.[4] At the time, there were only three employees.[5] Its first product was called the Softimage Creative Environment, later renamed to Softimage 3D. It was the first commercial package to feature Inverse kinematics for character animation. The software was eventually replaced by SoftimageXSI, originally codenamed "Sumatra".

The company became public in 1992[4] and was acquired by Microsoft in 1994.[6] In 1998, after helping to port the products to Windows and financing the development of Softimage|XSI and Softimage|DS, Microsoft sold the Softimage unit to Avid Technology, Inc. which was looking to expand its visual effect capabilities.[7]

Avid initially grouped many of its visual effects products, such as Elastic Reality and Avid Media Illusion, under the Softimage brand, but in 2001 discontinued most of these products. Until 2008, Avid's AlienBrain product was also branded with the name Softimage,[8] even though it was developed by a separate company.

On October 23, 2008, Autodesk signed an agreement with Avid Technology to acquire the brand and the 3D animation assets of Softimage for approximately $35 million, thereby ending Softimage Co. as a distinct entity.[9] The video-related assets of Softimage, including Softimage|DS (now Avid|DS) continue to be owned by Avid.

Product releases

This section is in list format, but may read better as prose. You can help by converting this section, if appropriate. Editing help is available. (July 2012)

1987

1988

1989

1990

1991 - Actor Module

1992 - Eddie

1993

1994 - Microsoft Softimage

1995

1996

1997

1998 - Avid Softimage

1999

2000 - Softimage|XSI 1.0

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008 - ICE, and sale of company assets to Autodesk

Softimage products were made in Quebec.[62] Softimage is mentioned in the song "Fabriqué au Québec" written by the Québécois humorists Pat Groulx and Louis-José Houde.

See also

References

  1. ^ Watanabe, Yoshiyuki. "Case Study: Metal Gear Solid 4". SoftImage. Archived from the original on 13 February 2009. Retrieved 2008-10-31.
  2. ^ a b "CBC News Indepth: Oscars". CBC News. 26 January 2004.
  3. ^ "Corporate Profile on Softimage". Digitalmedianet.com. 1999-10-27. Archived from the original on 2012-02-18. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  4. ^ a b "Char Davies - Artist Biography". Immersence. 15 February 2008. Retrieved 27 May 2015.
  5. ^ Grau, Oliver (2003). Virtual Art, From Illusion to Immersion. Cambridge, Massachutsetts: MIT Press. ISBN 978-0262572231.
  6. ^ "Silicon Graphics Shops for Software". GamePro. IDG (70): 138. May 1995.
  7. ^ "Pr Newswire Uk: Avid Technology To Acquire Softimage Subsidiary Of Microsoft Corporation". Prnewswire.co.uk. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  8. ^ "News - Softimage's AlienBrain 8.1 Expands OS Support". Gamasutra. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  9. ^ "Autodesk - Softimage: Now Part of Autodesk". Usa.autodesk.com. Archived from the original on 2012-05-30. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  10. ^ "Char Davies (biography)". David Langlois Foundation. Retrieved 13 March 2015.
  11. ^ a b "History of Discreet Logic Inc. – FundingUniverse". Fundinguniverse.com. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  12. ^ "News Releases". Phx.corporate-ir.net. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  13. ^ "COMPANY NEWS; An Acquisition By Microsoft". The New York Times. February 15, 1994. Retrieved May 23, 2010.
  14. ^ "Animation Software Companies and Individuals in CGI". Design.osu.edu. 1995-02-07. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  15. ^ "Softimage 3D Version 3.5 for Windows NT to Ship This Month". Microsoft.com. 1996-08-05. Archived from the original on 2013-01-29. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  16. ^ "Strong Industry Momentum for New Softimage SDK". Microsoft.com. 1996-08-05. Archived from the original on 2012-09-05. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  17. ^ "Softimage Announces Breakthrough Integrated Video and Audio Editing, Compositing, Paint and Project Management Environment". Microsoft.com. 1996-04-15. Archived from the original on 2009-09-18. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  18. ^ "Softimage Launches Integrated Nonlinear Production System, SOFTIMAGE|DS". Microsoft.com. 1997-11-06. Archived from the original on 2012-09-05. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  19. ^ "Softimage 3D Version 3.7 for Windows NT and IRIX Platforms Now Shipping". Microsoft.com. 1997-04-07. Archived from the original on 2009-05-02. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
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  24. ^ "Microsoft Softimage to Be Acquired by Avid Technology". Microsoft.com. 1998-06-15. Archived from the original on 2010-05-01. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  25. ^ "Softimage Ships SOFTIMAGE-DS Version 2.0". Microsoft.com. 1998-07-20. Archived from the original on 2012-09-07. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  26. ^ "Softimage Ships SOFTIMAGE|3D Version 3.8". Microsoft.com. 1998-07-20. Archived from the original on 2012-09-08. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  27. ^ "Softimage "Twister" Enters Beta at SIGGRAPH". Microsoft.com. 1998-07-20. Archived from the original on 2009-03-27. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
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  29. ^ "Softimage Co. Announces First Customer Shipment of SOFTIMAGE/XSI Version 1.0; Softimage Grants 17,000 Licenses of Next-Generation 3-D Animation Software". Business Wire. May 30, 2000.
  30. ^ "SOFTIMAGE Announces New Release of SOFTIMAGE/3D Optimized for Game Developers". Business Wire. March 2, 2000.
  31. ^ "SOFTIMAGE Announces Worldwide Beta Testing Cycle of SOFTIMAGE/XSI v1.5". Business Wire. 2000.
  32. ^ "Softimage Ships Its Much Anticipated SOFTIMAGE/XSI 2.0". Business Wire. December 13, 2001.
  33. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2009-04-14. Retrieved 2009-09-11.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
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  35. ^ "Alias/Wavefront To Make 3D Graphics More Accessible Through Maya Personal Learning Edition; New Offering to Provide Free, Non-Commercial Access to Maya Complete. - Free Online Library". Thefreelibrary.com. 2002-01-07. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  36. ^ "SOFTIMAGE| XSI 3.0 feature review". Edharriss.com. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  37. ^ "Softimage Announces SOFTIMAGE/XSI V.3.0 At Siggraph 2002; Beta Testers Report Major Productivity and Performance Enhancements With New Version". Business Wire. July 23, 2002.
  38. ^ Raffael Dickreuter. "Softimage XSI Community". XSI Base. Archived from the original on 2012-05-13. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  39. ^ "Softimage Announces SOFTIMAGE/XSI V.3.0 At Siggraph 2002; Beta Testers Report Major Productivity and Performance Enhancements With New Version". Business Wire. July 23, 2002.
  40. ^ [1] Archived March 17, 2005, at the Wayback Machine
  41. ^ "SOFTIMAGE/XSI v.4.0 Now Available Worldwide". Business Wire. June 7, 2004.
  42. ^ a b "Softimage releases SOFTIMAGE XSI 4". Archived from the original on August 14, 2007. Retrieved September 11, 2009.
  43. ^ "[ODE] ODE used in XSI4?". Ode.org. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
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  45. ^ Feature Review
  46. ^ "News - Avid Announces Softimage XSI 4.2". Gamasutra. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  47. ^ "Avid Unveils SOFTIMAGE/XSI v.5.0". Business Wire. August 1, 2005.
  48. ^ "News - GDC: Softimage XSI v.5.1 Announced". Gamasutra. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  49. ^ "Versions 5.1 and 5.11". Softimage.wiki.softimage.com. Archived from the original on 2012-02-27. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  50. ^ "News - Avid Announces Softimage Face Robot". Gamasutra. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  51. ^ "News - Product: Softimage XSI Version 6 Released". Gamasutra. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  52. ^ AWN – Animation World Network (2007-01-05). "XSI 6.0 Review: Focusing on Animation and Other Resources | AWN | Animation World Network". AWN. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  53. ^ "Softimage Announces Availability of Softimage XSI 6". Dexigner. 2007-01-10. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  54. ^ "Softimage Unveils SOFTIMAGE/XSI 6.5 and SOFTIMAGE/FACE ROBOT 1.8 Software at SIGGRAPH 2007". Business Wire. August 6, 2007.
  55. ^ "Version 6.5". Softimage.wiki.softimage.com. Archived from the original on 2012-02-27. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  56. ^ [2] Archived November 30, 2008, at the Wayback Machine
  57. ^ Presenting the Interactive Creative Environment.zip (2008-08-27). "Download: Presenting the Interactive Creative Environment (ICE) in Softimage|XSI - Microsoft Download Center - Download Details". Microsoft.com. Archived from the original on 2009-12-23. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  58. ^ "Autodesk - Press Releases Archive - Autodesk Signs Agreement with Avid Technology to Acquire Softimage". Usa.autodesk.com. Archived from the original on 2012-03-08. Retrieved 2012-07-07.
  59. ^ "Autodesk Signs Agreement with Avid Technology to Acquire Softimage". Usa.autodesk.com. Archived from the original on 2016-01-08. Retrieved 2015-10-23.
  60. ^ http://usa.autodesk.com/adsk/servlet/item?siteID=123112&id=12606638&linkID=10235798. Retrieved June 2, 2009. Missing or empty |title= (help)[dead link]
  61. ^ [3]
  62. ^ Softimage: "16 Years of Leadership and Innovation (2002)", softimage.com, 2002.