Autocomplete has long been a part of how we type, especially when it comes to phones and test messaging. If it wasn't for autocomplete, typing on those old phones that didn't have full keyboards would have been a huge pain. But what if this concept was applied to animation?
Microsoft Research, in partnership with the University of Hong Kong and the University of Tokyo, has unveiled a new concept technology that could combine the charm of hand-drawn cartoons with the speed of digital animation.
The technology basically looks at what an artist draws and then makes predictions about what might come in the next frame. It is also able to easily connect the dots between two different drawings and propagate animation between them. The system also works for color, enabling artists to fill one frame with certain colors, after which the system will replicate those colors for future frames.
If the new software does eventually make it to commercial release, it could be a big help for animators and those who reminisce about the good old days when we used hand-drawn images for cartoons.
Microsoft isn't the only company working on this kind of technology. Autodesk's Draco allows users to animate images using quick motion and Adobe enables users to create 3D models based on 3D images drawn by the user.
In a way Microsoft is simply continuing animation tradition by making computers do the grunt work, but what makes Microsoft's technology even more impressive is the fact that it is able to reshape designs and offer suggestions in real time as the user draws. It's also impressive how easy to use the interface of the software seems to be. In fact, this kind of software seems like it would be great for tablet use. Of course, there's no word yet as to whether or not the technology will ever be brought to market.
Check out the video below to see the new technology in action.