You might have been wondering why I haven't posted this already, the reason is really simple, we decided to include some features added to the CVS during this weekend and also generate the proper builds for testing.
Well, the delay was because sculpt tool was added to the CVS on the 6th of November and we decided it should be on our report. Along with it came a feature also added in November, fluids improvements. But we will get there in a minute.
And if you haven't yet read my previous report, you really should, since I sum what happened since 2.42a got out.
This article will only focus on changes since my last post.
So, lets get to it.
- New Script added, "Render Billboard Script". More about it here.
- Added a new script - "Dump All Images to Path". More about it here.
- Tri2Quad script removed, functionality merged into Blender as proper C code, using the F key. More about it here.
- Grouped hooks selection added. More about it here and here.
- "Shift + O" now cycles between proportional and random proportional. More about it here.
- "Shift + Del" combination was added to delete an object from all scenes. More about it here.
- Clicking on a constraint in the outliner now shows object buttons. More about it here.
- Added a new empty draw type - single arrow. More about it here.
- Snapping improvements, not much to see yet, but ... More about it here.
- New Hotkey "P", Parent Bones "Pose Mode" and "Edit Mode". More about it here.
- Tablet support in Windows. More about it here and here.
- Added Verse master-server functionality. Important reading, more about it here.
- Server list is available in outliner (new mode "Verse Servers").
- Verse sessions are now also in new mode "Verse Sessions" in outliner.
- In user preferences System & OpenGL master-server ip setting (default master.uni-verse.org).
- In File>Verse entry "Get Servers" to get server list.
- RMB on "Available Verse Servers" in outliner to "Refresh" server list.
- Softbodies improvements in self-collision, faster now. More about it here and here.
- Bullet 2 now in CVS, but doesn't yet build with Blender, too many changes happened. More about it here, here and here.
- Fluids, major improvements. Important reading, more about it here. Compare image here and videos here and here.
- New: isosurface subdivision (directly).
- New: fluidsim particles (extended model for particle simulation and generation).
- New: particle loading (different types of particles can now be selected for display: drops, floats and tracers).
- New: moving objects impact factor (this is another tweaking option).
- New shadow feature: Irregular Shadow Buffers. More info reported here at BlenderNation, but also here and here.
- New shadow feature: Halfway Average. More about it here and here.
- 3D View, several CAD related improvements. Important reading, more about it here.
- File Output node now has Min/Max frame for wich to write files. More about it here.
- New Curves Widget option, mostly to be more friendly when used in the compositor, but you should read the log here.
- Curve Modifier now has it's own X/Y/Z axis deform direction settings. More about it here.
- Render window now zooms with mousewheel and pgup pgdwn. More about it here.
- Added basic transform capabilities (rotate, scale, shift) to the sequencer. More about it here.
- Sequencer Z Buffer support. More about it here.
- Added two new NLA & Armature editing features. Important reading, more about it here and here.
- Forward cycling and matching. Image here and video here.
- Action Modifiers (motion deformers). Videos here and here.
- Added button in Armature options panel to set custom bone drawing on/off. More about it here.
- Added NLA Strip "Mute" option, to temporally disable a strip. More about it here.
- NLA window now follows visibility for scene layers, cleaning up complex files quite some. More about it here.
- Added Google Summer of Code sculptmode/multires/retopo tools. More about it here.
And again, my Speculation area... things that may or may not happen...
- Addison-Wesley seems to be interested in a blender-python book.
- Python API may be scheduled for a revamp, so it can be better and cleaner.
- A company named Zabaware seems to interested in using Blenders Game Engine as their base 3D Engine.
- klockwork.com provided some code analysis on Blender code, allowing to discover potential bugs, some already fixed.
- Release as been scheduled for December, perhaps a Christmas present :) .
- Release targets defined were: sculpt, nodes improvements, + other stuff in patch tracker, + render layers improvements, depsgraph work.
- Major projects have been postponed for next release, with a possible new number, 2.5x .
- UPDATE: BCon schedules proposed: bcon2 November 15th(no more inclusions), bcon3 around December 4th, bcon4 Dec 24th Christmas release ??
- Particles refactoring is on the works as reported here at BlenderNation.
- Cloth modifier was delayed again.
- Andrea hopes to have an Image Browser patch soon.
More, even more...
Along with this report the team at Blender Builds compiled a set of binaries for all of you to test these new features.
There are builds for all tastes: Windows, Linux and Mac OS X (ppc and intel). Optimized, non-optimized and debug binaries too.
You can get the builds here.