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Blender Developer Meeting Notes: 15 February, 2021

3

Announcements

2.92

  • 2.92 bcon4 on 17 February.
    • We will go back to using release_candidate tags.
  • High-frequency Wintab tablet input will be removed since it introduced many problems for old drivers. Windows Ink can be used instead when available. In 2.93 we plan to only support Windows Ink.

2.93

  • 2.93 bcon2 on 17 February.
  • Python 3.9 support has landed for 2.93 alpha.
    • This has ended Blender support for Windows 7 and 8.
    • The new minimum requirement is Windows 8.1.

Modules

Grease Pencil

  • New features for grease pencil fill tool and draw mode:

VFX & Video

  • Sebastian Koenig and Sean Kennedy have accepted a task of being technical artists in the Compositor area of the module!
  • Richard is working on improve proxy building performance D10394.
  • Habib Gahbiche is working on the anti-alias node for compositor D2411. Compositor artists and developers are welcome to provide design review and do tests. Habib started discussion here.

Projects

Geometry Nodes

  • Last week the focus was on “everything nodes design”.
  • Final design docs will be prepared and shared later.
  • This week starts the sprint with the focus is on attribute workflow.

Asset Browser & Pose Library

  • Design discussions continued last week.
  • Final design docs will be prepared and shared later.

New Features and Changes

(From the last 3 weeks)

Geometry Nodes

  • Collection Info Node (commit) (Sebastian Parborg)
  • Volume to Mesh node (commit) (Jacques Lucke)
  • Attribute Proximity Node (commit) (Victor-Louis De Gusseme)
  • Attribute Combine and Separate XYZ nodes (commit) (Wannes Malfait)
  • Attribute Randomize node: add operation setting (commit) (Hans Goudey)
  • Attribute Math node: support all operations (commit) (Hans Goudey)
  • Align Rotation to Vector node: support fixed pivot axis (commit) (Jacques Lucke)
  • Join Geometry node: use multi-input socket (commit) (Fabian Schempp)
  • Allow attribute nodes to use different domains (commit) (Hans Goudey)
  • Attribute interpolation between domains (commit) (Jacques Lucke)
  • Make instances real on-demand (commit) (Hans Goudey)
  • Multi-Input sockets (commit) (Fabian Schempp)

Rendering

  • Eevee: improved Depth of field (commit) (Clément Foucault)
  • Cycles: Dwivedi guiding for path-traced subsurface scattering (commit) (Lukas Stockner)
  • Cycles: shared AOV settings with Eevee (commit) (Jeroen Bakker)
  • OpenColorIO: upgrade to version 2.0.0 (commit) (Brecht Van Lommel)
  • Baking: support vertex color baking of normal material, UV discontinuities (commit) (Brecht Van Lommel)
  • Sky Texture: change Nishita Altitude to use unit system (commit) (Marco)

Grease Pencil

  • Fill tool improvements (commit) (Antonio Vazquez)
  • Multiframe support in Draw mode (commit) (Antonio Vazquez)
  • Basic block display in Dopesheet (commit) (Antonio Vazquez)
  • Move Autofit parameter from topbar to advanced panel (commit) (Antonio Vazquez)

User Interface

  • Windows: always show child windows on top of main window (commit) (Harley Acheson)
  • macOS: use system generated document icon (commit) (Johannes Jakob)
  • Keymap:
  • Add ‘Confirm On Release’ option for radial control (commit) (Juanfran Matheu)
  • Expose Precision Key for transform (commit) (Germano Cavalcante)
  • Outliner: enable render visibility column by default (commit) (Nathan Craddock)
  • 3D viewport: expose the 3D views active object in all modes, even when hidden (commit) (Campbell Barton)
  • Node Editor: multi-input node socket spacing and interaction (commit) (Fabian Schempp)
  • Add Object Tool: make automatic axis selection an option (commit) (Campbell Barton)

Python API

  • Python was upgraded to version 3.9.1 (new features).
  • Option for render engines to delegate Freestyle render to Eevee (commit) (Miguel Pozo)

Other

  • Subdivision Surfaces
    • Expose all UV interpolation options (commit) (Sergey Sharybin)
    • Use better default UV interpolation (commit) (Sergey Sharybin)
  • FFmpeg: improve multi-threading settings ((commit) (commit) (Sergey Sharybin, Peter Fog)
  • Images: Flip image operator (commit) (Pablo Dobarro)

Weekly Reports

About Author

Bart Veldhuizen

I have a LONG history with Blender - I wrote some of the earliest Blender tutorials, worked for Not a Number and helped run the crowdfunding campaign that open sourced Blender (the first one on the internet!). I founded BlenderNation in 2006 and have been editing it every single day since then ;-) I also run the Blender Artists forum and I'm Head of Community at Sketchfab.

3 Comments

  1. This is kind of unrelated to this week's update. However, explain something to me.

    Almost a year ago to the day, Pablo seemed pretty adamant on deprecating dyntopo in favor of pushing ahead with voxel remeshing. A lot of people didn't support that idea voxel remeshing is pretty lossy; You have to crank up the settings just to preserve fine detail.

    Proponents of keeping dyntopo suggest that, yes, it's buggy and needs upgrading, but localized detail is a huge part of their sculpting workflow. Looking at his reported commits from last week (Feb 8-12), he still seems to be bug patching and improving support for dyntopo

    Very simple question: Does anybody know if dyntopo is still on its way out or if the BF is still committed to keeping it in?

    I only ask because killing off dyntopo without already having a replacement or true (built-in) ZRemesher killer similar to QuadRemesher seems crazy. It would be a step backwards, relying on multires or even older methods. Nobody is suggesting that Blender could replace ZBrush fully, but having it around as an alternative would be nice.

    I like ZBrush, but it's overkill in many respects. I, along with others, would much rather stay in Blender. It makes no sense to devote time to moving over to Blender for sculpting, however, if it's going to be neutered though.

    Any idea on where dyntopo stands today in 2021? I know that many of you read the various chats more than I do.

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