TurboSquid, the largest online marketplace for 3D models, announced late last week that they are hosting a programming contest running from now until March 31st, 2012. The top prize is $1000 USD and the challenge is to write a utility to evaluate 3D models for quality attributes to the standards of the CheckMate Certification Program.
TurboSquid is seeking a tool that automatically inspects a 3D model within 3ds Max, then generates a detailed report outlining how well the model meets the CheckMate Pro standard. The goal of the report is to identify areas of a model that need to be fixed prior to certification.
The prizes are:
- 1st prize: $1000
- 2nd prize: $500
- 3rd prize: $250
The CheckMate(TM) Certification Program is the industry’s first 3D modeling standard, introduced by TurboSquid in August of 2011. Models that qualify for the CheckMate program have shown to be 9-to-1 favorites by customers using the TurboSquid platform. The suite of quality-checking tools is offered as a resource by TurboSquid to the worldwide, online 3D community. The tools run within a 3D application, generating a detailed report which provides valuable data to the artist on how well a single model stacks up to the CheckMate standards for certification, allowing the artist to quickly identify and repair the 3D model prior to submission.
As more CheckMate tools are needed, TurboSquid aims to enlist those within the programming community to rise to the challenge. “About half of our CheckMate artists purposely use versions of 3ds Max prior to 2010 to provide compatibility in the 3D models they create for our customers,” says Michele Bousquet, CheckMate Ambassador for TurboSquid. “If artists upgrade to the latest software version, they might compromise customer satisfaction. Instead, we want to give them access to a CheckMate tool that’s compatible with their workflow.” She adds that a significant number of CheckMate artists use 3ds Max 9, with a few going as far back as v7.
The CheckMate Tools Contest calls for utilities that run on 3D models created in versions of 3ds Max prior to 2010. The main challenge for contest entrants will be finding ways to replicate features included in later versions of the software. In v2010, 3ds Max began including the XView feature, which automatically performs many of the functions required to inspect a model for CheckMate readiness. Since pre-2010 versions of 3ds Max do not include XView, the entrant’s main objective will be to find ways to do what XView does with the features available in earlier versions of 3ds Max.
“We’re looking forward to seeing what the programming community brings forward with this contest,” says Bousquet. “More artists are submitting for CheckMate every day, and making the process easier for them means more CheckMate content in our catalog. Customers have told us over and over that they want more CheckMate models, and this contest will lead directly to just that.”
To enter, you must be a TurboSquid member that is 18 years of age or older. For other restrictions and full details; please see the contest rules page. The CheckMate Tools contest ends on March 31, 2012. Full contest details are available by clicking here.