RealityCapture LIVE from Organic Motion

Posted in Video Game Development with tags , , , on September 21, 2015 by Dan Amerson
We’ve been working like crazy at Organic Motion on our RealityCapture LIVE product. It’s a real-time content creation platform for VR that we’re rolling out at TechCrunch Disrupt this week. Powered by markerless motion capture, people can step into our booth, capture full geometry and color information, and then stream that to VR.

Check it out on the Organic Motion website or YouTube if for no other reason than to see me wearing a shirt covered in prints of hamburgers doing silly things.



Posted in Miscellany on December 17, 2012 by Dan Amerson

I’m not much of one to post pictures and information on the Facebook machines or wherever, but I do need to share some shots of little Vivian Kathryn aka Cupcake. Here are a couple; check her out.

Vivian in the Bouncer

Vivian in the Bouncer

Vivian at 6 months.

Vivian at 6 months.

She’s so freaking cute! dba

Upcoming Knife Self-Defense Seminar

Posted in Martial Arts with tags , , , , , on October 25, 2011 by Dan Amerson

I’m excited to announce that Master Eric Bullock and I will be hosting a knife self-defense seminar at Ladd Family Martial Arts in a few weeks. Here are the details, and a link for the flyer.

I’ve been studying the Filipino martial arts with Master Bullock for some time, and that was my inspiration for this seminar. They’ve been an amazing complement to Taekwondo and now Tang Soo Do as primarily empty hand arts. Working with the cane and knife in Arnis classes has opened up a whole new set of techniques and knowledge. It’s something I wanted to share with folks. If you’re studying at a school in town, please come out and train with us on November 12. It will be a great learning experience and a lot of fun.

If you have questions or plan to attend, please get in touch using the contact form on the right.

I’ll see you on Nov 12. dba

Tang Soo Do Test

Posted in Martial Arts with tags , , , on September 11, 2011 by Dan Amerson

I’ve been remiss in posting this update. On August 13th, I tested for 1st Dan in Tang Soo Do with Master Jason Ladd at Ladd Family Martial Arts. I passed and now hold a Dan ranking in Tang Soo Do as well as Taekwondo. Here’s a pic of us after the exam.

Testing board and students after Dan Test on August 13.

Dan Testing

Many thanks to Master Ladd and Master Donnelly for overseeing the test, and I’d also like to thank Kyo Sa Santini and Kyo Sa Hubbard who tested for 3rd Dan. It was a great test, and a good experience for me to work toward a new Dan with them. The whole process has reminded me how much I love the martial arts and rekindled my fire to open a dojang one day.


Big Brother is Watching You

Posted in Life in General, Miscellany with tags , on August 27, 2011 by Dan Amerson

Ever wonder if there’s someone watching you. Well, I’d propose the Raleigh police department change their wifi network name if they wish to remain unseen.
One is named suveillance van.
I also agree. Not a Carolina Tarheels fan either. dba

Review: Ironwood Arnis Sticks

Posted in Martial Arts with tags , on May 17, 2011 by Dan Amerson

For Christmas, my mother-in-law had a brainstorm to get me some new sticks. She found these Kamagong (aka Ironwood) sticks on Amazon. I wasn’t familiar with the Kamagong tree until I got these, but there are some interesting facts on the Wikipedia page.

(Edit 2011-07-18: According to Sam in the comments, this may not be the true iron wood. See below. dba.)

Each of these sticks is about one pound making them significantly heavier than rattan or American hardwoods like hickory. I weighed a rattan stick for comparison, 7.5 ounces. For that reason alone, I would recommend these sticks. They are great for strength training. It’s much like swinging a weighted baseball bat before you get to the plate. I use them at least once a week to run through the 12 strikes and basic drills.

Conversely, these sticks are heavy and solid enough to destroy any lighter materials they encounter. In fact, I have not tried nor would I not recommend using them for contact and striking drills with others unless they were swinging equally dense and heavy sticks. I can’t imagine a set of rattan sticks would last more than a couple of minutes.

Length is 28 inches which is fairly standard, but might be longer than some folks want.

The case provided is simple but quite nice. The velcro closure is strong enough to hold even if you sling them over your shoulder upside down. The nylon strap is easily adjustable but doesn’t slip once set. Mine is all black, but it looks like some pictures have colored trim which I think would be nice as well.

Aesthetically, the wood is beautiful. It has a deep, rich color with a variation and undulation in the grain. I have a soft spot for woods and wood grain, so these hit the right note with me.

Obviously, I think the weight of these sticks is a mixed blessing since it limits when you might do contact drills, but I always have a pair or two of rattan when I train so that’s not a huge deal to me. My only other criticism is that the sticks have been treated with what I presume is linseed oil (or possibly some natural wood oils from the tree). In any case, it leaves your hands a bit tacky when you’re finished. It’s worth noting as one of the downsides on an otherwise good product.

Generally recommended. dba

More Martial Arts

Posted in Martial Arts with tags , , on May 12, 2011 by Dan Amerson

I’m going to try to post more about martial arts and my training. There’s a new category for this if you just want to follow that information, and I have a dedicated Twitter feed for martial arts related stuff, @MasterAmerson. For those that take Arnis classes with me, that feed is where I’ll post status on Thursday night open floor workouts as well.

Suggestions on topics are welcome. dba

Middleware Mingle – Now With Sponsors

Posted in Video Game Development with tags , , , , , , , on February 18, 2011 by Dan Amerson

As I mentioned a few weeks ago, I wanted to repeat the Middleware Mingle at GDC this year. Since then, we’ve been looking for a location and sponsors to make sure we had a good place to meet and talk. After a bit of work, we’ve put together some sponsors, so I’m happy to say that the Middleware Mingle will be happening this year. Details:

  • Open to all folks in the tools and middleware industry as well as hardware partners and platform providers.
  • Location: Jillians at the Metreon on 4th St.
  • Date and Time: 9PM on Tuesday 3/1/11.
  • We’ll have some food available and drink tickets until they run out. After that, it’s cash bar.

We’ve sent an evite out to someone at every company we can think of. If you aren’t sure whether your company has responded, just shoot me a note by email or the contact form on the right. I can coordinate things. Also, I want to take the time to thank the sponsors. This event is a really great way to help each other within our industry stay connected and the sponsors deserve a huge thanks for putting some money into this.


For last minute info as the event nears, keep eyes here or follow me, @DanAmerson.


Giving It Away

Posted in Video Game Development, Video Games with tags , , , , on February 6, 2011 by Dan Amerson

Last week, we launched the Free Community Edition of Intelligent Character Motion(ICM) at Activate3D. This has been a really cool experience for me for a couple of reasons.

First, it’s been great to take a piece of software from a research codebase to a real product in 6 months. I spent a long time at Emergent working on software, and I shipped 15+ releases while I was there. However, when I joined NDL in 2001, NetImmerse was already on version 4. Even though things changed over time, that team had an established process and product. I’ve never started from the ground up on a piece of software. It’s exciting to realize that I was a crucial part of putting together a top notch team and working with them to establish a development process that has led to a full product. There are a lot of questions to answer, and, while you can rely on your experiences with other projects, there’s no precedent for the decisions you make. You end up taking a lot of leaps of faith and making educated guesses. It’s been a great and humbling experience to realize that I know so much and yet so little about software development. I’d encourage every developer to consider working on a brand new product at some point in their career if they haven’t already.

It’s also been exciting to release a free product to the community. All of my previous work has been on commercial projects that required contacting our sales department to evaluation. While ICM is certainly a commercial product, this version is free for non-commercial use in the community. We’re targeting a different user base and reaching out to work with hobbyists and people working on prototypes. It feels good to help foster innovation and share technology. It’s also been a good way to get feedback on the product. We’ve already had great discussions with several developers that have downloaded the package, and we’re meeting with some of them at GDC as well. In that sense, it’s interesting that we’re getting something back even though we’re “giving away” our software.

New experiences on my part aside, give our download a try if you’re into Kinect development. It’s cool tech for making cool motion games.


Middleware Mingle – 2011

Posted in Video Game Development with tags , on January 19, 2011 by Dan Amerson

Last year, I organized the Middleware Mingle. I think it was a great success, and I’d like to repeat it this year. Here’s the proposal which is similar to last year.

All of us in the middleware space know each other through competition, partnership, or other collaborations. At GDC, it’s always good to see each other and catch up. However, we’re all generally so busy working the booth that we don’t have much time once the show starts. I thought it would be good to have a middlware meetup where we can all get together and talk about the show, share stories, and have a drink. It would be a lot easier than trying to find 20 minutes on the floor during the show.

The plan would be as simple as last year. Pick a bar near the conference, likely the Thirsty Bear again. Pick a time. Descend and meet up. If this grows a bit bigger than last year, I may see if I can get a few middleware companies together to sponsor the drinks or at least the first few rounds. For now, however, this would just be a cash bar get together.

Let me know what you think. If you’re in the middleware space and would be interested in such a thing, reply in the comments (preferably) or send me a message using the contact form on the right. Please note a preferred time. Last year, we did the night before exhibits open at 9PM. That would be before the show starts but late enough to have most booths set up. Same thing this year would be Tuesday, 3/1. However, I’m open to other suggestions.