Skip to Content

Auto Animator

Animating a person’s movements for a movie or video game can be costly and time consuming, requiring that actors be filmed with special cameras for every step and shrug. A new tool created by Zoran Popovic at the University of Washington and Aaron Hertzmann at the University of Toronto, however, can extrapolate a person’s movements from a single sequence of motions. First, the sequence is used to train the system. Then the animator picks a new movement for the digital character by, say, changing the position of its hands and feet. The system then calculates the most probable corresponding positions of the rest of the body. Popovic says that a clip of only 20 or 30 frames is enough information to give the system a good sense of how a person tends to move. Popovic imagines that the technology would be particularly useful for animators who make sports video games based on actual players. In fact, the technology is currently licensed to Redwood City, CA-based Electronic Arts, a maker of video games.

Keep Reading

Most Popular

transplant surgery
transplant surgery

The gene-edited pig heart given to a dying patient was infected with a pig virus

The first transplant of a genetically-modified pig heart into a human may have ended prematurely because of a well-known—and avoidable—risk.

Muhammad bin Salman funds anti-aging research
Muhammad bin Salman funds anti-aging research

Saudi Arabia plans to spend $1 billion a year discovering treatments to slow aging

The oil kingdom fears that its population is aging at an accelerated rate and hopes to test drugs to reverse the problem. First up might be the diabetes drug metformin.

Yann LeCun
Yann LeCun

Yann LeCun has a bold new vision for the future of AI

One of the godfathers of deep learning pulls together old ideas to sketch out a fresh path for AI, but raises as many questions as he answers.

images created by Google Imagen
images created by Google Imagen

The dark secret behind those cute AI-generated animal images

Google Brain has revealed its own image-making AI, called Imagen. But don't expect to see anything that isn't wholesome.

Stay connected

Illustration by Rose WongIllustration by Rose Wong

Get the latest updates from
MIT Technology Review

Discover special offers, top stories, upcoming events, and more.

Thank you for submitting your email!

Explore more newsletters

It looks like something went wrong.

We’re having trouble saving your preferences. Try refreshing this page and updating them one more time. If you continue to get this message, reach out to us at customer-service@technologyreview.com with a list of newsletters you’d like to receive.