CrowdRender - Super Computing for everyone

James Crowther

Sunday 30 October Salon 30

Hi there! we're super excited to present our 30 min talk summary!

The first five minutes of the talk

What is Crowdrender?

Crowdrender is a startup based in Sydney Australia. What we have built is an API and platform for sharing computer resources in real time. Currently in early prototype stage, we're assisting some talented artists with a short film called Luke's Escape (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eKYTL4g7R5E) to accelerate both production and final rendering for film quality animation. Our work is currently being developed as an addon for Blender, though our aim is to have an API that can be used by any application. You can see it in action here (https://youtu.be/1w5wSY2hnuQ).

Why is it a big deal, how is it different to systems like BURP and Renderfarm.fi?

Online render farms like BURP and renderfarm.fi are great examples of crowdsourcing computing power. But when we asked artists (especially those that do commercial work) if they used these systems they said no. They told us that these systems had some flaws that meant these systems were only used by enthusiasts who had no time pressure to deliver content. So we turned our attention to a system that used similar crowdsourcing principles but could potentially be used to help artists deliver content to a project timeline.

CrowdRender allows you to crowdsource computing power from almost anything that can run blender and use that power instantly, no waiting for files to upload to the cloud, though you do have to do an initial upload, but after that all subsequent changes are near real time#. You can make even minute changes to your scene and have these changes propagate to the crowd of machines you are using. This allows very fast turn around for look development and final render tuning and of course then you can do final renders as well. All results are loaded back into blender as a render result as per normal renders using the native engine.

Whats the big vision?

Individually, freelance and enthusiast artists may not posess the large render farms that the likes of Pixar or Dreamworks can boast of, but in aggregate there is potential for a lot of power. We believe that a network of connected artsts could benefit from the spare capacity latent in their collective of machines. We hope that one day we would see a new social sharing phenomenon where it is common place that artsts share and trade computing power amongst each other to be more productive.

What is the rest of the talk about?

The talk will cover;

  1. Why this addon exists, what problem/s in the 3d workflow does it aim to solve or improve?
  2. A little about how it works - via a demo! See our work in action where we'll manipulate a scene from Luke's Escape and then render it.
  3. How its being used to help finish Luke's Escape
  4. What we plan to do with regards to building a platform for artists to share and trade their spare computer power

#All changes that don't require a file upload, uploading a new texture file does require an upload, but this is handled in the background for you, no need to manage this yoursef.