The Alias|Wavefront logo is a registered trademark and Alias|Wavefront is a trademark of Alias|Wavefront, a division of Silicon Graphics Limited in the United States and/or other countries. Maya is a registered trademark of Silicon Graphics, Inc., exclusively used by Alias|Wavefront, a division of Silicon Graphics Limited. The Maya logo, Maya Personal Learning Edition, Maya Complete, Maya Unlimited, Maya Paint Effects, Maya Artisan, Maya Fur, Maya Cloth, Maya Embedded Language and Maya Shockwave 3D Exporter are trademarks of Alias|Wavefront, a division of Silicon Graphics Limited. IRIX is a registered trademark and SGI is a trademark of Silicon Graphics, Inc.
Alias|Wavefront’s Maya is a comprehensive production solution for 3D artists in animation and visual effects, starting with the initial concept to the final rendered image.
Maya Complete by Alias|Wavefront for the Mac OS X (fully Mac compliant using OpenGL), Windows, and Unix sold for $7,500, now (1/2003) at $1,999. Maya Unlimited was selling at $16,000, now (1/2003) at $6,999. A free, noncommercial version of Maya Complete is available as Maya Personal Learning Edition. Also available are Maya Real-Time Author and Maya Shockwave 3D Exporter.
Maya Personal Learning Edition is a free noncommercial use version of Maya Complete’s main toolset, including NURBS (Non-Uniform Rational B-Spline, one of the primitives in 3D), modeling, animation, inverse kinetics (IK), Maya Artisan, Maya Paint Effects, particles, dynamics, and Maya advanced rendering capabilities.
Maya Personal Learning Edition restricts users (3D graphics and animation students and industry professionals learning Maya) through the displayed watermark (a moving text image that is placed on created images) and a special file format readable only through this system. Maya Personal Learning Edition will run on Windows NT 4.0, Windows 2000 Professional, and Windows XP but not on Windows 95, 98, Me, Linux, or IRIX (buy the Maya Complete version). Maya Personal Learning Edition requires 695 MB to install and 270 MB to run (the installer is deleted). The complete set of user documentation is included.
Maya Complete 4.0 includes modeling, rendering, animation, dynamics, Artisan, Paint Effects, Maya Embedded Language (MEL), open interface for programming and scripting, Maya Fur, Maya Cloth, and advanced modeling features.
Maya Unlimited (for IRIX, Linux, and Windows platforms) includes Maya Cloth, Maya Fur, and Maya Live, reads and writes Maya software files, all MEL commands (like system, fopen, popen, fwrite, fprint, and cmdpipe), and API, and supports exporting skin weight maps and character maps.
Maya is a node-based program where each node can represent a surface, a texture, or an animation curve with attributes like the object’s position or size. There are two user views: hypergraph or outliner panel view.
Maya’s three primitives are NURBS, polygons, and subdivisions (in the Windows version only). Layers separate objects for editing and viewing, which can be shown, hidden, templated, or referenced.
Light has several variations, including ambient (uniform light), area (rectangular emitted light), directional (parallel light rays), point (radiates out from a center), or spotlight (cone-shaped lighted area). Light creates shadows.