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Fledermaus 8.1.0 - New Functionality and Improvements

Fledermaus Free Viewer (Replacement for iView4D)

Originally released in 2003, iView4D has been a key part of the Fledermaus workflow for many years. The free tool allows the distribution and viewing of 4D scenes created in the main Fledermaus application. This allows delivering a data set to a 3rd party with the same viewing capability as when the data was created. Going forward, we are replacing the standalone iView4D application with a new "Free Viewer" mode for the primary Fledermaus Application. Having a single installation makes distributing the application easier and helps switching between the licensed and free versions on the same machine.

  • After installation, two desktop links are created; one for the standard Fledermaus, and one for the new Fledermaus Viewer, which does not require a license to use.

  • A new feature of the Fledermaus Viewer is the ability to playback presentations created in Fledermaus

Improved Mesh Creation and Use

A major part of the Fledermaus 8.0 release was the introduction of the new mesh object. We have continued to invest in this capability with a number improvements for Fledermaus 8.1:

  • Increased speed when creating a mesh
    • The improved mesh creation algorithm is better designed to take advantage of multi-core systems
    • Creation is now a minimum of 10% faster, with a reduction of 50% for creation time using a mid-level desktop machine
  • Higher resolution option
    • Max Octree Depth has been increased to 18, allowing very high resolution mesh objects
  • Automatic clipping has been added to remove any parts of the mesh with no points contributing to the surface
  • Mesh creation is improved for vertical areas by using the orientation of the acquisition sensor (QPD files only)
  • Improved the user interface for the mesh creation dialog
  • In addition to improving the creation process, we have added better support for importing mesh objects in FBX format. This improves the import of textured meshes from 3rd party applications, such as Pix4D.

NOTE: Mesh creation from large data sets is a CPU and memory intensive operation. When creating high resolution meshes (Octree Depth of 12 or more), it is best to do mesh creation in a smaller areas using the selection tools.

Improved Movie Rendering

Creating high quality stand-alone movies is a key output from Fledermaus, and we have added a number of big improvements and enhancements in this release:

  • You can set the "Encoding Quality" using a slider to adjust between low and high compression.
    • This is much easier to use than the previous method of specifying a bit rate
  • Added ability to render 4K and 8K movies.
  • Added  high-frame rate rendering (60, 90, 120 frames/sec to the standard list of 25, 29.97, and 30)

NOTE: Similar to mesh creation, rendering high resolution / high frame rate movies can be very resource intensive. It is better to render short segments first to get a feel for the overall rendering and encoding speed of your setup.

QPD Time and Location Display

When opening any QPD files in Fledermaus, the Scene uses the full time information from the files. This allows the time controls to be used in conjunction with other time aware tools, such as the Video playback dock. In addition, the current QPD vessel location is displayed on the track line, based on the current scene time. The time can be played back linearly, or the time bar control can be used to jump to specific point in time.