The new Academy Software Foundation — otherwise known as AWSF — counts among its founding members The Walt Disney Studios, DreamWorks Animation, Epic Games, Google Cloud, Intel, Autodesk and Cisco.
The Foundation seeks to allow open source developers to share resources and collaborate on technologies for image creation, visual effects, animation and sound.
It is the result of a two-year investigation into open source software used across the motion picture industry, finding more than 80% of the industry use such software, particularly for animation and visual effects. However, despite such heavy use, development was happening in silos and suffered version compatibility issues. Thus, the AWSF was conceived to foster collaboration over continual re-invention and to develop an open continuous integration and build infrastructure platform.
“Open Source Software has enabled developers and engineers to create the amazing visual effects and animation that we see every day in the movies, on television and in video games,” said Jim Zemlin, executive director of The Linux Foundation. “With the Academy Software Foundation, we are providing a home for this community of open source developers to collaborate and drive the next wave of innovation across the motion picture and broader media industries.”
“Developers and engineers across the industry are constantly working to find new ways to bring images to life, and open source enables them to start with a solid foundation while focusing on solving unique, creative challenges rather than reinventing the wheel,” said Rob Bredow, senior vice-president, executive creative director and head of Industrial Light and Magic and member of the Academy’s Science and Technology Council, Open Source Investigation Committee.
“We are very excited to launch the Academy Software Foundation and provide a home for open source developers to collaborate, regardless of where they work, and share best practices which we believe will drive innovation across the industry.”
“In the last 25 years, software engineers have played an increasing role in the most successful movies of our time,” said David Morin, project lead for the Academy Open Source Investigation. “The Academy Software Foundation is set to provide funding, structure and infrastructure for the open source community so that engineers can continue to collaborate and accelerate software development for moviemaking and other media for the next 25 years.”