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Re: pterosaur launch animation

an animated pterosaur [kinda like a Rhamphorhynchus, but having an extraordinarily short tail] crouches down as if resting (ischium touches the substrate, wings drag between fingers and feet], then leaps with its very short hind legs and tiny feet, arches its long back, pushing its forelimbs further down, then rebounds into the air....

Mike, how did the animators do? Other than the major problems, was that close to your and Jim C's vision?

Well, it's probably the best pterosaur launch animation so far, since they at least got the overall sequence of hindlimbs-to-forelimbs correct. That was what I really pushed for. That said, there are clearly plenty of morphological errors. I knew the wing folding was going to be off, but I didn't worry about that too much (this also means, of course, that the unfolding doesn't occur in quite the manner it really would). The upstroke should have occurred more rapidly (and earlier), which would have brought the first downstroke into play at the correct timing. But, it gets the point across, and that's all you can hope for. I had only a couple of quick afternoon calls to talk them through it, and send some very rough sketches, at which point the poor animators had all of 48 hours to build the basic animation. So there's only so much information I could impart.

Knowing your preferences, I know certain things you would probably have changed. You look younger and I undoubtedly missed any report of this video on the list. You can just point me to a date if you wish.

There was a short discussion just after the show aired on Sept 2nd. It should be buried in the posts from the 3rd to 5th or so.

 I've often asked for a drawing. You never mentioned the existence of this. Or was it so far off the mark?

Well, it just came out recently, and I'd really rather give you illustrations that are more precise - I think you deserve an overall accurate representation (including proper wing folding, etc). I also figure you'd prefer a specific species (they used a "generic" as it were). I'm building some figures for SVP - I'll probably unveil them there, and send you copies if you don't make it to the meeting.



Michael Habib, M.S.
PhD. Candidate
Center for Functional Anatomy and Evolution
Johns Hopkins School of Medicine
1830 E. Monument Street
Baltimore, MD 21205
(443) 280 0181