New Softimage Product - Alienbrain 8. Why can't SVN do this?


Just saw this link over at CGTalk:

I watched the introductory videos and it sounds like 90% of the functionality is provided by SVN + TortoiseSVN (on Windows anyway). I tried using SVN once for this sort of thing but I found it wasn’t visual enough for use with art assets (eg I would like to see a list of image version thumbnails!). Now my questions is whether anyone here has managed to use SVN successfully for CG assets, whether there are any essential SVN tools or whether there any good open source alternatives to asset management. What do you use?

Any thoughts or comments? Post away!


I don’t think Alienbrain is really new. Hasn’t it been out for years? As to your question, though, I have no idea.

Digital Asset Management is targeted toward our kind of stuff that we use. Fedora was developed and is enterprise wide. see

@ Mrunion:

You are right - it does seem that this product has been around for a while. Version 8 is new though.

@ PapaSmurf:

I’ve just checked out Fedora. While I’m sure it is a great repository system for some tasks, it doesn’t seem suited to basic multimedia assets management at all. Have I missed something?


I think SVN was used for the art assets in Elephants Dream, wasn’t it?

BlackBoe: You are right as we can see here:

SVN is usable but not very visual (there are some image tools but they are rather cumbersome). Wonder how well the ED team got along - anyway, essentially I’m asking if there is a way to make SVN more like AlienBrain.


Koba: a multimedia file is a specific case of a digital asset. This from the link I gave you:
The digital asset management system described in this scenario manages digital images, videos and audio recordings as three different types of data objects, each potentially with more than one object model. Client-side applications with flexible, configurable interfaces depend on the repository to provide very standardized views of the assets. Each object contains metadata that is specific to it. Metadata about relationships among the assets is assumed to be located in external databases, keyed to the repository by the persistent identifier of the object. Metadata about the assets is extracted for the objects and combined with data from external databases to feed the appropriate data to each application.

So, you want a system that containerizes the blend file, the texture images, the sound track, concept art, multi-layer render passes, the compositied output, check-off lists, scripts, storyboards, everything about a project, not just the image. A generic digital asset management database system, and which provides version control, where-used reporting, and resource sharing and tracking.

Thanks PapaSmurf!

Have you had any success installing this system and using it? So far it is looked rather complicated and technical - even the blurb you posted there is full of jargon. Currently I’m doing more research on it before I make any more comments.


EDIT: Just look at the “tutorial”, how is this supposed to help me? Sorry, but so far this is anything but straighforward!