Talk:Computer-generated imagery

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What belongs here?[edit]

CGI is not just a technique for film and animation. It is often used today to create still imagery for advertising which is commonly mistaken for photography. Most of the cars or products you see in print or on the web are created using CGI. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Vblakev (talkcontribs) 22:47, 8 April 2009 (UTC)

Some people below below are really off -- and it is because of their lack of knowledge of the Englsh language. The make daffy, out-of-control statements because of this.
CGI means "Computer Graphic(s) image", "Computer-generated imagery", and "Computer graphical interface".
Therefore, just tossing around the acronym "CGI" is not permissible, because that acronym is ambiguous.
For other examples of the same sort of thing, "RIP" means "Rest in Peace" and "Routing Information Protocol", and IP means "Internet Protocol", "Initial Point", "Intercept Point", and "Interception Point".
If you are interested in defending s country or a fleet against aerial attacks, the knowing about "Interception Points" is a very useful thing! (talk) 15:21, 6 August 2010 (UTC)
Strictly speaking [very questionable!], CGI is the film technique. The beauty pageant is confusing because it is for video game characters, and the intro specifically mentions that CGI doesn't usually refer to video game characters. The part about web commerce avatars is unrelated as well since that is a real-time computer graphics application. I removed these sections. – flamuraiTM 21:38, Jan 26, 2005 (UTC)
I think the distinction between CGI and Computer animation is slight. It can't really be called a film technique because of its major application, as listed here, to pure animation, and whether this is for film or video is only a matter of detail and the resolution used for rendering. HDTV is blurring the separation of "film" and video, with movies about to be shot and delivered digitally, with no "film" ever involved, not even video tape. The resolution used for Toy Story was, surprisingly, lower than HDTV. If there is a distiction, CGI is probably just a matter of "high end" (3D High-Res) as opposes to "low end" (2D) animations --Lindosland 18:12, 29 December 2005 (UTC)
We must be careful to preserve the "hierarchy", which is a problem arising in many Wikipedia pages. CGI is a class of computer animation, which is a form of animation. Games take the concept to real time, and Avatars perhaps even further. Some unnecessary repetition is occuring here. I have suggested the concept of 'Root pages' to get round this. I would call "animation" the root page, and then list this first in the list of see also, on all associated pages. -Lindosland 18:18, 29 December 2005 (UTC)
I do not totally agree on the hierarchy nature of CGI as a class of animation, I mean, CGI could be a class of many other things (e.g. it could be son of Computer Graphics, Visual Effect,s and so on...). The top of page backlink seems to me out of place. I would like to remove the top one and leave just the back link in the 'see also' section. ALoopingIcon 23:31, 27 February 2006 (UTC)

A good CGI weblog[edit]

Is there a good weblog that covers the latest developments in CGI, e.g. new movie releases, software, etc.?--Eloquence* 22:58, July 28, 2005 (UTC)

"The first real CGI character was created by Pixar for the film Young Sherlock Holmes in 1985 (not counting the simple polyhedron character Bit in Tron)."

Wasn't the MCP in tron also conputer animated? Or was that simply hand-drawn animation appearing to be computer animation? If so, it certainly counts even if Bit doesn't.

Also there is a movement to refer to CGI as CG instead, as CGI is more commonly (in technology) used to refer to Common Gateway Interface, the protocol to submit web forms.

Dodger 18:52, 17 September 2005 (UTC)

This is mostly the history of CGI - need 'how its done'[edit]

This is mostly a history of CGI, but gives little clue as to how it's done. While I know something of this, I'd like to know how characters are moved realistically, how many variables are involved, is it done by entering numbers, or by dragging opbjects, or by people wearing lights that are tracked, as I've seen demonstrated? Can someone write a section headed, "how it's done"? The modelling page is mostly about rendering, and does not answer the question.-- 11:58, 29 December 2005 (UTC)

Hierarchy needed? - the 'Root page' suggestion[edit]

This is only one of many good articles on aspects of Animation, all of which tend to be suffering from omissions and duplications, as well as misconceptions over what constitutes CGI for example, as opposed to, computer animation, and whether CGI is a 'film technique'.

I've solved a similar dilemma on other topics by introducing the concept of a 'Root page', in this case Animation, and a hierarchy. I suggest that CGI is computer animation, is animation. If anything, CGI is 'hi-end' computer animation, meaning probably hi-res 3D rather than 2D, but the distinction is disappearing. CGI cannot be a 'film technique' as fully animatied 'movies' like Toy Story are now about to be delivered to cinemas digitally without ever seeing 'film' even as 'videotape'. Avatars and games come 'highest' in the hierarchy, as they involve real-time CGI.

The newcomer to CGI, or to Computer animation, may need to have animation explained, hence the need for hierarchy, with the 'Root page' listed at the top of 'see also' and described as such. The Root page should list all key associated pages in the hierarchy first. --Lindosland 18:35, 29 December 2005 (UTC)

Digital effects versus analoge effects[edit]

I was just wondering. Can a digital computer today do everything an analoge tool can, or can analoge effects still do some things better than digital? Like Lear Siegler Video Synthesizer and some of the other stuff they used in movies such as The Andromesa Strain (1971)? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 17 January 2006.


This page has been vandalised but for some reason I can not do a rollback like on the Afrikaans wikipedia. --Renier Maritz 13:46, 2 February 2006 (UTC)


Computer-generated imagery is often referred to simply as CG (though this is a less specific term). The initialization CGI also has different meanings, which could be confusing. Maybe these should be mentioned here? WurdBendur 05:54, 18 March 2006 (UTC)

I concur! I hate the term CGI when referring to graphics.

Second that! This article is WRONG. CGI can only refer to imagery entierly generated by computers. ALL artists in the field of Computer Graphics dispise this use, as it suggests that the computers is taking an active part in the design work. The computer is just a tool, the artist is the creator. Therefor, all visual effects we see in movies should ONLY be refered to as CG. If you are refering to graphs, waveforms, patterns and other imagery solely created by computational rules, then that's by all means computer generated imagergy, CGI. Any other use of the term is simply degrading to artists! You will not find anyone working in the business of post production or digital animation refer to thir work as CGI. So, I demand a complete re-write of this article as it doesn't match reality! —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:52, 14 October 2007 (UTC)

CG vs CGI[edit]

At the very beginning, the term CG was used for Computer Graphics, and CGI was used for Common Gateway Interface. I wonder that people mistakenly used CGI instead of CG for Computer Graphics and then invented the term "Computer Generated Imagery" to justify this mistake.

I hate the term CGI refferring to CG as well  :( 12:09, 8 July 2007 (UTC)


Someone needs to address some peoples criticism of CGI. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Metnever (talkcontribs) 16 April 2006.

Yes, I agree (although I think the criticisms are silly). Scorpionman 01:14, 1 May 2006 (UTC)s
Silly? Yeah. CGI is only killing cinema with its idiotic appeal to the eye. Goodbye good plots! Now we have beautiful digitalized images and cute human robots! —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 05:18, 12 March 2007 (UTC).
Not to mention that this computer stuff looks awfully stupid, the puppets certainly would suffice.

I'm actually getting pretty tired of seeing every main-stream animated movie in CGI. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 5 August 2006.

CGI took the best thing about going to the movies out...the grittiness. Now all films look slick and more cartoony...Thats right I said it....CGI doesn't make things look realistic...It makes them look like slick, boring, cartoons. DEATH TO CGI! BRING BACK OTHER WAYS OF FILM MAKING!

Yeah, I more or less agree. I came here after watching a little Return of the Jedi, after seeing some Revenge of the Sith the day before. What a difference. Sith looked like a video game, while Jedi showed restraint and focus in its use of fantastical imagery. I thought, surely there must be some documented criticisms of CGI on Wikipedia. Alas... Vranak (talk) 18:43, 11 August 2008 (UTC)
A criticism section would be appropriate. There are valid criticisms of CGI (vehicles, animals and people often act as though the laws of gravity and motion have been repealed; textures are too smooth; images sometimes appear transparent; I could go on). Even with good CGI, if there is no plot, dialog, acting, continuity, the good effects are wasted. Naaman Brown (talk) 22:12, 10 March 2009 (UTC)

That part of this is not a forums don't you user get ? There will need no need for a criticism section, because they're just personal opinion which wiki do not want. (mich (talk) 05:31, 29 January 2010 (UTC))

If other articles on Wikipedia can have criticism sections, then so can this one. HypertimeTraveller (talk) 03:51, 2 November 2010 (UTC)

Unless it back up by a official source, there will be no criticism section. You must cite a source. mich (talk) 03:29, 6 May 2013 (UTC)

Motion graphics[edit]

Is Motion graphics a synonym of CGI? I thought a merge to this might be OK. thoughts? --Clubmarx 03:58, 19 June 2006 (UTC)


How is Maya free? --Chewxy

  • I think whoever wrote that is thinking of Maya Personal Learning Edition. However, I think that the section in the article is a permanently incomplete list stuck in the middle of an otherwise useful article. I'm about to remove it in a minute or two. Ayavaron 21:02, 10 September 2006 (UTC)


I just turned to this article and had a movie — the second Pirates of the Caribbean — spoiled for me with the picture that some clever person put up. Thank you! Not everybody in the world sees every movie right away. Wouldn't it have been possible to show a picture from an older movie? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 19 September 2006.

That sounds rather selfish of you; you know, some people still have not seen citizen kane but would that make it acceptable to tell everyone what rosebud means? Some people actually go back to watch movies back in a time when cinema was good, not with your johnny depps and shitty pirate movies.

External links[edit]

I cleaned up the external links section, but was reverted by an IP address with no comment. I would be interested to hear how those links meet our guidelines, or otherwise make this a better encyclopedia article. They appear to mainly be a directory of studios who do CGI. I'd like to remove them again - any objections? -- SiobhanHansa 13:11, 18 August 2007 (UTC)

Only movies?[edit]

I notice it is only movies where computer-generated imagery has been used that is mentioned in the history section. Why not also include shorts and early technologu and experimentation, like the The Kitte, which was an example of Russian computer animation from 1967? (talk) 13:31, 15 April 2008 (UTC)

Image copyright problem with Image:Movie poster toy story.jpg[edit]

The image Image:Movie poster toy story.jpg is used in this article under a claim of fair use, but it does not have an adequate explanation for why it meets the requirements for such images when used here. In particular, for each page the image is used on, it must have an explanation linking to that page which explains why it needs to be used on that page. Please check

  • That there is a non-free use rationale on the image's description page for the use in this article.
  • That this article is linked to from the image description page.

This is an automated notice by FairuseBot. For assistance on the image use policy, see Wikipedia:Media copyright questions. --23:17, 21 September 2008 (UTC)


Apologies for my last edit; I got confused between my own user page and the actual page; Rpgsimmaster (talk) 22:08, 16 August 2009 (UTC)

Big gap in history[edit]

There is a big gap in history in the article between "The Last Starfighter" which was released in 1984 and Jurassic Park/1993. In between, there was a Terminator 2, which was released in 1991, and don't tell me, that T1000 was not CGI. And what about Tin Toy, released in 1988 by Pixar? Slidersv (talk) 08:58, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

Not commercial failures?[edit]

On the topic of "The Last Starfighter", the CGI article mentions it as a commercial failure along with Tron, yet the article for TLS says it was a financial success earning 28$m on a 15$m budget. --Laserhead (talk) 17:46, 21 April 2010 (UTC)

And the article for Tron says "Tron was released on July 9, 1982, in 1,091 theaters grossing USD $4.8 million on its opening weekend. It went on to make $33 million in North America, moderately successful considering its $17 million budget.[15]"

Where does spam begin, and information end?[edit]

I think the 360 entry timeline database is probably not pure spam, because it is compiled by Barbara Flueckiger who is a professor in some department of cinema and a search on Google books shows up entries for her. She has a book "Digital Bodies" (just translated from German) that I have not seen, but she probably knows what she is talking about, so I think it has reasonably sound information in it - probably. But it will make sense to extract info from it and add, rather than just have the link out there, for the link may die in 2 years. History2007 (talk) 16:42, 8 January 2011 (UTC)

Common gateway interface[edit]

Please include the abbreviation of this in the top of the article: (talk) 19:37, 5 April 2011 (UTC)

Pixel density[edit]

I came here looking for a description of what is displayed on a movie screen:

  • What is the pixel density for an image on a movie screen?
  • Are discrete RGB pixels visible on the screen?
  • If not, what is the minimum size of the splotch of blended color projected to the screen?
  • How does the use of CGI affect the maximum screen size used for projection? IOW, when might a moviegoer sitting "too close to the screen" be distracted by the granularity of CGI?

Some information was found here:
4K IMAX about 12.5 million pixels (4096 x 3072)
If you sit much closer than 2 ½ picture heights, that's what you're seeing, artifacts, not movies!

- Ac44ck (talk) 17:46, 23 February 2012 (UTC)

What gets displayed at a movie theater is a somewhat different issue. The fact that an image may have been computer generated or not does not necessarily affect how close a viewer needs to get to the moviegor's siting position. However, I would note that 57 arcseconds per pixel is the maximum amount of detail that the human retina can perceive. History2007 (talk) 18:08, 23 February 2012 (UTC)
Thanks for the reply. It appears that the granularity of a pixel in a 4K Imax screen may become visible when viewed from closer than one screen height away.
When looking perpendicular to the center of a pixel:
0.5 / 3072 / tan( 57 / 2 / 3600) = 1.2
- Ac44ck (talk) 18:53, 23 February 2012 (UTC)
Yes, probably so. I do wonder how long movie theaters are going to last, but that is another question... History2007 (talk) 19:24, 23 February 2012 (UTC)

History of CGI section?[edit]

Surprised this article has yet to discuss the history of CGI...i.e., it deserves a dedicated history section. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Dosware (talkcontribs) 07:33, 11 April 2012 (UTC)

You can be the one to write it. Someguy1221 (talk) 07:48, 11 April 2012 (UTC)
Much of the history of CGI was about animation. There is History of computer animation and its existence should probably be clarified somewhere here. Alas that article is in need of serious help. I had hoped that user:Amichaelnoll would have done it, for he would know the topic better than most. But that did not happen. I will try to fix Computer animation sometime in 2012, then touch up the history afterwards, perhaps by the end of 2012. History2007 (talk) 07:57, 11 April 2012 (UTC)