A clever piece of software has been developed in China to turn film into a comic strip.
Movie2Comics, developed at the Hefei University of Technology, converts any film into a comic using sophisticated technology and is the first software of its kind to be fully automated.
The process analyses a film, identifies the characters via facial recognition, and then takes screen-grabs of the action. Once completed, it shuffles and orders them to tell a coherent story, then converts them into a comic panel format. Finally speech bubbles can be added, and the finished images rendered into a chosen style - a cartoon or an anime. The resulting images are very blocky and are not animated.
A professor at the university said: "We have two future plans - firstly, to improve the performance of each component and to generate perfect clips without user interaction, and secondly, to integrate speech recognition technology so we can generate comics without movie scripts."
By Ocana & Runberg
Well, I wasn't expecting that.
Darwin is carrying on with his investigations into the strange animal-like attacks in Yorkshire, but as the tale unfolds it becomes more and more curious as to his misdirection and apparent subterfuge. When a girl is attacked on her farm and is rushed into town for help by her desperate father Darwin dismisses it as a dog attack when it's clearly the same type of attack he has seen before. Darwin appears to be hiding something, but is it for the people's own good?
But then there's his nocturnal behaviour, involving drunkenness, brawling and prostitutes, and this all from a man that history shows us was a mild-mannered, thoughtful family man who couldn't even bring himself to publish his most famous book for twenty years for fear of the upset it would cause. But this is a work of fiction and, like Abe Lincoln: Vampire Hunter (and Doctor Who for that matter), there's a current spate of works that are lifting real life historical figures and spinning fantastical tales around them. And that's exactly what we've got here.
It is, unquestionably, stretching credulity, but is done well enough to keep you involved in the story and wanting to see how it pans out. Runberg also writes the rather wonderful Orbital series, and he's not afraid to do something a little different with his writing which is certainly no bad thing.
I'm intrigued as to where exactly they can take this next now that the revelation at the end of the book has been made, so I'll certainly be keeping my eyes peeled for book 3.
And if you liked that: Get yourself a copy of Orbital if you've not already done so.
It is with sadness that we post news of the death of Jean Henri Gaston Giraud who passed away at the weekend after a long illness, aged 74.
Giraud was a French comics artist, working in the tradition of bandes dessinées (drawn strips), and earned worldwide fame, predominantly under the pseudonym Mbius. Esteemed by Federico Fellini, Stan Lee, and French politicians Jack Lang and François Mitterand, among others, he was one of the few francophone comic strip artists to receive international acclaim.
Among his most famous works is the Western comic series Blueberry which he co-created with writer Jean-Michel Charlier, one of the first Western anti-heroes to appear in comics. He also created a wide range of science fiction and fantasy comics. Under the guise of Moebius, Giraud contributed storyboards and concept designs to numerous science fiction and fantasy films, including Alien, Willow, Tron (1982), and The Fifth Element.
Royal Mail is launching a series of comics stamps to celebrate 75 years of the rich heritage of British comics, showcasing the comics that many of us grew up reading, with an image of the front cover and a head shot of a famous character from within its pages.
All ten First Class Comics Stamps are being offered in a colourful presentation pack which includes a fabulous miniature reproduction of 12 pages from the first edition of The Dandy in 1937. Featured comics are The Dandy, The Beano, The Eagle, The Topper, Tiger, Bunty, Buster, Valiant, Twinkle, and 2000AD.
The stamps, which are not released until 20th March, range in price from £4.60 to £5.95. For more info, click here.