[Disclaimer: This article has been written as part of a paid collaboration with NVIDIA. It’s been written by me, on a topic I had an interest in, and trying to convey useful information to the community, so I hope you’ll like it]
A few weeks ago, while reading the news about SIGGRAPH, I saw NVIDIA teasing the release of the Omniverse connector for Unity, and as a Unity developer, I found it intriguing. I asked for the opportunity to have more info about it, and I had the pleasure to have a talk with Dane Johnston, Director of Omniverse Connect at NVIDIA, to ask for more details about it.
The article is a summary of the most interesting information that came from our chat… including the mind blowing moment when I realized that with this technology, people in Unity and Unreal Engine could work together on the same project :O
Omniverse is the collaborative and simulation tool by NVIDIA. I had some difficulties grasping what it does until some people at the company explained it to me in detail. Long story short, Omniverse is a system composed of three parts:
A central core, called Nucleuswhich holds the representation of a scene in USD format in the cloud and that cares about integrating all the distributed modifications in his common scene;
Some connectors, which are used by people working remotely on the scene. A connector connects a specific local application (eg Blender) to the Nucleus on the cloud, and sends to it the work that has been done in that application. There are connectors for many applications: people creating 3D models may use the connector for 3D Studio Max, while people working with materials, may use the one with Substance. Nucleus will take care of merging all the assets created by the various users using the various applications in a common scene;
Some NVIDIA modules, which can be run on top of Nucleus, to perform some operations on the scene. Eg you can have a module to perform a complex physics simulation on the scene that the team has shaped.
Omniverse lets people of a team collaborate remotely on the same scene: in this sense, it is a bit like Git, but for 3D scenes. And it also offers the possibility of running NVIDIA AI services (eg for digital twins) on the scene you created.