Dropbox Renderer

Apr 16 2009

I’ve raved about Dropbox a couple of times in the past.

I’ve recently needed to create some new poses of Dister, our project mascot. I also needed to add a glass full of juice into the scene and suddenly my PC wasn’t beefy enough to do render iterations fast enough to get the materials right in a reasonable time. I have a Macbook Pro that’s mostly just idling so I looked at the renderfarm scripts that people have written for Blender, but all of them just require too much configuration that’s not worth it unless you need to render a long animation. People are probably not lazy enough.

I ended up writing this horrible script that watches a folder for blender project files, and as soon as one shows up, it unleashes blender on it, renders a still and deletes the project file. So the workflow is simply to copy a .blend over to a local directory. As Dropbox syncs this folder across all my machines, I immediately have the render available on all my boxes. Of course those machines don’t have to belong to you if you can convince your friends to run the script. Loop’s 8core Mac Pro really screams I must add ;)

The script is really a joke, but it may inspire someone to create something as easy to use.