Andrew Bonello

I’m Andrew Bonello – a creative software engineer with many years’ professional experience. After graduating from Oxford University in Engineering and Computer Science, I had a brief stint in the big ol’ smoke of London, where I worked in web design (Ziff Davis) and finance (UBS). I soon moved into the visual-effects arena at Vicon Motion Systems in Oxford, where I worked on the Vicon IQ motion capture software/hardware system. My main focus was the markerless motion capture project at Vicon (in collaboration with the Motion Dynamics research team at Oxford University).

One summer, I attended the SigGraph conference (held in San Antonio, TX that year). There, I met up with the software team from Cinesite – Kodak’s digital studio, based in Los Angeles CA. That autumn, I made the leap across the pond to start working at Cinesite as an image restoration engineer. Cinesite excelled at taking film scans of old, classic movies and cleaning them up using digital methods.

To this end, I created several new automated tools to perform color correction, scratch and defect detection/repair, deflickering and film grain removal (denoising). I also developed a clustering framework using the MPI (Message Passing Interface) protocol. This allowed any of Cinesite’s image-processing tools to be shared out onto the studio’s render-farm – vastly decreasing the time needed to process a single film’s 140,000 individual frames.

The image-processing tools I wrote were used to correct and post-process sequences on the movies “To Kill a Mocking Bird”, “Imitation of Life”, “The Aviator”, “Open Range”, “X Men: 2″, “Williamsburg: The Story Of  A Patriot” … and many others.

During my time at Cinesite, I gave a presentation on my work at the 2004 Joint Technical Symposium in Toronto. There, I spoke about using Monte Carlo methods to automate the reregistration of individually-scanned CMY film separations. Details of this work can be read here.

Alas, Cinesite LA’s future was soon cut short due to budgeting problems and, erm, some questionable management. Soon afterwards, I began working at DreamWorks Animation in Glendale, CA. After a working as an animator and in production engineering, I moved into the R&D group at DreamWorks, where I focused on the studio’s in-house image compositor. I overhauled the rotoscoping tool, wrote a new film morphing node, a color gradient node, and several other new plugins. I also rolled out a Python image-scripting API, which allowed digital artists to design compositing graphs entirely using the Python scripting language.

My work on the DreamWorks compositor was used in several movies, including “Kung Fu Panda”, “Shrek 3″, “Monsters vs Aliens”, “Madagascar 2″, and “Over The Hedge”. For my detailed filmography, please visit my IMDB profile page (at the Internet Movie Database). I also appeared in a feature at Vida magazine in 2010.

In 2009, I spent a year working at Google Inc in Irvine, CA. There, I got knee-deep in web technology and communications. I focused on machine-learning: latent semantic analysis of web page content, recommendations engines for Google’s online help system, and other artificial intelligence projects at the company. My time at Google gave me the curiosity to go it alone and start creating my own web products. I started with a webserver and online content management system. This system is currently the foundation on which two of my websites are built (see below).

I’ve always enjoyed using my technical abilities to bring digital creations to life. Seeing my code translated into web beautiful images, moving pictures and web pages is an amazing rush. In 2010, I left the full-time corporate world to follow my soul’s work and use my talents in new endeavours. I launched Izjed.com offering free, moderated classified to all of Malta and Gozo.

In 2012, I created CityFlyBy.com which uses WebGL to offer virtual flights around nearly 19,000 US cities, towns and villages – all from the comfort of a web browser. I’m focused on using my skills and experience at the intersection of film (my great love), technology and artificial intelligdnce (my great dream). My passions are film, sci-fi, automation, personal finance, cycling, and sitting on a beach with a good book or a podcast.

In addition to computer languages I also speak several European languages. I’m fluent in written and spoken French, and can get by in German, Italian and Spanish. I’m always looking for opportunities to combine my linguistic skills with my technical endeavours. So, if you have a creative project with an international angle, and you think I can help, then please get in touch!

For more details of my experience and skills, please visit my LinkedIn Profile.

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