Nvidia recently has released a beta to the new Mental Ray Layering Library Shaders they are calling MILA which will provide some new life into the aging Mental Ray tools by offering shader components as building blocks for larger shader layering as well as features such as a built in framebuffer outputs, improved importance sampling resulting in faster renders, and overall maintaining energy conservation naturally. Hopefully this represents a push into bringing Mental Ray into the “modern world” where certainly integration at the very least is streamlined in applications like Autodesk Maya.

This library is currently designed as a flexible replacement for (at a minimum) the fast_sss, metalllic paint, car paint, and mia_material shaders

the Elemental Ray Blog posts a look at the User Interface and Brief Descriptions of the various components to the Mental Ray MILA Layering Library, and also posts a look at how the ideology of rendering frambuffers with MILa has changed. Check out the post for The Layering Library (MILA) UI: BETA SHADERS here, and Using Framebuffers with the Layering Library (MILA) here.