Maya has increased its procedural animation game over the last while, especially with MASH, Maya’s Motion Graphics Toolkit. If creating procedural animation in Maya is your thing, then you might want to take a look at Myriad Grains.
Myriad Grains, developed by Michal Gamrat, is a plugin for Maya that offers a scripting language that allows for the parallel processing points. The plugin can help with per-particle data manipulation and give you an easy way to instance anything.
The plugin adds lets you transform instanced data quickly. Transformations can include controlling scale, orientation shading properties or any other user defined attributes. Myriad Grains can do this, by working on its own custom scripting language, MGL, Myriad Grains Language, which is at the heart of the toolset.
MGL was designed to process points. The plugin connects with Arnold to give the user creative controls over instancing objects and point. Can be a great tool for motion graphics artists. The basic workflow is three stages. Supply an input, which can be a mesh, points or numeric data. Then write a script to define transformations using MGL. MG then outputs the transformed data to a mesh or instance node.
Visit the Myriad Grains site to learn more about the Maya plugin, and download it for free.