View Full Version : ON MESSAGE: Fixing the Communication Channels...What NT needs to do...TELL US...

04-16-2018, 07:06 AM
One message that seem to be clear to me is that NT seems to be trying to clear up the communication channels
between them and their user base. But I think it would help to clear the air a bit to talk about EXPECTATIONS of what it should be, and the REALITIES of why it is not (Liability if items are not delivered)

To be blunt the way the user based communication has been handled om the past decade reminds me of this bit from the movie Office Space...(I got people skills)

So lest do something constructive..
* What do you consider BEST practices of USER communication?
* How can NT start the healing process?
* How do you keep the well earned Gloom and Doom/ Toxic under control?
* what should the user base community expect in a realistic fashion?

I am looking forward to your comments.


04-16-2018, 07:17 AM
i think most people want to know where Lightwave is going
and whether there is a will and desire to actually get there and quickly.
Cinema 4d was almost dead at one point.
What saved them was Mograph.
Lightwave needs those tools and an improved modeler system for starters.

04-16-2018, 09:12 AM
"Best practices of user communication?"
We need a space where we can communicate with NT in a more official capacity. I dont think this forum is that space. Is NT supposed to sift through forum posts for feedback? NT needs something like Autodesk's feedback forum to handle suggestions for bug fixes that displays user feedback publicly (https://mayafeedback.autodesk.com/forums/160514-ideas-for-maya-forum) instead of what they use now (https://docs.lightwave3d.com/display/LW2018/Feedback). This allows users and the NT team see what is being requested and how it is being handled.

"How can NT start the healing process?"
Anyone in leadership will say, if you cant fix a problem, at least listen. Listening means communicating that you are paying attention. 2018 was the most idiotic release I've ever seen. All it would have taken would have been a post or an email or even a video post here and there. Not detailing specifics, just showing your presence. At one point there was speculation for several weeks that the LW3D group had folded... conspiracy theories spiraled and all that it took was an informal post in the forum from someone in NT to just say "Everyone, we are not closing."

Also, the marketing... where is it? Every single form of communication is sporadic and so unprofessional. Newsletters are written to convey they are "monthly" but there were 4 in 2017. They were released Jan, March, April, June... this is like how an amateur blogger releases material. If you cant drum up enough content, which is a whole other problem, at least regulate your releases and make the newsletters quarterly.

Social media for LW is also dismal. Facebook is sporadic. Twitter is not much better. And @NewtekInc on twitter NEVER mentions Lightwave! Not even the 2018 release... not a word. Lightwave is not mentioned in the bio of Newtek. It would make sense to promote the 3D graphics package that is optimized for all of the live broadcast graphics hardware and products they are selling!

The Youtube page is ridiculous. The main promo is for the 2014 demo reel? It's 2018!

"How do you keep the well earned Gloom and Doom/ Toxic under control?"
Get a rep that is remotely engaged, stop acting like LW is the bastard child of NT and promote LW in all of NT's functions (like NAB). If NT is strapped for resources and there is just no time then rely on the community more! get more unofficial liaisons! So the Maya approach (a professional marketing approach) or Blender approach (embrace the community in a more official capacity).

04-16-2018, 09:48 AM
Honestly I have stopped to have a need to tell NT wat to do.

* What do you consider BEST practices of USER communication?

A dev log. (not going to happen) Moderators with a thick skin.
Eidt: O you mean what the user should do when communicating with newtek:
Do their thing don't get agressive and less emotional on things, but do you thing.
And in general be playfull and experimental and share your insights...no matter what

* How can NT start the healing process?

Its pretty obvious when and where the brain drain started....and no its not all about going to other software.
But nobody will confess it...
I doubt there are enough people willing to invest the time getting things back to the golden times.
You basically have to rebuild the community from ground up. But currently there is no William Vaughan or Larry Schultz out there. wich would invest the time and energy and share their knwledge for free on a monthly basis to fire up the community engines.....don't get me wrong there a few who try to do this but some a bit to specialised (sorry bryphi....beginners look at your node setups with bambi eyes :) )

Mhmm I really don't now...maybe release a free version or a reduced price for the next 5 version for good tutorials / good artwork ?
And no don't make it a monthly thing...so you would need to choose one no matter how bad the tuts / artwork are. Make ir a exceptional thing wich you do from time to time, and yes make it public, rub it under the nose to those who have the capabillity to do good tutorials, but never found the incentive to do so.

* How do you keep the well earned Gloom and Doom/ Toxic under control?

You have these discussions everywhere and also here in the past, the only difference is, that there are enough quality posts wich will render them unnoticeable / less interesting to forum visitors.

Threads like these will also fire up doom and gloom btw.

* what should the user base community expect in a realistic fashion?

The community has to work to get communication to a normal level again
You can't force it from outside (only make some supporting moves).
The community has to understand that they are on their own on this.
They should expect _nothing_ from newtekl

But I'm not Newtek, I don't have the insights and numbers to back it up. Currently there is a lot of movement in the 3d Industry on multiple levels, if I would be sure a certain strategy will work out I would say it in bold letters, but I can't....the level of uncertainity is big.

I know this post does not help at all. and yes its more targetet as a general critique on the current forum community. But your questions hit a few nerves...sorry
But this community slowly gets more and more demanding and less giving. And yes I appreciate those people still comming here and answering questions / solving problems...but those get rare.

04-16-2018, 03:32 PM
Several things are worth mentioning about this thread.

1. Newtek is a business, and it's their privilege to either discuss or not discuss current projects. For the disgruntled, see below on what seems to me to be a very sound business decision. For the record, I have used myriad software of all kinds, and I have heard similar sentiments about non-communication and user dissatisfaction amongst the predominant brands in the world in a number of fields. Companies significantly larger than Newtek, and household names in software.
2. They have completely rebuilt lightwave from the ground up, and made it backwards compatible - achievement*
3. If they had said in 2015 "hey folks, sorry to be a downer but the rewrite will take 3 years", they would have had no users left. Almost any other 3d software would have been more satisfactory a venue to jump to, due to the uncertainty in the market of a 3 year project with no certainty of success. They kept a user base, albeit with some disgruntled users. The rewrite is a success. LW 2018 works fine, thanks. Incidentally did Newtek lose any programmers or other staff? If not, well done to them for keeping their staff employed during what must have been a torrid time. That's 3 years of dropping software sales, folks. Oddly, LW perfomred pretty solidly throughout that time.
4. They have made a startling improvement, and there is more in the pipeline - see Lino's videos on interactive, animatable displacement - which is obviously working, but in beta. With the rewritten core, I assume much more is now possible and the team will have been building with the knowledge of what else is already out there from other providers, so I anticipate decent stuff coming. Start with the basics is a good decision, then build on that. They could have implemented a lattice modifier in 2015.4, but that would have precluded the volumetric stuff, which is a game changer for me (and lots of others).
5. Of course there are core improvements that can be made. Goodbye backwards compatibility. Convert the files you are currently using, then see what further changes are coming.
6. LW 2018 was 300. Read that again. 300! Any other software this good at that price? Blender is not for me, I'm afraid. Personal preference. I chose LW due to its improved render engine, and its stability - disparate modeler and layout means you lose the scene, you don't lose the model. Unlike many other softwares.
7. Mention has been made of the broken nodes. Sad, true. Compatibility can only go so far. I hope Denis Pontonnier can be persuaded to start a new node career. He should be on the payroll.
8. The bug fix team are absolutely top notch. I have not yet had a bug report not responded to favourably within hours.
9. I am not affiliated with Newtek, but I do think that the rewrite, which I can only liken to rebuilding a skyscraper with a manual in Russian, with a requirement that it look exactly like the old one but with a completely different electrical system, is a serious achievement.
10. If there is a dialogue to be had with them as to what is required from future releases, I think the above should perhaps be a starting point to consider. Dialogue implies two viewpoints.
11. My opinion. Feel free to disagree. I have only been a user since 2014.

3D Kiwi
04-16-2018, 03:46 PM
PLCD. Personal Lightwave communications director. He sits behind you and keeps you informed of everything that is happening at Newtek.

You may have to feed him.... maybe

04-16-2018, 04:54 PM
people talk to gods and deities, animals even, at least NewTek are different in as much as they answer back now and again, maybe we need a community ouija board

04-17-2018, 12:14 PM

AD has put the Fusion 360 one on the Help button in the program, and it's regularly updated. Works well for them, why not you Newtek?

04-17-2018, 04:16 PM
2. They have completely rebuilt lightwave from the ground up, and made it backwards compatible - achievement*

Please clarify precisely which development cycle you're citing w.r.t. Newtek/LW3DG having "completely rebuilt Lightwave from the ground up, and made it backwards-compatible"?

What precisely does "completely rebuilt from the ground up" mean to you regarding a software project?

TMK, no such thing has occurred in any recent time-frame -- other than in a pragmatically-meaningless, but pedantically-accurate sense where it offers zero value as an accomplishment (and by which definition, is also true of every other software pkg developed in compiled languages upon recompilation).

04-18-2018, 06:20 PM
NUM #1 don't expect any favours or acknowledgement from NT , they don't owe you anything " that's not to say they don't listen , pay attention or get emotional when it comes to their product"
#2 Fix the forum
#3 Hire someone that actually works and uses LW with deep connections oriented towards the 3D market and I don't mean someone who can post on Facebook.
#4 Grass roots education , make education Lics free and push a rep up and down the schools installing and walking each lecturer through the basic foundations .
#5 Start engaging with people " they can be extremely ignorant and somewhat rude , however see NUM #1
#6 As a user don't ask them , show them ... take the initiative
#7 Support 3rd party developers even more so , than they do atm

I could go on, but it's not place nor shall I let my personal feeling obscure the objective...

look it boils down to this, you might be the biggest LW fanboy in the world , you might even use the software in a large studio , hey you might even own the largest LW community in the market ...
at the end of the DAY LightWave3D / NT is a company and it's at their discretion.

but trust me they do listen ,if you get a response back or not , that's a different story.