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eblu
06-23-2006, 10:24 AM
I came to LW, from a decidedly broken application. its development was floundering, each successive generation adding more features and failing to fix any bugs, the net result being that each successive generation of the app, was LESS stable than the previous. What is worse, is that none of the developers were interested in learning about os x (way back in os 9 days), so they were missing out on several Key aspects of os 9, that could speed up dev time, speed up the interface (such as OpenGl), and make mac users happy. they were entrenched in a compiler that was 5 years dead, and unwilling to make the investment to move to a technology that was current, reliable, and bug free. I concluded that it was doomed, and so I moved on. to lightwave.

at that time Lightwave was "industrial". it gave up fancy interface for robust and solid tools, the renderer, while old was one of the best out of the box renderers period. its stripped down toolset was more powerful than it appeared at first, and it was a one stop package for 3d.

today, the application I came to Lightwave from, has shipped as a universal binary. it works on intel, it works on ppc, it works on os x. This is a dev team of 5 individuals making a cross platform 3d app. it has a box with more bullet points than Lightwave. I don't necessarily believe it is good, but it is a very complex application, which has to be near as difficult to port as Lightwave.

I am extremely unhappy with the status of Lightwave, I am surprised that Lightwave as a whole has frittered away its reputation as an industrial package for marginal features (those which make a good bullet point, but just don't work in a robust and practical way), and I am embarrassed that Lightwave has dealt with these last 8 years of os x by ignoring the signs.

Lizard Head
06-23-2006, 10:47 AM
there are other apps around... good luck !!!.. Adios

Chilton
06-23-2006, 11:57 AM
I can't speak for NewTek's past, as I wasn't part of it. But I can tell you that going forward, Mac users will be very happy with NewTek's offerings.

As Chuck and Jay have pointed out before, we are working on a Universal Binary right now. However, we weren't going to rush it out the door just to meet Apple's Design Award deadline last week. It will be released when it's ready.

Obviously, I can't reveal any specific parts of LightWave's roadmap. However, I can promise you that when it ships, the Universal Binary version of LightWave will be fast, solid, and make Mac users very happy.

-Chilton

BazC
06-23-2006, 12:09 PM
That's good to hear, thanks Chilton! :D

RonGC
06-23-2006, 06:31 PM
Great to hear Chilton. I have a couple of MacTels here just itching to use a UB version lightwave:)

One thing i'm grateful for is that since the open beta started we are getting to see you Newtek guys a lot more in the forums. Hope that this will be ongoing into the future, nice to get feedback and nice to have you around.

Thanks.

Ron

joao
06-24-2006, 06:00 AM
i never understood why specific parts of lightwave's roadmap cannot be revealed... maybe i'm just idealistic and naive.

Chilton
06-24-2006, 01:52 PM
Hi Joao,

Regarding the MacOS X Universal Binary, I can give you this highly specific roadmap:

1) Now: LightWave 9 is a CFM based application
2) Next: LightWave 9 will be a Mach-O application*
3) After that: LightWave 9 will be a Universal Binary application

*note: this is the same roadmap all CFM apps have to take.

As a general rule, anyone can release a Universal Binary. Making a *good* Universal Binary--that's the real trick.

-Chilton

UnCommonGrafx
06-24-2006, 01:59 PM
Hey Chilton,
Are you the mac guy? Your name is new to me and I'm curious and verbose this week.

Chilton
06-24-2006, 04:07 PM
Yes, I am the Mac guy. And absolutely thrilled to be working on LightWave.

MLynch
06-27-2006, 06:16 AM
Greetings, Chilton. Glad to have you as part of the NewTek team and forum. :)

You'll have to excuse my ignorance on this subject... I'm on a G5 Quad - will the Universal Binary version of LW run on PowerPC workstations? Or will it run only on Intel-based Macs? ...also, what is a CFM-based app?

BeeVee
06-27-2006, 06:34 AM
A Universal Binary will run on both platforms. If you used a Mac during the transition between 68k and PowerPC processors you should already be familiar with "fat" binaries that did the same back in the day.

B

MLynch
06-27-2006, 07:11 AM
ahhh... fat binaries... you're making me nestolgic, Ben. :)

Thanks, Ben. That's good news.

Darth Mole
06-27-2006, 09:00 AM
Hi Chilton, glad to have you on board!

With regards the UB apps, I notice that when some apps have been recompiled to UB, the PPC version actually runs slightly faster - is that generally the case, due to the efficiency of Apple's X-code compiler?

Eblu - which app are you talking about?

eblu
06-27-2006, 11:16 AM
Eblu - which app are you talking about?

darth, I'll message you. I feel it inappropriate to advertise for competition in Newtek's forums. And, truth be told, I wouldn't want to subject anyone to the torture of using that app anyway. Chilton, while you have a point about whether its a "good universal" or not (and my opinion is that the app in question is Not good), I hope you can see My point. Lightwave has languished for quite some time, and just beginning to catch up is nothing to celebrate. Lightwave should have been mach -o years ago, let alone anything else.
I have great respect for the amount of work that goes into lightwave, in fact its partly for that reason that I don't understand why Lightwave doesn't take advantage of modern development tools/techniques.

dsol
06-27-2006, 12:39 PM
Switching development platforms is a non-trivial task, so I think berating NT for not transitioning to Xcode yet is a bit unfair. They have a large established code base and while Xcode is a pretty cool tool (and a great freebie!) for mac developers, it still has a long way to go. I'm willing to believe that despite it's age, Codewarrior still offers features lacking from the lastest releases of Xcode. I'd love to hear how hard it was for the developers of Shake, Final Cut and Logic to port over to the new system (unlikely, given Apple's intense paranoia about inner company machinations).

If you haven't read it before, this blog post by an adobe developer sums up the reality of the intel switch for complex applications nicely

http://blogs.adobe.com/scottbyer/2006/03/macintosh_and_t.html

And don't forget - Apple is waaaaaay ahead of schedule in terms of the hardware transition. I guess the Steve's taking the hardball strategy of choking PPC asap, so that it builds customer pressure on the app developers. A gentle, ordered strategy it is not.

Chilton
06-27-2006, 02:34 PM
eblu,

Out of the 20 or so non-Apple apps I use, only a handful are Mach-O at this point. Only one is a UB, but it's in closed beta right now. So I feel your pain!

I don't expect you to get up and dance about the fact that a UB version of LightWave is in the works. But going forward, I think you'll be happy. At some point ;-)

TomT
06-27-2006, 08:31 PM
eblu,

Out of the 20 or so non-Apple apps I use, only a handful are Mach-O at this point. Only one is a UB, but it's in closed beta right now. So I feel your pain!

I don't expect you to get up and dance about the fact that a UB version of LightWave is in the works. But going forward, I think you'll be happy. At some point ;-)


Chilton, it'd be good to see NT win back the hearts of mac users. I'm saying that as someone who has used LW on a Mac since it was first available. Several key elements of the Pipeline we're using _are_ UB, so I would not underestimate the importance of UB to the Mac community, and also the importance of improved the stability and performance of the Mac port of LW.

Unfortunately, NT reps have too often fell back on blaming Apple while competitors have achieved the upper-hand in some keys areas. What I've seen in the past is that NT gets very defensive when it is pointed out that competitors have overcome hurdles they have not, so it's a breath of fresh air that you are willing to speak so openly here.

/Tom

eblu
06-28-2006, 08:46 AM
Switching development platforms is a non-trivial task, so I think berating NT for not transitioning to Xcode yet is a bit unfair. They have a large established code base and while Xcode is a pretty cool tool (and a great freebie!) for mac developers, it still has a long way to go. I'm willing to believe that despite it's age, Codewarrior still offers features lacking from the lastest releases of Xcode. I'd love to hear how hard it was for the developers of Shake, Final Cut and Logic to port over to the new system (unlikely, given Apple's intense paranoia about inner company machinations).

If you haven't read it before, this blog post by an adobe developer sums up the reality of the intel switch for complex applications nicely

http://blogs.adobe.com/scottbyer/2006/03/macintosh_and_t.html

And don't forget - Apple is waaaaaay ahead of schedule in terms of the hardware transition. I guess the Steve's taking the hardball strategy of choking PPC asap, so that it builds customer pressure on the app developers. A gentle, ordered strategy it is not.

dsol,
yeah, switching dev platforms IS non-trivial. Its difficult. its a long process, fraught with complications. well, for newtek, it is. But how does that justify putting it off? putting it off, made the process MORE complex, More difficult, and MORE costly.

isn't 90 percent of LW's codebase platform agnostic? doesn't THAT mean it can easily be moved from one platform to the next? Don't try to sell me on Lightwave's large codebase, they intended to have a flexible extensible system from the start, so that it COULD move to other platforms, dev platfroms included (in fact isn't that WHAT they do to get to the mac? dev on the pc first THEN move to codewarrior on another platform), they already moved to a new dev platform on the pc side a few years ago. If its so fragile as to make the task daunting, then they have significant, structural problems that should be fixed right away anyway. I know there is a lot of work, but the longer you wait to start it, the bigger the task is going to be when you finally get around to it.

And I completely disagree with you on the subject of codewarrior. Its dead. been dead for a long time. Sure some companies use it, Motorolla (the new owner), and Apple have been very clear however... Codewarrior is no longer viable. Nobody is updating it, and it doesn't support Deal Breaker technologies. Its been dead for a very long time in the computer world, and it takes an effort of willful ignorance to think otherwise.

I do find Xcode baffling sometimes, the interface is insane. But for all of the quirks, its where development is.

and lets back up for a second and talk about realities, the Universal Binary thing is a nice buzz word, but Lightwave is VERY far from actually being there. Adobe is Light years ahead of where I'm hoping Lightwave will get sometime in the next 12 months. Adobe is faced with

you brought up shake, and I personally think it IS the way to go for industrial applications. Newtek could learn a whole new ball game by looking closely at shake. Every function of shake, is a unix level tool that takes an image file or an image buffer as an argument. In this way you can access every function of shake from the terminal. Every function of shake can live independently from every other function (making bugs MUCH easier to manage, upgrades and additions easier to enact, etc... ad nauseum), and because the functions aren't tied in any way to the ui, it can be 64 bit. Its a perfect example of one of the things netwek could have done even in code warrior, years ago, even on a small scale (think screamernet at the very least) which could have helped the dev process. I was advocating this Kind of thinking in the Lightwave forum that predates this one.

dsol, don't get me wrong, I'm not saying Newtek should throw the baby out with the bath water... adopting technologies before their time. But Newtek is in no danger of doing that. Netwek has a history of Ignoring change as it happens around them, and they are currently reaping what they sowed... and I'm paying for it, with money. I like Lightwave, it has a lot of potential, I'd just like to see it reach some of that, especially after I invested in so much software from newtek.

Chilton, while I have your ear, is there ANY chance that you guys could take a look at porting the LINUX screamer net to the mac? I'm sure I speak for almost everybody, developers included, in saying that screamernet should really be a command line tool. And since Mac os X has a bona-fide command line, in which other Linux tools were ported, we know its possible. Then maybe, just maybe, you could remove the renderer from lightwave, shrink the size of the app, and render from lightwave by connecting to the command line tool (screamernet), eliminating some redundant code, areas where bugs could crop up.

Scazzino
06-28-2006, 08:50 AM
As a diehard Mac user, I'm VERY encouraged by what I've seen during the LW9 Open Beta program!

MANY long standing Mac bugs have finally been crushed. Including some particularly nasty bugs that could bring down Mac OS X. LW9 is so far the most stable Mac version that I've used. I've been using LW since version 5.5.

Keep up the great work!

:thumbsup:

As for a UB version, sure that will be welcome when it's ready. But Apple itself is just getting around to updating all of its own apps, so I don't blame NewTek for not being ready yet... ;)

Chilton
06-28-2006, 09:50 AM
dsol,
isn't 90 percent of LW's codebase platform agnostic? doesn't THAT mean it can easily be moved from one platform to the next? Don't try to sell me on Lightwave's large codebase, they intended to have a flexible extensible system from the start, so that it COULD move to other platforms, dev platfroms included (in fact isn't that WHAT they do to get to the mac? dev on the pc first THEN move to codewarrior on another platform), they already moved to a new dev platform on the pc side a few years ago.


I've worked on a ton of cross platform code over the years. I can definitely say NewTek 'did it right' from the start. It certainly makes my job easier. But that's about all I can say about that.


dsol,
And I completely disagree with you on the subject of codewarrior. Its dead. been dead for a long time. Sure some companies use it, Motorolla (the new owner), and Apple have been very clear however... Codewarrior is no longer viable. Nobody is updating it, and it doesn't support Deal Breaker technologies. Its been dead for a very long time in the computer world, and it takes an effort of willful ignorance to think otherwise.


To be fair here, while it is dead, it still trumps XCode in a number of ways. Ironically, AppleScript is one of them. XCode's support for AppleScript, until this most recent release, was HORRIBLE. Which was a giant, mind-blowingly ironic shame, since it's used as a part of ***AppleScript Studio***. There's a discussion on one of the Apple lists right now about how to script CodeWarrior to do something. I know I (and probably dozens of other Mac developers) filed bugs and feature requests for this way back in the ProjectBuilder days, only to have that fall on deaf ears.

CodeWarrior still compiles faster than XCode, except on Intel Macs, for obvious reasons.


dsol,

I do find Xcode baffling sometimes, the interface is insane. But for all of the quirks, its where development is.


Quite correct. For that matter, CodeWarrior is no longer for sale, even from the new company.



and lets back up for a second and talk about realities, the Universal Binary thing is a nice buzz word, but Lightwave is VERY far from actually being there. Adobe is Light years ahead of where I'm hoping Lightwave will get sometime in the next 12 months.


I have no idea where Adobe is on this matter, and I'm not allowed to say where LightWave is at this time, obviously.



you brought up shake, and I personally think it IS the way to go for industrial applications. Newtek could learn a whole new ball game by looking closely at shake. Every function of shake, is a unix level tool that takes an image file or an image buffer as an argument. In this way you can access every function of shake from the terminal. Every function of shake can live independently from every other function (making bugs MUCH easier to manage, upgrades and additions easier to enact, etc... ad nauseum), and because the functions aren't tied in any way to the ui, it can be 64 bit. Its a perfect example of one of the things netwek could have done even in code warrior, years ago, even on a small scale (think screamernet at the very least) which could have helped the dev process. I was advocating this Kind of thinking in the Lightwave forum that predates this one.


I like a lot of what Shake does. I hate the horribly rendered fonts it uses in the node trees though. I'm not sure how Apple let that portion of it get out the door.



Chilton, while I have your ear, is there ANY chance that you guys could take a look at porting the LINUX screamer net to the mac? I'm sure I speak for almost everybody, developers included, in saying that screamernet should really be a command line tool. And since Mac os X has a bona-fide command line, in which other Linux tools were ported, we know its possible. Then maybe, just maybe, you could remove the renderer from lightwave, shrink the size of the app, and render from lightwave by connecting to the command line tool (screamernet), eliminating some redundant code, areas where bugs could crop up.

To paraphrase the Borg Queen, you assume disparity where there is none. And that's probably all I can say on it at this time ;-)

-Chilton

eidetiken
06-28-2006, 10:36 AM
The Borg Queen?

I'd personally like to write plug-ins for LW. What kind of SDK support for Mac OS X will we be looking at, since LW is moving from CFM to Dyld, i assume? Mac plugins are few and far between compared to Windows.

Chilton
06-28-2006, 11:01 AM
The Borg Queen?

I'd personally like to write plug-ins for LW. What kind of SDK support for Mac OS X will we be looking at, since LW is moving from CFM to Dyld, i assume? Mac plugins are few and far between compared to Windows.

For the Universal Binary version, I honestly don't know yet.

-Chilton

eblu
07-05-2006, 08:07 AM
To paraphrase the Borg Queen, you assume disparity where there is none. And that's probably all I can say on it at this time ;-)

-Chilton

sorry buddy,
no i don't. ;)
the current state of affairs, is that screamernet is a command line app, ported to the mac on codewarrior. When it was originally ported the mac had no command line. So Newtek kit bashed a portable command line called souix and encapsulated screamernet with it. instead of unravelling that quirky mess at the advent of Mac os x, and enabling screamernet to work on the Unix command line, Newtek chose to update it, a hairy process indeed, as souix was Not supported on carbon. This lead to some Significant issues. I can't talk about whats coming, I don't know what newtek is planning, I know that it can change anyway, as I'm sure it has in the past. Lets only talk about shipping products. Oh, If we're talking about the "plugin" nature of the renderer... somebody else has already spilled those beans... and it has zero net effect on the state of screamernet on the mac.
the reality is that scremernet is hobbled by the ancient technologies that it employs on mac os x. My question was actually a respectful way to point out that there is a significant pent up consumer demand for a unix based command line renderer on mac os x from newtek. Demand that has not been met, by any currently shipping product.

Chilton, I don't want enigmatic references to something you can't talk about (putting you at risk of tipping your hand etc...), I just want to know that you (newtek) have heard us. Because we've been pretty vocal about this stuff for a long time now.

mlinde
07-05-2006, 08:35 AM
To paraphrase the Borg Queen, you assume disparity where there is none. And that's probably all I can say on it at this time ;-)

-Chilton
I'm chiming in here, as someone who has used and battled the ScreamerNet setup since LW 5.0 on the Mac. The one simple thing I would love from LWSN would be, simply:
1) to access it via terminal with full LWSN functionality in terminal.
and/or
2) functional external command reception. This is a bit vague, so let me be clear. I have and use QMaster (apple's render controller). I would love to integrate LWSN rendering through QMaster, but LWSN does not really accept and process external commands as it did way back when. I've only been able to utilize LWSN consistently by setting up a config file that autoconfigures LWSN to render. That kills me, as even in Windows you can launch a command prompt to initialize and configure LWSN to begin rendering. I would be happy (maybe even ecstatic) to be able to type, at the command prompt:
LWSN -3 -c"~/Library/Preferences:" -d"~/Animations/Voyager/" "Voyager-surfing.lws" 1 240 1
and have LWSN start and run the same way it would if I create a cmdline file with this:
LWSN -3 -c"Hadrian:Users:mlinde:Library:Preferences:" -d"Hadrian:Users:mlinde:Animations:Voyager:" ":Scenes:Mode3Scenes:Voyager-surfing.lws" 1 240 1

That's my take on LWSN.

griggsyboy
07-06-2006, 04:04 AM
this is a cool thread and just thought i would stick my tuppence worth in, as a returning lightwave user, the improvements in vers 9.0 fully justify my purchase in 8.5 back in feb, i use a ppc in work and have a couple of mactels at home.

While lwave 9 does slug a bit at home on rosetta it doesn't matter though, because of the joy of bootcamp, and the joy of the newtek licensing policy, i can boot into windows as and when and have lwave running sweet as a nut on windows on my mac, its not quite universal binary but its a full solution which does me.

but i agree with chilton, get the app right then convert to a UB. The UB of firefox for example, although still in beta, is horrid.

eblu
07-07-2006, 12:50 PM
chilton,
see mlinde's post. everything, every mac user wants in regards to screamernet. exactly what I was talking about, with specifics.

with what you have in linux already, it really should be fairly straightforward to get the renderer on Xcode, and UB, and running in this fashion. It is after all, supposedly "platform agnostic" code, and from the linux, its already running on unix.

Jeez, if the renderer itself was xcode/UB/unix - ed, that would go a LOOOOONG way towards making the mac community very happy. and heck... 3rd party plugins? release the renderer alongside the current product, and give the 3rd party developers both time, AND an incentive (consumer demand... no longer pent up) to convert to xcode/ub.

mjcrawford
07-07-2006, 01:32 PM
sorry buddy,
no i don't. ;)
the current state of affairs...

...Chilton, I don't want enigmatic references to something you can't talk about (putting you at risk of tipping your hand etc...), I just want to know that you (newtek) have heard us. Because we've been pretty vocal about this stuff for a long time now.

I think that you missed Chilton's point. obviously they hear you or he would not be taking so much time on this thred, as for the Borg Queen quote, I think he is trying to hint that with the 9x series your conserns are already being addressed as far as screemer net is conserned.. not that there is not a problem to begin with..

my two cents... :D

Chilton
07-07-2006, 02:29 PM
sorry buddy,
no i don't. ;)
the current state of affairs, is that screamernet is a command line app, ported to the mac on codewarrior. When it was originally ported the mac had no command line. So Newtek kit bashed a portable command line called souix and encapsulated screamernet with it.

Well, without using more movie quotes, what I'm referring to specifically (insomuch as I can...) is that SIOUX is CodeWarrior's response to command line apps. So *technically*, Screamernet *is* a command line app, just sitting in a clunky UI wrapper. The obvious next step is... eh... obvious ;-)

Obviously, I can't be specific about what we're doing, but just know that we are listening, and the obvious forthcoming changes will come.

-Chilton

jat
07-07-2006, 04:38 PM
Chilton, way off topic here but please get the Mac guys to fix the miserable audio scrubbing in layout - it just plain sucks. This is so important for lip syncs and it makes it pretty much insane to try to accomplish......please don't tell me that its supoosed to be this way.........thanks

mjcrawford
07-07-2006, 06:02 PM
Chilton, way off topic here but please get the Mac guys to fix the miserable audio scrubbing in layout - it just plain sucks. This is so important for lip syncs and it makes it pretty much insane to try to accomplish......please don't tell me that its supoosed to be this way.........thanks

the audio sucks for PC's as well (at least in 8) but in another thred they said that while they are not going to fix it for 9.0 it will be addressed in the 9x series

JeffRutan
07-08-2006, 01:46 AM
I know other companies get a significant amount of direct assistance from Apple for porting their code to UB. Is NewTek taking full advantage of these services?
-Jeff

Chilton
07-08-2006, 02:22 PM
Hi Jeff,

Yes, we are.

-Chilton

JeffRutan
07-09-2006, 12:13 AM
Chilton: Great! Thanks! Very much looking forward to better performance on the PPC Mac as well as the UB version! UB version for LW is one of the milestones that will influence when I upgrade my Macs from PPC to Intel. I really want all the speed I can get, but I can't afford to move backwards with my apps that don't support UB yet. Better to wait and get an even better machine once those apps are ready.

I am glad to hear that NewTek is committed to doing a quality job on the Mac platform! I hope that commitment continues even if great parallel Windows support with native video card support comes to Mac OS X. I worry many developers will abandon Mac versions then and ignore the large segment of Mac users who don't want to use Windows at all.

Thanks,
-Jeff

Chilton
07-13-2006, 10:41 AM
I gotta say that the difference in speed between a G4 and a G5 for computationally intensive applications is nothing short of phenomenal. The Woodcrest beasty that Apple is supposedly going to debut at WWDC had better be AWESOME, if it's going to top that.

-Chilton

Unwanted
07-13-2006, 10:53 AM
I gotta say there's always been a difference in speed and performance between the PC and Mac versions of LW, so a UB version would be tremendous if it also means there will finally be parity between both.

Would a UB version have any impact on community plugs (ie - will it mean the end of PC only plugs)?