PDA

View Full Version : Modeler going the way of the renderer ?



Yog
07-22-2003, 03:56 AM
Traditionally Lightwave has always had two great strengths, the Modeler and the Renderer. Character animators have always said that LW wasnít too good at CA, so probably rightly a lot of the latter development has been in this area. And now even a non-CA like me has to admit that LWís CA tools look pretty impressive.
However, this hasnít so much been at the expense of some of Modelerís and the renderers development, this appears to be to the exclusion of Modelerís and the renderers development.

Lightwave 6.0 seems to be the last time these two areas had any significant development, and frankly itís beginning to show.
Us Lightwave users used to laugh at MAXís renderer, but now with constant development from Discreet and a host of 3rd party renderers, all my paying work I now port to MAX just for the rendering. Not only do I have more control, I get better results and in a much faster time.

Now unfortunately it looks like Modeler is going the way of the renderer.
Whilst Newtek have just been adding a couple new plug-ins for Modeler each release (a number of which were free downloads from 3rd party developers), other products MAX, Maya, Cinema 4D have been making significant and fundamental (in the same way that LW6.0 was a fundamental improvement over LW5.6), changes to their modelling workflow with each release.

Iím predominately a modeller, and after a quick check I realise that most of the tools I use are 3rd party plug-ins rather than native LW tools, (model roughed out with native tools, but the vast majority of tweaking done with plug-ins), including the basic move and extend tools.

Please Newtek, if there arenít many Modeler improvements in LW8.0 (as indicated by Lee Stranaham, then please have a re-look at what can be done for LW8.x.
The fact I have to go elsewhere for my rendering needs is bad enough.

KillMe
07-22-2003, 06:09 AM
i got to agree with this - i to use mostly plugins not native lw tools

and i think while NT addressed the character aniamtion tools to attract character animators into lw without improving the modeler and renderer they are removing the reason for character animators to want to work in lw

for 8.x let see some deveolpemtn of modeler and if nothing else some speed improvements on the renderer

Neil_Campbell
07-22-2003, 07:25 AM
[Apologies for length, but hopefully a constructive comment rather than a rant as to why many users are so disillusioned with LW's (lack of) development]


I have similar concerns .......

Please don't get me wrong. Even though I hardly ever use it, I'm more than happy to see CA / dynamics / gaming toolsets and the like beefed up, and can understand why people want it. It's pretty much essential to rounding out the whole package to ensure it can compete in this market, and LW was pretty weak in these areas by most people's accounts.

But it will be a shame if NewTek focuses solely on CA et al as it appears to be doing right now. Okay I know there are some other improvements, but pretty much everything announced so far has been around animation / dynamics. It will be especially worrying if these CA improvements are to the exclusion of other areas which used to be LightWave's core strengths, such as modelling, texturing and rendering - particularly as these were the reasons for many people, myself included, buying LW.

For example, I do a lot of architectural visualisation, and LW's radiosity engine is way behind the competition. I'm not trying to be a naysayer, but being realistic. Compared to the radiosity implementations in C4D, Maya and even native 3ds max 5 (never mind Brazil, fR, MR, VRay, ...), LW just can't cut it. LW's multibounce algorithms are unusably slow, the user has almost no control over the radiosity solution, and then there's that blazingly fast AA engine .....

From where I'm standing all of the major improvements to the render core that have been developed since LW6 ~3 years ago have come from third parties (yay Worley, double yay evasion 3D :) And this lack of development of the core is really showing LW up - it has been looking weak for some time, but now it's going to look seriously bad if NewTek doesn't have something tangible and progessive to announce (or better yet, to show) about rendering at Siggraph. Even Carrara has photon mapping and HDRI support that (as far as I can tell) matches LightWave's features, and Truespace has goniometric lights, IBL, radiosity ....

The bottom line is that for whatever reason the development of LW8 stalled, the market simply doesn't care. If NewTek can't develop LW so that it competes on features with C4D, Maya, 3ds max, XSI, .... it's simply going to have to compete on price with the hobbyist applications like Carrara, Truespace, Amapi, .... which is not where I want to see LW end up.

Okay maybe that's too doomy and gloomy, but I guess what I'm trying to say is it's incredibly frustrating sitting here watching bits of LW get beefed up, and others get totally neglected. I really hope it won't be all that bad, after all, Lee said not all of the Layout feature set had been announced, and NewTek should have been working on LW8 for what, 18 months now? But my expectations for Modeller have been managed pretty much into the floor in the last hour, and all the announcements about Layout have been dynamics based, which is not what I was hoping for.

The acid test will be the announcements next week. And to see how well integrated the new features are and how many are sticking plaster jobs to get some 'feature headlines'. Hopefully hiring guys like Ino will really help beef up some of Layout's animation toolkit in a truly integrated fashion. Then we can avoid a round of bolting-on plugins which have totally different workflow, aren't integrated with the core, and can't work with anything else. The big question I have is who (if anyone) is the driving force behind the improvements to Modeller (edge weights etc) and Layout's texturing / rendering components?

The fact is that nowadays competition from Maya and C4D, never mind 3ds max, is so tough that NewTek simply cannot afford to neglect major parts of LW, and unfortunately that's exactly what it looks to be doing right now .....


Neil

Stranahan
07-22-2003, 08:31 AM
I think these are valid concerns, so let me address a few of them. I want to be very clear - I'm not stating any NewTek policy in this post, just my personal opinions. READ THIS >>> Nothing I'm saying here relates to the actual state of development at NewTek - just some of my own thoughts << READ THIS

First, there's somewhat of a developer's problem in modeler - because there are so many good third party tools. Think about this - let's say NewTek went out and bought all of them. Bottom line for the Modeler Power User - no change.

In other words, we have dedicated modelers out there and they ALREADY have a much bigger toolset that Modeler 7.5 contains.

So, whether NewTek rewrote those tools or bought them, the average power user would just yawn. Hail to the 3rd parties and hail to LScript.

Part of it, I guess, is just the nature of modeling. It's more 'tool' based then something like character animation, which requires more core changes. This isn't totally correct, but perhaps you see my point.

All of that being said, I'm personally not exactly sure where a big huge leap in Modeler would happen. To me, there's only a finite amount of core changes I can imagine. One might be adding a totally different modeling metaphor, such as pure splines or surfaces. But as far as a subd / polygonal modeler, there are only a handful of cores changes. Sorry to overstress this, but I don't want anyone reading this and thinking that NewTek doesn't see this - I am speaking PERSONALLY. I'm not saying I'm right or even stating a position. I'm only saying what I think.

sailor
07-22-2003, 08:50 AM
Hi Stranahan :)

well i dont totally agree with you...there are lots of core modifications that could and should be done in Modeler (and Layout btw) like History...this has nothing to do with the choice of subdivs/poly paradigm or spline based modeling but with the posibility to maintain a modeling relation between operators...usually LW community tends to compare softs...this is a main lack in LW that ALL other competitors has in a way or the other...also notice that the spline based system can also be improved (why not adding Nurbs based modeling for instance?) LW modeling set is good and efficient but doesnt offers all the modeling paradigms that others can offer...for the same price :) so apart from a developpers POV i cant see how u could argument the fact that its is a "deliberate" choice from NT to not include a toolset commonly found in other packages....at the same range of price and even cheaper...i can understand that there could be other priorities than having Nurbs (for some users) but saying that there is not so much to do is just inaccurate...and by the way MAYBE Nurbs or edge manipulation arent a priority for modeler but FOR SURE interface design isnt a priority...i rather see an icon based LW 8 with a complete toolset rather than a nice designed interface with half integrated scripts ...after a few hours i forget the interface...but i never forget how much a pain in the *** is not having a camera in modeler :)
and well i know this isnt the interface thread but hey in a professional environment saying "hey this oft is crap because i hate the buttons colors" is just unprofessional....lets focus in the work to be done and the toolset please :)

Lightwolf
07-22-2003, 08:55 AM
Hi Lee,
as for the Core, I too think there are plenty of areas within modeler where NT could improve:
Edges
Real Spline Patches(tm) ;)
SDK SDK SDK...
Unification of Tools.
Construction History

You seem to emphasize the 3rd party community, which is good. In that case though, at least an SDK revamp would make their lives easier. (And even though I call myself an obfuscated SDK hacker, I'm more of a layout than of a Modeler hacker...).

Cheers,
Mike - just my personal opinion too ;)

Stranahan
07-22-2003, 08:56 AM
I tried to be clear. Really I did.

I am not saying that NewTek made a deliberate choice.

I wasn't talking about NewTek.

I wasn't speaking about NewTek.

Me NewTek not speak.

juanjgon
07-22-2003, 08:57 AM
I hope that LW[8] have significat advances in render engine. Actually render is ok, but it has some important issues who cant wait more to be available ... if not, LW will step down in relation with other packages. Next week we can see whats new in [8] ... i hope news about speed, memory management, GI solution, lighting, antialiasing, texture filtering, SDK and shaders issues, instancing, etc.

Regards,
Juan J. Gonzalez

Stranahan
07-22-2003, 09:00 AM
There's aren't significant changes in the render engine in this release.

Neil_Campbell
07-22-2003, 09:07 AM
"There's aren't significant changes in the render engine in this release."

Ouch

Lightwolf
07-22-2003, 09:09 AM
Originally posted by Stranahan
I tried to be clear. Really I did.

You were clear.
Me talk to Lee, me not talk to NT (in this case...)
That thing about the renderer does hurt though, I second the ouch!
Cheers,
Mike ;)

sailor
07-22-2003, 09:09 AM
one word: CosmEIGHTic


:(

scott_krehbiel
07-22-2003, 09:12 AM
Hi Lee,
Thanks for reading this, and for your thoughts.
I can appreciate what you're saying, that the
power users will purchase the power tools and
will incorporate several plug-ins.

Still there are just some aspects to the way
the process works in modeler that make even
the plug-ins work in a rather kludgy manner.

For instance, there's no really easy way to
perform a lathe or an extrude of a spline while
specifying the number of divisions of that spline.
Why not just have a field included in a tool...
lathe, extrude, what-have-you
that allows you to specify the curve divisions?
If you could specify it per-operation, I think it
would make a great difference.

Also history would be so incredibly beneficial.
I'd love to be able to lathe/extrude and then
adjust my source curve, and watch the resulting
lathed/extruded shape update.

Now I really appreciate that I won't have to
keep hopping back and forth between Layout
and Modeler to adjust my character setup. I
think that will be a great update.

Still, I'd love to see some updates in the Modeler
engine - numeric spline subdivision, history, and
editable cardinal surfaces (where the surface passes
through the defining points, rather than like
the meta-nurbs)

I'm guessing that no plug-in would really be
able to make these requests a possibility.
If I'm correct that no plug-ins would be able
to do this, then I think the Modeler engine
may need some updating.

Thanks for reading
Scott

trick
07-22-2003, 09:18 AM
Originally posted by juanjgon
... i hope news about speed, memory management, GI solution, lighting, antialiasing, texture filtering, SDK and shaders issues, instancing, etc...

I'm afraid this one is jumping ship soon !!!

trick
07-22-2003, 09:20 AM
Originally posted by scott_krehbiel
...Also history would be so incredibly beneficial.
I'd love to be able to lathe/extrude and then
adjust my source curve, and watch the resulting
lathed/extruded shape update...


...and animating your source curve will be possible in WHAT release ???

Castius
07-22-2003, 09:24 AM
There is no question layout needed a big heap of help for LW 8. With the focus back to layout for rigging. My biggest issue now is the so so work that has been done with modeler/hub. All the extra (skel,light,power/)Gons with a one way connection they must not be just left to rot. These need to be addressed along with the new focus and not just left as legacy features.

The other biggest core issue in my eyes are discontinues UVís, camera view, pivot rotation, LS commander, nurbs import, And please find time to add edge weighting so I donít have to see another post in the forum about it.

The future looks very bright. Thanks Newtek.

TyVole
07-22-2003, 09:29 AM
Originally posted by sailor
one word: CosmEIGHTic


:(

Le bon mot du jour!

Sailor, you very much underestimate your English language abilities.

Stranahan
07-22-2003, 09:31 AM
Here's the thing about jumping ship. I can't control that. Some people will leave, and some new people will come in because, frankly, what we have to offer is the best value in 3D, and I believe that. I'm not interested in debating that, because it's my opinion and nobody's mind will be changed by an arguement. But realize that what may be old and creaky to you, is impressive as hell to a whole bunch of people.

And here's the other thing - the people on this ship are being honest with you. That's not going to change. NewTek is spending huge amounts of time, money and resources to improve LightWave. There's no magic wand. Everything is harder than you can probably imagine, in ways you probably can't imagine. But regardless, we have a great upgrade in LW[8], even if it doesn't solve every problem under the sun.

And we're out here, talking and listening to our community of users, in order to make future releases of LW[8] even stronger. I've tried to be clear and not BS about what this release has and doesn't have, and of course we're going to fix other areas. Behind the scenes from what you see here, there's a whole other level of discussion happening at NewTek.

I've always felt that when you buy a 3D program, you're buying a relationship with that company. That's a long term comittment, not a one night stand. We can't fix everything at once, but we're adjusting and balancing as we go.

LW[8] and all that it includes is just a flat our amazing value. Great new features, new docs, free tech support, free upgrades, and a huge third party of tools and techniques. That's what we have to offer. I hope that all of you want to keep your relationship with NewTek, and we want you to know that we are working tirelessly to keep that relationship with you.

Valter
07-22-2003, 09:36 AM
I don't know.

There are many people around the world that don't have internet to get this plugins and many others that don't speak english, but they works everyday with LW in TV station, Video production house, Schools, public corporation etc etc. This people need a LW solution. Sometime they don't have time to search for new plugins or Lscripts to complete his lw toolset.

Well this is my point. I'm remind 5 years ago when I can't read anything in english language. So was very hard to find good stuffs for LW. Today my english is a bit better but very poor yet, however I can understand something :)

And about people that not have a internet easily...

excuse my english

Elmar Moelzer
07-22-2003, 09:40 AM
Hey Lee!
I have to agree with Lightwolf here.
SDK, a history, Edges and interactive spline- patching would be very necessary improvements (if you want to make it even better let the splinepatches renderable, so there is no need to convert them into polygons anymore).
Dont remove the handles from some tools once the tool is droped This is very important for the Skelegon- lollies and the bezier- handles.
As I wrote elsewhere, there are a few things regarding the amount of tools we have got in Modeler that could and should be changed easily.
What I mean is that one could easily merge a lot of tools into one, without having the user do a single buttonclick more than he has to do now (this is very important to me).
Handles simillar to the Rove- tool should be in the normal move- , rotate, scale and stretch- tools too. Splineguide- functionality should be in bend, twist, scale, stretch etc (as numeric options).
Edges as an additional selection- type would remove the need for the amount of additonal edge- manipulaton- tools.
Add wireframe- texture and colored wireframe- shade- viewmodes.
Better snapping.
Fix the Zoom and Transparency- bugs that I have submitted ages ago (6.5).
You see there is plenty that can be done in Modeler and I could let that list go on and on.
LWs Modeler is still one of the best(I am mainly doing modeling here and I dont think I am bad at it) and many big studios use LW only for modeling. So I would really take good care for the "best horse in the stable".
CU
Elmar

Lightwolf
07-22-2003, 09:44 AM
Originally posted by Elmar Moelzer
LWs Modeler is still one of the best ... and many big studios use LW only for modeling. So I would really take good care for the "best horse in the stable".

Something I don't see happening to that other horse, the renderer (sorry if that sounds a bit harsh).
If it doesn't get any of the above mentioned imrpovements I see LW getting overtaken by even the MAX scanline renderer (or Maya's native renderer, pick any one), yeuck ;)
Cheers,
Mike

Stranahan
07-22-2003, 09:45 AM
To clarify - I wasn't saying I didn't see changes to Modeler. There are obviously a bunch. I'm saying I see more 'tool addition' changes then 'core code' changes. It's a comparision. And, many of the tools are already out there.

Maybe it's a muddled position, and not thought out real well. I don't know. I just think it's kind of hard to really IMPRESS hardcore modelers because they have the tools already.

Lightwolf
07-22-2003, 09:48 AM
Hi Lee,
I think if you combine tools and unify the toolset, then you'll be able to impress them again :)
No worries,
Mike

Stranahan
07-22-2003, 09:48 AM
As far as the renderer goes, there's been a lot of discussion about that in-house but you aren't going to see much change in this release. Trust, though, that it's a priority. And that's all I'm going to to say about that.

I'll do a sentence version of my earlier longer post - please know that NewTek is working on ALL this stuff, whether's it's in 8.0 or not.

scott_krehbiel
07-22-2003, 09:49 AM
Lee, let me again say that I greatly appreciate
you taking the time to chat with us on this list.

As you said, it's a relationship with a company,
and I don't think we'd ever get this kind of
attention and interaction from one of the designers
of other big corporate packages.

And thanks for making improvements in
character setup. Now that I'm doing some
character work, that was a big issue for me.

Scott

Castius
07-22-2003, 09:50 AM
I think(hope) most of us understand how hard it is to produce a product like LW. They just want to see it be as good as it can be.

PS. I forgot go to put texture stretching with UVíd sub-d as a major area to fix. Probable on the hardest ones to fix as well. 8)

Elmar Moelzer
07-22-2003, 09:54 AM
Actually Lee, I dont use any 3rd- party- plugins in Modeler, only what ships with LW and I spend an average of about 6 hours a day in front of Modeler...
I am pretty confident though that NT will do enough to keep Modeler going until they have time to look deeper into it.
I think the renderer really needs some speed- improvements, thats all. Everything else is pretty much OK, or can be added via 3rd parties. Just some speed- improvements (and the bugs in it fixed) would be fine for the time being...
CU
Elmar

Yog
07-22-2003, 09:57 AM
Thanks for the reply Lee, with the apparent lack of development in Modeler it is even a big relief just to know someone connected with Newtek has even read this thread.
This is part of the reason why the Feature Request forum is so disheartening for us predominantly modelling based people, itís often like whispering down a deep well without the echo.

BTW Lee - I think this is the reason people are so enthusiastically dropping their hopes for new features all over your posts, is that it feals that someone connected with Newtek is actually listening.
I know Newtek have listened before, you never know they are listening :D

Whilst you do have a point that there is already wide range of modelling tools provided by 3rd party developers (god bless every last one of them), it is often a draw back that a lot of these plug-ins are in script form and arenít as efficient as their compiled counterparts, add to this that new releases of LW often break several of these plug-ins and that a potential new user would only see a lack of features (not being aware of the plug-in bandaids).

I donít agree that there is very little room for Modeler to expand though.
I wonít even go near the edge tools debate, itís been done to death, and NT should have the message load and clear by now.
But other untapped areas include dynamic patch modelling (as seen in most other apps and in a limited way through Steve Hurleys new plug-in), where we could go back and edit the splines at any time. Non-destructive rail extrudes falls into this category.
A camera view for Modeller. This would make modelling shadow/reflection catchers a lot easier.
Construction planes (known as a User Co-ordinate System in CAD programs). There is a great plug-in called C-Plane that adds a lot of this functionality, but it has the potential to be a lot better if it was integrated into the core of Lightwave.
Additional smoothing algorisms. Currently Lightwave uses a sub-division surface method, that conforms more to the centre of the polygon faces, leaving the points floating out in space. Now if there was a second smoothing algorism similar to some NURBS types that had the surface pass though the polygon points, (more of an expanding to encompass the polygon cage, instead of reducing into the polygon cage), it would make product visualisation a lot more precise and predictable.
Joint sculpting for characters that didnít involve saving endomorphs from Layout, sculpting in Modeller, applying -100% morphs and then re-exporting to Layout.
A mirror tool that reflected ALL Modeler commands, including cuts and edge manipulation.

There are a lot of places I would like to see Modeler go (increasingly inside Layout), and I donít think itís come to a dead end just yet.

Yog
07-22-2003, 10:14 AM
Originally posted by Stranahan
Here's the thing about jumping ship. I can't control that. Some people will leave, and some new people will come in because, frankly, what we have to offer is the best value in 3D, and I believe that. .......

And here's the other thing - the people on this ship are being honest with you.

Lee, in this I have to agree with you 100%
Lightwave is probably the best value for money application at this level (and the LW8+DFX+ was way beyond good value).

It is one of the reasons I haven't gone over to MAX full time (that and the Modeler tools + plug-ins :D ). I don't really trust Discreet and their upgrade policy is abysmal (miss one upgrade and pay double next time, and no free ver x.5 releases with new features).

It's just a little frustrating that areas that Lightwave excell at seem to go into development hibernation for years at a time.

Elmar Moelzer
07-22-2003, 10:19 AM
It's just a little frustrating that areas that Lightwave excell at seem to go into development hibernation for years at a time
Yupp, the renderer and the Modeler are the two reasons, why I use LW. I am not that much of an animator.
Oh and LWs userinterface is pretty comfortable to work with as well (this is why I monitor all UI- changes with skepticism).
CU
Elmar

Gabriel
07-22-2003, 10:38 AM
Everything is harder than you can probably imagine, in ways you probably can't imagine.

What?
Are you talking about copyright issues? ;)

More seriously, I can't help but think about Modeler's copyright belonging to others, not NewTek. So what's the point investing in anotherone's product.
Perhaps the renderer code has some similar issues? I don't really know.

The fact seems to be that until NT can come up with a totally rewritten package in a year or two we will be stuck with just minor upgrades or software bundles on top of the product "as it is", hoping to alleviate that fact.

For many this will do, for others perhaps not. We'll have to wait and see.

Anyway, I wish the best to NewTek, LW and its users.

hrgiger
07-22-2003, 10:42 AM
You can't please everyone. I think that some of the features that have been listed for 8 address a lot of the big concerns I've heard in the last few years here on the forum..

-Multiple undos (that's been a HUGE request)
-Rigid bodies, more softbody features
-Eliminating some of the need to jump back and forth between modeler and Layout (another HUGE request).

Not to mention, we haven't even seen the complete list of new features yet.
Not much in the way of render improvements (supposedly) but Lightwave always has had a nice renderer. I would just be happy with a speed increase.
To me, what I've heard so far is worth upgrading to.

Stranahan
07-22-2003, 10:44 AM
No. There are absolutely no copyright issues. None, zero. NewTek owns the code and has the rights to do whatever they want to with it. Same with the renderer, same with all of LightWave. I want to nip that speculation in the bud in the strongest possible way.

And your assertion that any changes made won't be to the core code is also as incorrect as it could possibly be.


What I meant by 'more difficult' is that there's a whole human factor to every decision. There are discussions, there are disagreements, and there is politics. This is all normal, but it makes everything may may seem 'easy' to one person in reality, not as easy.

Gabriel
07-22-2003, 10:53 AM
I'm really happy to hear that! It's very good news to all LW users I think.

As I already stated before, I hope the best for LW's future and this aspect of things was a very important one (to me at least) to clarify.

thanks!
:)

Zithen
07-22-2003, 10:53 AM
So what was there to "dispute" about ealier in the year and why would anything need to be resolved if Newtek owns everything, no questions asked?

Neil_Campbell
07-22-2003, 10:58 AM
I'm sure people here appreciate your honesty and lack of BS Lee - I know I do. It makes a welcome change.

But it still doesn't make the really bad news about the render engine taste any better. Especially as there's a whole stack of LW users who frankly don't give a damn about animation, but want a high quality modelling and rendering engine. I don't begrudge the CA guys anything they can get, but I'm not happy with a one-sided upgrade like this one.



The render engine is an area where a huge amount of work needs to be done. And without trying to be too selfish :) that's where my main problem is right now. LW used to hold lead the rendering pack, now frankly it's not even in the leading pack in many areas, even with all the excellent plugins from Happy Digital, Worley and evasion 3d.

Simply put, in terms of rendering capability, LW has failed to keep up with the professional competition (dare I say it, even max's native renderer in some respects) and in many areas it is being caught by the hobbyist tools that retail for a fraction of the price. I'm not trying to slag off LW, but be realistic in assessing what it can and can't do. And given that the render core has stood still for a couple of years whilst the competition has stormed past, it doesn't exactly make projecting this trend forward all that attractive. I mean, just how big is NewTek going to let the gap get before it reacts? And remember, this was an area where LW had a lead, not a lag - how times change.

And let's be honest - those online and magazine reviews of LW7 weren't exactly glowing over the 'improvements' to the render engine way back when. Goodness knows what they'll say when 2 years later NewTek simply rebadges the render engine with LW8 and no improvements. I can't see how this will help keep current customers who were thinking about / in the process of jumping ship, let alone those toying with buying LW. All I can say is I hope you've got a damn good development roadmap to show the reviewers.



For me personally this lack of render development worried me (and hampered my business) for some time, and in desperation about 9 months ago I changed my workflow. I used to model in ArchiCAD, then tweak the geometry in Modeller, add in a whole stack of custom-built objects like chairs and plants using Modeller, texture in Modeller, then render in Layout. Now I model in ArchiCAD, tweak, build and texture geometry in 3ds max and render with Brazil.

Yes that setup costs a bit more, but not much - frankly by the time I'd bought a shedload of plugins for LW the price was pretty much the same as my current max+Brazil setup. And most professionals will admit that the licence price isn't the biggest issue - it's the ability to do the job quickly and effectively, because if you achieve that you can recover licence costs quickly - the biggest hindrance for a business is an ineffective toolset.

Because of this I now only use LW for other (non radiosity) material, but even then I'm really just playing around with spaceships and stuff for my own enjoyment. And I only use LW for that because it was the first real 3D app I learnt, I still really like it and still find LW's interface a bit easier than max. I keep loitering here hoping to see some positive news that will allow me to pick up LW professionally again, but so far have been disappointed.

And I'm using LW less and less. If I had to totally dump one 3D app tomorrow, it would without a doubt be LW. In fact I'd take C4D over LW simply on the basis of the superior radiosity engine. Please don't get riled by that, it's not my intention to start an application war, it's simply an observation that much as I love LW I can't use it in my particular line of work (architectural visualisation) to make money - it's radiosity engine is way, way too slow and simply doesn't have the control provided by the competition. Which is a pity, because in most other areas it's a pretty well-rounded application.



I also find it perturbing Lee that you're finding yourself in a position to make a post effectively defending NewTek's development strategy and LW's value for money, and having to point out that there is lots going on behind the scenes. Every company will claim the former, and I can't disagree with the latter since that's pretty much a given for any company that wants to stay in business.

But I was hoping that NewTek had listened to the many people like me who had offered opinions (such as those of us in photoreal architectural visualisation in addition to the guys wanting beefier CA tools) about where LW needed improvement, looked at the competition and said "Wow, we need to do ....." and then actually done something about it. Especially as excellent rendering tools have always been a core part of LW's ethos. After all, it wasn't exactly last week that the last major update came out - NewTek has had a lot of time to get LW8 sorted out, Luxology not withstanding. But all I can conclude is that either NewTek has decided that: they don't want to play in this part of the market; they simply don't have the capability to deliver a tool that can do the job; they're rushing out a weak / partial upgrade because they're running scared of the competition and are desparate for the publicity of a release; or they dropped the ball. None of these is particularly encouraging.

And sure LW8.1 probably is going to be great, LW8.2 will be greater and LW9 will be *&$^ing awesome. So we're asked to believe. But I distinctly recall hearing all manner of positive spin from NewTek about LW8 a while ago, saying how the future had never looked so bright, how it would be a major improvement, ...., and look where it is now render-wise - way behind the curve.



Okay, so now the render engine is apparently a priority post 8.0. Since the renderer is such a key component of LW, one for which it was rightly famed before it fell into a coma, any chance of a little more information on the development roadmap - such as features & timescales for the next evolution of the renderer?

Regards
Neil

Stranahan
07-22-2003, 10:58 AM
I'm not going to comment on anything more about the dispute, ever. Sorry, but wouldn't be prudent. I'm stating this strongly because I don't want anyone confused about it or thinking I might say more.

What I just stated about no issues is accurate today.

Zithen
07-22-2003, 11:13 AM
:)

I was wondering when I wouldn't get any move answers. Thanks for the support.

Stranahan
07-22-2003, 11:15 AM
Neil,

Thanks for the well thought out and honest response.

I'm not defending any strategy - because the position we're in now is not one of strategy, but circumstance. There was no decision or strategy to not work on the renderer. There was time lost, and then when the dust had settled we had to move forward quickly.

One possibily was simply not to do an upgrade until changes had been made in modeler and the renderer. The idea there would be delay the release for a few months and get more parity. This case was made strongly by a number of people, and I'm sure some people here would think it was a good idea, too.

That wasn't the decison made, however. We decided that we have so many changes that people want, right now, that would should get LW[8] out the door. One note - and I mean this - this was in no way shape or form a a financial decision for NewTek. Sometimes companies will get product out the door because they need the cheese - this wasn't one of them.

It's what I said. People want multiple undos. They want improved character stuff and dynamics and other stuff. So, even though it's not as well rounded an upgrade as everyone would have preferred, it's a damn good upgrade.

Some people won't buy in on the first round, and that's fine. That's always the case. But I think that far more people will than not, and that 'tipping point' is always an important factor.

As for revealing a road map, I don't think we should do that. The stuff we've been talking about is stuff that the competition would be interested in. I'm in favor of open communication, but there's a point where secrets need to be kept secret.

Also, please suspend some judgement until the whole upgrade is revealed in the next few weeks. Even SIGGRAPH won't be the 'final' list, because we're listening to user feedback from that show.

Stranahan
07-22-2003, 11:19 AM
Zith,

All I said was that I'm not going to comment more on the dispute. There's no 'support' issue at all. I've tried to be honest, forthright, and clear about everything I've said. Sorry if there are some things I'm not in a position to say, but that's reality. And it IS reality. It's out of my hands.

stone
07-22-2003, 11:29 AM
well, im a modeler only and close to never start layout at all. which is also why im a bit concerned that lightwave8 wont hold anything new for me.

but the point i wanted to make here, dispite my lacking knowledge of layout and the renderer, is wheter its worthwhile to keep developing the renderer in-house.

all the compotition uses 3rd party renderers, which mean they save lots of development time that can be used to improve other aspects of their applications.

can newtek keep beeing as good as all those 3rd party renderers? its kind of like when amiga got lost by the compotition because they did everything inhouse, and just couldnt keep up with all the 3rd part companies specialising their products.

just maybe the clever thing would be to adobt a 3rd party renderer.

/stone

Bytehawk
07-22-2003, 11:34 AM
Lee,

Do you think that now developement of LW has picked up again, and once the LW8 release is out of the door we will see a faster and more frequent .1 .2 .3 release? Maybe with additional features added along the ride.

I don't want any statements but your honest opinion. Do you THINK this would be a possibility or do you think there will be huge steps made before another release like we saw from 7 to 7.5 ?

FWIW i'd like a much more regular update policy - like a new version every 2 to 4 weeks even if the percieved steps are smaller...

KillMe
07-22-2003, 11:51 AM
i think the ability to use a 3rd party renderer would be good as said being specilaised it would be hard to newtek to keep on the cutting edge

but i would certainly hope they would continue to deveolp lws native renderer for those who dont want to spend a fortune on some rendering engine

more generally once lw 8 is out can we expet upgrades reasoanbly soon with some of the major rendering and modeling upgrades that have been hinted at?

i have no problem that since the point updates are free with lw but i would have a prob with it if i have to wait for lw 9 for them

Neil_Campbell
07-22-2003, 12:46 PM
Lee, you mentioned that it's a "damn good upgrade", but that's really only the case if you're into CA / dynamics. For the rest of us this upgrade is largely irrelevant - not because there's anything wrong per se with what's being enhanced, but simply because what's not being enhanced means the upgrade just doesn't touch our workflow.

Hence my question about the roadmap - basically to see if there is any light at the end of the tunnel for the way I want to use LW. Even if the roadmap only looks 1 point release / 3 months forward.

I see your point about roadmaps and confidentiality, really I do - except everyone BUT NewTek has got a decent, fast multibounce radiosity engine. So announcing that you're implementing one of those for 8.1 with a target ship date of January 2004 (for example) can hardly give much away, can it? I mean what will Maxon do - remove theirs from 8.2 to make it a level playing field and then build a completely new version for 8.3 before January? I think not. And do they know NewTek is going to build a better radiosity engine - of course they do - if you don't you may as well kiss goodbye to a chunk of your user base right now.

I'm not trying to be facetious, but seriously, how could announcing this sort of feature, with some indication of timeline, hurt? If anything, announcing a roadmap with some key issues addressed on it will reassure the customers that NewTek don't have their head in the sand, and most importantly have a strategy for getting out of the circumstance that they're in.

Sure, save some of the stuff that really is confidential, like genuinely new functionality (like radiosity was pre LW6, and SSS until a couple of years ago). But since we're playing catch-up in a number of areas, and are talking about standard features that are missing from LW that all the other professional apps have, how can it hurt? Simply saying nothing reinforces the perception that NewTek has been seriously, seriously damaged in the dispute with Luxology, that their strategy has been nuked and their product development has collapsed in a couple of key areas (modelling, rendering) and they don't know what they're going to do next. Given the current tough market conditions, that's really not a healthy position to be in. Sure it's relatively cheap compared to some, but not all. But price is only one consideration - features are another. NewTek can't be seen to be directionless wrt LW development.

Okay, so on the plus side is the fact that NewTek now apparently views the renderer as a priority and is running flat out to make up for lost time and to close that gap (which I stress again, used to be a huge lead, not a lag - dammit, NewTek really took their eye off the ball - at least that's what many will think, myself included to be brutally honest). But is NewTek really prioritising the renderer? Sounds like there's still some politicking / bickering / indecision going on. And quite why people are even thinking about the colour of buttons in the interface when so much else should be sorted out first escapes me - not that I don't appreciate Deuce et al looking into this, but I can't see how having people at NewTek thinking about round vs square buttons is actually more important than keeping the render engine up to date. Maybe it's just me, but I don't think that's the case.

And don't forget, also on the down side, Maxon, Discreet, Alias and gang will be running flat out to make the gap even wider. So despite all the talk, I still see no evidence that NewTek can recapture its position - the stuff being announced now seems to show how you can retain a position against Maya for example in areas such as CA and dynamics, but does absolutely nothing to stop you sliding further behind in others such as modelling and rendering. Again, a roadmap, against which regular progress can be demonstrated, would help allay these fears.

The problem is, as anyone who has a marketing background will tell you (that would be me :) ) that perception is almost always more important than fact - and rightly or wrongly many people believe that NewTek, and LightWave, are in a deep, deep hole, struggling to get out - and the circumstances of this lopsided / partial release will only serve to reinforce that.

Think about how the conversations on the bulletin boards will go - or the reviews in graphics magazines. "Okay, so NewTek chose to focus on multiple undos (about damn time) and other CA stuff - great. But apparently they couldn't do the other basic stuff in Modeller or the render engine that their customers had been asking for, and which the competition already has, because they lost time because of some obscure infighting over copyright with a few of their ex-developers. So what that really means is that for whatever reason, and certainly through no fault of the customers or the market, NewTek has been unable to deliver the goods across the board, and in key areas like modelling and rendering, it is now behind packages like C4D, and being caught by pretenders like Carrara and Truespace." Okay, so that last about Carrara and Truespace is a bit of a stretch, and I'm digging a bit unfairly at the guys at NewTek who have been busting their balls to make LW better in difficult circumstances. But perception (and competition) isn't a great respecter of fairplay. And it doesn't matter how you spin it, none of the above can be made to sound good. And with no information, people will read between the lines, and if they are uncertain, at best will delay a purchase, and at worst will ignore / dump LW.

In my experience the only way to fight this kind of situation is all guns blazing - and that means communicating frankly and honestly with your customers - no BS, no hype, but clear, calmly communicated positive fact. Give them respect and honesty and they will reward you with loyalty. Ignore them or try to conceal things (even with the best of intentions) and they will simply walk away - customers present and potential will fear the worst and walk away. Show the customers you understand the issues they face, convince them that you have an approach (a roadmap), and then deliver against it. If you simply keep quiet, NewTek may be confident it can deliver something some time in the future, but what customer base will it have when it finally rolls out LW 8.X?


And that's one reason why people (myself included) are latching onto your posts with relief - here at last we have someone connected with NewTek who has the inside track, and is actually telling us stuff. Okay so it's not all rosey, but it's information - something that has been lacking before. Okay, so announcing stuff in advance wasn't something NewTek or many others liked doing historically, and may prefer not to do in future. But NewTek must recognise that the situation it finds itself in isn't the one it's enjoyed in the past, and so it has to act differently.


So that's a very long winded way of saying more please - more from you, more from NewTek :)

And a roadmap


PS : Did I mention you absolutely have to release a roadmap


And in case my diatribes are getting you down - thanks for posting Lee - I genuinely appreciate what you're doing.










Mmmmmmmmm R O A D M A P
:)

Yog
07-22-2003, 01:14 PM
Roadmaps - Tricky ;)
I can see why Newtek wouldn't want to put out any sort of road map,
Newtek - "We will be updating the renderer in the next release"
Competition - "Newtek openly admit that their renderer isn't up to scratch".

That and the fact that if they miss any date us the users would crucify them for it ;)

All this talk about the lack of updates to Modeler and the renderer whilst full steam ahead on the character animation tools got me thinking.
Maya was know as having a not very good modeller and a terrible renderer, but because they had some really kick @ss CA tools they made big in roads, into film television and games.
Has Newtek taken a leaf out of Alias Wavefront's book, and aiming for a more prestigious market :D

Castius
07-22-2003, 01:52 PM
Well that was simple way to much to read. :)


no BS, no hype, but clear, calmly communicated positive fact. Give them respect and honesty and they will reward you with loyalty

Then your roadmap needs to be loyalty and reputation If you can wait. You can't expect them to be able to give much more than we will try our best to give everyone what they need. In the aftermath they made a decision to work on certain areas. After V8 comes out you make the decision to upgrade or not then go to the request forum and make a poll thread on the things you want that didnít make it into that version. Hopefully you will get allot of votes. If you need something now and LW doesnít have it then you have to do what you have to do. Itís disappointing and hard to do but hopefully the job will be able to pay for itís needs. Itís the nature of the game Iím sure you know to well.

The layout interface needs the attention it is getting. layouts feature list has grown a lot, and in that time only small changes in the interface to support them. I donít like going home in pain because the interface has caused me to work ten times harder than I should.

The render can be slow in some areas but I have found that it holds up very well up against some of the top render in allot of areas. Itís not the best anymore but itís still good.

Iím in no means say Iím not disappointed LW 8 might not destroy the competition in every feature. But these guys look like they are working double time to get back on top if things and deserve the respect to say Iíll just have to wait and see what happens.

Stranahan
07-22-2003, 01:52 PM
Neil,

Your post confused me.

So, you want a roadmap?

omeone
07-22-2003, 02:08 PM
Well said Neil, all you wrote exactly what this user is thinking too, fortunately I have free upgrades for 8, so I'm hoping the point releases have relatively short intermissions.

hrgiger
07-22-2003, 02:16 PM
I agree with Lee, certain releases of info about product are ok, but I don't think that releasing a release roadmap is a good idea at all. First and mostly for the competition sake but also, can we really release a roadmap when there is no certainty that things will not arise that will make it difficult to stick to? I know I would be pretty ticked if NT said they were going to release LW8 last summer and then it didn't happen because of the debate issues with Luxology or whatever the case. I would much rather see maybe more frequent, smaller updates that were unnanounced.

I started a poll several months back (first post in the LW community forum) asking people what they used Lightwave for. Chracter Animation is still at the top of the numbers so I don't think the importance of new character animation tools should be downplayed at all. Some people have already mentioned the strength of Maya's CA toolset, but I think it's also important to note some of the newer, lower cost character animation packages, Kaydara's Motionbuilder being one example. These are also things we need to keep up on, not just modeling and rendering.

Newtek hasn't even released a full feature list for LW8 yet and already people are complaining. I guess this is nothing new. You can't please everyone but the things I see already features for 8 seem to cover a lot of what I've seen requests for over the last year so I don't get the impression that Newtek isn't listening or that they "have their heads in the sand". Nor does it mean that development has stopped on the renderer or the modeler, both of which by the way are still a lot of the reason that people buy Lightwave in the first place.

To suggest that Newtek might lose some customer base because of it's development cycle might be true but what is also true is that every piece of software is constantly losing customer base to people who see something better somewhere else. What is also true is that Lightwave(and other software) will gain customer base for areas that it is strong in and if that just happens to be character animation, then so be it. LW in my opinion is still one of the best values out there for price versus features.

Mike Pauza
07-22-2003, 02:55 PM
I agree with hrgiger.

NewTek has finite development resources, so they probably looked at what people wanted the most in an upgrade and what was easiest to do, and went from there. I sympathize that the renderer and modeler are not as relatively strong as they once were, but most users said they wanted better character and physics tools, and that's what NewTek says they are getting.

-Mike Pauza

Neil_Campbell
07-22-2003, 02:55 PM
Regarding the roadmap, it doesn't have to be incredibly specific, but enough to give us a general view of the functional areas and timescales / priorities for future releases - NewTek has done this before, and recently, so why not do so again to address the major concerns that people still have now that it's clear LW8 isn't going to be all it was originally hoped for?

Or am I in a minority of one worrying about the state of bits of LW? I'm pretty certain I'm not, but I won't speak for others - my posts are long enough just giving my own views :)


Yog - Yes, issuing a development roadmap is tricky, and does have some risk to NewTek - but the alternative for NewTek is to do what - make with the silent treatment and hope its customers will still be along for the ride in what, 2 years time when the next big update comes out and oh look we had time to do radiosity properly. Okay so I know that's over the top, because NewTek will be working on a much more aggressive timescale than that for releases or they're going out of business - but just how aggressive is NewTek going to be - are we looking at 3 months for a decent update of the radiosity engine, or 18 months? And don't laugh, seriously, when was the last time the radiosity engine had a real overhaul? PS, how're you getting on with fR Stage 1

Castius - I agree, the renderer does hold up well in many areas, and with plugins like X-Dof, HyperSmooth and G2 it's an awesome package. Albeit it's a little slow in places and the AA isn't great. But in some areas it simply doesn't compete (like radiosity) - while that's not a problem for some people, for others it's a killer

Lee - Do I want a development roadmap? Where did on earth did you get that idea? ;)

Oneone - Yep, I'm hoping for more frequent updates between point releases, say 3 months - a roadmap would help clear that up

hrgiger - Re the vote, with all due respect, 200 votes is just a tiny sample of the customer base, so no one should read too much into that. I guess people should read even less into my posts. I'm just hoping to have a sensible discussion around functionality, not get into an argument. And please don't get me wrong about CA - I'm not trying to downplay the importance of CA at all - I'm just trying to point out that in some other areas LW is way too weak and needs urgent attention - that's been true of CA and dynamics for some time, and it looks those issues are being addressed which is great - it's also been true of radiosity for some time but unfortunately that part's not looking so good right now in terms of development. And re complaining without seeing a feature set, Lee's already told us not to look for much in the way of render enhancements, so I'm not just spouting off for the hell of it.


To reiterate, I like LW and still use it for fun, even if it can't handle what I need it to do at the moment for my particular line of work. I'm just bitterly disappointed that the upgrade is so blantantly one-sided, enhancing only one part of the core package I've invested a lot of time into learning. I'm hoping to get some tangible assurance that NewTek is actually going to do something to redress this imbalance in a sensible timeframe. Hence the need for a .... wait for it .... roadmap.

Anyway, if these rambles of mine prove nothing else it's that I'm passionate about 3D and LW - if I wasn't I wouldn't be sitting here in the dead of night writing these posts.

Damn, and I thought this was going to be a short post

Stranahan
07-22-2003, 03:12 PM
Neil,

To give you a serious answer..

My assigned job was to do the pre-SIGGRAPH annoucements about LightWave. Beyond that, I'm not a spokesman. So, I can't comment on about will be commented on post SIGGRAPH. I'm trying present a realistic view of the 8.0 upgrade, so people like you have the facts before you make a buying decision. I'd rather have you not buy and still like NewTek, then buy and curse us. Of course, I'd rather have you buy and be happy.

Personally, I'm obviously in favor of more communication. I think there's probably a way to give more of an idea of a general direction, but I'm not at liberty to do that.

papou
07-22-2003, 03:13 PM
i'm so agree with you Neil...

if Nt will not upgrade the renderer for 8, they must say to users if they are going to make it for next release...

lw need a serious rendering improvement, i can't wait lw9 for that.
i have to make a decision for my company (we are max users too) we need to choice a only one app.
But if the renderer will be upgrade with 8.1, maybe i can wait....
actually lightwave rendering is nice but too slow.

Neil_Campbell
07-22-2003, 03:17 PM
Thanks Lee - I appreciate the info you're providing - here's hoping this open nature continues post Siggraph

Castius
07-22-2003, 04:05 PM
Neil - Would you mind giving me examples for me to test in detail for myself so I may look at them more closely and add them to my feature list if need be. As far as I can tell from my tests the biggest problems are more control over smoothing GI and animation.

Papou Ė I have the same job you do about choosing the software the company uses. Waiting for software updates based on public announcements is just short of suicide.

Iím very happy with Chuck saying we will be making more frequent updated with LW in the future. Our production schedule for VT showed it worked well and will will try to adapt that to LW.

Any more than that could cause extra problems for them. Why is it so hard to believe that a company 10 years old knows how to run itself.

marko
07-22-2003, 04:16 PM
problem of newtek was comunication. we had only few official people from newtek speeking about development of lw. and those (arnie, ernie and ferguson) are not present in lw development team.

americans say "elvis has left the building"

i have spent so many nights browsing the web and pushing lw rendering to the limit to find pitfals of existing engine. for that purpose i have started public competition with christian (cgtechniques.com) to show developers problems of lw radiosity(sibenik cathedral and sponza atrium). three years after just few of my remarks were covered: multiple bounces (very lame implementation), exposer instead hdrexpose.

majority of posts on old forum are still unanswered :(
http://forums.newtek.com/discus/messages/2/48.html?1045280035

if there is someone who would like to hear workflow of person who has been in architectural viz for last 14 yrs i am ready to help thru this forum. but i expect at least that someone coments them. the best experience i had with software development was icarus. one day you say it will be great to have this feature. next day programers coment it and in next 15 days feature was implemented. you can check my statements if you take look at yahoogroups.

what we need now is reassurance that there is development team and that they know what they are doing, and that they wont need next 3 years to make decent upgrade!


sorry but our confidence was shaken

marko

Neil_Campbell
07-22-2003, 04:26 PM
Castius - When you say examples, you want to me describe problems with the radiosity engine? I am happy to do so, but they're all well documented on the feature requests page, and the old LW forums.

Neil_Campbell
07-22-2003, 04:32 PM
And cue Marko with the link :)

Hi Marko, I always followed your threads with interest, even though I was lurking not posting. Some really well thought out ideas. Hopefully we'll see some real development from NewTek on the render engine, sooner rather than later.

BTW, I enjoyed the challenges like Sibenik, Sponza and PostSparkasse.

Chuck
07-22-2003, 04:57 PM
Originally posted by Yog
Thanks for the reply Lee, with the apparent lack of development in Modeler it is even a big relief just to know someone connected with Newtek has even read this thread.
This is part of the reason why the Feature Request forum is so disheartening for us predominantly modelling based people, itís often like whispering down a deep well without the echo.

BTW Lee - I think this is the reason people are so enthusiastically dropping their hopes for new features all over your posts, is that it feals that someone connected with Newtek is actually listening.
I know Newtek have listened before, you never know they are listening :D

I'm busy for a week and suddenly I'm chopped liver! ;)

Please rest assured, actually we are always listening, not only on our forums here, including the Feature Request forums, but also on as many other forums, mailing lists, and newsgroups as we can manage.

The fact of the matter is that a number of issues are being addressed in Modeler, primarily in speeding up the workflow and making tools perform in a fashion that conforms better to expectations and is more intuitive. That does not preclude feature additions, there just isn't anything we're quite ready to discuss at this point, but your input is certainly critically useful for us at this point.


Whilst you do have a point that there is already wide range of modelling tools provided by 3rd party developers (god bless every last one of them), it is often a draw back that a lot of these plug-ins are in script form and arenít as efficient as their compiled counterparts, add to this that new releases of LW often break several of these plug-ins and that a potential new user would only see a lack of features (not being aware of the plug-in bandaids).

I donít agree that there is very little room for Modeler to expand though.
I wonít even go near the edge tools debate, itís been done to death, and NT should have the message load and clear by now.
But other untapped areas include dynamic patch modelling (as seen in most other apps and in a limited way through Steve Hurleys new plug-in), where we could go back and edit the splines at any time. Non-destructive rail extrudes falls into this category.
A camera view for Modeller. This would make modelling shadow/reflection catchers a lot easier.
Construction planes (known as a User Co-ordinate System in CAD programs). There is a great plug-in called C-Plane that adds a lot of this functionality, but it has the potential to be a lot better if it was integrated into the core of Lightwave.
Additional smoothing algorisms. Currently Lightwave uses a sub-division surface method, that conforms more to the centre of the polygon faces, leaving the points floating out in space. Now if there was a second smoothing algorism similar to some NURBS types that had the surface pass though the polygon points, (more of an expanding to encompass the polygon cage, instead of reducing into the polygon cage), it would make product visualisation a lot more precise and predictable.
Joint sculpting for characters that didnít involve saving endomorphs from Layout, sculpting in Modeller, applying -100% morphs and then re-exporting to Layout.
A mirror tool that reflected ALL Modeler commands, including cuts and edge manipulation.

There are a lot of places I would like to see Modeler go (increasingly inside Layout), and I donít think itís come to a dead end just yet.

Agreed, we're a long way from a dead end, and virtually everything you've mentioned is very much on the minds of the development team with respect to the, truthfully, unlimited potential for growth in modeling capabilities.

I'm going back to work on our SIGGRAPH, prep, so I'll be back in chopped-liver mode.... ;)

Yog
07-22-2003, 05:08 PM
Originally posted by Chuck
I'm busy for a week and suddenly I'm chopped liver! ;)


Ah, ya know we love ya Chuck ;)

It's just when some fresh meat comes along and openly wants (although he might be regretting it now ;) ) to talk about new features, we can't help but bend his ear for all it's worth :D

Castius
07-22-2003, 06:06 PM
neil - http://vbulletin.newtek.com/showthread.php?s=&threadid=8364

does that help?

-EsHrA-
07-22-2003, 06:11 PM
'I'm busy for a week and suddenly I'm chopped liver! '

aah, you always crack me up Chuck :)

i was allready too deep into this thread and thinking 'aaaaah!!' when you showed up :)

Thanx for the heaps up!

Good luck @ Siggraph and ENJOY..... (important 2 you know...enjoying stuff...)



Cheers,

-EsH-

Chris S. (Fez)
07-22-2003, 10:22 PM
No significant improvements to modelling or rendering for 8? To me that would be like being a Bulls fan in the 90's and finding out that both Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen are sitting out the season.

Layout has been beefed up? That is like Bulls management trying to assuage fans by releasing a report saying Steve Kerr (the little white guy for those who don't remember) has been lifting weights all summer. I'm sure the competition would all be quaking in their hightops.

Newtek focused on fine-tuning animation tools (to the detriment of the two toolsets that historically set Lightwave apart from the competition?). Fine, management made their decision, but man, Layout better be able to dunk :).

Sorry. I can't help myself. Looking forward to being wowed.

Stranahan
07-22-2003, 10:33 PM
Fez,

Incorrect assumption - I explained this earler. You're assuming that this was strategy driven, like we decided not do work on the render engine or the model.

That's not the case - what we decided was that we had enough stuff in LW 8.0 to make an upgrade that most of our users would want. Again - we're not going to sell this upgrade to everyone. We never do. We knew there were areas where we could add more features, but rather than make everyone wait we wanted to get the cool stuff we had to people, as soon as possible.

To use your analogy, it's like the Bulls deciding to play a game even though Pippen and Jordan missed the bus. We're not going to forfeit or not show up - and even though Jordan and Pippen missed the bus, we suddenly have a time machine that gives us LeBron James and Kobe, (pre arrest). So - we have a great team and the fans want to see them - even if a couple of key players are a little later. They aren't sitting out the season - they are going to show up later.

Forgive the extended sports analogy. I blame Fez!

What we do have is a tremendous value, a big step forward, and gives a lot of our users tools they can use, right now. If you don't think the upgrade is worth $495 to you now, we hope to catch you on the next 8.x upgrade. In the meantime, I expect most LightWave users will jump on the bandwagon and get working with the new tools right away...and get the upgrades free.

Earl
07-22-2003, 10:34 PM
NewTek has always had great pride in their renderer and their modeling tools. Although all of us had hoped for significant improvements in these areas for the 8.0 release (since they've felt neglected since 6.x), I just don't see NewTek allowing their biggest prides to die. I think both the renderer and the modeling aspect of LightWave will be seeing a lot of glory in the next (after 8) release. NewTek wouldn't be considering vast UI changes to give old tools a new look - I imagine when that change occurs, whether it be for 8.5, 9.0, or even 10, all tools will see major improvements, especially in the modeling area - improvements that will make the wait worth the time.

Chris S. (Fez)
07-22-2003, 10:50 PM
"Incorrect assumption"

Good. That is actually really comforting to hear.

"If you don't think the upgrade is worth $495 to you now, we hope to catch you on the next 8.x upgrade."

If I go to the Siggraph party and like what I see will I be able to purchase the upgrade there? How about the VT3 upgrade for that matter?

Stranahan
07-22-2003, 10:52 PM
VT3 is shipping....

LW[8] won't be shipping at the party...

Just come and have a free drink and hang out, man....we'll sell you stuff later...

Neil_Campbell
07-23-2003, 12:53 AM
"NewTek has always had great pride in their renderer and their modeling tools."
Glad to hear it - you wouldn't know that from 8.0 though.



"they've felt neglected since 6.x"
They have been - I'm not trying to criticise for the hell of it, but for whatever reason these tools have been neglected and the competition has stolen a lead in areas where Lw used to be king



"I think both the renderer and the modeling aspect of LightWave will be seeing a lot of glory in the next (after 8) release <snip> - improvements that will make the wait worth the time."
I hope so to - but the question has to be, how long is that wait, given it's been what, 3 years since the last major update in these areas?

Userdelta
07-23-2003, 01:35 AM
i hope these suggestions would be simple enough for lw8. they would help tremendously.

lockable layers instead of wireframe background layers.
give layers independent render styles
adding some additional render styles like textured wireframe, etc.
fixing/reworking symmetry in modeler so that tools will work
ability to set any of the display options(show grid,show normal, show etc...) to keyboard keys.
edge weighting would be nice

the other suggestions by other users would be awesome as well.

colkai
07-23-2003, 02:34 AM
I think Lee should be congratulated on his efforts to tell us folks what *is*. Naturally, one should expect he cannot reveal what will be.

As for how lame LW8 is and how Newtek should have done A, B, or C - we get the same tired arguments over and over with every release.

There *is* some useful suggestions in the thread - but all this negativity is gettin' really old - really fast.

I have just ordered a LW8 upgrade, with CA tools, enhanced Particles, Softbody Dynamics with NEW hardbody dynamics, plus who knows what else! On top of which I have DFX+ - all for 340 ukp plus VAT. Then we are told we will get other releases free of charge.
I have paid 400 ukp for my last 2 upgrades.
Guys - regardless of how you *personally* want to see LW develop, and I stress the word PERSONALLY, we are not privy to all that takes palce and are not the poor sods who have to do all the coding!

Me, I trust Newtek to produce the goods down the line. Chuck has said they have big plans, Lee has said they have all sorts of ideas - good enough for me.

This is my one and only post on the matter.
As always the guys at Newtek (& Lee) have my sympathy - seems the "abandon ship" message is firmly stuck in some folks brain - strange though - these same people say the same thing with every release - yet they are still around!
Can't be anything to do with the fact that bang for buck, LW is still one hell of a product could it? ;)

takkun
07-23-2003, 02:47 AM
i hope these suggestions would be simple enough for lw8. they would help tremendously.

lockable layers instead of wireframe background layers.
give layers independent render styles
adding some additional render styles like textured wireframe, etc. Those are great ideas. I especially like the first one.


Fez meet LeBron..... LOL! I get it now.:D

Librarian
07-23-2003, 02:55 AM
Originally posted by KillMe
i think the ability to use a 3rd party renderer would be good as said being specilaised it would be hard to newtek to keep on the cutting edge

but i would certainly hope they would continue to deveolp lws native renderer for those who dont want to spend a fortune on some rendering engine

Good suggestion. It`s hard to be good in all departments. And using other renderer with LW`s kick-a s s.

sailor
07-23-2003, 03:04 AM
Hello :)

Some of you (i wont name them) would like some others to stop asking for new features and be happy and let NT work and well...just wait and see what they are cooking right? some have already paid for an upgrade without even knowing what was in the feature list and without even knowing if the new toolset was going to suit their needs...i suppose that those are only motivated by the "bargain" and the supposed good deal of it...once you have paid or made the decision to do so you want the others to stop "thinking" well maybe we are not in the right thread or section but even when 8 will be out i wont stop asking for edges, integration, or history since it has been many years that some of us ask for them some others are already afraid of not seeing enough modeler improvements ...Now i can understand that for those that already paid for LW it must be painfull to now just wait and see what is next...you are in a hostage situation....defending with poor arguments and a fanatic attitude your choices and trying to stop others to keep asking is like a new version of the "Stockholm syndrome"

:)

PS notice that i didnt name anybody :D

This said i wanted to say that i still find strong points in LW...the point being that the list of those is shrinking!!! i spend some time with interest trying to find out what NT is going to do...i really will love to see some modeler imrpvements really !!

takkun
07-23-2003, 03:11 AM
sailor, I don't think that people mind when others suggest features that should be added, it's only when those requests are bitter, negative and sarcastic, that's what most people don't like; not the feature requests but the unprofessional negative comments by some.

sailor
07-23-2003, 03:15 AM
Takkun :)

well my post was adressed to those who mind...because they are some that dont care, some that do mind, some that makes sarcastic posts and some that ask for features ...its a jungle out there ;)

Neil_Campbell
07-23-2003, 03:38 AM
we get the same tired arguments over and over with every release
Perhaps because there's some merit to them?


but all this negativity is gettin' really old - really fast
There's an easy solution to that one - don't read it


I have just ordered a LW8 upgrade, with CA tools, enhanced Particles, Softbody Dynamics with NEW hardbody dynamics, plus who knows what else! On top of which I have DFX+ - all for 340 ukp plus VAT.
Which is excellent, if that's what you want. And I make no bones about it, I'm being selfish here - it's not what I want / need - and evidently I'm not the only one who feels that way.


Then we are told we will get other releases free of charge.
Which is nice, but I'd like some reassurance that those free releases are actually going to address topics that another big part of the LW user base is concerned about. Sure it's easy to say NewTek's working on 'it' - but come on, NewTek has been working on the render engine for 3 years now, hasn't it? Evidently not. So what's to say the next 3 years will be any different? And I'm not trying to be sarcastic.


Me, I trust Newtek to produce the goods down the line. Chuck has said they have big plans, Lee has said they have all sorts of ideas - good enough for me.
Great, I'm happy for you, really. Me, I look at where LW was a couple of years ago with LW6 and 6.5 relative to the competition (at least in areas I was personally interested in), and the hype that's been coming out of NT ever since about LW7 and then LW8, and compare that against the reality of where we are now - and I'm far from happy. Yes I realise they had problems with Luxology and the like, but it doesn't make me any happier.


This is my one and only post on the matter.
Okay - at least you won't be polluted by any more negativity ;)


seems the "abandon ship" message is firmly stuck in some folks brain - strange though - these same people say the same thing with every release - yet they are still around!
Well as for jumping ship, I can't speak for anyone else, but personally, I've already jumped ship and have made no secret of it - I now use max and Brazil for my work, but am still lurking here hoping for good news that would give me a reason to come back to LW for anything other than playing around in my spare time


Can't be anything to do with the fact that bang for buck, LW is still one hell of a product could it?
No one is saying LW isn't good value for money. But is it the best value for money, now it's going head to head with Cinema and Maya? As far as CA is concerned I genuinely don't know because that's not my area - I can barely rig a character, never mind push LW to the limit. But as far as rendering is concerned, IMHO no, it's not the best value for money - cheap, sure, but lacking in some key areas such as speed, functionality and control.


Please don't mistake constructive criticism as being the same as slamming a product. LW is still a great package. I don't think anyone here is saying "LW sucks, it's all crap, I hate it and am going to snap my install CD in half." I, and I believe others, are simply trying to put across their opinions about where they would like to see LW develop next and what's coming out is the intense frustration that nothing appears to have happened in these areas for the past 3 years. Which is a very long time in the current highly competitive market.

You know, it is still possible to be a fan of a company and their products without fawning over everything they do, and it's still possble to criticise a company and their products without hating them.

I hope I'm getting the balance right - let me know if I'm not.

hrgiger
07-23-2003, 06:56 AM
To me Neil_Campbell, the balance you speak of is way off.

To address something from before, you dismiss a poll here in the forum because only 200 or so Lightwavers had voted and I agree, it is such a small percentage of the LW user base. However, that's how polls work. They always use a demographic to represent the whole. That being the forum users. Generally, they're pretty accurate. So as far as we know, most Lightwave users ARE interested in Character Animation.

You've made your criticism heard. And it is noted. Then it was noted again. Then it was noted again. And again. It's getting to the point of being preachy. It's like you're trying to argue the release because it's not up to your standards. Other issues such as the renderer and modeler are being addressed, maybe just not as much as you would like at this time. It seems like a great number of people here are looking forward to the LW8 release, so I don't think you're going to convince us otherwise. Again, your criticism has been noted I'm certain by Newtek. What else do you want?

The jumping ship arguement gets really old as well. So you've moved to other pacakges, well, zippity doo-dah. Oh no, Newtek you better shape up, or Neil's going to leave. The whole jumping ship arugement is just melodrama.

Lastly, I just like to say that people all the time here are worried about Lightwave competing with Max and Maya, and Softimage and thinking they should have all the same features, yet at a $1500 price tag. Newtek's mission has always been to provide powerful software at a price that an artist can afford. People spend too much Godd*mn time looking over their fence into the other person's yard worrying about what someone else can do with their software and what we can't do with ours. If some other software works better for you, then fine, don't let the door hit your ***** on the way out. If you're blaming your tools all the time for your own shortcomings, that's your own fault. And if you feel that LW is limiting you, then it's not Newtek's fault, it's yours for sticking around.

Neil_Campbell
07-23-2003, 07:38 AM
Thanks for your feedback hrgiger

I didn't dismiss your poll - if it came across that way I apologise. I thought I played down my own posts in the very next sentence so you knew I wasn't getting at you, so please don't get wound up over that. And yes I do understand how polls and sampling work, but those polls aren't conclusive in many regards - heck, I've already seen people reach different conclusions from your own polls.

And for the record, I have NEVER said CA wasn't important to the wider community, or that I didn't think it should have been implemented. It is important, and it's great that NewTek is dealing with it.

Re the repetition of my posts, hey, I'm the first to admit (and have done so already) that my posts were a little long. I've been trying to make the recent posts shorter. But it's the way I am. Genuinely no preaching intended. I just tend to post on a few topics at length rather than clocking up hundreds or thousands of shorter posts like many others, such as yourself. No way is better than others IMO, although shorter is more readable. But either way, if you don't like my posts, you really don't have to read them. It's not like I'm spamming every thread with my views, just those that are relevant.

And no I'm not trying to argue the release isn't up to standards (mine or anyone elses). The CA tools may be excellent, and I've already admitted that's not an area I can judge, so will simply go on what others here and elsewhere tell me. And no I'm not trying to convince anyone not to upgrade to LW8. The more of you that pay for an upgrade now the more money NewTek has to make the next release even better. So if you're happy with what LW8.0 offers that's great - I sincerely mean that. I've made my views clear about LW8.0, and will move on, hoping in the meantime NewTek will actually say (or better yet do) something about this part of LW.

Regarding jumping ship, I haven't held a gun to NewTek's head, I've made my choice a while ago, and what's more I'm comfortable with it. I didn't introduce any melodrama here. I didn't threaten NewTek. I simply stated what I'd done. At least I was honest about it. I think you're reading too much emotion into my posts where none is intended - possibly because e-mails can't get conversational intonation across - after all, smiley's only do so much. Don't know what I can do about that really.

Finally, regarding the second half of your last para, there's no need to be nasty, is there? I may have done many things in my posts, but I don't recall insulting other LWers.

hrgiger
07-23-2003, 08:08 AM
If you felt I was being nasty in my last paragraph then that's your own perception because it wasn't my intention. That's just how I feel. Either Lightwave is for you or not for you, and I mean that not only in the current implementation, but also how Newtek conducts it's upgrade schedule or features it decides to implement. It's all the things you take into consideration when you use a certain kind of software. And the last paragraph wasn't particularly directed at you. It's merely my opinion that people would be much better LW artists if they weren't constantly thinking about what they don't have rather then learning their tools and how to deal with any shortcomings and not blaming someone else. When people say "I use Lightwave", that tells me that they've accepted that it has weakness that they're willing to deal with because it has strong points that outweigh the disadvantages. I'm not saying don't request features, or don't hope for changes in future upgrades, but accept the way it is or not.

The "if you don't like my posts, you don't have to read them" argument gets a little tired also. If I'm going to participate in this discussion, then I think it's my duty to read everything in it, just not those I agree with. I guess I could use the same arguement with you, if you felt I was being nasty and you didn't like it, you didn't have to read it.

I'm not trying to necessarily argue with you Neil nor do I feel I'm being insulting. I also apologize if that's what you have perceived. You're not happy with what you've heard so far about 8, we got it.

Stranahan
07-23-2003, 08:30 AM
Neil,

While we may disagree on some point, I personally have no problems with anything you've posted. Take that for what it's worth.

And while I don't expect sympathy on the difficulties we've had the last two years, I at least would appreciate a small bit of understanding. Our hands were pretty well tied until just a few months ago. Since then, we've added new players to the development team, the dev team has come up with a great release, and LightWave marketing has been racheted up.

The Emmy award for LightWave, announced yesterday, is the latest example. That didn't fall from the sky - it was a combination of the 12 years of revolutionary value that LightWave has brought to Hollywood and every else reading this now plus a marketing department who's really marketing LightWave. It's been posted else where, but I'm proud of it so I'll post it again.

http://www.emmys.com/downloads/images/2003engineering.pdf

Just keep watching as more and more firm details come out. Again, we know we aren't going to sell to every user on every upgrade, but this one is quite good and does answer a number of long time user requests.

Neil - you see the changes here, I know that. Make whatever decisions you make, and keep contributing. It's a LightWave forum, so of course people are going to react when people don't pour out love for LightWave. But, Neil, I hope you do realize that your statements ARE making a difference.

Neil_Campbell
07-23-2003, 09:16 AM
hrgiger

Looks like it's an all round case of no insults intended, so I think we're okay :)

I don't know about you but I've found my problem with posting (and I'm normally more a lurker than a poster, so don't exactly get much practice at this) is that it's so easy to send or receive the wrong impression when relying solely on text, especially when people don't actually know one another.

After all, humans have spent millenia evolving to pick up on tone of voice, facial expressions, body posture etc, and use that as much as the actual words (often more so) to take our cues as to how something is meant. And these are all things which are all missing from the Internet

Well, at least until we get video posts!

Neil_Campbell
07-23-2003, 09:21 AM
Hey Lee, I appreciate your posts and info. I also am more than happy to cut NewTek some slack in the understanding dept, and to some extent can even sympathise, because the problem doesn't seem to have been of NT's making. I know (as much as someone from the outside can) what happened of late. But enough of that. I guess I'd built up my expectations re LW8 because of past commentary, but that was before the wheels came off, so as a result I've been disappointed.

I can also see how my posts may come across as a little blunt / preachy sometimes. That's not intentional, and it's only because I and others are so passionate about this business, and the companies and tools that we work with, that we come across so strongly sometimes - both 'fanboys' and 'naysayers' alike, to use a couple of particularly daft characterisations that seem to have become prevalent of late.

Provided discussions don't degenerate into profanities, gross insults or trolling, personally I'd much rather be passionate, even at the risk of being a little over the top, than be a grey suited guy doing a grey suited job (no insult to any accountants out there) with no emotional buy in to the job at all.

And even though LW isn't my primary revenue earner, it's the one I still enjoy playing with the most, so I will keep participating on these forums. And I hope I have a bit of a positive influence / encouragement on at least some of the people some of the time, and don't piss off too many of the others too often.




P.S.



R
O
A
D
M
A
P


:D

colkai
07-23-2003, 11:12 AM
Originally posted by takkun
sailor, I don't think that people mind when others suggest features that should be added, it's only when those requests are bitter, negative and sarcastic, that's what most people don't like; not the feature requests but the unprofessional negative comments by some.

You got it in one.
Some of us like LW, granted, there have been thing we want that have not materialized in previous upgrades, but a good program with faults is still a good program!

I was determined to hold off buying LW8, till I saw the part-feature list - damn that Lee guy! ;)

EDIT:
PS - Yeah - I know I said I wasn't going to post again - but I shoulda known myself beeter ;) :Edit

KillMe
07-23-2003, 11:16 AM
jsut wondering when the modeler feature list will be posted - then at least we can complain about what we know where not getting as to what we think were not getting =)

colkai
07-23-2003, 11:51 AM
Neil_Campbell
I'm fascinated!
You no longer use LW yet you hang round here and make comments about LW failings and where Newtek should be going?
Tell me, do you do the same on the Cinema 4D boards, XSI, MAYA asking about their development direction.

I dropped Imagine a while back, but it would never occur to me to stick around complaining about what it didn't do when I no longer used it - I dunno, could be just me, but it would seem like the only benefit of that would be to vent some angst as it would no longer affect my day to day work.

In a way, you've kinda illustrated my point. It may work for you, just seems wierd is all.

jevinstudios
07-23-2003, 11:54 AM
Unfortunately, I feel that Neil is right on the $$. I am surprised that NT would release, what I perceive to be, a half-hearted, substandard upgrade, when they could do much better if they'd just take a little time and address some key issues -- the renderer, much-needed Modeler enhancements, etc.

Part of the LW development issue I believe is related to NT expanding too much into so many areas -- when you have a small company producing multiple products (LW, VT, DFX, Aura, Inspire), something's bound to give. I think LW has suffered as a result.

It may be a good value for the $$, but it is not the BEST value anymore. Maya is a much better value for the cash -- for just $400 more, you get the best renderer in the biz (MR), integrated 3D Paint and top-notch organic sculpting abilities, exceptional CA and dynamics, etc. Newtek may offer free partial upgrades, but if they don't address key issues, who cares?

I must admit that I have been waiting in anticipation for a real significant, comprehensive upgrade that would boost Modeler into the spotlight. I feel very disappointed, and most likely will not shell out $495 for what I think will be an overhyped and underdeveloped "mid-point" upgrade labeled as a full point jump.

My studio, after adding Maya to the pipeline, has put LW into a position of exclusively modeling. Now even that seems to be in jeopardy; LW is falling far behind other high-end apps in functionality and progress; even Maya's modeling tools have advanced significantly, and offer serious reconsidering by my studio.

I'm afraid that LW has devolved into a mid-range application, competing more with C4D, Truespace and Carrara.

If NT would wait another 6 months or more, and sprinkle out small free upgrades in the meantime while producing a truly dynamic upgrade that would address important, key issues, I would see a responsible company dedicated to true software innovation. Instead, I see a company looking for a quick infusion of $$ at the expense of the software they put out.

Unless LW is the only 3D tool in your arsenal and you've got to have updated CA abilities, I'm afraid the new version is just not worth the money -- better spent on Maya plug-ins, or a new digital camera.....

Stranahan
07-23-2003, 12:05 PM
Could you please explain the over-hyped part? Where has anyone from NewTek over hyped this upgrade?

If anything, you're vastly overhyping the king of all overhyped products - Maya. It's simply untrue that's it's $400 more than LightWave - it's $400 more for the feature crippled, low end version - and please tell everyone what you're paying for your upgrades?

Maya is, IMO, the biggest bait and switch in the industry - hyping all the movies it's used on, and then saying it's $2000....but that of course isn't the version used on those films.

NewTek has been nothing been straightforward and honest about this upgrade. If you don't think it's worth the $495, okay. If it includes DFX+ and you STILL don't think it's worth, $495, okay some more. If it includes free updates, tech support and it's STILL not worth $495 - well, that's your opinion, but for some who is more than willing to let Maya charge what a FULL VERSION of LightWave costs for updates.....I don't understand your economics.

Use whatever tools you want, but let's not be deceptive about the real costs. That's all I'm saying/

sailor
07-23-2003, 12:09 PM
as a LW and Maya user i will have to agree with Jevin...you hit the nail i'm afraid...

Lee, i know that we are here in a NT forum but unless you make use of ur censorship i'm afraid that facts will say the opposite of what you are saying:

Maya Complete is 499 dollars more expensive and even in this "uncomplete" version as some can call it you have everything LW has and more...the fact bein that The Unlimited version has EVEN more but the Maya Complete version has every tool any Lightwaver could dream of...the only thing that keeps me attached to LW is the easy to use, and fast workflow (even if i wonder if it is not more of a lack of personal experience with Maya

sorry but knowing exactly what is in Maya i cant let you say that it is a crippled version...it is simply wrong Lee ....please check the Maya Complete feature list

BTW Jevin 7.5 plus 0.5= 8 yes it is a mid point jump :)

Cman
07-23-2003, 12:20 PM
Lee... don't get drawn in... it's an endless, meaningless debate... it will just ruin your good mood... run while you still can... :D
*outta here*

hrgiger
07-23-2003, 12:24 PM
He didn't say it was crippled compared to Lightwave, he said it was crippled compared to Maya unlimited. His point was, Alias wavefront pushes it like Maya complete is used on the major Hollywood movies and the truth is, it's not.

Well Jevin, it sounds like Lightwave is not for you. Bye.

sailor
07-23-2003, 12:35 PM
Hrgiger :)

i'm really devil's advocate and i like that :D

"it's $400 more for the feature crippled, low end version "

this is what Lee said so for a 400 $ more bucks he was talking about complete not Unlimited....(LW plus 400= complete)

but yes i agree he was then saying that A/W sells Complete as being used in films....actually i havent seen any add saying that Maya Complete was used in films but just that Maya was used in films....i agree that they are taking advantage of the confusion here...this said at the present time the only differences that exists between Complete and Unlimited are: FUR; FLUIDS; CLOTH and MACTHMOVING.....the rest of the application is EXACTLY the same...

Now i still think LW is VERY capable (mainly for small pipelines IMHO) this said Jevin point is still valid he was saying that LW 8 upgrade wasnt worth it (but doesnt means tha LW isnt worth it)

lets just calm down and dont make it personal ok? a little preassure to NT to develop a good product wont hurt... this is not against Lee or HRgiger i do appreciate your points eventhough
HRGiger i think i wil start a "if you dont like LW move on" score for ya :p hey i'm sure you can do better than that no?

come on we are free of speech so just dont waste time with bad arguments and personal attacks...personally i'm ready to admit my mistakes...i just wait from others to arguments with facts...

peace

rabid pitbull
07-23-2003, 12:38 PM
Originally posted by jevinstudios

Unless LW is the only 3D tool in your arsenal and you've got to have updated CA abilities, I'm afraid the new version is just not worth the money -- better spent on Maya plug-ins, or a new digital camera..... [/B]

I would bet that most of the people who use LW DON'T use any other 3d apps. The reason is that it is a complete package, maybe it is not as "complete" as maya, but it also doesn't have a subscription pricing. Something us "small" timers can't afford. I really like using lightwave, and can't believe that people are complaining about the new version even before all the release details are out.:confused:

Yes I would love it if LW could render in half the time, who wouldn't? Of course in LW I could go and buy as many render slaves as I would like to speed things up, if it became a serious issue. But I am quite content with its power, and have no complaints. I was very happy to hear that the animation tools are being revamped definetly the most complained about feature I have noticed on these forums. In fact untill these threads came out I never heard anyone complain about modeler, in fact quite the opposite. :D

Stranahan
07-23-2003, 12:40 PM
Very well put for a rabid pitbull!

sailor
07-23-2003, 12:43 PM
Rapid Pitbull:

facts brotha facts....tell me one thing that LW has that Maya Complete doesnt?

facts are more powerful than words no?

and AFAIK there is no more subscription fee or whatever now?

anyway pricing is not MY personal argument but used to be NT main argument...as far as most of the time my employers that buy a license i dont care that much how much it cost...it is much more important whta it is capable of (and also a much sexier marketing argument really)

Stranahan
07-23-2003, 12:45 PM
Sailor.

How do you re-use rigs in Maya?

Nightwalker
07-23-2003, 12:58 PM
Just my 2cents:

Well.. about the price point... Maya Complete is the most serious competior to Lightwave, two things that favor LW are the free tech support and the cheap upgrades, that is unquestionable, that and the render nodes perhaps...
Its truth that Lw is still the best value for money, Its truth maya has expenssive upgrades, but... the problem is that if in the past LW had also the Best integrated renderer, the Best Poly modeler, etc... It isn't the case anymore... Lw was the first package introducing radiosity, hdri, back in the times were maya complete whas 7K and didn't even include Subd's... Lw whas leading in features and inovation... Not anymore...
Imagine that Lw will be the only of the big 4 not to have Mental Ray integrated after Max 6 ships....

My point is that there is less and less reasons to go Lw instead of maya or c4d or max, and those companies, especialy Alias because of the direct competition with Xsi, are on a amasingly fast developement cicle...

Ignoring these, bashing the other apps without realy knowing them, or threating people who points those problems like heretics, is nothing less than helping Alias and others to get more customers...

Just in case some of you may tell-me the tipical "go buy Maya and leave us alone" I don't need to, My boss aleady did, I just wich I had more arguments so I could make him also buy Lw.
I still hope Lw 8 can bring me some of those...;) in other areas perhaps?

sailor
07-23-2003, 12:59 PM
select a mesh, select the joints and make a skin/smooth bind...this should take your constrained and setuped bone hierarchy connected to a new mesh

of course you will have to skin the mesh (paint the weights) (but i'm not an animator so you should ask a Maya animator to be sure)

u could also use advanced skeleton plugin for Maya

but to be honest i'm more of a modeler ...so i have more of a modeler question...how can i for instance make a 3d spline offset in modeler ? or even easier import an IGES (standard industry Nurbs file) if i'm doing an industrial design object rendering?

sorry you should'nt start those :)

But hey Lee i'm not making it personal...i'm just waiting for core improvement like history and edges in modelr and camera modeling all those are real life problems that i encountered and that LW ca'nt solve at the moemnt...

Neil_Campbell
07-23-2003, 01:06 PM
Hi colkai

You're mistaken I'm afraid. I never claimed I don't use LW anymore. What I did say was that I don't use it for professional work because of the radiosity shortcomings, and that I do still use LW for fun and games in my own time, and that I'm here because I'm hoping to see some good news that will help me with my professional workflow.

All of which kinda makes the rest of your post wide of the mark.

Although to be fair to you, given the brevity of my posts, it would have been quite easy to miss :D


Neil

Nemoid
07-23-2003, 01:08 PM
From my POV Newtek is doing quite well.
first of all, CA is a keypoint in a 3D app, and was a weakness
in Lw for many reasons : the obligation to pass from modeler to
layout and vice .versa when rigging , the lack of bone tools in layout
and many others made the process quite painfull.

this is only an example to show in what position Lw is currently compared to
apps like Maya.
so, first of all, CA was the field in wich put the main research.
also layout workflow , regarding animation and CA need a great work,
to become smoother so that is a great point of interest.

and game tools too

in a few words i think that Newtek choosed well the fields from
where to start developing and enhancing Lw.

this being said i too, looking at modeler if i have to think to improvements
i'd make surely a long list, I am personally for a rewrite of Lw wich should
give to it a better structure, with no separation between modeler and layout,
plugs able to talk with the core, a better SDK etc etc
I really hope Newtek is considering this opportunity for the future,
but this means also a lot of work, reserach and time to pass before seeing smth.
as Lee said there is no magic wand and Newtek choose to be honest with their customers.

Right now,with the current situation, since Lw is a 3D animation app, i'm happy to
see that CA, as well as Dynamics has been involved in a develop processand that Nt
will give to Lw a good future.

I think Newtek is working hard and really interested to give to us a great app,
even if not a revolutionatry release Lw will stand between the best 3D
apps in the market.

p.s. some other big apps users dream about Lw speedy workflow overall in modelling...:D

Mike Pauza
07-23-2003, 01:10 PM
Maya's not $1500. Maya minus tech support is $1500.


***I've been corrected below, but there seems to be some dissagreement.***

sailor
07-23-2003, 01:18 PM
Mike i'm sorry but AFAIk the tech support fee is not longer there...AFAIK Maya Complete is 1999 period...Alis used to have a support fee but not anymore i was told...when u check the site u have no technical support pricing either

jevinstudios
07-23-2003, 01:22 PM
Simply put -- as a multi-app studio, I don't see anything revealed so far in the LW 8 upgrade that is a significant improvement over 7.5 that would compell me to lay out $495 per license. I just don't think that enough was done to merit a priced upgrade (referring to Modeler and the renderer). Until I see a feature-rich Modeler list put out soon, there's nothing NT can do to change my mind. I'm not saying that LW is not good software -- it is. But it's not competitive on the level with other high-end apps anymore. Key areas have been neglected, and a band-aid upgrade ignoring these areas will not stem the blood flow. A tournequet is needed if NT wishes to remain competitive and attract the industry professional. And in response to hrgiger's post -- I've been a LW user for about 7 years now -- it just hasn't held up in line with the competition, that's all. I use it for Modeling because that's what it's really great for -- but that's changing very quickly. I'm just hoping that NT will take some of these comments to heart, take a little more time, and really release an upgrade that's worth paying for. Forget the "new UI look" -- ridiculous!!

And as far as Lee's "crippled" Maya Complete, please check the facts. It's only 4 plug-ins off from Unlimited. And, for less $$ than Unlimited, I've purchased 3rd party plug-ins to replace thos functions, that are even BETTER than the ones bundled in Unlimited (i.e.: Shave & a Haircut, RealFlow2/RealWave2, etc.). More power for less $$, and fully capable of producing feature film animation. Also, yearly maintenace contracts are OPTIONAL, not required. Alias does offer minor fixes and plug-ins/downloads for free on their site. Your argument is baseless.

Stranahan
07-23-2003, 01:27 PM
http://store.aliaswavefront.com/dr/v2/ec_MAIN.Entry16?SP=10024&PN=29&xid=41107&V1=30012315&V2=30012315&V3=1&V5=11000161&V4=10&S1=&S2=&S3=&S4=&S5=&DSP=0&CUR=840&PGRP=0&CACHE_ID=0

They aren't baseless, they are facts. If you want to use Maya, fine - but just get the facts correct. Five phone calls cost as much as LightWave[8]'s upgrade.

I like how that page shows a guy in a cage. Very appropriate.

All kidding aside, Jevin - our development was sidetracked, and now we're back on track. Sorry you don't see the value in LW[8] - perhaps the demos at SIGGRAPH will give you a clearer idea of what's in the upgrade. Sorry that I've failed to make the case for you.

rabid pitbull
07-23-2003, 01:30 PM
Originally posted by sailor
Rapid Pitbull:

facts brotha facts....tell me one thing that LW has that Maya Complete doesnt?

facts are more powerful than words no?

and AFAIK there is no more subscription fee or whatever now?

anyway pricing is not MY personal argument but used to be NT main argument...as far as most of the time my employers that buy a license i dont care that much how much it cost...it is much more important whta it is capable of (and also a much sexier marketing argument really)

actually I never said maya unlimited was not as powerful as LW...

as for the subscription fees, I was confused by the maintenace contracts, not necessary but no support without. correct?

I am gonna stop fanning the flames now, so enjoy the day. Got some work to do.. starts modeler and smiles.:D

jevinstudios
07-23-2003, 01:43 PM
Stranahan -- have to skip Siggraph this year due to tight project deadlines for an aerospace job we're doing; work comes first. To be honest, the Maintenance Support contract is not really necessary -- many solutions, questions and tech anwsers can be found online at their site -- there is a members section with online tech support and a comprehensive user forum that works just as good -- no fees required. So, there ARE options for tech support that are not fee-based.

The only thing that will make the case on LW 8 being a worthy upgrade for my studio is a comprehensive Modeler overhaul, or significant improvements/additions. If you can assure me that these are in the works, I'll definitely consider a closer look.....

Oh, about being sidetracked -- I understand, but why take a shortcut as a result? Take the time lost and add it to the production time left to really produce a quality upgrade, not a quick partial fix....

Chris S. (Fez)
07-23-2003, 01:48 PM
"I'm just hoping that NT will take some of these comments to heart, take a little more time, and really release an upgrade that's worth paying for."

If LW 8 Layout is now on par with Modeler, that makes Lightwave a pretty wellrounded app. I think Newtek should release what they have ASAP. Just be sure to show us what is coming for free in the future.

j3st3r
07-23-2003, 02:08 PM
I am using Maya mostly at work now, since I am animating characters (after modeling them in LW), and I am very pleased with it, although I was a fanatic anti-Maya man...But I`ve realized it`s strength...ANd now I`m considering to migrate to Wings and Maya...

Maya offers so much flexibility, you cannot dream of LW. Repetitive tasks can be stored at the shelf...And reusable rigs? Of course...You only have to repaint the weights...but you have the possibility to use alternate skinning methods...You have a very well managable "scene editor" (Outliner), you have excellent and fast viewports, you hav the ability to create FASTLY AND EFFICIENTLY the set driven keys, etc., etc. The list is loooong...And what I like the most, that the shading network system is capable of doing almost everything...It`s true, that Maya hasn`t the best built in renderer (not speaking of MR), but I see guys who are wizards in Maya, and makes much better renders, that one can imagine...

Now my selection would be Maya, because of it`s extremely flexible, and open environment...

But I love LW. I love it for modelling. But now I think, it`s behind the standards...Fortunately there are great guys, who provide us plugins resolving the long-lasting problems. Thanks, Mr Ikeda, Ichikawa, Dstorm, and all the rest!

The problem is that it was promised more than a half a year ago, that LW 8 will be the next generation of LW...It looks currently a 7.5d or 7.75 update rather than an 8. But I haven`t seen any FACT just outlines...

SO after Siggraph we can talk of it again.

One more thought...if THIS LW is released in Q4 only....it`s a big big problem...

Stranahan
07-23-2003, 02:11 PM
Simple answer to that one, Jevin - because people want the features now.

I understand that your main use for LW is modeling - but you're rare in that sense. For the vast majority of our users, they use LW as their primary. And for them, we have stuff ready to go now.

So - why make them wait? We've speeding up the development cycle and we have free upgrades. We have signicant changes and additions to the areas our users told us LW needed it most, and now we're going to give them to them.

Fair enough?

Pavlov
07-23-2003, 02:38 PM
"There's aren't significant changes in the render engine in this release."


Well... after all this time, beside Lux problem, i'd be quite negatively surprised if Newtek addressed just some animation/workflow issues.
Before spending words let's wait for Siggraph, but... if no core- architecture change has been made, rendering has not been massively improved, and so modeler... what's this ?
IMHO, if that's how things are going, even the very best IK solver and the very best dynamic engine won't save LW from MAX and Cinema, which are 3-years-ahead-concept-softs.
Let's hope, but i seem there are very *few* arguments this hope can stitch with ...

Paolo Zambrini

jevinstudios
07-23-2003, 02:39 PM
Ya know, Stranahan -- you really had the chance to reel me in here. But unfortunately, "Fair Enough" was the wrong answer. In effect, you've helped me make the software decisions for my studio more firm than ever -- and the future for LW here is pretty bleak. Best of luck w/ LW 8. Not on board for this one....

Am off the board -- gotta get back to work. Too much time wasted here.

Stranahan
07-23-2003, 02:49 PM
Ummm...I really don't understand.

It wasn't fair enough? Really, I'm lost in what I did to apparently piss you off.

sailor
07-23-2003, 02:57 PM
Oops Jevin...geez :o

As a freelancer i already had to make self training decisions...that is why i choose to have a look at maya's features (but not only Maya , i was as a modeler intersted in touching the design market offering industrial design type of modeling wich mean Nurbs modeling) and start learning it...at this moment i still feel more comfortable and efficient when using LW...i was really really expecting the great improvements many of us were waiting for....In this same forum i've read the same people saying maybe in 6.5, 7 7.5 8 and now we will certainly have to wait for 9...or 9.5 or....

Lee you are understimating the number of modelers out there...actually you are certainly aware of the fact that in a large production pipleine you find very specialized people (modelers, texture artist, matte painters etc...)...with all the competition goin on out there u cannot focus only in one part of the software rather than the other...i understand that NT has limited ressources but errr competition doesnt waits...LW modelers market was already pretty hard like that at the moment in Paris and no modeler improvement will make things worse for me ...and i do prefer to make part of a large production pipeline in SFX or full 3d movies rather than a multipurpose "Flying logo" artist...

some rumors also says that Luxology is preparing a full application and not only an extrenal LW plugin...and that rumor is growing?

:(

best luck and i really would love to see that LW 8 or higher will make an astonishing come back !

KillMe
07-23-2003, 03:04 PM
maybe i'm stupid but i trust NT to develop lw - i cant help but think lw is a pretty good deal even if those feature i would love to see in modeler aren't going to be in 8.0

specially as i got dfx+ in the deal and everythign is free till lw 9

maybe i'm blind to the truth but i honestly believe NT will release some great 8.x releases that will give all the things i want

now as a hobbyist maya seems abit pricy - ok complete isn't that much more but compared to what NT gives youcan you honestly call it complete. should really be called maya incomplete

as a company (not that i have one unles the occasional job counts) $495 isn't going to bankrupt me, and would be worth it to jsut avoid having to use maya's clunky interface

nope as much as could threaten nt to jump ship unless i got blah blah blah ............... right now its not going to happen not unless some of the other packages happen to end up looking just like lw with the same style of workflow( of cource if they did this they woudl be admitting the lw is better =)

sailor
07-23-2003, 03:14 PM
a modeler? where this info comes from? :)

Neil_Campbell
07-23-2003, 03:16 PM
Although some of us aren't happy with where LW8 is right now, please don't shoot Lee down over it - it's hardly his fault.

Lee's got the tough job of being messenger boy (no disrespect meant Lee, it's really great we've got someone pushing real info out), salesman to this crowd, and all round feature teaser ......

So while some of us, myself included, might want to rant and rave about LW8 (purely in a constructive fashion, of course :) ), we should cut Lee some slack and try not to jump down his throat anytime he says something. I believe Lee's trying to help by telling us the truth, so we can all make informed decisions - whether that's to buy LW8 now, to jump ship tomorrow, or to put your feet up for a couple of weeks and watch things unfold.

NoName
07-23-2003, 03:16 PM
"now as a hobbyist maya seems abit pricy - ok complete isn't that much more but compared to what NT gives youcan you honestly call it complete. should really be called maya incomplete"

KillMe, why do you keep making untrue statements about Maya? It has been made clear that Maya Complete comes with far more than LightWave out-of-the-box by ppl. that actually use both.

Neil_Campbell
07-23-2003, 03:20 PM
Regarding Luxology - rumors abound for sure - nothing really new there, it's been a real question mark for a long time

Personally I have a lot of time and respect for many of the guys at Lux, irrespective of what's happened with NewTek.

All that said, would I give Lux my money today? Errrm, well in a word, nope. Not because I don't trust Lux per se, but exactly what would I be buying and when would it arrive? I've seen absolutely nothing from them so far. And even if they do have something, what does it have to offer that my current toolset doesn't? Maybe Lux will rock, maybe it won't. If LW rocks even more than Lux it'll be irrelevant anyway.

Who knows? I for sure don't - it's simply too early to tell.

Gabriel
07-23-2003, 03:32 PM
Seing the features of the new version of LW and taking into account Lee's statement that they had new features ready and they would like to give users the posibility to use them. I'm starting to think the only problem with this upgrade is just to call it 8.0.

Perhaps if it was called LW 7.8 or something like that people (like me) wouldn't start to dream about great new features in first place. So everything would be just ok.

I'm not saying for a minute that the new version of LW doesn't contain important new features, just that they don't seem to be as deep and radical for calling it 8.0.

My 2 cents.

sailor
07-23-2003, 03:36 PM
well Lee maybe it is about time to talk about modeler's 8 feature list?

KillMe
07-23-2003, 03:54 PM
KillMe, why do you keep making untrue statements about Maya? It has been made clear that Maya Complete comes with far more than LightWave out-of-the-box by ppl. that actually use both. [/B]

i was talking about tech support free upgrades etc - as for its acauly capabiities etc i cant speak to them much - in my playing with ple i jsut cant get past how horrible it is to use

Limbus
07-23-2003, 04:02 PM
I dont get it. I think it was made very clear by NewTek and Lee that the published features are not complete. But alot of people act like there is some final list of upgrades which will be put into 8 and brag about all the missing features. Lets wait and see. Siggraph is just around the corner.

Florian

Maxx
07-23-2003, 05:01 PM
First and formost, let me state that this is not a Maya vs LW post - I know nothing of Maya. Anyway, about the upgrade costs vs apparant feature updates, NewTek has already made public statements that it was going to move LW to the development cycle style headed by Video Toaster - I believe that I remember a post where Chuck mentioned that there were some 17 free updates in the past year for that product. Note that, in the now mysteriously missing G2 preview in Layout Camera View movie, Lee (or whomever it was driving the demo) said something about not knowing if this functionality would make it into this version of LW8.

Personally, I think NT is doing a smart thing by producing what appears to be substantial upgrade in the areas most spanked on by the user base. Let's face it, for quite some time now, people have been pipelining (?) LW models into MAya for CA - now NewTek is adressing that issue. That alone warrants a number upgrade, IMO. Also, with the information tucked neatly in mind that the development cycle should be getting faster and better, I wouldn't be surprised that whatever is missed elsewhere is taken care of with free updates over the next year.

NewTek has never really been a company (since 5.5, which is when I started using) to release simple bug-fix patches. Every .x upgrade has new features and functionality. Wouldn't surprise me if the G2 preview was not in 8.0, but showed up in 8.1 in a month or two.

Basically, not to blindly shout "follow NewTek, dammit! Just do it!" but seriously, this company does not seem to be going away. Niether does their product. I haven't upgraded Photoshop since 5.0 because the upgrades destroyed the UI and had no real meat behind the new features. Quite honestly, I've missed v3.5 since the day I left it. And as far as LW is concerned, not once have I regretted spending the initial outlay or the upgrade money.

I swore that I wasn't going to get into this thing, but it just seemed that everybody had forgotten about the announced intended upgrade paths and directions, and missed the hints dropped here and there about the commitment to following that path.

Yog
07-23-2003, 05:06 PM
Originally posted by Maxx
Note that, in the now mysteriously missing G2 preview in Layout Camera View movie, Lee (or whomever it was driving the demo) said something about not knowing if this functionality would make it into this version of LW8.


Ah, that explains it.
I was at work when I first saw this demo, so was watching with the sound turned down. Missed the disclaimer bit.

Ta for the clarification.

RuiFeliciano
07-23-2003, 05:07 PM
It was 7 free upgrades to the Toaster, not 17.
Anyway if LW development cycle is to follow VT's that's a VERY good thing, we'll be here to check how well Newtek fulfills this promisse.

Maxx
07-23-2003, 05:09 PM
Aw, c'mon - what's ten upgrades between friends? :D Seriously, thanks for the correction.

sailor
07-23-2003, 05:11 PM
well maybe with a little chance we will see an Softimage/XSI situation...maybe NT will keep updating LW until the natural death of the product (that shouldnt be that far now) while Luxology finishes the new architecture soft?

that could make sense...and maybe its the best solution :)

DarkLight
07-23-2003, 05:39 PM
I'm sometimes amazed by the amount of negative comments that can be generated around speculation of what will be/wont be included in Lightwave 8.

People seem to expect that every single item requested in LW8 should be included in the first release. Newtek have already stated that they are going to be releasing more frequent updates and i for one bellive that we will see more features adding to these updates. It is not realistic to expect newtek to add all the requests they have recieved into LW8, for one thing the developers can only do so much in the timescale they have.

Personally i'm quite excited about LW8. While it does not address all the features that i would like to see in the next version, it is off to a great start. I for one will be upgrading when lightwave 8 is released. The only feature i would request as a plugin developer would be a beter sdk :D

jevinstudios
07-23-2003, 06:35 PM
Stranahan:


It wasn't fair enough? Really, I'm lost in what I did to apparently piss you off.

Hey, I'm not pissed off -- quite the opposite. This kind of stuff does not get under my skin. I just would have liked to hear something along the lines of: "Will pass this on to our development staff to see if something can be tweaked in the upcoming upgrade, or in a small point addition added later" or along those lines. This whole thread IS after all about Modeler being left behind in the development sector, isn't it? I find it ironic that when that point is pursued, ya guys get defensive and point out that you're catering to the majority of the users, and that's why Layout took a priority.

I mean, c'mon. My whole point is, why shell out upgrade $$ if a program is used for Modeling and there are to be few Modeling enhancements enacted (or at least revealed, at this point)? If you want ALL users to be interested in 8, then cater to the Modelers (or in my case, studios that designate LW as a Modeling app) as well as the ppl who use LW as their primary soft equally. Get a post with some cool Modeler enhancements up ASAP, instead of pushing the issue aside.

This has been a pattern of NT for quite some time on this forum (take the whole Lux issue -- NT sidestepped it for so long, it got completely out of hand). If you want an effective PR machine, then get as much info out simultaneously to as many people as you can so that you have a genuine interest in the product, from all angles.

I still stand by my statement, though, that at this point 8 looks very one-sided and incomplete as far as upgrades go. If Modeler is not enhanced equally, you'll turn off a lot of potential revenue, mine included.

Chuck
07-23-2003, 06:57 PM
Originally posted by sailor
well maybe with a little chance we will see an Softimage/XSI situation...maybe NT will keep updating LW until the natural death of the product (that shouldnt be that far now) ...

NewTek is committed to developing LightWave as a flagship product, always. That means that we will of course do any development necessary to continue LightWave as a living, vibrant, powerful tool for artists, including re-architecting from time to time; in fact one of the principles that Andrew Cross, our Sr. VP of Engineering, is firmly dedicated to is that revising, replacing and refining the architecture is best approached as a constant process if the goal is to lead in technology, and that is always NewTek's goal. Whatever your view may be of the current state of matters, the fact is that NewTek has a long track record and whenever there may have been what seemed a slow period, we come back and make up the ground.

I don't think I have ever been as excited for the potential for LightWave 3D as I am now. NewTek's development of LightWave is in truth on a great track and I expect phenomenal things both in the near future and as we continue through the cycle for [8] and then beyond. I have no doubt whatsoever that we will continue the tradition of groundbreaking technology in practical and affordable tools that has led to this day, when for the second year in a row seven of the ten nominees in the Emmy Outstanding Visual Effects categories used LightWave as their principal 3D tool or very heavily, and LightWave itself has been recognized by the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences with the 2003 Engineering Plaque.

John Fornasar
07-23-2003, 09:19 PM
Originally posted by sailor
Rapid Pitbull:

facts brotha facts....tell me one thing that LW has that Maya Complete doesnt?

facts are more powerful than words no?



how about 1000 render nodes?

... out of the box
... no extra charge

Stranahan
07-23-2003, 09:30 PM
Jevin,

I wasn't pushing the issue aside. I'm sorry you felt that I was. People in development are reading these threads - I've stated before that everyone is. And I've been as straightforwad as I can.

I understood your point. All I was responding to was the idea you put forward that we not release the update, because there aren't significant modeler changes. I explained our position, and I hoped you'd understand. That's it.

I'm being honest. I'll telling you like it is. I can't and won't say we'll fix it in the next point upgrade for sure, because I don't know that for sure. I think we will, but I have learcned that it's a bad idea for marketing to write checks that development has to cash.

I'll repeat - we're listening. I'd think the UI thread would have shown that, because within two days of a number of people saying they liked Matt's UI, we announced we were bringing him out.

But we can't announce what's in 8.1 or 8.2. Sorry, but it wouldn't be honest. I could lie to make you happy, but you'll note I haven't.

jevinstudios
07-23-2003, 09:39 PM
No prob -- thx stranahan! It's no secret that I'm extremely demanding about the tools my studio employs, and the work that's created with them (I've eliminated several programs from our arsenal over the past 2 years in a major streamlining effort -- to save both time and $$). I've been w/ LW for over 7 years, and just hope to see the progress excellerate forward, and not slip backwards in relation to other tools available today. I mean, hey -- I still love LW's Modeling tools over anything else I've encountered in the biz -- I hope I can still say that a year from now..... I may come off as a prick, but as long as my feelings about LW's direction are being heard by the people that write the code, my mission is complete. I know that there are a hell of a lot of others out there who have similar desires for LW, but just don't take the time to log into the forum and lay em down....

Oh, don't mean to shoot the messenger, either. You're doing a damn good job by just keeping up with the posts and the work NT has laid out for you. Kudos, and I tip my hat to your efforts.

Mike Pauza
07-23-2003, 09:39 PM
Guys, LW8 may only contain minimal improvements of traditional strengths, but the new dynamics tools could be incredible.

Like "the discovery of fire incredible". I predict Dynamic Bones will make it easy to add realistic physics based motion to just about anything, and be stable & fast. When they get it right you'll be blown away. Let em work on modeling and rendering (after V8) for a long time, cause I'll be a happy man. :)

Stranahan
07-23-2003, 10:48 PM
Jevin,

Have you posted specific requests somewhere?

Jockomo
07-24-2003, 09:36 AM
IMO NewTek's focus is in the right place. It is no secret that modeler rocks, even when compared to much higher priced packages.

If your looking for real speed enhancements, your going to find it in CPU power, not a programming trick. While there could definately be some improvements to GI and streamlining network rendering, I personally don't hold this as a critical issue at the moment. To be quite honest, when lightwave is rendering, it is making me money, and I don't have to do anything. So the opportunity for frustration is pretty low in rendering, as compared to say, setting up a scene, where I actually have to do something with the software.

It's not like there are a bunch of modeler programmers sitting around doing nothing. If NewTek spends time working on one thing, they have to NOT work on something else (or take 2x as long to work on them both at the same time. It only makes sense for them to work on the areas that really need improvement.

froggie
07-24-2003, 06:07 PM
"It is no secret that modeler rocks"

You sir should mess around in other packages.

Lw modeller "rocked", it's old, not been updated since 2 or 3 years now and other applications, every single one, offered new workflow (i won't even start saying that since XSI introduced metanurbs in V3 with support of edges, creases, ngons...and the list goes on, it totally rock, especially considering all LW tools can be scripted and script is actually strong)

*waits to see if LW8 modeller is updated*
if not i won't buy LW heh.

Jockomo
07-24-2003, 07:33 PM
Originally posted by froggie
You sir should mess around in other packages.



You sir should look around in the lightwave gallery. :D

Personally I can't justify putting out many thousand extra dollars just for a handful of tools that may get some use ... sometimes... maybe.

Just curious Froggie, do you own a seat of XSI?.

andrenozawa
07-24-2003, 09:18 PM
People forget that LW is the" best for the buck" `piece of software.So we should not expect LW being as powerful as Maya or Softimage.No miracles.Newtek is much smaller than Alias or Avid.
" Best for the buck" is a good marketing strategy and works as a good excuse for not updating the software as people wish to.
Newtek would say:"if you want all this stuff,save more money and buy Softimage"

Stranahan
07-24-2003, 10:32 PM
Well, I wouldn't go THAT far...

Here's my take...see if it seems rational...

Maya and XSI are, overall, probably better for movies than LightWave is. Movies have big budgets, in terms of both time and money - the toolsets of XSI and Maya are deep and configurable. They are good for large teams with programmers and time to research and tweak and build tools.

LightWave is better for TV sized time and money budgets. LightWave can knock things out faster under a crunch. There are ways to power through things. It's better for smaller teams of people, or even one person. It's quick and battle tested.

No wonder Maya won an Oscar last year. No wonder NewTek won an Emmy a couple of days ago. It makes sense to me.

In this sense, by the way, the games market is closer to the Movie - longer time frames, programmers, bigger budgets.

Obviously, you can use LightWave for feature films. A lot of people do. And obviously, you could use XSI or Maya for TV and some people do that, too. But the programs really DO have different strengths. Some of it is personal preference - but some of it is in the nature of the programs and their goals.

I'm not stereotyping. My brother does feature films with LightWave, and I am sure some of you use Maya for flying logos.

And I think the advantage is for LightWave, because most people have more 'TV style' time and budget issues. One of the problems is that, for a time, LightWave tried to be all things to all people and it lost it's indentity. But if LightWave tries to be the best LightWave it can be, I really do think the best days are ahead.

Does this make any sense? I'm sleepy.

hrgiger
07-24-2003, 10:37 PM
I hear you brother Lee.

More importantly, Lightwave works for me.

hrgiger
07-24-2003, 10:38 PM
Not to mention, some people talk as if development has simply stopped on modeler which isn't the case at all.

Stranahan
07-24-2003, 10:39 PM
No, it hasn't at all...

papou
07-25-2003, 03:06 AM
i work for tv product, i make different short animation every day, or every 2 days, or 3 days, not only Flying logos, duh.
Lightwave is very good to make something quickly, sure, and tv project, don't have same budget as movies, but they want quality too...
But actually, i have problem to render all.
∑ Slow AA, have to render 10 times the frame, minimum.
∑ can't use Fieldrendering if i use Glow or some imagefilter...coz the broken field. So i need to comp a lot.

i know i say everytime the same thing but...arrg.

froggie
07-25-2003, 04:00 AM
Originally posted by Jockomo
You sir should look around in the lightwave gallery. :D

That's irrevelant. Every package can roduce great artwork. If you want to go this way, look on cgtalk for the expose book. LOADS of pictures are done with max - brazil. Bu at least newtek know how to choose pictures for the LW gallery. Does that make other packages unable to render great pictures (without the "best renderer in the industry", as they say), no. Even render wise, LW is now lacking behind many other renderer.


Personally I can't justify putting out many thousand extra dollars just for a handful of tools that may get some use ... sometimes... maybe.

That's exactly why I am angy that LW8 seems to be a "poor" update (well from my point of view)! I really wished it will be THE best update they ever made, that they will fix all the things people request since LONG time, i mean command since when people want edges, better UV tools and so on?. Other than that, I feel like it is a point release. I really like LW otherwise, but if you open your eyes it is no more the best value for money, it was, and I hoped NT would continue the good way but apparently they don't.

I read they couldn't really start devellopement since some months ago, they shouldn't have announced LW8 untill they covered all the issues people pointed out, without covering all the requests (well the most common one). It's really annoying to see so much potential wasted. I am a lightwave adorer, i consider it one of the best package ever made, but not anymore.
More tools, mean more people can find theyre own workflow, mean people using other package can move on LW faster. Seeing guys from NT saying "you can use scripts" and people using almost only scripts is just non sense. having to wait kind people update theyre scripts before you can use your new copy of LW efficiently while other package actually see advantages of them and include them in new release just doesn't make sense. You shouldn't rely on 3rd party tools to work in a package. You have o be efficient as soon as it ship.

Just curious Froggie, do you own a seat of XSI?.

I work in games, on 3DS Max ( that makes me think that newtek is missing the point again with what they announced for game devellopers, feels like a bad joke, hope they have better than exporters to offer...). Curently testing XSI tho, and some people here use maya. LW seats = none, for games it is the worst (IMHO), but it doesn't make me thinks it's an awfull package especially for high res stuff, just it have ennormous potential and NT is wasting it.

About devellopment on modeller didn't stop, it sure doesn't show it continue...

hrgiger
07-25-2003, 04:09 AM
You do realize Froggie that Newtek had been in a legal dispute for months and development was seriously delayed. I think that them getting it out when they are with the features it has is pretty commendable. With all that going on you can't possibly expect v8 to have everything you could possibly want. NT is already talking about the free point releases after 8 and 8 isn't even out yet. Be a little patient..

And Lightwave still is the best value for the money.

trick
07-25-2003, 04:25 AM
Whatever NT does with [8] I will be using [7.5] certainly for the next 2 years because of some long-term projects. I may be in an exceptional position on this , but I probably will spent the upgrade price just for fun to see what [8] has to offer. I wanna see what part has been developed by the new NT team and what part by some "hired" 3rd parties: maybe Ino for the FX and Dynamics, Irrational number and Pavel for the CA stuff and who knows who !?!?!?. Total integration, an updated SDK and more LScript-enhancements are signs for a good team.

Just a few days to go...and there will certainly be a lot of announcements...not only by NT...just look at this (http://www.irrationalnumber.com) page...

Nemoid
07-25-2003, 07:59 AM
well, I think Lee talked quite frankly
about the situation in wich Lw is currently.
as time passed the different structure of
softwares like Maya or XSI give them the possibility to
grow exponentially with a good flexibility.
we have to consider that they are more young than Nt and that Lw has a surely strange history for a 3D app.
Lightwave now its like the classic Softimage package
before XSI was born, and so its more difficult to make
it grow in that direction.

there are many chances though
in wich Newtek can work regarding Lightwave.

first of all, the current version and structure of Lw goes towards
users with the need for a certain amount of quality in no time.
that's why, even if some tools is not so deep, the workflow is
generally fast. personally i love this, because i can have the time to solve many problems, and there are great tricks to make the job done thinking to the image i want to obtain, NOT to work it all in Lw.
this philosophy is very good for all kinda productions , video, and also for solo works too. also i love the great Nt render nodes policy :)

this being said i think that, now that "Lux affair" passed, Nt can start soon to think to a new evolution of Lw for those wich want high end products.

this can be difficult, expensive, and requires certainly time, but thinking that

1) the tools of the current version of Lw are good , only need to be enhanced (many ideas from 3rd party plugs here) reorganized in some way and more important they can be used as a great source of inspiration for programmers really good starting point
thinking to how an animator would work.

2) Lw has the best community in the world, so that many ideas
will be given from very well rounded users wich know what 3D is and how a 3D app really could work both speedly and powerfull

3) Lw has great plugins developers that can work on new tools, peole like Worley, Ikeda, Irrational Number etc.

4) consider the possibility that a new app can born now, with a better structure than Maya or XSI ; it will blown them away.

I'd have no doubt about the possibility to create a new product wich, mantaining the Lw great philosophy can have more power, flexibility and a solid integrated structure.

also, there are better methods than current ways of Maya or XSI to give to a 3D app power and flexibility. the key in fact would be not imitation. but research.

finally, u could wonder about : why different products?

i think that the current and immediate future v of Lw is so good that, with the enhancements Nt is working on, many users in the video and mid level production can use it for astonishing works.
so they'll buy it.

for me, also a version of modeler enhanced and selled
separately coul be a great product indeed.
since the current way of thinking is about animation
apps, why not an astonishing stand alone modeler?

froggie
07-25-2003, 11:41 AM
Originally posted by hrgiger
You do realize Froggie that Newtek had been in a legal dispute for months and development was seriously delayed..

yes, that's why i think this update is not really great and they should have waited to add a bit more to please theyre users (that i am not but could have become if LW8 was really great)

I can only hope NT will really release LOTS of point release with LOTS of new content, then i'll buy me a licence, for home. I like LW alot but in its current state I just found too much annoying things to buy it heh. But someday perhaps. =) (i waited since LW6 to see the changes i hoped for...i think i've been patient enough :D )

sailor
07-25-2003, 12:14 PM
my 2 cents,

i'm ready to bet that not only some of us were "disapointed" by the way LW developement was going...I'm talking about people that were at NT and are now at LUX...i'm ready to bet that one of the reasons they moved away (hey HRGIGER you see that the "move on " argument is heard sometimes ;)
was certainly some decisions (or lack of decisions) from NT.

in a few days we will have some answers to that...personally i was waiting for 8 as a signal for a LW reborn. ..i dont really care how many new features are in there actually...i will have considered more important to see LW taking the way of a rewrite and integration...If LUX comes with an integrated philosophy then u have a second answer....i dont focus much in the details but more in the backbone structure of the software...no matter how many addons or features you put in 8 i will consider all this as a smoke curtain...i already have a large percentage of lscripts and .p stuff in my actual LW arsenal...but still no solution to cam in modeler or history (and scripts wont solve this)

focusing in marketing deals, cosmetic interface, addons and the like is not the way to go for sure...at least not to convince people like me or some others in this forum...i'm afraid that the community will be splitted in 2 if LUX comes with new material...

my opinion nothing more

hrgiger
07-25-2003, 04:42 PM
I don't think Sailor that you won't see a rewrite of LW or even integration possibly in the future but don't expect it for 8. Newtek has had its hands tied for some time, certainly not leaving enough time to rewrite Lightwave. Lightwave 8 is definately going to have some much needed features and not so much cosmetic as you suggest. In fact, many of the features of 8 are going to actually support the argument of not integrating since there will not be as much need to jump back and forth between the two programs which is a big argument from those who want integration. For instance we will now have skelegon functionality in Layout. We will also be able to animate individual points in Layout so no need for corrective joint morphing from modeler. Adust as we animate, just how it was supposed to be.
I'm not sure how cams would be useful in modeler, unless you're talking about rendering but as I see it, with Layout running and the hub connecting, I say render away in Layout.
History I agree would be useful but not absolutely necessary. If it's added in a point release after 8, that would be nice but that's why I save my model at several points during modeling so I can go back to it at any point in the modeling process. Just about as useful as history would be.
I'm not too concerned wtih Luxology. I don't think a lot of others are either. Truth is most people are pretty happy about 8 and have a pretty good outlook on the future of Lightwave development now that those matters are seemingly behind us. Check out the Outlook for lightwave poll that I started the other day. Only 6% of people are really unhappy about Newtek and Lightwave, 30% or so are undecided but the rest and the majority of people are pleased. Nobody likes to start over learning a new 3D package, especially those who are happy where they are.
Not worried about Lux.

sailor
07-25-2003, 05:13 PM
Hrgiger :)

Well the problem since the beginning is that as lee stated (i dont remember when now) some things were not intended to be as they are (remember now example :undos) but i dunno if i should consider you as a LW fanatic (you tell me ) but i have too often read in here people giving arguments for what were (later) admited lacks...around a week or so ago there was this "old timer Lwaver" guy (caustic _wave i think) saying that we were no t aware of the fact that Layout already had so many non linear undos !!! (no kidding) and of course we were so stupid of asking for undos because (he gave an example similar to your saving models example) we could easily save LWS so that we could reload a scene if a mistake was done...come on !!!

and now i'm happy to see that NT is working on the undos issue...i suppose that Caustic_wave is hiding somewhere with his super "load previous scene" technique now...:)

with the integration problem i'm afraid you are heading the same way...you are argumenting about this but what you seem to forget HRGIGER is that Modeler and Layout being 2 separate apps was never intentional !!! but the result of a parallel developpement...NT will certainly one day adress this point (hopefully) and that day i will come to ya personally to tell ya YOU SEE ?...in a friendly way dont worry :)

my point is that maybe i'm an heretic ...but it doesnt changes a thing to the fact that in production there are some stuff needed and that if NT wants to transform the Emmy award into an Oscar they will certainly some time have to consider Integration.

Just be reasonable for a second and ask yourself a simple question...LW uses a tcehnology that is availbale to everyone...Ctamull Clark algorithm was not invented by NT nor IK nor radiosity etc...so this are NT implementation of the same tools you can find in other packages...Do you really are convinced that separate apps is a "think different" strategy while EVERY other package on earth is integrated?...it sounds pretty hard to believe no? if you consider the additional arguments that modeler has undos but not Layout...that you dont have snaps in Layout's Grid while you have in modelers etc etc...you can easily understand that this is not the result of any engineering strategy?? u see?

so finally you are defending what is basically a long time mistake...and the fixing of this mistake posponed since "projcet purple"...(LW6)

And belive me...it is much easier to get used to an integrated app than one day discover the huge limitation of not having a cam in modeler and the horrible workflow that this means...(among many other things of course)

:)

hrgiger
07-25-2003, 05:29 PM
Sailor, I understand that Modeler and Layout were created seperately by two seperate programmers. I don't see the problem with that however, as each new Lightwave release has steadily closed the gap between them. Lightwave and Photoshop are two seperate programs but for me, they seem to work pretty well together. I model things, make templates for them, paint them in photoshop and apply my textures in layout. Pretty seamless really. It's much the same way with modeler and layout. I model things in modeler, template them. Take them to Layout, texture them, animate and render. Sure there are workflow issues and there are some things about the programs that would work better if the two were integrated(i.e. certain plug-ins, scripts, etc....), nor am I saying that we shouldn't ultimately strive to seamlessly integrate modeler and Layout. But as I said, you can't just expect that now. It's enough for now that we have new features that will keep us from jumping back and forth between modeler making workflow much easier.
I never advocated saving scenes in Layout as a way of having an undo. We should have layout undos, and lookee here, we have them now, or at least when 8 ships we will. Problem solved. However, even if we had history in modeler, I would still save incremental changes to my model because who knows when you're going to have to go back to a model and how can we be sure that the history will always be there?
And it's just a personal preference, but I like having a different environment for modeling and a different one for animation. Keeps my workflow and area cleaner. Just my preference.
Don't turn this into another integration argument because I'm not arguing it. I frankly don't care if it's integrated or not. But I'm happy with the changes I see slated for 8. I think most should be.

chikega
07-25-2003, 05:31 PM
Seriously guys ... I spent $500 for an upgrade to LW7 and that was almost 2 years ago. What a bargain.

My friend who has XSI payed $18k for Softimage3d Extreme a few years ago when Softimage was owned by Microsoft. Then Avid bought it from Microsoft and development almost ceased for a couple of years. During this lull, my friend was chucking out $2k a year for "maintenance" and some other upgrade fees to his "Value-added" retailer. He's a solo medical illustrator like myself and that really stressed him beyond belief. You wouldn't believe the screamin' and cussin' goin' on on their forums.

It's all relative ... myself, I don't get too stressed out because NT hasn't asked us to pay a "maintenance" fee these past two years. It's just that development is taking a little longer than usual and this stuff sometimes happens ... even to the "big-budget" programs like Soft.

Important bulletin ... <beep, beep, beep>
Tropical Storm "Lightwave" has been upgraded to a category 5 Hurricane and has just passed Cuba ... <beep, beep, beep>

Shhhh... can you hear that? ... me neither ... must be the "quiet before the storm".

Stranahan
07-25-2003, 05:37 PM
Good point, Gary...

Some news - I mentioned before that I'd post a modeler list when I could, and it's 6:33pm Texas time - and I still can't. This probably means that there won't be any Modeler annoucements for SIGGRAPH, either.

Or, there might be.

There are a number of things underway for Modeler 8.0, but there are some technical and busiess related issues that need to be worked out, and if they aren't worked out now they won't be by Tuesday, I don't think. That may mean waiting another couple of weeks for more Modeler info. Meantime, there's plenty of Layout news and we'll update you on Modeler as soon as we can.

By the way - just to be clear - none of these issues relate in any way to ownership of the Modeler code or any other big picture concern. This is smaller stuff. Patience, please.

phrick
07-25-2003, 07:08 PM
Could it be that the "delay" has to do with SDS edge weighting and Pixar patents? :)

SLAYER
07-25-2003, 11:56 PM
[QUOTE]Originally posted by Stranahan
[B]Good point, Gary...

Some news - I mentioned before that I'd post a modeler list when I could, and it's 6:33pm Texas time - and I still can't. This probably means that there won't be any Modeler annoucements for SIGGRAPH, either.

Or, there might be.

There are a number of things underway for Modeler 8.0, but there are some technical and busiess related issues that need to be worked out, and if they aren't worked out now they won't be by Tuesday, I don't think. That may mean waiting another couple of weeks for more Modeler info. Meantime, there's plenty of Layout news and we'll update you on Modeler as soon as we can.

Awww... man!
When do we get the list? I have not slept in four days waiting for it.
Could it be because Newtek realized that my two simple requests could be made quickly and are being implemented now?
See them here:

http://vbulletin.newtek.com/showthread.php?threadid=8490

Nemoid
07-26-2003, 02:11 AM
Considering how Lw was born, ,like two applivcations that were
put together, explain well how difficult can be make them working together in a smooth way .

The "error" was at the base with the idea of developing 2 app instead of one.
this being said these 2 apps are so good that can work together to get the job done still now.

integration, or better a new structure with one app, will be useful in the future though because this can solve the issue deriving from the modeler/layout separation automatically, at the base.

and i think its easier build somth new than adjust what we have now, in these conditions.

also, from a programming and developing point of view, now Newtek have to project tools for layout and similar tools for modeler because of the separation

its a double work!!!

Putting a camera in modeler can be done, but its unrealistic. and this its only an example.
its clear that every package now have this structure and its normal too( why creating two apps instead of one?)

Good tools for Layout are coming now, and other very good tools to enhance working in modeler will arrive soon. so I have to Thank people at Newtek, because they're doing a great job now.
Lw still is a good app with very strong points on workflow, modelling and many other things.

but from this year, they have the time to build a Lw evolution, a Lw high end new generation based on Lw experience.

this doen't means the current version of Lw have to die. on the contrary its very good having such an app for video , Tv and still images-print production.

talking about the workflow in some sort of new Lw evolution,

the fact of working in some compartments like modelling, animating etc can be done however, its an interface task. simply when you are in modelling, an interface full of tools will appear,if u want, to organize and concentrate on your work, with the possibility of saving the object, or the whole scene .
the fact of moving points will be automatically solved because you will be allowed to use all modeler's tools to work with all elements in animation. layout will have snaps, because modeler and layout will be the same etc.
really, the list of such an integration could be very long and long.

the advantages are so huge that I'd have no exitation on doing this.

obviously i don't expect this things from 8, i expect this from Newtek for the future. I love the Lw philosophy and world so much that I hope this would be done.

a 3D app must be a tool. and must be both easy to use (and Lw currently is ) flexible and powerfull at the same time. tools must be created for animators not programmers. we are artists, not
code writers. thinking on this, its a great opportunity being able to create new tools wich will be more naturaland logic from an animator point of view.

the key points are user friendly tools, interactivity in tools , prewiews, real time , accurate open gl implementation, flexibility and logic in the organization of tools, complete possibility of customization (UI and elements), strong script language.

sailor
07-26-2003, 03:28 AM
Nemoid,

You said in a much bettre english what i wanted to say...the ONLY thing that disppointes me is "not this time in KW 8 but probably in the future" because this has already been said mmm 3 years ago? and this is why some LW users are gettin nervous...

easy to understand why...

cheers

please don't let Lightwave be Lightweight

Dodgy
07-26-2003, 03:47 AM
I was going to post a riposte to all those people who think maya is so superior to LW, but now I really can't be asked. Just try 'view selected' on a complex object, and then painting weights... You paint all over the hidden polys. Not a good design I would have thought. That's just one of the many ways maya's admittedly powerful feature list is crippled by day to day stupidity.
I use it day in and day out so I know all it's little fun packed features, and it doesn't make me go out and sing it's praises. It's okay, but it and LW are about the same. LW for me is just so much faster at the simple things, that you do all the time, that you have time to think about the complex things (which might be easier in maya, but take a long time to get to because you're faffing with the supposedly 'simple' things).

With the improvements in just listed so far for 8, I think it fully justifies the upgrade price. I am there.

Nemoid
07-26-2003, 04:11 AM
Yap, i know this. its certain that Nt had a strange attitude in the past regarding Lw evolutions. i'm not agaist no one who worked there, but they put some tools not completely developed and not well integrated with the core of the app in the past.

think to sock monkey, or skyracer for example...or skelegon wich were nor smoothly integrated with layout.

it was like a sort of not serious attitude.

if they reworked Lw for an integration at the time of 6 release, now we woulb be in a great adcantage against othe apps.
instead now we have to wait. this is not complaining this is reality.

now i see they want to work seriously,with the community too
this is great and i sincerely hope this behaviour is not caused by some fear rather than a sincere attitude.
if all is true, then i am optimistic about a bright future of Lw and newtek.

ithink great peole like Proton, Lee and others understand well
these things and i find them sincere and honest.

I say these things because if an evolution will not come in the future then i see Lw in danger; there are several mid level apps wich can do great things and become superior to Lw.
think to the rapid and smart evolution of C4D, for example..

also, there is the Lux "affair" wich is a competitor, so it will be clearly another app.
Lux exploited the Lw name to get users interested in a sort of awful way i think, not completely honest. they stopped Nt with their misleading campaign about Lw copyrights and so on. Nt lost other time , while they were developing a new app.

but i don't want to fear anyone with my statements.
Newtek is doing well now and i think after Siggraph
a r-evolution will start.

thx for my english ebven if i find it crap.
I am italian, and one of the few proud to be it.:)

Karmacop
07-26-2003, 04:55 AM
The way you see lightwave integrated, as one app where you flip between modeler and lightwave like we do currently is I feel the best option. I do like lightwave as two programs though.

Id lightwave was re-written from the ground up for 6 as a single program it would have taken them much much longer to update lightwave. It wouldn't have been financially viable for them. They made it so merging them into one app when the time comes will be easier though. Alot of the modeler and layout actions are in seperate dlls to the main executable, so (as far as I can tell) layuot could use modelers move tool if it wanted, it just couldn't actually do anything with it at the moment because although layout can see it and could load it etc, it doesn't currently understand what to do with the tool.

I think my main point is, I'd hate to see lightwave integrated like max is .. yuck :p

Nemoid
07-26-2003, 06:16 AM
Lw must be integrated... in the Lw way IMO.

I personally would like to see a main app, divided in some sort of compartment as a out of the box choice e.g. modelling. texturing , animating etc, to avoid confusion and not to cause a cluttered interface.
writings in the buttons like now for sure (I hate to have millions of icons to remeber what they mean ) maybe the possibility to have icons if someone really wants them.

obviously the compartments will be only the surface of one app, so u see, no real division between them, only a way to organize your inteface.
then the possibility of building your own inteface if you want and memorize layouts of it, keyable.

in this way you will have many possibility to work, even choose what tools you want to see.

but there are many things more important than these, wich can be made also in the current version.

for example i rig a character, then i find that the rigging was good for some movement, but now i want to refine my rough animation and this require some adjustment.

well, if i have some sort of history in all tools, i could simply retouch bones position or weight maps or joints to fit better.the animation changes smoothly with the new settings and i can save it as a second possibility etc.
true that i can project different rigs for every phase, but a thing like I talked allows me to refine my work if I need.or experiment new solutions.

to do these things, its not necessary to copy the way Maya or XSI or other app does them but find an own solution, wich can be even better, test it and also try to find the better way for a speedy workflow. a few clicks and done.
the philosophy must be :really its so simple doing these things in Lw? yes, its SO simple!:)
for example look now phantom points in modeler sub-ds:great tool!! a Maya user would look and his jaw fall down. these are the kinda tools i'm talking about.

see the advantages?

Limbus
07-26-2003, 06:45 AM
Originally posted by Karmacop

I think my main point is, I'd hate to see lightwave integrated like max is .. yuck :p

I would love to see LW integrated like XSI. Press 1, 2, 3 and 4 to switch between Model, Animate, Render and Animate Menus. Each has its own color and menuitmes so the mneus dont get cluttered with everything like in max.

Florian

Elmar Moelzer
07-26-2003, 06:59 AM
You know, I havent had the chance to play with XSi yet, but I have been using 3ds3 and various versions of MAX professionally before, as well as SI 3.8 for a few days. All of these made me praise LW for being two separate apps and made me very sceptical about integration.
CU
Elmar

Limbus
07-26-2003, 07:24 AM
Originally posted by Elmar Moelzer
You know, I havent had the chance to play with XSi yet, but I have been using 3ds3 and various versions of MAX professionally before, as well as SI 3.8 for a few days. All of these made me praise LW for being two separate apps and made me very sceptical about integration.
CU
Elmar

I dont like MAX either. Its mostly because of the icon based and very cluttered interface. Most icon cant tell what the do.

The seperation of the different tools in one app in XSI is very nice. No cluttered interface but also no difference between the different menus. I just spend some time with the XCSI 3.0 Experience Version and did some of the beginner tutorials. It seemed to me, that Softimage has put lots of thought into workflow.

Right now I see no benefit from having two apps. It works but it could be better.

Florian

Karmacop
07-26-2003, 08:00 AM
Yeah, XSI is nice. It's very much like lightwave now except in one program. The two programs look very similar but do two different thigns. Nice :cool:

faulknermano
07-26-2003, 08:06 AM
Originally posted by Dodgy
I was going to post a riposte to all those people who think maya is so superior to LW, but now I really can't be asked. Just try 'view selected' on a complex object, and then painting weights... You paint all over the hidden polys. Not a good design I would have thought. That's just one of the many ways maya's admittedly powerful feature list is crippled by day to day stupidity.
I use it day in and day out so I know all it's little fun packed features, and it doesn't make me go out and sing it's praises. It's okay, but it and LW are about the same. LW for me is just so much faster at the simple things, that you do all the time, that you have time to think about the complex things (which might be easier in maya, but take a long time to get to because you're faffing with the supposedly 'simple' things).

hey dodgy, you aint out of that maya-angst yet? hehe :D

i concur with what you have said.

but of course, the less i think about the software, a better artist i can become.

sailor
07-26-2003, 08:57 AM
Karmacop,

i really think that for the sake of construcive critics we should go deeper than just a "surface" evaluation of the pros and cons of software...as i already stated in other threads XSI and LW has VERY little in common...the only thing that someone could think they have in common is the text based interface...and that is all...

Nothing in XSI is done the same way as in LW... XSI has History, NURBS, Cameras in modler and even the Workflow is totally different etc..etc... is really "easy" to say that XSI and LW are similar while they are not AT ALL...

If you just stop to the way the interface looks (not even the way the interface works!) then for sure LW and XSI are the same :p

is like saying that Maserati and Ferrari are the same because both are italians...how fool will you sound if you were talking to a mechanic?

:)

Karmacop
07-26-2003, 10:05 AM
Sailor, that's all I was trying to compare really .. If modeler and layout were to be combined into one program I'd want it to look (not function) liek xsi, how the interfaces are similar between modeling and animating (like layout and modeler are at the moment) and it's not like 3DS Max were it's all in one interface. That was all :)

Nemoid
07-26-2003, 12:51 PM
I'm not so expert of XSI ,
but i heard it has not a speedy workflow and also i saw a very long feature list request !!:D also is very expensive compared to Maya.
one thing's very good it has Mental Ray implemented very well, while i Maya its not so good as in XSI.

I find interesting. the surface look of XSI though.

Dodgy
07-26-2003, 05:56 PM
Originally posted by faulknermano
hey dodgy, you aint out of that maya-angst yet? hehe :D

i concur with what you have said.

but of course, the less i think about the software, a better artist i can become.

Me??? Nah.... Well maybe a little. :)

Just had to fight with it for 2 hours trying to get it to do some simple things I set up LW to do in 20 mins....Guess I was a ickle bit frustrated :) This is why it confuses me when people go how marvelous it is. I use it every day for 3? 4 years? and still don't worship it. I just like to let people know around here that there's a reason I bought LW with my own money, and they shouldn't go all green whenever the M word is mentioned. You don't have to point out the good things to me (I know what they are!), and dredge up another M vs LW (oh no, I've done it already..... arrrgh I've succumbed!) debate. Perhaps people should stop monging on about what other packages have and make some polite feature requests. NT only have a dozen pairs of hands, and they'll put in the things that are needed urgently, (although everyone has their own opinion of what those are!) and we just have to hope they pick one of our pet mongs. Lots of things can be done with FREE plugins (that's FREE! and I've contributed to that I hope) and mostly you only need to check up on www.flay.com to see the newest useful addition or search on it for something to your taste.
GOD now I'm monging on about mongers.... I'll go to bed and wait patiently for NT to announce you don't need to unweld UVs anymore!

froggie
07-26-2003, 07:47 PM
Originally posted by Limbus
I dont like MAX either. Its mostly because of the icon based and very cluttered interface. Most icon cant tell what the do.


er excuse me but max have text buttons for most of his tools, only a few icons at the top and icons IF you want to use them... and once you shortcuted it to death (as you can do shortcuts like t to move in viewport and t to move points in unwrap for example, it's easy to make millions of shortcuts) you don't have to stumble across any button not icons.

Another strong point of max is customisation, if you want to build you own LW-like layout, you can...as you can create new toolbars, new buttons and customize them text based. You should mess around in the program a bit before disliking it. saying that max is icon based is a false statement.


Originally posted by Elmar Moelzer
You know, I havent had the chance to play with XSi yet, but I have been using 3ds3 and various versions of MAX professionally before, as well as SI 3.8 for a few days. All of these made me praise LW for being two separate apps and made me very sceptical about integration.
CU
Elmar

there is like millions of issues about LW not being a sigle application. Ask anyone who use Maya, XSI, max and have a stack or history, you'll see what i mean. If you don't see the advantage of this well allright...heh. Ignorance is bliss.

faulknermano
07-26-2003, 11:30 PM
Originally posted by froggie


there is like millions of issues about LW not being a sigle application. Ask anyone who use Maya, XSI, max and have a stack or history, you'll see what i mean. If you don't see the advantage of this well allright...heh. Ignorance is bliss.

yes, in fact, there are issues with the separation.

elmar, from what he says, already has professional experience with max. so he doesnt have to ask anyone. based on that, his opinion isnt ignorant.

---

i know maya, i work with it in a professional capacity and i know the advantages. but i also know the advantages of separation.

Limbus
07-27-2003, 03:04 AM
Originally posted by froggie
er excuse me but max have text buttons for most of his tools, only a few icons at the top and icons IF you want to use them... and once you shortcuted it to death (as you can do shortcuts like t to move in viewport and t to move points in unwrap for example, it's easy to make millions of shortcuts) you don't have to stumble across any button not icons.


I have 27 Icons just at the top and that does not even include stuff like the blur plugins or Meshtools. On the right menu are even more and if I open something like Track View there are still more. Most of them dont tell you right away what they will do.

Sure I can shortcut everything but shortcuts only make sense for functions I use so often that I can remember the shortcut. And this is certainly not very beginner friendly.

Florian

stone
07-27-2003, 03:21 AM
Originally posted by froggie
[..]max have text buttons for most of his tools, only a few icons at the top and icons IF you want to use them... [..]

first off, its more than a few. secondly, there can hardly be any doubt that the max ui is the worst across the line of 3d apps. its extremly slow, cramped, cluttered and heavy to work with.

every command takes atleast three mouseclicks and a dozen of folding/unfolding groups.

also you cant guess how to do anything. the icosn doesn't really give away what their function is, and its not logically organized. the result being an extreme amount of using the help file to do even simple things when you are new at max.

surely an interface to stay away from.



Originally posted by froggie
there is like millions of issues about LW not being a sigle application. Ask anyone who use Maya, XSI, max and have a stack or history, you'll see what i mean.

there are also good things about being seperated, and in many ways a simpler and more effective interface is one of them. im a modeler and never start layout, so obviously the seperation it perfect for me.



Originally posted by froggie
If you don't see the advantage of this well allright...heh. Ignorance is bliss.

for some reason it seems to me that you are the ignorant one. just because all the other applications does it, doesnt mean they are right at doing so or any better than lightwave.

sure lightwave is different, but thats a strength rather than a weakness.

/stone

Karmacop
07-27-2003, 04:52 AM
Another thing I hate about 3ds max is that when it was popular in the gaming industry last decade all the game tools of the time used similar interfaces, degrading the quality of interfaces everywhere :p

Nemoid
07-27-2003, 05:27 AM
Originally posted by stone

there are also good things about being seperated, and in many ways a simpler and more effective interface is one of them. im a modeler and never start layout, so obviously the seperation it perfect for me.

really, I don't see any advantages of having separate apps
at all. if u have an organized inteface, with tabs that brings u to different compartments organized like modeler or layout if u want u will have quite the same interfaces but the app will be one integrated app.
if u also have the possibility to organize your UI like u want u can also mix them and save different layout for example.
in this way you will have flexibility, power, organization.

the only adcvantage i see can be for pure modelers wich do only this, but its a small advantage compared to that of an integrated app.



for some reason it seems to me that you are the ignorant one. just because all the other applications does it, doesnt mean they are right at doing so or any better than lightwave.

sure lightwave is different, but thats a strength rather than a weakness.

/stone [/B]

here u can be quite right. there is no reason to imitate other apps.
even if the app have to be one, the structure can be different and even better.

the speedy workflow of current Lw have to be mantained and enhanced if possible.

things have to be changed to get better, not worst.:)

Limbus
07-27-2003, 05:55 AM
Originally posted by stone
there are also good things about being seperated, and in many ways a simpler and more effective interface is one of them. im a modeler and never start layout, so obviously the seperation it perfect for me.

What are the advantages from seperate app's compared to a switchable GUI like XSI's? I only see (and experience) problems from the separation.

Florian

sailor
07-27-2003, 05:57 AM
the problem here is some being too passionate and giving us mixed arguments...it is just a matter of basic logic in here...how can some give an argument like "dont make it integrated like MAX "
i mean ONE thing is being integrated ANOTHER is being Max...the same goes for the Icons example...what is the relation between icons based interface and integration? there is none...an there we go counting the number of icons...is this the world championship of how to sidetrack a thread or what?
I mean the strategy of those against integration is always the same....Max is integrated so gosh dont make it Max ! huh? and yes if you want an extra argument Max has icons so please dont make it Max...and then comes the final argument "we are different (read we are at the leading edge of technology)" so we are right....nobody can understand us...
hopefully NT will be clever than that because otherwise LW will as someone stated already head the way of the dinosaurs...
NT can come with their "own" way of integrating things...i dont care as long as all this "suckigons" and horrible bandaids disappears...
I and many others need to have for instance a cam in modeler...i dont care how they fix this as long as this is fixed...but because there are some others issues to solve i'm pretty sure that integration will solve all this...and for those that bring the XSI argument please go beyons the surface and join me to ask for History (as in XSI) or Nurbs....(now you cant say i always speak about Maya huh?...

McLeft
07-27-2003, 06:03 AM
I see only one advantage of having modeler and layout separated. Ability to edit object in it's local space any time. But with Maya, XSI, Max you can do exactly same thing - use separate scene for your object and edit it in it's local space any time and it will get updated in your "layout" scene. And you have a choice to do so or not.

Limbus
07-27-2003, 06:11 AM
Originally posted by sailor
the problem here is some being too passionate and giving us mixed arguments...it is just a matter of basic logic in here...how can some give an argument like "dont make it integrated like MAX "
i mean ONE thing is being integrated ANOTHER is being Max...the same goes for the Icons example...what is the relation between icons based interface and integration?
there is none...an there we go counting the number of icons...is this the world championship of how to sidetrack a thread or what?
I mean the strategy of those against integration is always the same....Max is integrated so gosh dont make it Max ! huh? and yes if you want an extra argument Max has icons so please dont make it Max...


Where did I say anything against integration??

:confused:

sailor
07-27-2003, 06:26 AM
dont feel concerned Limbus i was talking in general ...not about ya

:)

Original1
07-27-2003, 07:07 AM
Originally posted by Yog
Lee, in this I have to agree with you 100%
Lightwave is probably the best value for money application at this level (and the LW8+DFX+ was way beyond good value).

It is one of the reasons I haven't gone over to MAX full time (that and the Modeler tools + plug-ins :D ). I don't really trust Discreet and their upgrade policy is abysmal (miss one upgrade and pay double next time, and no free ver x.5 releases with new features).

It's just a little frustrating that areas that Lightwave excell at seem to go into development hibernation for years at a time.

I've worked in shops that use both MAX and Lightwave.

I can only go by observation since Lightwave is my hobby (since version 5.0) but Max seemed to crash a lot. Dedicated Max Users complain about its workflow and some of the guys who made the switch from modelling in Max to Lightwave Modeller prefer Modeller ( i know 3 or 4 freelance guys who had to do this)
some shops here in the UK use Lightwave because of cost 2 seats Lightwave = 1 seat Max.

Good work is good work whether done in Max or Lightwave

I have already ordered my 8.0 upgrade, I have not had time to contribute to the disscussion about what improvements i would like to see in Lightwave, but a large number of features I asked for went into 6.0 as a result of Newtek listening.

One thing I would really like to see is a Tutorial DVD outlineing the changes and new workflows "Get up to speed with Version 8" sort of stuff. Its the one area where I think 7 went backwards was tutorials missing from the Documentation.

Whilst this may have been to allow a certain individual to make training tapes, this was a mistake for Newtek.

Not everyone has 24/7 access to the web, so a good series of walk through tutorials is an essential part of the documentation.

I hope Lightwave 8 gets that as a small addition.

PS I am really pissed off at not getting to Siggraph, party some for me boys

froggie
07-27-2003, 07:45 AM
Originally posted by Original1
I've worked in shops that use both MAX and Lightwave.

I can only go by observation since Lightwave is my hobby (since version 5.0) but Max seemed to crash a lot.

hehe can't agree more with you max is crash'o'matic =P. While that make me angry that i larned to deal with it... Hold comand is your friend. I preafer LW modeller as well, for lots of things but not for all.

I don't defend max with passion, it's just a tool, it have some flaws but overall it's not as bad as LW users sometimes may think. Of course the workflow can be better, does that make me unable to be fast in it? no.

If LW was really that great i'd have jumped to it long time ago, fact is, for game art it's far from max, sadly. Alone the unwraper is a reason to stay with max (5).

faulknermano
07-27-2003, 10:13 AM
Originally posted by McLeft
I see only one advantage of having modeler and layout separated. Ability to edit object in it's local space any time. But with Maya, XSI, Max you can do exactly same thing - use separate scene for your object and edit it in it's local space any time and it will get updated in your "layout" scene. And you have a choice to do so or not.

that's a good point mcleft.

my experience, however, is with maya 3.0, 4.0 and 4.5, and from what i know of those versions it is possible to reference a scene file into a current scene. however, i've not been able to bind bones from a referenced mesh.

i'm noting this because i find the lightwave-way separation a big advantage in terms of mid-workflow modifications - and in this case the modification is rigging (e.g. bone weights, rest positions, etc).

am i wrong; have i missed anything?

Original1
07-27-2003, 10:21 AM
Originally posted by froggie
I don't defend max with passion, it's just a tool, it have some flaws but overall it's not as bad as LW users sometimes may think. Of course the workflow can be better, does that make me unable to be fast in it? no.

If LW was really that great i'd have jumped to it long time ago, fact is, for game art it's far from max, sadly. Alone the unwraper is a reason to stay with max (5).

I couldn't agree more At the end of the day a tool is a tool, people do good work in Max and lightwave, and there are areas where all of the other packages are stronger or not, but with all or the main packages coming closer there is a need to make the next version of lightwave shine,which is why I think a number of the Lightwave community were looking for a great leap forward in LW 8.0

MAX 5 was a great leap forward for most MAX users, but I have to say that the thing that originally put me off 3D studio max was the attitude of the local Autodesk Dealer which was "well thats the price take it or leave it" wether that is still an attitude that prevails I don't know.

For me Maxs Shockwave export and link to the Havok Physics plug-ins for some of the Shockwave stuff I have had to do is one reason, some of the animators reckon Biped and the character studio stuff is better but thats a couple of grand again.

For a lot of video work I do Lightwave is still quicker, but I really feel that in areas where lightwave had the lead with HDR and render quality that lead was lost by resting on their laurels.

I really do hope that LW 8.0 is more than it has currently being touted as, a cosmetic upgrade.

What would i find useful in modeller Hmm Bolt and thread builder.

I sometimes have to visuallize Engineering Stuff and a panel that would build a bolt or nut with the correct thread for American, Metric and English Screw threads would be really useful.

Would a spline type cage/model be useful, I don't know does Sub patch do the job well enough?

Nemoid
07-27-2003, 11:08 AM
Well, i find that Lw have a good workflow in many areas, over all modelling but also surfacing.

The main area in wich they had to work was character rigging and animation. For whar concerns rigging, i think they implemented Ortho tools and they will refine them, to give us the smoother workflow possible in this area.

Probably this will cause skelegons to become a second possibility or also a way to build bones whyle in modeler, roughly to refine them in layout. This seems to me a good enhancement. Points moving in layout will allow us to animate deformations and more, so that
We will have a boost in animation as well. The process at last seems that to improve animation more and more.
I like the fact that this is thought for animators indeed i see that many good fellows like Proton and Splinegod partecipated to the process of developing these ideas, and i think we will see in the next future great improvements that will make Lw[8] and beyond a must have indeed.

The problem of the Lw structure i talk always about regards not the fact of Lw being cool now.
Lw IS cool right now and these enhancements and the work wich Nt is doing is very good.
I talk of Lw structure thinking at the future and at the competition that there is surely, wich brings other apps grow and grow and also being very respected from high production to low production.

Here in Italy for example, when u say you work in Lw people take you for an non professional artist sort like a home hobbist.they doesnít know Lw at all in most cases. Seriously, this make me laugh because i know that isnt like this, and i think someone have to judge results instead of the tools u use, but here and in many places. its not like that.

So, the future of lightwave will be good starting from a solid and huge structure wich can grow and grow with not so bad technical issues. When something needs to be implemented, simply they can implement it in no time.
This implies a rewrite. Because with a great work of planning an open and flexible structure things will be more easy for newtek. And this imply a research wich can bring great solutions to make the work of 3D artists easy to concentrate in creativity and not in the app itself.


In these years i see that all the 3D softwares are in some way not so artist friendly.with tools really thought for animators. Expecially in animation i see new apps like MB or Animanium wich bring new ways to make more easy animators work. Why? Simple. Standard apps are not SO good in that area. They are complex.

So u see , Newtek have a great possibility with Lightwave, thinking in this way. They could really create a new revolutionary app doing so, because they have a fantastic starting point, and people wich created huge plugins that can be part of such a development. Some of the best artins allaround are Lw artist as well sothey can give many ideas and test them.

There is a great difference between enhancing smth with many problems and task to solve
and create , from a good starting point an astonishing new tool.

Elmar Moelzer
07-27-2003, 11:29 AM
Well I have used that scene- referncing in MAX before. We used it during a large project, so we could split up tasks better between different people.
It was terrible really. I would not want to see anything like that in LW. I really like the way we can do whatever we want to an object in Layout and still have it perfectly layed out in Modeler. This is one big strength of separation for me and I really want to keep that even in an integrated LW.
So we probably should define separation or integration a bit more, shall we?

1. Separation of Objects and scenes into different files. I really like that one. To me this makes a lot of sense and it helps with reusing objects in other projects.
This is a must keep in my opinion!
I could imagine a 3rd fileformat that packs the entire objects, scenes and images into a single file ( a bit like a zip- file or the pack- files of games like quake). However it should be possible to unpack it at any time to have the original files again for editing

2. The separation of UIs. I want to keep them as separated as possible. Animation has nothing to do with modeling and the other way round.
Keep the interfaces as clean as possible. I cant help the feeling that they could be cleaned up already, even now where they are separate apps, now imagine all that in one interface, this would be a mess! I also want to keep the perfectly layed out objects in Modeler. The way this is done in MAX is not acceptable for me.

3. The separation of apps on the programming- level. AKA make it one exe- file and have file- access from both parts of LW.
Here I am not as a strict a separatist as with points 1 and 2.
Having both apps in one exe- file is maybe the best compromise. Both could access the same data and the same tools.
However it is very important for me that the current memory- friendlyness of the separate apps is maintained even if they are merged into a single program.

How this could be done, I have no idea, but it I am certain that this would not be easy to do and if one is not very careful with that, LW could quickly exceed MAX with its startup- times and memory- consumption.
One would have to be very careful then and I think that things could get a lot more complicated for the dev- team.

The other thing is that to keep the code clean and readable this would require the use of C++ instead of C, at least IMHO.
Otherwise it could quickly become more of a mess than it already is (and messing in the core would affect both parts).
As the use of C++ would be ineviteable, it would mean a bit slower code over all (only little slower though) and it would mean that LW would have to be rewritten from ground up.
This would mean a very long time until that release (like 2 or three years).
Keep all that in your mind during that discussion.
CU
Elmar

Original1
07-27-2003, 11:35 AM
Originally posted by Nemoid
.

Here in Italy for example, when u say you work in Lw people take you for an non professional artist sort like a home hobbist.




Home Hobbyist Hmm

Jimmy Neutron

R2D2 in the the some sections of Clone Wars

In the UK, in the hands of people like Andy Bishop of Darkside Animations its a tool for doing Tons of TV work
(latest trick was blowing up Sun Hill police station in an episode the Bill)

All the modeling for Annanova by DAG was done in Lightwave

and framestore modeller stuart penn

http://www.newtek-europe.com/uk/community/lightwave/penn/penn_1.html


Babylon 5 (though most of that was done in LW 4 using Amigas and the original toaster)

Elmar Moelzer
07-27-2003, 11:50 AM
Hey Nemoid!

I know what you are talking about (I am just a few hundred kilometers north of your position (Austria).
Europe is badly infected with MAX- users everywhere and they think they are soo pro. All I can do is laugh into their face ;)
I think they would be happy if their projects- list was half as long as that one (and this is not even complete):

http://adh.best.vwh.net/lwproj.html

CU
Elmar

sailor
07-27-2003, 12:49 PM
Geez elmar :p

"Europe is badly infected with MAX- users "

I remember a little austrian fella with a mustache that found Europe infested with a lot of things...

ok..ok...it was a bad joke but i couldnt help it :p

PS i'm not a Max user so i dont care about the Max comments...i think lots of your points are very interesting like memory use or stuff like that...i find your stetment like modeling an animation not being the same thing a little radical because there are a lot of things doable at the point level or spline level very easy to use in an integrated app (of course once LW 8 will be out you will be telling everybody how cool this is without of course mentioning that this was doable years ago in an integrated application)...i once had to "model" a wall with some bricks that had fallen from it...In maya it took few seconds i just modeled one brick, cloned it and run a hard bodies dynamic simulation and voila...the bricks were dispatched on the floor in a realistic way and with no effort...same goes for some clothing on a statue...run the soft bodies and then tweak the geometry from there...
:)

Dodgy
07-27-2003, 01:14 PM
Stacks are all very well if you can use them. Being in the game industry, we can't use the stack in Maya, everything has to be flattened. This means if you want to do a modification to a mesh which has been boned and weighted, you have
1/un skin it
2/flatten the mesh
3/re-weight it

The re-weighting is the time consumer (especially if you have a complex mesh. Have I gone on and on about hidden polys and their weight painting tools? Oh yeah!). With LW, you can go back and modify the mesh as much as you want, and you only have to modify the new vertices weight, or sometimes not even that as it interpolates between the vertices a new vertex is between... Lovely jubbly!

sailor
07-27-2003, 01:19 PM
errr...there is no modifier stack in Maya what you talking about? the modifier stack is in Max...unless you are talking about history?

Elmar Moelzer
07-27-2003, 01:35 PM
Sailor, yeah I know about that guy. I did not think about his ways of treating those infections though. I was actually thinking more about enlightening the people you know...
;)
I stick with my comment that modeling and animation are not the same thing. Point- level- animation has little to do with modeling IMHO, as modeling is much more than just moving points around.
I like the idea that I can move points of my model in Layout without touching the original object- file, which will still be in its original state and perfectly layed out in Modeler, when I go back to reedit it.
CU
Elmar

sailor
07-27-2003, 02:06 PM
Elmar,

yep well i suppose that we are now talking about personalpreferences...ant that is well..personal :)

i find cool the idea of objects and scenes separated...the real question is if to have these we need to keep modeler and Layout separated...subtle question no? ;)

and still stick to my rigid bodies modeling example...i had to model a lot of "ruins" and to break windows for instance i used shatter and dynamics the same for the walls and bricks example...if you look carefuly you can use many animation tools for modeling...another example the good old phone cord thingie...a breeze to do in Maya thankto: History and integration....

and for the little story i have to tell ya how i came to work with Maya while i was considered in production as a LW modeler integrist...one day i had to model a prop matching a focal lens and points captured with a Leica device...the whole think existed as locators and a camera in Maya...(nulls if you prefer) i also had some shots that were taken while they were usng the Leicas...that they i had to close modeler to open Maya...

as a conclusion you can model with animation tools in Maya in at least (my personal experience) the following tools

FFD
Animation snapshots
Rigid and soft dynamics
Cloth

there are certainly many other creative ways to do so...

Nemoid
07-27-2003, 04:21 PM
Elmar i agree about your thoughts about integration.

in fact i was talking witha similar idea in mind.

Lets imagine to have one app, with different compartments, but common tools. compartments like modeler texturing rigging, animation, dynamics rendering. every compartment is an organization of your app, ok? u click in a compartment and the related interface appears.

but its not like u have closed compartments tools are in common for example move could work in animation and in modelling, rotate too etc.

this structure allows you to organize your work and only model or texture or do the whole process etc.

then a good possibility is that of saving the object, with layers and maps and bones and store it and save your scene , in different files indeed. but i think also to saving animation poses if you want and other things.

the nested compartments allow also to build a very clean interface indeed, with their tabs if needed andwith some great tools dedicated to for example modelling, just like in modeler.

actually the modeler interface could not change so much! (another great possibility woul be choosing the tools you want into a compartment and create its own layout. also being able to delete tools if you want, simply selecting them and hitting del.)

the great difference is that u have a integrated app under all this structure, (wich must not be imposed, but the base structure u can rebuild if you want.) with all the possibilities this gives.

the base interface must be organized to speed workflow to do the job done. so since i think thet if someone models its difficult that he animates modelling there is a modelling compartment.

another tip some compartment wich have unusual tool like dynamics or fx could be not loaded if you don't want, so that you have what you need in the moment for a faster workflow.

about Lw in Italy : i know perfectly what Lw can do . I enjoyed Jimmy Neutron as well as other Lw productions from Babilon 5 till now. I know the work of several good companies and artists. in Italy some good artsit is trying to do a full lenght movie too.

but producers are producers and they have money. if they're convinced that the app makes the difference how can I change their mind ? they are close minded.

also, in the work field they tend to look at the fashioned app at the moment:
"oh, Maya was used to do LOTR so it is the best app."

I personally have nothing against no app in the world. i'm studying Maya as well because i have it and i'm going to work in a company with Lw and Maya in their pipeline, and i saw also things of Max wich I found great. I always try to look at good things everywhere.

but to be little polemic I'd be very pleased to heras people say
hey, Lw was used to make (great movie here) Lw won an Oscar for visual fx so its the best!! :D

this will be possible if seriously Nt starts to invest for a bright future of our preferred app.

I know they can do it.
I hope they'll do it. :)

Karmacop
07-27-2003, 04:28 PM
Anyone that thinks you can't currently use layout tools for modeling needs to check the save menu in layout a bit better :p

sailor
07-27-2003, 04:44 PM
Karmacop,

i know how to use save transsformed in Layout....ok i give up...
you will have point manipulation in Layout in a few days and then you will be saying "gosh how could i live without it before ?" same will happen with integration and the like...
most of you have little imagination when it concerns improvement in a workflow...i suppsoe that u realized that when u save transformed (after a bone deformation for instance) your object is freezed? so good luck with point manipulation then...

If you prefer to go back and forth between modeler and Layout that is your prob...there will always be some reactionary people to progress and improvement...and the fear of improvement is the main obstacle to LW evolution...some (not you Karmacop) even mixes modifier stack in Max and history in Maya and forget that you can simply turn off anyways this option and there you have your old plain LW style modeling...you are so in a hurry to find a good reason not for things to change...what a conservative mind my friends...

McLeft
07-27-2003, 05:55 PM
"...modeling and animation are not the same thing..."
This probably could be true if your work is character animation... but when you working for TV it is not. TV packaging requires a lot of "magic"/abstract stuff which easily can be created with animating modeling process...
Modeling for "Camera mapping" (Front projection) is a pain when you have projection in layout and geometry in modeler.
Simple animation task - filling transparent complex shaped vessel with water and with waves on water surface... what i would use in other packages is simple subdivided cube with waves displacement map moving along Y axis + intersection boolean with vessels inner shape.

Actually there are many tasks which get too complex to perfom because of separation.

Dodgy
07-27-2003, 06:10 PM
In a word Sailor... Balls :)

I was using the term stack in case you didn't know what history was. Different terms for VIRTUALLY the same thing (note the virtually there!) I am not confused, nor I am in any way against progress, I'm just saying that implementations have to be done right. For instance, the implementation of hidden polys is maya is a right load of rubbish. In maya the history isn't the be all and end all, it can be very useful in some circumstances.

In LW at the moment you can go into modeller and modify a section, having the rest of your object all hidden, just in the view you want, and then you can go into layout and see the effect on the mesh after it's been deformed, boned or whatever.
With Maya you can't do that, you'd have to set your bones off, hide any geometry in the way, modify your mesh, unhide everything, turn your bones back on, see what happened and repeat. THEN you'd have to delete by type history (for games), which would 'flatten' the history, (because even if you have history off, if you edit the mesh after binding, it adds in mesh edit nodes, which you don't want, hence turning off history..), but this detaches the bones from the mesh. So then you have to reweight. How useful. One of the many ways in which substance screws up good ideas in maya. LW has weights, but they're done in a fashion so that you can cut your mesh up as much as you want and you only have to weight the new vertices, which already have weights if they're been created by old geometry.

Most of the people I've talked to with max say they have to collapse the stack every few ops to keep it running at a decent speed. Cinema 4d does an interesting method, and it's quite fast too, but again it has it's limitations.

I like the fact in LW you can go with one click, back and forth between two different environments, specially designed for particular jobs, with the mesh set up (bits hidden, un-touched by deformations etc) in ways which are useful . They COULD be integrated into one package, and I've suggested ways to do this and keep this useful structure (and extending this idea even more), very similar to what Nemoid suggested.

This would take a lot of work to get right, and it's not going to get done by saying 'people with little imagination' are holding us back. It's insulting to everyone who prefers this useful feature of LW, and who have some very good reasons for wanting this functionality kept. (note I didn't say 'want two programs kept seperate' )

Karmacop
07-27-2003, 07:54 PM
EDIT: Damn .. delete my double post someone .. please? :)

Karmacop
07-27-2003, 07:55 PM
Sailor, I'm all for improvements, I just don't see how you can say you can't use animation tools for modeling. You can stick bones done a phone cord or run simulations on a brick wall and cloth. I haven't used maya for more than a few hours so I'm not sure how different it is doing the same thing in both programs. The point is, Lightwave can do it. Sorry if I aggravated you, I didn't mean to :(

hrgiger
07-27-2003, 10:09 PM
I have to take issue with Sailor suggesting that we are against innovation or that we lack imagination, or even that we fear improvements in Lightwave because we're not sitting here demanding full integration of the program. As I've said, I'm not against integration, but I've known for a while now not to expect it for 8. If you seem to remember, there was this little Lux debate going on for a while which just recently released Newtek's hands to move forward on Lightwave not to mention bringing in new talent. Give it some time. 8 is bring about some changes which will address some of the concerns of those who want integration, having point manipulation in Layout as well as Skelegon functionability for bones in Layout. It's all a process. No matter how long it takes for integration to occur (if it ever does), I'm just happy to see the gap between the two programs being narrowed with each release.

sailor
07-28-2003, 03:12 AM
To everybody :)

We fin,ally are speaking the same language then...

Karmacop i wasnt saying that animation and modeling is not the same ...it was Elmar saying that! and me saying the opposite! (sorry if my english is that bad that you didnt get my point :)...i am just asking for MORE integration between animation and modeling and then you said i had to know better how animation and modeling can be used in LW....nevermind :)

Hrgiger i wasnt talking about you at all...but if you feel concerned :) the only personal reply on my post was to Karmacop :)

as a final point i DO agree that History isnt EVERYTHING nor INTEGRATION i'm not saying put those in LW and never update the software again...there are issues about history but also benefits...i only think that there are more benefits than issues...and now you see that this is common language with any progress the mankind searchs...always pros and cons but sometimes the benfits worth it...
and sorry if "little imagination" insulted you....by "little imagination i was talking in general about people that will in a few days (thanks NT) have point manipulation (that has been asked for hey YEARS now) and during those years some people (that lack of imagination i reapeat but maybe not you) kept saying "what for?"

so all this point are "general" for some fanatic attitude out there...sorry if i sounded personal guys...


i never mean to make a war application...i just want to take what looks great for me in other apps...NT can implement them the way they like dont care...but you will never read from me stuff like "dont make it Max" or "LW is LW" i rather ask (and this is what i do actually) for the cool things in LW to be in Maya for instance...

and Dodgy...i agree 100 % with the fact that LW way of manipulating hidden geometry is great...that is a good point really...and never noticed that beacuse i'm more of a modeler with Maya...but then believe me that History isnt everything but as a modeler i find it VERY handy in lots of situations...the same goes for a Nurbstoolset that i usually use also for a Polygon mesh Output...eventhough i dont use this everyday it is nice to have them and i'm sure some will use them more often...

Pavlov
07-28-2003, 03:24 AM
Hi,
i don't agree with this...
i'm all for a total integration because of my needings; seeing LW playing a *so* slow catch-up, while other packages are 3 years ahead (speaking of core-architecture) is not so funny.
If LW was the only package i could agree with you.
But we are into a market; the goodness of a tool is not absolute, but relative to all other tools around. From this POV, LW is too much beyond every other software, so i dont know how long i'll be sitting here waiting, and so will a bunch of other users.

Paolo Zambrini

colkai
07-28-2003, 05:08 AM
Well
I've said it afore, an I'll say it again.
What the choice of programs means to me is that I don't need a super-computer to run LW.
Before anyone shouts about how cheap computers are, we don't all have a couple of thousand to buy a computer when we do this for a hobby. The amount of repairs I could have done around the house for 2k precludes the missus letting me spend that on a new PC. ;) (I know, ....I've tried :D)
I like that I don't need WinXP with 1.5Gb of RAM and 1GB of hard-disk space with a graphics card at 'who-knows-what' rez with 'how-much???' memory just to load the damn thing up! :p

Just because a program has a different outlook, doesn't mean it is behind the times. Povray is still text based, but some of its features are considered "high-end" by other products and it had htem long before some other software. It's just borne of a different parent is all.
By the looks of LW8 sneak peeks, integration or no, it's gonna be a seriously powerful upgrade. I'll take that over joing the 2 programs anyday ta very much :D :D :D

Original1
07-28-2003, 05:50 AM
Originally posted by Pavlov
Hi,
i don't agree with this...
i'm all for a total integration because of my needings; seeing LW playing a *so* slow catch-up, while other packages are 3 years ahead (speaking of core-architecture) is not so funny.
If LW was the only package i could agree with you.
But we are into a market; the goodness of a tool is not absolute, but relative to all other tools around. From this POV, LW is too much beyond every other software, so i dont know how long i'll be sitting here waiting, and so will a bunch of other users.

Paolo Zambrini


There is a very strong reason for not intergrating and it is this it makes the interface less cluttered and more managable,also it might mean a fundamental change to the scene file which is just text whilst the object is a binary file. What the ramifications are for reworking the program is I dont know, but it might have an impact on cross platform rendering.

From a personal point of view I would perfer to see a 64-bit version for OSX + Linux that will run on 64 bit processors so i can put it on a dual Opteron Box or a Dual G5 Box but render on a linux based render farm. I would also like to see VideoToaster running under the same two enviroments so i can get away from the microsoft monopoly which is going to take them until 2005 to produce a 64 bit operating system.

Pavlov
07-28-2003, 06:00 AM
Hi Colkay,

___
Just because a program has a different outlook, doesn't mean it is behind the times.
___

it's not a matter of look and interface. The matter is that LW is, without any doubt, very outdated (speaking of architecture).
Ok, it still works and it does a good job; but it's old, and it could be far better that now.
7.5c architecture is still the same of early 90's, with small improvements like hub, some plugin classes and a few others.
All other 3D softwares has made the "jump" to OBJ-oriented cores. Remember 3SD becoming MAX, Cinema 4D evolving, Softimage becoming XSI, Power animator becoming Maya.
Come on: let's face reality, it's not a "thnik different" issue. ALL other developers cannot be that stupid... and also the monster of Florence used to think different.

___
By the looks of LW8 sneak peeks, integration or no, it's gonna be a seriously powerful upgrade.
___

Opinions. I wouldn't have seen much new features, but just a serious work on architecture. Imho it does not matter what they add on top, now; the basis requires much more attention.

Paolo Zambrini

sailor
07-28-2003, 06:06 AM
totally agree Paolo

Forza !

:)

Lightwolf
07-28-2003, 06:07 AM
Originally posted by Original1
There is a very strong reason for not intergrating and it is this it makes the interface less cluttered and more managable,also it might mean a fundamental change to the scene file which is just text whilst the object is a binary file.
Hi Original1
I think this is a common misconception in this thread...
Integration does not neccessarily mean any of the above.
Just think of it that way (on the simplest level), you're in Layout, press F12, and your current window gets replaced by the Modeler window. That would be integration on a basic level, but could already mean that both parts have access to the same images for example. This would actually use less memory than the current two app setup.
If NT plan out smartly, they would throw the Modeler and the Layout functionality in libraries, that get loaded on demand. It might even be possible to load the "master" app with a command line switch to go straight to the modeler part, or to open the Modeler part in a new window, so that the workflow would be identical to the current set-up, but from within one app.
The system ressources argument isn't that valid either imho, to the contrary. LW uses around 12-30 MB of code, all plugins included, max. The Modeler or Layout specific code is no more than 2MB, which you save if you only run one of them. As sson as you have an object open in both apps that uses a number of textures though, you'll use more memory than with a single app that only loads these textures once.
And, using shared libraries, the memory footprint of a unified app that is in Modeler mode wouldn't be higher than what Modeler currently uses (since the Layout shared library would only be loaded on demand).
Cheers,
Mike

Pavlov
07-28-2003, 06:24 AM
Hi,

____
There is a very strong reason for not intergrating and it is this it makes the interface less cluttered and more managable,
____

Not so strong. XSI is not cluttered, and integration could happen with the two modules keeping exactly the same interface, or maybe leaving the timebar at the bottom to anmate easily modeling operations.


___
also it might mean a fundamental change to the scene file which is just text whilst the object is a binary file. What the ramifications are for reworking the program is I dont know, but it might have an impact on cross platform rendering.
___

Well, this simply means that projects should be closed under 7.5 before passing to 8 (or 9, or 10, at this point...)
Again, a little utility could easily transform old scenes into new format ones.

Paolo Zambrini

sailor
07-28-2003, 06:28 AM
the clutterd interface is not as good argument either IMHO...with a little creativity there are several ways to deal with this...like in XSI or Maya...i dont find the Maya interface cluttered myself...i have little experience with Max and i do find Max menus pretty cluttered...the possibility to totally create a personal interface (Maya) allows you to load different Layouts for differnt tasks so in ends up being even less cluttered that what modeler interface is !!

colkai
07-28-2003, 06:30 AM
Pavlov,
So, if I read your reply correctly, you would forego any new features and enhancements to LW8 in favour of simply putting the two programs together as one?

Call me naive, but I doubt most LW users would be thrilled at an upgrade that provided no new functionality bar an integrated layout and modeller.

I do think integration is coming, but to do so at the expense of other features, well, I think the clamor would then be just as loud, but for different reasons.

Plus, speaking as a programmer, currently *trying* to provide and new UI to software, it is no easy feat. We would have to throw out a lot of our exiting code and write a whole new bunch just to cater for the change. That's just on the surface as well, these things usually end up going far deeper than you realise, or want! :(

For sure, after months of doing this - I think I can safely say that I'd be glad if we had just left it as it was and develop a whole new system from the ground-up. The amount of work we have put in over this would astound those not in the game. I guess its like a project client asking "whooshy but not too wooshy, you know, like `swwiissh` " ;)

Hey if things were that simple - I coulda retired years ago :p

Nemoid
07-28-2003, 06:59 AM
Well, i think we all are speaking the same language, with quite similar ideas, but saying it different after all we are different persons and some of our needs is different too.

I have nothing against people wich loves Lw like is now. and I don't think they have a small imagination at all.

at the end all of us have to work with what we get.

this being said, I don't understand why some of you have fear of integration. we all know that is difficult to make a rewrite and that we'll have to wait.
i'm optimistic , so I like considering this task from the opposite side. its difficult and requires time, ideas and research, but at the end of this process there is the possibility to see a revolutionary app.

the main fact is that this process have to start, expecially now, wich Nt is free from "Lux affair"

if I was newtek, I would consider that I have an app of a good level, wich needs a rewrite. this give me the possibility to start create the new generation, while the old will stay alive as well. like Softimage so while the time passes we will have current Lw enhanced more and more. and when the process is finished we simply will have another choice with an high end level revolutionary app.

with a good price policy one user also could start with the current version, wich as well could be selled in bundle with VT or DFX+ then if they have other needs they could upgrade, passing to the new generation. smooth!!! :D

faulknermano
07-28-2003, 08:09 AM
i think people are 'afraid' of integration because lw might inherit the bad side of integrated apps that have been mentioned here.

my concern is whether or not newtek programmers can finesse their way come integration... what if their mindset is totally different? it underlines what people here have been saying: it's all about implementation.

how come i have the feeling that IF integration does come we'll all ***** about how lousy it was implemented? :D

j3st3r
07-28-2003, 11:15 AM
Hungary is Maya infected...

Speaking of troubles with Maya...Yes, it has problems with weight editing...it`s unbelieveble stupid problem. But there are lot more advantage comparing to LW. I think if I would count all the features I like in Maya and what I dislike, the advantages should be much much higher. In LW I would do the same counting, It would be more or less equal.

For example. Adding custom attributes in Maya is easy. Creating the Set Driven Kay in Maya is also easy (few clicks). channel management is also very easy in Maya, and the viewports are much more gamedev friendly (alpha masking, wire on texture), etc. An endless list.

But I like much more LWs linear architecture...The node system of maya can make a simple FPS shoot animation into a 31 MB file...(lot of forgotten nodes).

I like LW, but I think that LW must change, evolve into a more flexible system. Modeler is absolutely the best around the world...

Looking at the plugins, LWs architecture is good. So I hope every issue will be solved, within a year...

Nemoid
07-28-2003, 12:53 PM
Originally posted by faulknermano
i think people are 'afraid' of integration because lw might inherit the bad side of integrated apps that have been mentioned here.

my concern is whether or not newtek programmers can finesse their way come integration... what if their mindset is totally different? it underlines what people here have been saying: it's all about implementation.

how come i have the feeling that IF integration does come we'll all ***** about how lousy it was implemented? :D

Well,first of all iI think thse problems can be avoided with a smart planning of the structure at the base. I see more advantages thanproblems indeed, and the probs are also more easy to fix working with a C++ code.

for the way of integration the suggestion may be rely on the community, wich is the best on the field, with very well rounded people. there are great animators working with Lw and also people wich do plugins and knows how to program. so they can have many great ideas, the only condition is thinking to the final work of the animator.

I know some great italian user for example, and the creator of Italian Lw mailing list is one of my best friends.we have good animators, that also are looking to other apps being little disappointed with Lw current structure for certain tasks.

so maybe there could be also a project list to submit at Newtek, to aid them to do this job... there are a lot of things we could do, I think.

people at Nt are great I think, and after selling Lw[8] great release, they will have some more money and start to plan the project.

Pavlov
07-28-2003, 12:57 PM
Hi,

___
[B]Pavlov,
So, if I read your reply correctly, you would forego any new features and enhancements to LW8 in favour of simply putting the two programs together as one?
___

Absolutely yes.
But dnt misunderstand me: a huge leap of new features would "emerge" just from this.
Animatable modeling, simple and powerful skelegon/bone setup, etcetc would be all "included" in this, plus lots of other things.

___
Call me naive, but I doubt most LW users would be thrilled at an upgrade that provided no new functionality bar an integrated layout and modeller.
___

Read above: this is the way to get TONs of new functionalities, and some of them are not possible now. Think at Camera modeling, animatable modeling (which means dynamic point number in layout, impossible by now), and a bunch of others.
The merging ALONE would give us more features than we'll get with 8. Oh, putting commercial plugins into LW is not "a new feature". this can be done also while integrating.

___
Plus, speaking as a programmer, currently *trying* to provide and new UI to software, it is no easy feat. We would have to throw out a lot of our exiting code and write a whole new bunch just to cater for the change. That's just on the surface as well, these things usually end up going far deeper than you realise, or want! :(
___

I'm not a programmer... i can assume these issues are not easy.
But it's all relative... i look at other development team and what they do. Again: how can LW make the great jump it HAS to do to stay competitive, without rewriting some code ?
If code is old, lets rewrite it. That's life :)

Paolo Zambrini

colkai
07-28-2003, 01:00 PM
If code is old, lets rewrite it. That's life

Heh,
You sound like my boss, to him everything is "just a two minute job", usually followed by a "can we just...."

I once got landed with a two minute job which took 3 weeks, when it as over I was that fed up I brought him to task. These days, he quantifies it by starting "I think it might be..." ;)

marko
07-28-2003, 01:12 PM
You sound like my boss, to him everything is "just a two minute job", usually followed by a "can we just...."

I once got landed with a two minute job which took 3 weeks

this job has started two years ago....

froggie
07-28-2003, 01:14 PM
competition is a good thing heh
http://www.3d-palace.com/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&t=630#3600

game art update
alone the 3D paint makes me happy heh.

Elmar Moelzer
07-28-2003, 02:03 PM
You know, all I want to avoid is that NewTek makes the same mistakes other developers have made with their integrated apps.
The problem is , I dont have any control over what NT does, or does not do. So I cant really get rid of my concerns.
If LW becomes integrated and is in anyway simillar to MAX, MAYA, or whatever app, I will just switch to MAX, MAYA or whatever app. The reason? Why use a clone when there is already an original?
The small price- differences between packages dont matter for me at all. I use LW because I like it better (the way it is now) than the others, not because it is a little less expensive.
CU
Elmar

DeadMan
07-28-2003, 02:29 PM
Originally posted by froggie
competition is a good thing heh
http://www.3d-palace.com/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&t=630#3600

game art update
alone the 3D paint makes me happy heh.

Yawn. Discreet just trying to rip of Alias, as usual.

froggie
07-28-2003, 02:53 PM
Originally posted by DeadMan
Yawn. Discreet just trying to rip of Alias, as usual.

what can i say? Orthopedic was script for max develloped 2 years ago for max 4 then integrated in max 5...they are all copying each others heh. If you really want to go this way (OMG NT copying Max)

Heh not really... :D

Be glad there is some harsh competition as well as guys putting lots of newfeatures in theyre package to attract people, this way everyone have to make effort to catch up and attract as well.

NanoGator
07-28-2003, 02:59 PM
I don't want the Modeler and Layout integrated. They are two seperate apps, and as such I can make them behave on my dual monitor setup. It's not clear to me that integrating the two would be some bfd. I don't see how it'd solve more problems than it causes.

anieves
07-28-2003, 03:04 PM
As long Max continues to have that God aweful UI with millions of little icons the scrollable panels that seem to have no end and that unbearable Material editor I will not consider buying a seat. Not even with mental ray. HELL NO.

DeadMan
07-28-2003, 03:10 PM
Originally posted by NanoGator
I don't want the Modeler and Layout integrated. They are two seperate apps, and as such I can make them behave on my dual monitor setup. It's not clear to me that integrating the two would be some bfd. I don't see how it'd solve more problems than it causes.

Modeler and Layout not being integrated presents many more problems than being seperate. The only valid arguement for them being seperate is that an integrated package uses more system resources. The rest are just inexperience or misconceptions.

Elmar Moelzer
07-28-2003, 03:45 PM
You know I have been using integrated apps long enough (professionally, yes) to actually know that I dont like them the way they are usually done.
LW would have to do a lot better to please me.
Still I have no idea how this could work in a way that is to my liking.
To be honest, a main reason for me to be against integration is that there is a high possibility, that an integrated LW could turn out in a way that is not to my liking.
The way it is now works very well for me and I am always like "dont fix what aint broken" you know...
CU
Elmar

j3st3r
07-28-2003, 04:04 PM
There are few problems...
One- almost all LW user look at LW from a personal point of view. What I see now, that the community contains mostly individiual artists.

You are talking about mostly personal opinions, but what about a studio? Take a studio with 20 artists...

If I would run a studio, I would choose a program that is flexible enough to easily expand it`s toolset, and help to solve repetitive tasks fastly, etc. And have a flexible render-engine, and have a huge userbase. The software should be technologically advanced, because I want to employ folks, who`s skills are advanced. I need new and fresh technology to make my clients jaw dropped.

If I would run my personal one-artist studio LW is fine for a certain level...It lacks of many STANDARD features that almost all STANDARD program has...Snapping (in Layout), etc.

What LW needs? More interactive tools, standard positioning in Layout, better OpenGL, etc.

But now I think LW is mostly a one-person tool, while maya, XSI, and even MAX became a team-tool.

I`m working currently in the game industry, and LW simply doesn`t have the features (openGL mostly) we need. Maya is far superior in viewport management, and snapping...Oh, and LOCAL COORDINATES...I heavily miss it...

About trust...Buying a package is investment for a time. This time is when your studio will stay alive, or sink in the water. When you wait for an over-hyped upgrade (it was told, that it`s the next gen of LW), and you see no (or not too much) improvement on that area, you have to reconsider your investment. It`s not a baseball league, but hard business. I do understand jevin, Neil, and sailor, and those unnamed ones who migrate to other package, eg. Maya. I am working with Maya, and I surprised, how easy to use, to solve many problems, that required extreme hacking to do in LW. But I don`t like it`s modelling...I can model almost in a LW way, but that`s not tha same...

So when you defend LW, please take a moment, and think of larger scale, not your personal POV. I think all of you understand, that real solutions required not roundabout way of solutions...

I`m sorry, my ENglish is rustier than before..

labuzz
07-28-2003, 04:24 PM
TKY j3st3r and your are not alone to think this way!
I agree on all your points.

NanoGator
07-28-2003, 04:24 PM
Originally posted by DeadMan
The only valid arguement for them being seperate is that an integrated package uses more system resources.

There are more reasons than that. Here's a few:

- What does Undo do? Does it undo your last modeler operation, your last Layout operation, or your last operation in either sense?

- A crash in Layout also kills the Modeller. Not cool if you're sending a mesh from M to L to do a test render.

- Dual Monitor setups and how they handle indvidual apps.

- Resources. Right now, having LW and Modeler open with a decently detailed mesh rapidly gobbles up my gig of RAM. I'm seriously looking at going to 4 gig now.

- Having Modeler and Layout as two distinctly seperate apps also causes the users to treat the two aspects of 3D seperately. Modelling is modelling, and rigging/animating is rigging/animating. Blending the two can be hazardous. Imagine rotating an element of your object to animate it only to realize you're rotating the mesh itself because you didn't realize you're in modeler. MAX users know what I'm talking about.

- Different apsect ratios and areas of the screen. Can't talk for everybody here, but niether Modeler nor Layout on my screen are maximized. They're not even the same size relative to each other. They're small while I have satellite windows around them such as Scene Editor or Surface Editor. How would this type of setup be handled with a unified setup? Newtek could doo it, IF they were to design a new UI. And what would the benefit be? Welp, it's hard to imagine. I admit there are possibilities out there but I'm not seeing them ATM.

I'd be all for Newtek merging the two apps *If* they get some UI guys in on the design of it from the ground up who know everything there is to know about workflow. Frankly, though, I just don't see the point.

I think what you all really want is better performance and more updates via the HUB. That is more than adequate for most.

Limbus
07-28-2003, 04:38 PM
Originally posted by NanoGator
There are more reasons than that. Here's a few:

- What does Undo do? Does it undo your last modeler operation, your last Layout operation, or your last operation in either sense?

History function.



- A crash in Layout also kills the Modeller. Not cool if you're sending a mesh from M to L to do a test render.


You dont need to "send" stuff in an integrated app.



- Dual Monitor setups and how they handle indvidual apps.


Open like six individual viewports, scene editor, spreadsheat and what not and spread them over your two monitors.



- Resources. Right now, having LW and Modeler open with a decently detailed mesh rapidly gobbles up my gig of RAM. I'm seriously looking at going to 4 gig now.


This would be better in an integrated app, because all common function would not have to be loaded twice (image editor, move, rotate, scale etc...)



- Having Modeler and Layout as two distinctly seperate apps also causes the users to treat the two aspects of 3D seperately. Modelling is modelling, and rigging/animating is rigging/animating. Blending the two can be hazardous. Imagine rotating an element of your object to animate it only to realize you're rotating the mesh itself because you didn't realize you're in modeler. MAX users know what I'm talking about.


Look how XSI is doing this. It works. And you are able to animate modelling withou having to use morph targets.



- Different apsect ratios and areas of the screen. Can't talk for everybody here, but niether Modeler nor Layout on my screen are maximized. They're not even the same size relative to each other. They're small while I have satellite windows around them such as Scene Editor or Surface Editor. How would this type of setup be handled with a unified setup? Newtek could doo it, IF they were to design a new UI.


Well a unified LW would off course require major UI changes. And while they are at it they could make the UI fully customizable.

Florian

Elmar Moelzer
07-28-2003, 06:01 PM
Hey J3st3r!
Actually I own a studio, not that big, but more than a one- man- show.
Actually LW is being used in big studios. Many big studios.
You know I think the separated apps are actually a plus in a larger studio- environment, but that can be my personal impression only. I only know that MAX as unusable for big projects, that were easily split up among a few artists in LW.
And of course this can only be my personal view.
CU
Elmar

froggie
07-28-2003, 06:52 PM
"only know that MAX as unusable for big projects, that were easily split up among a few artists in LW. "

Well considering max is the most use 3D proggy in the worlkd, I am sure it must be used by 1 man shop as well as big studios don't you think? Blur anyone? Blizzard? Oh yeah they aren't only using it for cinematics, but for games as well, and what you found in games? big studios with big teams and lill studio with lill teams.

There goes your point.

Different people may have different experiences. some will don't like max or maya, some wont like LW even, is this why we should start dissing each others and try to be clever in a kid-like "who have the biggest one" contest (sorry)? I think not. Competition is a good thing (as I already said) and more package, more users, with different workflow can found what really do it for them. Personally i think it's great. and it's always good to look what competition is doing. Pretty sad when you are going blind and don't even see the good thing about something.

j3st3r
07-29-2003, 03:49 AM
Elmar,

separation is good, and bad. Good, that you can concentrate on modelling without any disturbing details of animation. I wish, if modeler could be purchased separately...I`m pretty sure, that it would be great business.

MAX is useless...I think my friend at Frantic Film could answer to you much better...They are MAX house, and done VFX for XMen2, The Core, etc. My other friends made VFX for T3, in many shots, using Maya. They all told me, that on that scale LW is usable only for modelling...Current Layout structure is not flexible enough. One of the member mentioned the problem, that particle cannot bounce off a MD cloth LW...I`m pretty sure, that in MAX even the free cloth simulator can boounce the particle off the cloth objects...Etc. The list is endless.

What I see is that most satisfied users are defending Newtek with lot of passion. I don`t know why, but I have a feeling that many of these users are against changes. I do believe, that Newtek has many talented programmers. Look at the so called naysayers posts. They are highlighting the weak points of Lightwave, because they would like to see Lightwave as the best program. And they recieve sometimes arrogant, and passionate responses.

I believe that LW could make it again. But it has to be conformed to the present standards. I want to be a LW user forever, but if my employers choose maya for its open architecture, I cannot do anything.

NanoGator
07-29-2003, 03:59 AM
Originally posted by j3st3r
One of the member mentioned the problem, that particle cannot bounce off a MD cloth LW...I`m pretty sure, that in MAX even the free cloth simulator can boounce the particle off the cloth objects...Etc.

Assuming that's true (not in a position where I can test right now) that's not something that'd be hard to fix. Bake the motion of the cloth and then apply the particles. Okay, not the fastest or best way to do it, but it's not a stop-the-presses type of event. From what I understand of MD, though, I'd be stunned if that were the case. (Note: I'm not disputing the problem exists, just saying I'd be surprised.)

I got news for ya, MAX has limitations like that too. It's the nature of software, not a bfd.

j3st3r
07-29-2003, 04:10 AM
That`s what I`m talking about...Roundabout solutions...

One said MAX is great in knowing everything to a mid level...That one would say Lightwave is a great roundabouter...

It`s not production friendly, if I bake the cloth, and the use particles. Think of an animation 500 frames long. You make your jig with it, than the director wants another motion to the cloth, etc. you have to bake it again...No, friend, it is not working in production. I`m pretty sure. I don`t like MAX, but it has been mentioned here as a pile of crap. But it has features, LW doesn`t have, and until few architectural changes won`t happen, those features are far from LW.

Look at LW realistically, without personal feelings...

NanoGator
07-29-2003, 04:28 AM
Originally posted by j3st3r


Look at LW realistically, without personal feelings...

I am. I used MAX for a while. I didn't find it production friendly. Too many steps to do simple things. Wanna do point-by-point modelling? Not quickly! (Note: That was MAX 3. They may have improved by now.)

It's not like I just picked up LW one day and decided to defend it to the death. It's also no surprise that a common comment that studios make about LW is how fast they can turn projects around with it.

j3st3r
07-29-2003, 04:45 AM
What most of you don`t realize, that we are not against LW. I love LW, but I also see, that there are many features missing from LW that is standard in the industry.

NanoGator
07-29-2003, 04:51 AM
Originally posted by j3st3r
What most of you don`t realize, that we are not against LW. I love LW, but I also see, that there are many features missing from LW that is standard in the industry.

That's a fair point I wouldn't argue with. Just remember that the same could be said for the rest of the apps there. That's why most studios have more than one 3D package around.

j3st3r
07-29-2003, 05:20 AM
Sure!

That`s why I animate in Maya, while I model in LW (painlessly!)

Nemoid
07-29-2003, 05:28 AM
I agree overall with Jester and Limbus and Sailor opinions about integration. Very clever analysis of an integrated Lw. We have to remember that Lw was born in a very strange way, in a period in wich 3D was pioneristic. So, its structure was good at that time, because 3D world was very young and the possibilities offered from most of 3D packages were a few. So Lw was not penalized from the fact of being two apps. But years passed, and a new way to work has born. Thatís way app like Maya or XSI has born. In this period, Lw had to change its structure too, to be aligned with other apps around, mantaining its characteristic of a speedy workflow.

You can easily notice that most of other apps did this Power Animator became Maya Softimage became XSI 3D Studio became 3d Studio Max., everyone its own way.

Lw not. They created the HUB, wich is not the best system to connect two apps because uses protocol TCP/IP wich is slow. There are better systems to do this. This is not integration nor blending. Its only a trick, a bridge to send information between 2 different apps.
So you see. The structure and internal code of Lw its the same of early 90, whyle most of the apps have a new code, wich can cause less bugs and problems.
This is the reason why for example, Lw plugins interfere each other sometimes and require more time to render or work. I think Corona can be a good example of this.

Most people like also Nanogator are simply so used to Lw current structure that they doesnít see all the advantages of an integrated app. This is normal. Infact being used to a workflow depends also from everyone Ďs needs. But I think that in a clever rewrited app, with the great features it can have and cool tools he can become rapidly used to a new workflow. Relly I see no problem.
Cool thindgs like speedy workflow have to be mantained and enhanced. I think no one works to get worst, but to enhance and make it better.

Small aexample of strange things Newtek did : rigging is not a modelling task. Its an animating task.
So why they didnít create better way to create bones and do all the rig in layout? Without Ortho tolls that are present now J rig was impossible to do in Layout so we had some tool in modeler and others in Layout. This is not clever and ihas been fixed only now ( I hope)


Please donít think that when I am talking about these things Iím thinking always to Maya, XSI, or other apps.
I am thinking beyond them, about the possibility to create new tools and technologies to help the animator and 3D artist to create better.

This is because I like interactive tools and prewiews at all. They allows the user to work visually, and not entering numbers and numbers. Including snaps and other systems interactive tools can become precise at all. Then , with the numeris we can refine the job or utilize snappimg.
And with history we could refine it also later.

For example, we all say that modeler is the best in the world. This is true, but there are also some lacks. Architectural precise modelling is not so easy to do in Lw because it lacks some tools. Importing from CAD can create problems etc. Thatís why many 3Dmax users like it. There are this kinda tools.
NURBS are not implemented, so people wich use them canít choose Lw. UV tools could be better as well. Of course they arenít so bad, and there are great plugins to use for UVís but what about make the whole process easier?

When I think to a rewrite, I never think like a 2 mins job. To be clear I think to a 2 years serious job.

Thatís why i suggested also to keep on enhancing the current Lw and not to drop it.

NanoGator
07-29-2003, 05:40 AM
Originally posted by Nemoid

Most people like also Nanogator are simply so used to Lw current structure that they doesn?t see all the advantages of an integrated app. This is normal.

It may be 'normal' but that's not where I'm coming from. I'm a UI designer. I've used my share of apps that one day turned 'integrated' and they were not instantly better at what they did. As per my profession, I've paid careful attention to that. As a matter of fact, I just wrapped up the first draft of a new piece of software my company is examining to integrate all of our tools into one big app. It's not something to be taken lightly! A whole new batch of problems came up and I'm having to tackle each one with a fairly complex design in order to balance work-flow, ease of use, and a non-cluttered display. Lightwave is infinitely more complex than my comany's apps. I cannot imagine they'd turn around something that'd be useful to everybody for a while. It's not a dig at Newtek, it has to do with having to put far too much effort to solve a rather small problem.

So no, I'm not coming from the point of view of being used to what Newtek's given me. I'm not resistant to change. I am, however, resistent to the idea of fixing something that ain't broke.

Elmar Moelzer
07-29-2003, 05:51 AM
Hmm, actually we are doing a lot of architectural stuff here. With LW of course. I think we are doing pretty well with LW.
Nanogator, thats exactly what I mean!
We cant predict how integration will affect LW. If NT decides to go that way, they will be stuck with it, there wont be any turning back and we will either be happy with what we have got, or hate it. Question is: What do we do, if we dont like it (i.e if it turns out like MAX)?
There have been a few examples in LWs past where things that seemed to be a good idea at first glance turned out to slow doen workflow. LW 6+ was not in all aspects an improvement over LW 5.6 (actually I feel that I am slower in LW 6+ than in LW 5.6 pretty often)
CU
Elmar

NanoGator
07-29-2003, 05:52 AM
I'm sorry guys. I don't mean to be hotheaded about the topic. It's like really hot here. Hehe.

*hopes no hard feelings are brewing*

Nemoid
07-29-2003, 06:19 AM
Originally posted by NanoGator
It may be 'normal' but that's not where I'm coming from. I'm a UI designer. I've used my share of apps that one day turned 'integrated' and they were not instantly better at what they did. As per my profession, I've paid careful attention to that. As a matter of fact, I just wrapped up the first draft of a new piece of software my company is examining to integrate all of our tools into one big app. It's not something to be taken lightly! A whole new batch of problems came up and I'm having to tackle each one with a fairly complex design in order to balance work-flow, ease of use, and a non-cluttered display. Lightwave is infinitely more complex than my comany's apps. I cannot imagine they'd turn around something that'd be useful to everybody for a while. It's not a dig at Newtek, it has to do with having to put far too much effort to solve a rather small problem.

So no, I'm not coming from the point of view of being used to what Newtek's given me. I'm not resistant to change. I am, however, resistent to the idea of fixing something that ain't broke.

can appear a paradox, but I agree with you Nanogator in some points. I know you're a very well rounded user.

I think peple at Newtek knows exactly the workflow of their app.
i'm thinking about great users like Proton or Splinegod, for example. they really are great animators and 3D creators.and they, like many people here, not only know workflow of Lw, but they know what 3D is from the bases. they are very well rounded and go beyond modelling and animating, they go creating.

but what this means at the end? it means that they really could give great indications ideas and suggestments to create an integrated app wich workflow could be superior to the current workflow. and not in the paper, but for real, because they can test it.

I think there is no danger to have a crap integrated app indeed

this is happening now, they are making a wonderful job about enhancing lw[8] wich will be a very must have piece of software indeed, just i can't wait to see it!!:D

but since integrating have its astonishing advantages indeed to make Lw so powerful that no one can doubt, this would be a great possibility.

they could rewrite it entirely, taking inspiration from the current Lw and watching beyond for a next evolution.
actually is not like integrating 2 pieces blending them , its more like creating smth new with a great background experience.

and rewriting is more easy than blending.

think to a software created from animators, for animators.

Jimzip
09-05-2003, 08:55 PM
Wow. Another monster thread.


I think the problem here is that people don't want anything to go wrong.
People are very used to the way Modeler and Layout are used. (Personally I can
honestly say I've never had a problem with the Hub..)
If they are integrated (and we've all seen those threads before) I think users
are just wary of what will happen with object and scene files, will they be
separate or combined (an odd example I know) will there be tabs switching from
the modeling mode to the scene mode, or will everything be done in one window,
things like that, (and I realise they aren't the greatest examples) are the things
people are probably wondering or worried about. It's a case of having to learn a new way to work. Also, nobody likes 'bridging' periods. Having to get used to a new workflow and stuck with the old one as well. Everyone will like it when it's finally all together, but it's that transient period that's the worry. (Mac OS X anyone?)

Again, I guess we'll just have to wait and see.

Jimzip :D

swann
09-06-2003, 02:38 AM
Just thought I would post my hopes for Lightwave.

But first, a bit of off topic background. My use of 3d is in the capability of a hobbyist Ė an attempt at art I suppose. Throughout college I purchased subscriptions to Maya, an application which was a pleasure to use and SoftImage. But when the end of University discounts was in sight there was only one real option: Lightwave. For this I must thank and applaud NewTek. Every 3d company now offers cut down versions of their programs or year long subscriptions but none of them offer very practicable shifts from educational institution to education beyond, those of us who just love to use 3d as a means of escape. What use is it to be able to try Houdini for free when all your work and learning meets the insuperable barrier of retail costs. Iíve digressed so let me just say that for those in my position buying a full version at educational costs and being able to upgrade to a commercial product will continue to make many loyal fans, such as myself.

On to the program. I share the general feeling expressed by the original post. Lightwaveís strong point has seemed to me, from the beginning, to be its modeler. Its fantastic that layout is becoming more robust, certainly an aspect I shall enjoy, but, for myself, modeler should continue to expand at an equal, or greater, rate. A more complete hair or fur, less lite, would also be quite welcome. No, I shall not make a list. I only hope Newtek continues to build on its strengths and not let those advantages atrophy in hopes of creating a more well rounded application. An extremely strong and efficient modeler is enough to keep me upgrading for years.

Nemoid
09-06-2003, 04:03 AM
hub has no major probs now, but isnt the more rapid way to connect two apps together. there are still probs with objects updating layout/modeler sometimes that have to be fixed.

however, I'd not worry about a integration between L/M because organizing well the app, simply tabs can make appear original modeler and original Layout interface, with no great changes indeed. its not a totally different way to work, its a better way to work.
tools would be common for every module, solving many issues coming from separation automatically.and no more double code. in modeler for example you'd have the real layout's open GL with lights and so on if you need them. in layout you could use modeler tools for animation, and these are only small examples of all the astonishing possibilities.

no more double code also for writing plugins cause the app is one, even if organized in different compartments ( but they are only apparently separated).
a better SDK would allow users to write plugins that communicate better with the core of the app, and also no more issues of plugs disturbing each other when rendering.