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Thread: Softimage going to be gone soon?

  1. #1
    Professional amateur Amurrell's Avatar
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    Softimage going to be gone soon?

    Looks like AD is moving towards phasing out SI.

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  2. #2
    Worms no more! Free fun! Dodgy's Avatar
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    They say the dev team is still larger than it was 2 years ago, but still, it's not encouraging. Shame, as it seems to be the best soft for character animation.
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  3. #3
    Space Monkey 3DGFXStudios's Avatar
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    Newtek should buy it and put all cool stuff in lw

  4. #4
    Super Member Hieron's Avatar
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    "Softimage development will now be carried out by a six-person team in Singapore"

    6?!
    Just... 6?

    Wow, for some reason I imagined a much bigger team.. for a software at 3.3k euro with a 800 euro yearly sub (ex vat), one would imagine more people involved? Surely they have more than 500 subs a year, let alone sales?

    Damn, I would be seriously worried if I'd be using SI :/
    (yeah yeah, learn more packages sure, but being a full generalist one does not jump package at production speed so fast)
    Last edited by Hieron; 05-04-2012 at 03:50 AM.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Hieron View Post
    "Softimage development will now be carried out by a six-person team in Singapore"

    6?!
    Just... 6?
    From some of comments it seems that text is misleading:

    quote:
    "Matt Morris said:
    The 6 people mentioned by Chun-Pong Yu are the main developers, they are not the only ones – its a bit misleading to say that its only a 6 person team now working on Softimage."


    From what i understand it's 6 NEW persons (DEVs) workign on it in Singapore located team but old DEVs are still available for stuff/questions until new Team goes into speed and nobody says how much teams exactly work on it fully. BUT even if is just a 6 DEVs team if they are in same office it can be more productive than 15 scattered around globe.
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  6. #6
    Super Member Hieron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lewis View Post
    From what i understand it's 6 NEW persons (DEVs) workign on it in Singapore located team but old DEVs are still available for stuff/questions until new Team goes into speed and nobody says how much teams exactly work on it fully.
    Yeah sure, I'd say the same if I was AD. But people have only so many hours a day and only so much focus to spend. Anyway.. who knows. It is hardly good news for SI imho.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lewis View Post
    BUT even if is just a 6 DEVs team if they are in same office it can be more productive than 15 scattered around globe.
    Sure, and 10 in an office can be more productive than 6, your point?
    Ah well, I was just expressing my wonder over the number.

    I'd probably be amazed at # of people working on LW and Modo too..

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Hieron View Post
    Sure, and 10 in an office can be more productive than 6, your point?
    Point? you don't see the point ? Well let me explain it to you then .

    If they previously maybe had 15 guys (just guesssing of course) working on SI from all around globe in different time zones and stuff they spend great deal of time in meetings and organizing some remote/video meetings to check who's working on what and now if they all can be in same room all that will be bare minimum 'coz they can communicate easily while working so nobody has to wait anyone to wake up or check where is code now and what's he working on... etc. etc...

    Heck even NT DEVs said it several times that their collective meetings are always extremely productive when they gather together in same room/office.

    So my point is that it could be good thing for SI if they are switching from bigger scattered team to smaller focused. Also like i said this 6 don't mean total number of DEVs anyway now will AD ever confirm that .

    I guess we will see with time will they kill it (development) or expand it .

    Maybe NT could catch modeling DEVs from them now .
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  8. #8
    Super Member Hieron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lewis View Post
    Point? you don't see the point ? Well let me explain it to you then ..
    I know what you are saying, but it is hardly a valid point as an answer to my reply.

    Sure, 15 scattered people may not be as ideal as 6 in an office.. but I could come up with tons of comparisons that may be less or more ideal.. all of it just guesses. How does it make sense concerning my point of it being merely 6?

    Nevermind btw.. I was just saying that 6 sounds like nothing to me. Concerning the well known and priced package.

    It may be a more focussed 6 now, it may have been 256 donkeys and a chicken working on it untill now, or it may even become 56 working in 8 different places atm. Who knows. I was just saying "6? 6 is little". But they will surely not disclose exact numbers.. keeping it in the middle is much better.

    Time will tell ofcourse... perhaps these people have more energy and new ideas and it will improve, who knows.
    Last edited by Hieron; 05-04-2012 at 04:47 AM.

  9. #9
    World's Tallest Dwarf safetyman's Avatar
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    This is what big companies do -- buy up the competition and incorporate their stuff into their main products. They'll take some of the better features from Soft and put it into Maya and 3DS Max. Nowadays, it's not cost effective to support 3 similar products. If AD buys Newtek (please God no), you'd see some LW features showing up in their flagship programs and LW would eventually go bye bye.

  10. #10
    Lead Character Artist kfinla's Avatar
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    I wasn't under the impression the SI team was scattered. I thought they were all in Montreal. I assume this is a cost saving, downsizing move. I'd be most concerned that these are 6 new people with little experience with the SI code base, I can't imagine a lot of the current SI gurus wanted to move to the other side of the world.
    Last edited by kfinla; 05-04-2012 at 05:46 AM.

  11. #11
    I Guess that what is happening here however is the taking of Softimage developers who have initiated ICE and doing something similar in Maya.

    ICE and Softimage are relatively mature now. Softimage in its current state is very comprehensive, and with ICE, users can expand Softimage's capabilities enormously. For example. I am working on a facial mocap system that just needs a video file into Softimage and outputs a final quality animation. All within Softimage.

    http://vimeo.com/40589904

    Currently Softimage is the only package that can do this without an enormous amount of tedious coding. That work above took less than a week of experimentation and nothing more than basic level maths. That's to build an image-tracker from scratch , a mocap solver, and shape-blending rig based on ICE logic.
    The concept of ICE's Visual programming language needs to become more commonplace. ICE allows you to pretty much do anything you can think of with vertices. Its comprehensive in that regard. But ICE could be even more and it needs some competition. (houdini's approach is currently far more reliant on knowledge of maths and coding so I dont see it as a similar beast, and houdini isn't a geometry animation centric package either like Softimage is)

    Many studios are using ICE, even in Maya centric pipelines, Autodesk have been selling this concept and their is reliance on ICE as there is nothing to compare with its speedy approach to programming and prototyping tools.
    Just look at the Softimage ICE channel in Vimeo, its very popular.
    It makes sense to bring that functionality directly to Maya.
    Until Maya has enough qualities to justify making Softimage redundant, I am confident that Softimage will be around. Softimage is a profitable business and as I have learned from doing Tutorials, and being able to view the geographical demographics, the densest population of Softimage users are in Asia, so it makes sense to centre a team there.

    I do not see this news as 'Yeah great for Softimage'
    What I feel is likely to happen long term is that an evolution of Maya will become the sole package. But thats quite a way off.
    If they can make Maya as palatable and efficient and powerful to use (without coding) as Softimage, I'd be happy to jump ship. It has a more deeply customisable architecture and an equivalent of ICE in it could be amazing.
    All us ICE users have a great head start. Softimage is like the future now.
    Last edited by pooby; 05-04-2012 at 06:27 AM.
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  12. #12
    Super Member geo_n's Avatar
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    Great post pooby. Very open minded approach about software to even consider jumping ship to maya. It is concentrated in asia especially the big cg and game companies. For smaller companies though its rare to see it maybe because smaller projects require less powerful software to finish stuff and the xsi guys are already working for top companies already.
    If only work and time allowed me to learn xsi I would, but I'm stuck with max which is not bad and pays the bills.

  13. #13
    Running at 29.97 fps Titus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3DGFXStudios View Post
    Newtek should buy it and put all cool stuff in lw
    Softwave?

  14. #14
    Running at 29.97 fps Titus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hieron View Post
    "Softimage development will now be carried out by a six-person team in Singapore"

    6?!
    Just... 6?
    And this is a bigger dev team than NT dev staff :P.

  15. #15
    obfuscated SDK hacker Lightwolf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Titus View Post
    And this is a bigger dev team than NT dev staff :P.
    Hehe, close, but not quite (even if you only count the people that actually write code).
    On the other hand, there's also a few things that the SI dev groups doesn't need to worry about... or spend a lot less time on (viewports/OpenGL and rendering are two prime examples).

    Cheers,
    Mike

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