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Iron Sky – Day 102

Saturday has again appeared and its almost the end of the month. For us its just another day while the rest of the crew has a “weekend”. Wow, must be nice to work only 9-5 and let a bunch of other people pick up the slack, pulling 12+ hour days 6-7 days a week, weeks and months on end. Bitter? No, I’m used to these kinds of schedules and working hours because well frankly that’s what is expected of someone working on set for a film and generally in post most of the time. Deadlines are deadlines. Deal with it. Right now we are doing just that. Luke is putting the final touches on the last set of shots for our “big battle” in the film in terms of previs for editorial. Once these are complete they will go through one last round of comments and then everything gets locked. I’m waiting on a composite render to finish in Fusion to help the Nuke compositing team get an idea of “how” to make these space shots look the way Samuli, myself and others want them to look. After that’s done and my machine is free, I’m back on previs for the “last battle” sequence at the end of the movie while mark and Tuomas take care of modeling and lighting set ups for the introduction portion of the film and a series of establishers shown throughout the movie. These are all things that need to be done and done quick because Lee will be back on Monday here and those elements are required for him to take the next step but it seems that we are on track. Unfortunately we loose Tuomas for a few weeks as he has to return to his “day job” in Helsinki working at Undo Graphics or VFX or whatever they are called. They are another heavy LightWave house and I had an opportunity to meet with them a week ago and discuss with their main management and artist team about LightWave3D and its use here in Finland in commercial production. It was an interesting conversation to say the least. We all agreed that LightWave needs to be able to handle MASSIVE (as in big) scenes better than it does currently. But of course they are still working in 9.6 like a bunch of twits (god dammit! upgrade! It’s worth it!) and didn’t realize that half of the stuff they bitched about was 1. fixed or 2. improved vastly in version 10 and again in 10.1. I don’t get this hesitation by some people to not upgrade to the recent version of LightWave when it comes out. Like come on… if something breaks (yeah I know people are a bit gun shy after 9.5 but still) in a recent release then you probably shouldn’t be using whatever it was that broke (usually a 3rd party plug-in from 5-10 years ago). Hello! Modern technology – classic methodology – those things go hand in hand with LightWave… duh!. Ok I have to get back to it but soon I hope to be able to show off more stuff from the VFX of the show and bring forward a really cool thing that you can participate with us on! Should be good! More news soon!   Kat (its hot here again).

15 Comments to Iron Sky – Day 102

  1. tuomas says:

    Mind you, we wanted to start using LW10 as soon as we could but the lack of support for XP64 was holding us back. Upgrading every computer in the office to a new OS is costly and time consuming, something a small company like Undo cannot afford when there’s constant deadlines that need to be met.

  2. Phil says:

    If NT actually moved the product forward in a reasonable way, the reliance on those ‘ancient’ plugins wouldn’t be so widespread.

    When did HV last get updated? Did you see any move to get onion skinning in Layout? What about the features brought to LW by Taft, Polk, etc.? NT aren’t moving to provide those?

    Instancing (e.g. HDInstance)? Yeah, right.

    Character tools to replace Maestro or RHiggit? Ha.

    VPR was, by and large, the only interesting thing in 10.0 and FPrime still provides a lot more in terms of responsiveness and convenience than VPR in 10.1.

    My point is – if people won’t upgrade due to poor value for money or plugin breakage, the blame lies with NT, not with the users.

  3. kat says:

    Reliance in what way? Most people are too dense to understand that half of those tools they depend on are indeed replaced in the current version of LW.
    And plug-in breakage? Get real. It’s not plug-in breakage, its being suck in 32bit land that is holding LW back.

  4. jeric says:

    Working 9-5, and having weekends, is not really too much to ask of a job.

  5. Phil says:

    @Kat. Last I checked, I was real. Breathing and feeling, etc. Yup all is good.

    My point, which you didn’t rebut at all, is that plugins are currently vital to LW, so breakage is a real issue. 32-bit doesn’t enter into it, except in a few isolated cases, but on the Windows side, 64-bit hasn’t been an issue for quite some time now.

    Right through 9.x, NT turned a blind eye to material node compatibility, breaking HDInstance, FPrime, Material Blender, etc. with every point release. The 3rd parties, unsurprisingly, got rather annoyed with this. NT ignored all requests for at least some legacy support back for one 9.x release, adding to the frustration. NT were happy to have users crash out, rather than invest some time for a safety net. That soured a lot of people – NT thought their users time and money was insignificant enough that the mere act of bringing up FPrime, or using HDInstance and having that crash LW instantly was not a problem.

    We’ve also had endless breakage with LScript, affecting Passport, Janus, Maestro, RHiggit, VehicleRigger. LScript, in theory platform neutral, has also never been so, adding to the problems. Maestro was broken several times during 9.x and Passport was abandoned after NT failed to document their scene format in later releases, despite requests from developers.

    With LW 10, NT also rearranged the program structure, and renamed the LWSN/ScreamerNet executable, without warning or consultation, breaking Vue and Deadline installations. It also rendered all existing documentation for setting up renderfarms inaccurate with immediate effect.

    You’ll note that none of the plugins above have any replacement in the LW10.0 or 10.1 releases, either, making your point about these plugins being replaced in current LW versions rather questionable.

    HVs haven’t been touched in years, nor has the dynamics system. If NT had a replacement for Dynamite, people would be ecstatic. They don’t. They don’t have a replacement for FPrime or G2, either. Nor do they have replacements for much of what comes with Taft or Polk (e.g. Acid). VPR is a partial replacement for FPrime, but without the raw speed in complex scenes or the ability to provide distributed progressive rendering.

    The biggest hindrance for 3rd party renderers remains the absence of any support in the SDK for the preprocessing in material nodes.

    The biggest hindrance for advances in the surfacing workflow is the closed box nature of Nodal. No scripting, nothing.

    These were all things that should have been in-scope for LW10; it’s not like they are new (or perhaps even very difficult to change). Given the above, though, it’s not hard to understand a reluctance to upgrade to LW10.

  6. kat says:

    Well last time I checked I haven’t had to do anything in 32bit in several years.
    But if you are looking to place blame on anyone and I know you know exactly how much I’ve voiced my opinions on this – then blame JAY ROTH.
    He was in control the entire time all this stuff happened. I too am disappointed with how LW program directory structure changed. I HATE IT the way it is now and it serves no purpose whatsoever and it wrecked our plans for SkyNet completely.
    But everyone seems to have gotten sucked into the CORE fiasco including people who complained about these very things. I saw RIGHT through that and called NT and Jay out on it and well, here we are now, exactly where we should be to get these things addressed in due order based on priorities placed forward by users. I know you want certain stuff fixed, but sitting there and bitching something broke in some previous release and NT didn’t bother to send you a personal email/apology about it doesn’t help. You have to tell them flat out and clean and clearly what is busted and what do to fix and what it means to you if it isn’t fixed or addressed or replaced, vs more whine with your cheese please. But you have to understand one way or the other that NT is just now finishing cleaning up a huge fucking mess from Jay and the CORE joke and they are doing the best they can to catch up after 5 years of wool pulled over the eyes of practically everyone in there and in the community by Jay. NT fell for it, we fell for it (for the most part – some of us called bullshit immediately and well before CORE was revealed. With what they have been able to do since Jay ‘left’ has been impressive considering the circumstances.
    Now that’s REAL.

  7. newton says:

    LW 10 is not worth it.
    Yes I’m part of hardcore and no Tylenol thread is ever going to repair lightwave rep. Whoever was responsible its in the past and nobody gives a shit about the past because the ball is on newteks court NOW. Newtek needs to offer more for less with each release if they want to keep the current userbase that is already so small. Fact is lw 10 doesn’t offer anything that was planned for core 1.0.
    Where’s the uvtools, bullet, node architecture not to mention the unified application.
    We got a halfbake stereocam feature, fiberfx halfbake fixes, slow vpr, virtualcam which majority don’t need, weightmap blur(hah, geocache that dpont already has a better implementation.
    The only decent addition to lw 10 is the linear color space. Is that worth it because at the same time they broke a lot of stuff to get to lw 0.1 which now they don’t want to work on anymore and already lw 11 is being mentioned. Stupid management doesn’t read the forums and how unhappy the majority of lw userbase are. They’re probably just playing golf somewhere.

  8. kat says:

    hardcore is a joke. Another jay roth special as far as I am concerned and it should be phased out as soon as possible. 10 is last year. 10.1 is now. 10.1 is worth it.

    Where’s uvtools? bullet etc? again – blame jay roth! ALL OF that could have been done and been done by now had he not had delusions of grandeur and taken the dev team down the path that he lead them. From what I understand, none of them wanted to work on core at all and kept saying “this can be fixed, we need to do that” but noooooo… jay roth and his supporters (suckers) gave him enough credo to dick around for 3 years on CORE.
    Now you can stand around and whine about features you don’t use (FFX? Really? Come on when was the last time you used it? or needed to have fur? – granted I would rather have had them do fluidic fire and smoke first… but still) or you think are useless (I use the virtual cam stuff all the time, its called a spacenavigator mouse and it’s 100 bucks – go get one) or not valuable. BTW, half of denis’s stuff is busted in some way on the MDD side so thankfully the NT solution does work and work well and its simple to use.
    You want all that other stuff? You want it quick? You have two choices.
    Move over to another app, or wait a short period of time and see what NT does in those areas. If you are not satisfied then you still have exist strategy choice number one on the go in the mean time. I will tell you this though, the guys who are here on iron sky who are using maya, are going to have to learn to use lightwave from here on in once the project is done. What does that tell you?

  9. newton says:

    You can blame Jay Roth all you want, but what newtek is doing now stopping at lw 10.1 is nonsense.
    Actually I need hair and fur fx because I do character animations and been using sas for a long time. So yeah I do need it to work as advertised. 3D is not just ships, ships, ships.
    If you needed fire and explosions then you should have followed thru with bakudan, like Jay Roth seems to follow through everything, right?
    Lw has been lingering way more than 3 years when core started. Modelling is a joke and can’t handle high polys.
    I’m not going to get a space navigator just for virtual cam when I can do the same camera shots without it.
    Dponts cache works for me transferring geocache with no problem. Ofcourse it could be that I’m still using lw 9.6 even when I have 10.1.
    I have moved over to another app for a long time but that doesn’t excuse the whole hardcore experience, the way it was handled courtesy of Jay Roth, and the way it is being handled, guess who’s responsible for that, the current team.
    We both know nothing is happening in hc forums and no one knows shit. The short period you’re talking is november? Are you willing to bet on that there’s nothing happening that time.
    Short period is like lw 7 to 9.6 where very little work has been done except for the renderer.
    Your maya pals suck, plain and simple. More than half of the 3D artist on earth are doing fine with maya. They do fine with c4d, they do fine with max, xsi, modo. Your point and posts about other software is what makes other software users hate lw users.

  10. kat says:

    First off, I’m not pals with any of the maya guys here. Let’s get that straight.
    second, the C4D team I worked with on Cargo was fucking useless and they were considered “top” people in Switzerland. So… Do they really do fine?
    Have you ever worked in a mixed pipeline before? Have you ever worked with these other apps extensively or with assets that come from those apps extensively? How are you able to tell me that the rest of the “maya world” does fine? I see maya fall down all the time around here and it comes down to technique and the fact that unless you have top end guys you’re fucked. LightWave is what it is. Leave it or lump it. It’s less than 1000 bucks and it still kicks a huge amount of ass at that price.
    And yes, I know 3D isn’t just ships ships ships. Come on… fawk. But if you don’t think having someone like me and the others on my team here at Iron Sky (and several shows since my time on BSG) pushing LightWave development on things that I need to have happen when I’m shoving around 30m poly plus scenes with multiple 10K textures around with MDD, Morphs, bones (yes bones!) PFX and other elements and neato stuff on space ships day in day out isn’t going to trickle down and some how help in other areas…. then well… I guess you are out of luck.

    Oh wait! I get it… you guys are not getting any attention with your comments over at the NT boards so you come over here and harass us. Great plan, that’s going to get you somewhere.
    Go get a different app and leave us alone or be more constructive with your commentary and contribute to making it better by sending in test cases, write stuff down and mail it to the right people and show whats killing you each and every time if thats the case in your work flow.

    As for Bakudan, that’s another matter completely and its not dead. We just chose to not have to deal with a lot of whiners who would insist it would have to work like fumeFX for less than 200 bucks and shifted development over UberCam which has been a huge success for us and its users. When we finish bakudan we will be certain to let you know, so you can whine and complain how it doesn’t work like maya fluids or something simply because it isn’t maya fluids.

  11. newton says:

    Yes its too bad everyone you work with seems to be useless unless they use lightwave. We’ve heard that before not just in liberty3D. On the other hand other people are doing fine using other software. Just ask the people at DD and KC.
    As for myself I am working with maya and max users who are all generalist and don’t seem to be useless. The only reason I use lightwave now is for old projects that need to be edited. Everything I do now is maya and I don’t see the benefit at all with the new lw 10.1.
    I am not harassing you man. I just read your posts regarding iron sky and I can tell you that you’re giving lightwave and its users a bad name. The way you talk about other software and its users is not helping at all but to alienate lw users in the pipeline and boost hate from others. Just look at how artist love lw users at cgtalk. Its because of this superior attitude lw users think about themselves that they can do anything just with a less than 1000 busck software when the truth is any software is capable and even more without buying loads of plugins unlike lw.
    I don’t know why the citizens of liberty would want to be associated with such an unprofessional person who talks about projects the way you do and diss other people and their software.

  12. kat says:

    You know what… You are harassing me.
    Your opinions are fine, and so are mine. They are based on experience. Yours being one thing and mine being another. In my experience he is how I see it.

    I’m personally tired of LightWave “users” who bash their own software just for something to do. All of that energy expended on trying to kill it and you use it! I am also tired of being called in to do work on shows that start in other apps, end up fucked and then we (us LW users who are normally starving half the time because LW is some kind of bastard child of the industry – gee I wonder why when many of its own users hate it so) expected to clean things up and make it look better with less than adequate assets to work with in order to do so, with very little time and next to nothing for money on the other end to finish the job properly. It would almost be better for us to star from scratch! Oh! wait a second, in my experience that actually happens a lot. And then some AD marketing jerk comes in and says the whole thing was done with X product of the week that they absorbed in an acquisition. This happens a LOT to LightWave artists. More often than I think even NT knows about. I am really tired of being a VFX mop for maya artists and the like.
    I’m also tired of hit pieces like you have attempted to put out here on our site.
    You sound like some of my other enemies who use nearly identical terms (its like a manual or a hand out you guys get or something to try and bash me and get rid of me or whatever your grand plan is) when coming after me. Big surprise.
    What I do continue to get enjoyment out of however – is when people use the term “unprofessional” in the way that you have here. I find that when this term is thrown out in conversation in the industry it’s generally the person who uses it, directed at someone else – is really the one who is being unprofessional. In my time in this business, it always seems to be the case.

    Now then a few things to wrap this up.
    NewTek does read the forums and they read up on what goes on here.
    They are VERY aware of what is going on and they are not out on a golf course somewhere. While I have my own issues with various decisions that NT management has made over the last 11 years or so some related to LW development some related to the video products division, in the end they have come through for me and my teams many, many times. They have come through again for me recently here on Iron Sky because they understand that in the “real world” their users have to get things done and when we get it done it looks good for them and us – it means more work and more sales. Win win situation. Because of this, and I would do it anyway – the proof being this site – I will be returning the favor as much as I possibly can and continue to do so. Don’t mistake this one damn bit for being a “cool aid drinker”. I am not. So, compare this to….What you doing? Coming over here, and jumping on my back, calling me ‘unprofessional’ and yet you admit yourself you don’t use LW any more except for “older projects”.
    So what the hell are you doing here? Really? If its not harassing me and trying to score points with some “in crowd” of LightWaveUsersTurnedHaters, name dropping along they way – then what are you doing even caring at all enough to post here? Don’t you have work to do?

    NewTek doesn’t need you to tell them whats “wrong” with the situation – are you kidding me? THEY KNOW. Why do you think things from the last year and a half have even happened the way they have? Why do you think LW is even SHIPPING today at all?
    They are trying to unfuck their situation and people like yourself are just piling on. Really really helpful. Just awesome of you.

    BTW, concerning L3D. The citizens here are here because they want to help build up, not tear down the application they use and love. It’s the quickest way for them to get what they want and need for themselves through co-operation and free enterprise which in turn benefits the community whether you like it or not. They know EXACTLY what I am all about and have for years. Your divisional attack on me just looks dumb, not to mention uninformed with regards to what L3D is and how it works and why it was founded and why and how it has become in less than 6 months the top LW related site outside of NewTek’s own forums – and we are expanding.

    So, with all of that said, your opinions are yours, thank you for sharing them, I stand by mine and both our rights to express them, but don’t come here and attack me for doing what I do just because you have your feelings about it and to your own admission are no longer using LW as your primary app and have the attitude you to without expecting a rebuke.

  13. kat says:

    Fast typing here above so there are some grammatical and spelling errors. Please forgive me for needing to get back to work fast.

  14. newton says:

    You should read your posts about Iron Sky or better yet let someone else read it and ask them if that’s the way a professional should work. Bitching about a project(ongoing btw) because you have users who are not lw users and their work is crap and yours is oh so good because you did it in lw. You have to redo assets and shots that were done by other people because they did it in another app and its crap. What would you call that?
    This is your past website all over again.
    Do you really think its good to bash other people for the software they use especially people who seem to be the majority of the bigger vfx crowd? The majority of non lw users are crap and they need to learn lw, dumbass c4d, maya, max users. You’re just damaging lw by this attitude. Maybe you’re unlucky and you really have useless non lw people around you, but really praising yourself and your work because you’re using lightwave is just full of it.
    And that’s why I’m here. Liberty3d doesn’t need this crap you’re talking about. It makes the site and everything involved with it unprofessional. Just post about news and lw development and none of the personal crap you deal with.
    If you need an outlet to let your frustration out on your projects and its useless, dumb, non lw users then do it privately, where it won’t cause damage to lw and its users, which technically I still am…for old projects.

  15. kat says:

    Dude, what is your problem with me? Why are you trying to separate me from this site and single me out from it? Get bent. I don’t bash all apps. Tuomas is here working in modo side by site with LW and its working really really well. One of the guys who works in zBrush and Maya has only been doing it for a year and all things considered he’s been kicking ass with the output he’s done and we have made him and others aware that some of their techniques come back and bite us and them in the ass and they are happy to know about it! Their texture artist when showed how things work in LW had a lightbulb go off over his head recently and went “oh wow.. ok, I have to learn lightwave!”
    Our concept/art director works in max and we have used it to do poly reduction on many of the ships. We are in a mixed pipeline here because that’s what was available for talent at the time, but my point in many of my posts is that technique is more important than the tools and most of the time the techniques LW artists have used and developed over the years when applied to a product speeds things up! the main guy modeling one of the big big ships has only been working in maya for again, about a year and he’s doing rather well considering. But I look at the situation and see how that if the show was started with more of a heavy LW influence from the onset instead of being side tracked by a maya artist with an agenda or few – it would have not been in this position.
    All of the artists could have been better off, including us.
    As for me “praising myself” you are missing half of my posts content, I am praising the work being done by the LightWave team here because we are able to pick up the pieces and move forward without getting bogged down in shit that doesn’t end up on the screen or contribute to getting there!
    Now just lay off or go somewhere else.