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How Blender started, twenty years ago…


Ton started writing Blender during the holidays of 1993. He found his earliest backups and based on their timestamps, he has announced Blender's birthday to be January 2nd. Next year, Blender will turn 20!

Ton writes:

I’ve managed to find the oldest backup of Blender, a snapshot of the first code I wrote to start a new project to replace the in-house tool “Traces”.

This started in the Christmas / New Year holidays of 1993, and with the first code working around new-year’s day.

The backup is from January 8, 1994.



  • camino1961

    Happy happy joy joy to world's favorite 3d program. More success in the coming year and may we have many more wonderful years of Blender 3d. Thanks Ton.

    • Spelle

      Long way! And something tells me that it's only beginning :) Happy holidays!

  • Utopia780

    hey hey.. The first 20 years! Imagine it 20 years from now!
    I was 15 back then.. I was drawing all the time but was far from being the 3D addict I am today.

  • Tristram

    Wow, that is my birthday also... but in 1959 lol

  • John Nyquist

    I love that screenshot, one small step for a man, one giant leap for 3d! I remember being a demo artist for StrataVision3d at MacWorld in January of 1994, never dreaming that Blender was percolating a continent away.

  • Lawrence D’Oliveiro

    Unfortunately, it references some other source files, in /usr/people/trace/ and /usr/people/frank/source/, without which it cannot build...

  • redwaller

    Is this the blender day I asked about, Bart?

    • Bart Veldhuizen

      No, this is just Blender’s birthday.

      • redwaller

        OK, just asking. Happy Birthday, Blender! Woo-hoo! I get the day off on Jan. 2!

  • spect3r

    Are there any copies of the original (compiled!) blender (traces) floating out around there? It would be neat to try and run and see how primitive/awesome it is!!!

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