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Development goals survey

101

Tom Musgrove (LetterRip) is doing a survey requesting feedback on where you would like Blender Development focused.

Note: this is not an official Blender Foundation survey, but a personal project of Tom.

Survey Closed: thanks for everyone who filled it out. Will hopefully do a follow up article with a summary of the results.

Tom Musgrove writes:

Hi all, I'd like to start getting more of the features that you specifically want done, as well as to provide funding for more developers to work on Blender.

I'd appreciate it if you would take this preliminary survey to see what sort of interest there is in funding Blender development directly in order to more fully meet your needs. This first survey is to get a rough idea of what the interest level is - where you think things are at right now; where you think things should go in the future. I'll use the top 10 feature requests and top 10 bugs as a basis for voting on priorities. (Ie I'll take the data from this survey, summarize it, then when someone signs up for the plan they can vote on the priorities from a list of suggested ones based on this survey, although write ins can be added also, etc.)

Development goals and needs survey

If this survey shows enough interest than I'll try and get the ball rolling to make it happen. I already have a number of core developers (including my Summer of Code student Jason Wilkins who did the sculpting tool improvements) who would be willing and able to put more time into Blender and focus more on what you guys want and need if the funding is available.

Thanks,

LetterRip

101 Comments

  1. Lucas da Costa Dantas - the WDHellS on

    Properties at Original Horizontal View,
    when items goes down at screen,middle button movement only scrolls
    at horizontal not vertical for view.
    I guess it must be a tweak to detect the pixels at user view not at program level.

    I still don't know about phyton,its there a software like dreamweaver or what?
    I am a kind of good delphi programmer.Maybe for jump in to create a ide for phyton programming.

    Its nice to save interface configurations on a Blank_ file,
    it are better to save settings on a settings file.To avoid save works on the Blank File.

    To reorganize screen for a split,
    must have a better interaction to visualize the split function,
    that maybe with a popup hint ballon,and better mouse gestures.
    Apply also for other features.

    Way to clean garbage at startup screen,for user custom settings and logo screen.
    Also add preview of files at startup and at windows folder when thumbnail view.
    With option for a screenshot custon preview .

    And other at more design working time with Blender Software.

    From your lovely boss desk.

  2. Joongle,

    it is a bit excessively detailed - note that everything is skippable, lots of folks only fill out the stuff that interests them most.

  3. It's a long survey, but I support the idea that there should be more voluntary funding to further the development of Blender. I am willing pay for development if I'm assured that critical functions are implemented or improved. I hope to see Blender being the Number 1 3D application in the near future!

  4. Subscription-based funding is a great idea, IMO. At least from my perspective, it's a painless and easy way to help fund Blender development. Especially if it's monthly (then I can account for it with my other monthly bills).

  5. rip-rap,

    I'd like to allow Blender to develop faster and have more devs working full time. Development subscriptions will always be optional, but those who subscribe will be able to influence what features are prioritized for development by the devs. So instead of a dev working only on stuff they find to be fun, they might work on something they consider boring but that you really want.

  6. I like the subscription based payment, but speaking from a consumer perspective, and not a generous investor perspective, I would want something substantial for it. Whether it be a monthly e-magazine or a weekly video demonstration, I think it should be something focused on educating, that way you can sell it as a service rather than a contribution. As long as the service is educational, its mutually benifical for both too.

    And i think you could segment it like gold member gets this this and this, silver member gets just this and this etc.. and the you could possibly sell individual elements on the e shop too.

    I also think having it as service will put the Opensource nature of blender in less jeopardy, have it as a seperate site from blender.org and advertise it on blender.org heavily.

  7. When can we expect to hear the results?

    This is exactly what blender needs, a group that does commercial support. Most people are hesitant to commit to a new package for a project if there isn't something like that. When working with maya, we would occasionally hire a guy to write something or call support with bugs. Also- Documentation!!!

    Good luck!

  8. I'm think, that the ones, who need some features, like me, answered all the questions in hope to make some push in right direction.

  9. Survey completed!
    I think it's a good idea that users who are willing to pay a subscription will have a say on what gets priority in development.

  10. Blender has been commericial for years... It's just a question of what the business model is. I'd say they're looking to get funding from people who NEED feature X NOW so that it can be coded and shared. The person who pays gets to decide the feature and early builds, we all get funky new features sooner and they get free beta testing ;) The GPL license / community prevent it just being locked up one day.

  11. Hola, Una saludo.

    EL apoyo debe de darse siempre y cuando las mejoras sean viables y visibles. Me gusta interes que le dan y el apoyo permanente a los desarroladores de blender.

    Espero que todos estemos dispuesto a poner un trozo de lo mucho que nos ah ayudado blender a los profesionales y estudiantes de el 3D. Estoy seguro que todos aportaran un pequeño grano que sumado sera una gran ayuda para el desarrollo ilimitado del software.

    Me despido, y deseo suertes en los proximos proyectos!

    RR
    Comunidad
    BlenderGameEngine

  12. I think a question about the ones taking the survey would have been a good idea, since I had to answer to $0 in the donation part because I don't have an income, since I'm a student.

  13. This doesn't look like a commercial move for Blender, in the traditional sense of the word. Blender is and will always be free as Blendiac says. This is a means for Blender to be improved by funding, those that have the money to pay will have their issues prioritised. The rest of us will still reap the benefits. It may not be the features we want when we want it, but it's progress for our software.

    I say good luck guys! Should I ever be in the position to do so, I'll definitely join the club!

  14. I'm with cloud_GL, student life means I can't really contribute money to blender without going hungry. but I like the idea of the development subscriptions.

    There was no real place for this in the survey, but the biggest priority in my mind is to get smooth working integration between existing features. It's the small things that make one app. better then another, and right now blender is still very rough feeling in this way. (I don't mean just in 2.5, even before this was the biggest complaint I heard/have myself.)

  15. rip-rap,

    What do you mean commercial? Software doesn't fund itself. A lot of us payed for Durian film credits so that Blender gets to the point where it is today.

    I don't mind the subscription model. Especially if it's gonna help speed up development. But it depends on the amount. In the survey, it seems some subscription options are out of reach for low budget users (i.e. one person user vs studio team).

    So I think you should have different subscription options. Ones designed for low budget users and one for higher budget. For example, low end: $120/year, higher end: $1200/year --- higher sub user requests get more priority.

    This is great in many ways. For example, a lot of users who use Blender for game development might not care about the BGE anymore, because there are free game engines for commercial use available that have all the features you could ever want (why reinvent the wheel).

    However those who use the BGE for scientific simulations and architectural visualization might want certain features that cater to those areas only. For example: scientific simulations might require some additional features to python scripting and perhaps hardware acceleration (i.e. Bullet OpenCL). There is no need to add all the crazy amount of features to BGE that are needed to make a game.

  16. i took the survey, very specific for priorities. i'd have preferred a few more questions with dialogue boxes, maybe its because i wordy about what i want to see changed and improved with software. as for the monetizing blender, i see where its coming from but i think blender should stay 1000% free and open source with no strings attached to blender as a product. if you look at blender's history you really could argue that it failed as a commercial product(not a debate for me personally). i do think there are ways for blender devs to make some money tho. my suggestions in the survey were to introduce commercial third party plugins, that way blender itself stays free for anyone; and treating blender more like a product a rock band might put out. in the survey i really did suggest introducing collectors editions of the software bundled with cool stuff that could be limited edition, i was thinking of the band nine inch nails when they released the slip how they made money with that, why not do something like that with blender, seriously thats one of the advatages of blender being comercially free is that it can be marketed in this way.

    wow lots of words in this post

  17. So is this actually affiliated in any way with the blender foundation, or is it a third party trying to setup a startup? How do you do a subscription model on open source software?

  18. But assuming that one person donates $5 a month and another $100, the one who donates more will always win out. So basically the one donating less will have practically no chance of their request being worked on, so they will in essence be wasting their money.

  19. @roofoo - if their wish is shared, then they can win out by having 20 othr people donating $5 a month who want the same feature (or 4 people donating $25 etc). They also have the opportunity to convince other members of the community.

    @ All the "Blender shouldn't be commercial" people:
    Let's face it. Blender is 100% free in every sense as it should be. And it's commercial. The Blender Institute right NOW is a registered company. It sells stuff (DVD's, t-shirts). The most successful FOSS projects tend to be both. No money slows things down in areas that people can't / don't feel like doing volunatrily (speed optimisations, documentation etc). Sacrificing freedom alienates the community that ultimately make up the customer base and removes the reason for a FOSS project existing and is equally bad for business.

    No one's arguing for less freedom. People here just seem to be mistaking that commercial equals not free. Done right, money gives more people more freedom.

    Personally we pay coders to write stuff that we GPL 100% (no proprietry plugins or suchlike), all the time. We just need specific features to exist for our business, so we pay for them. Other people get all those features for free under the GPL and enhance them / fix bugs. Everyone wins in a way that we wouldn't if no money was ever involved.

    The only important thing is that all code / assets produced with the money are shared under the GPL / CC. Other than that, I'd love to see more commercial Blender projects.

  20. "Hobbiest" should be hobbyist. Or are you suggesting that I'm somehow "hobbier" than you? :)

    Thanks for the survey. It helps me feel like someone might actually care what I have to say about Blender, even if I can't make a consistent monetary commitment right now (not regretting my Sintel pre-order in the least. Nope.)

  21. I've submitted as well. I'm happy to see this kind of survey and hope it helps Blender to become that much better. While I support FOSS, I understand that money is an issue when it comes to rapid development, even though developers passionate about the growth of Blender as a tool is really the cornerstone of its development. However, the Blender community is very large, and if we all contribute a little, such as in purchasing their products that we can afford or giving a little to the program we love, it can mean a lot toward it becoming the ultimate tool for all of us. Just a thought. Thanks to all that participate in the survey.

  22. Submitted. Thanks for seeking our feedback.

    Yes, I would gladly pay regularly for the development of Blender,

    especially for fixing / improving areas that are important for the end user, but boring, or not rewarding for (some) developers.

  23. ..bye-bye {open source" idealist dream...

    PS>Going commercial (yet relatively cheap) would be much more "straight forward" as far as the relationship between the Blender's headquarters and Blender's community is considered...Please...let's face it > ">> OVER!...(is there one amongst us who disagrees about the fact that e.g. Linux FAILED to substitute Windows (even after the Vista "bad joke") in their "7" incarnation"?...Is there anyone???...)

  24. missing quote from my previous message >>> "Make Love NOT War" days are >>> OVER ! Now ...just try not to get killed in the War...that's teh ONLY you can do!...

    PS > @Blendernation > Why when I want to edit my message,the old message NEVER loads?...

  25. If you want blender to mature you cannot just expect that coders do all the work forever.
    Some of them have a life of them as well and all need money to buy food from anyway.

    I think as a contribution for getting a good software for free this subscription model is so
    much and should be so much welcome to everybody. Even when a person can only add a
    little, it all can add up.

    And anyway since the very first project the Blender Foundation collected money to fund
    those projects.

    Only because you show your appreciation with a donation doesn't mean Blender goes
    commercial.

    Plus did anybody of you also consider what happens when some get to old to work on
    Blender, have a change in life, don't have the time anymore ...

    Come on guys use your brain.

  26. roofoo

    I don't think that this will end into a pid for features, that might be not the right way and a difficult way to go.

    I assume they might set a donation goal to reach and when funding is secured and a person found to code
    it will be done.

    I don't think that they would simply then allocate the spend money on other things incase lets say the
    funding goal was not reached.

    Question is if they also would do a refund system in case something is not reached.

    While this is a valid point to consider I think we should wait till they have concrete plans on how they
    want to set this up.

    I personally find this a good move because money is just needed and Blender needs more improvement in some areas then just some features added here and there and I am talking about the material shading and render system.

    I hope for that they can secure enough money and personal to bring Blender to where many would like it to be.

  27. A somewhat more "consistent" post...
    If a software gives you the chance (essentially it >>> allows you) to make some good ,real money through using it (like Blender does...)...then why this software,should it be free for itself???...if I made a multi-million dollars revenue ,successful "short" or game ,for example,how could I EVER DEMAND (or even hope) my beloved 3D app to be "free"???...Let's face it>>>There is NO real "free" software simply because there's NO real "free" economy...there's NO real "open source" thing simply because there's NO real "open source" (and shared) profits or revenues made by the VERY SAME product of the so called "open source" code...hope you get the meaning.

    ..".FREE AS A "FREE SPEECH" WILL ALWAYS BE DIFFERENT THAN "FREE AS A "FREE CODE"" ...you wanna know why?
    ?...Simply because >>> WE'RE BORN HAVING THE ABILITY TO SPEAK BUT WE ARE N-O-T BORN HAVING THE ABILITY TO CODE!...that is..."coding" a computer is a very specialized kind of a human activity aiming to harness the power of a machine that IS DESIGNED to control billions of data in order TO SAVE TIME AND EFFORT AND,THUS ,MAXIMIZE >>> PROFIT!...Got it now Mr John Doe???...
    How dared somebody to COMPARE AND TO CORRELATE our >>>NATIVE ABILITY TO SPEAK with our DEVELOPED SKILL TO CODE???...Gosh! (here it goes...)
    As a resume ...IT'S A-L-L ABOUT POLITICS MY FRIENDS...DO NOT ALWAYS BUY WHAT THEY'RE TRYING TO SELL YOU!...

  28. I'd love for people to define what they mean when saying to "go commercial". I really think by this most people commenting mean that you wouldn't be able to get a copy of Blender without paying. With Blender under the GPL and commits from loads of different people (all of whom would have to give permission to change the license) this just isn't happening. There's loads of ways for all the code to stay free and open source AND "go commercial" (ie get money for making it better) along the way. Blender can be (and has long been) Free, Open Source ***and*** commercial. It's not a one or the other thing.

  29. I;m ,frankly, thinking that Blendiac just put it right...yes,I agree and I think he has a strong point.There IS a way for a code to be BOTH "open source" ,"free" AND "commercial"...
    THIS is EXACTLY why I emphasized (in my first post) on this...NOTHING "wrong" or "bad" with that!
    I said > "going commercial" (that is...IF we want that Blender keeps having a sustainable rate of development and remain "competitive","appealing" and "updated" as an app WHEN ....WE HAVE to financially support it,in a way...) "(yet keeping it relatively "cheap") would be a much more "straightforward" ("honest"/"sincere") practice as far as the relationship between the Blender's "headquarters " (foundation / full time employed devs) and the rest of the community is concerned"...
    So...(@Blendiac and @daas) ...think that we kinda agree (in essence..) or what?...

  30. ...also guys...I forgot to ask you to forgive me for my horrible English! (English i not my "mother tongue" as you have already guessed for sure!...)
    But,even with some errors in syntax or grammar (even if I'm trying hard to say it right...) I hope that the "overall meaning" of my words is still (hopefully) obvious.
    Thank you

  31. @Slobodan - lol. To tell the truth, I hadn't even read all of your posts, but it sounds like we'd both like better funding for Blender :) I do believe that free, sharing, passion based economies already exist and succeed and that done right, money can help them succeed even better. Blender is a success already and can be even more so with good funding if it goes hand in hand with what makes people want to support it (great features and a great FOSS ideology). Ton's a smart guy, and it's in his own best interests to do the right thing by everyone here. I just see a lot of people scared unnecessarily of our beloved app becoming evil. :D

  32. @Blendiac Now you said it all!...I cannot stretch enough how much I agree with you!
    If not anything else,it's quite obvious ,at least,that we both love Blender (along with our fellows in this thread) and that our "critics" is a constructive one!...there is nothing wrong in admitting that a kind of support different (more "regular" in terms of time ) is needed for the great team of devs to be able to maximize its "efficiency" in making us proud and happy (:D) by providing us with the most "cutting edge" "goodies available in the industry!...isn't it?...
    If this wouldn't be the case (our love for Blender) then (anyone can rest assured as for this!...) we would be ,already,in some other forums by now!...not here!...
    So once again...I 'm more than happy that we agree (despite my horrible -I repeat- use of English!...)that's a sign of hope by itself!...:D
    All the best...and let's start giving for supporting our beloved Blender right away by subscribing ourselves!...it is for good reason...I can feel it! (Actually ,I answered to the relative question in the survey by appointing a certain amount of monthly support that I thought I could afford!...)

    Yes!...I agree also in that Ton is a very clever person and the best Captain around!
    Finally I liked these words that you said :
    "...I do believe that free, sharing, passion based economies already exist and succeed and that done right, money can help them succeed even better. Blender is a success already and can be even more so with good funding if it goes hand in hand with what makes people want to support it (great features and a great FOSS ideology)."...Great!...Blender is gonna "make it"!...there's some good "stuff" behind!...:D

    All the best to you my friend!

  33. blender should never be paid for and it never will be, that is the point behind it. If those of us who love Blender and have the means to support it financially sign up for these subscriptions, then we will get the benefit of increased input in the project. Not to mention that for a little money a month I'm not only making a better Blender for myself but a better Blender for people across the world who can't afford to purchase other 3D applications.

  34. The Payment Method is a theme to discuss I think, I don't know if other people have the some throubles I've, but in my contry, Argentina is not a easy way to pay to other countries. And Debit Card is not suported.
    Paypal don't work here, and I'm not a Credit Car user (I don't know, but I think is not popular in Latin-America).
    I'm trying to pay throught Bank on Blender E-Shop, but is engorrous. (I'm now trying another methond, Western Union).

    Have anybody found an easy way to do that? Even without Paypal and Credit Cards?

    Some times I like to support some project... but whe I see the Paypal button (or Credit Card button) I think: "Shame... :S "

    Regards!!

  35. I'm seventy two years old and have enjoyed Blender for several years. Mostly animated clips for my little granddaughter. But, I live on a small fixed income and thrive on free and open source programs.

    Now having said that I can't set the type font and size in the new Beta as we could with the old layout.

    But, yes any mention of money concerns me as I'm sure it would a student. And, the mention of subscriptions.. . Gentlemen this is just the position I find myself in now. You too might visit this place one day. ghost56

  36. The funding option (and a model for it) is a great idea and it is really needed. Developers can work on the features they like (as always), but this way individuals and studios can coral developers to work on features they need while benefiting the whole Blender community. There is actually a problem if one does not have this kind of funding option, which is that some features are neglected (e.g. NURBS, aligning and snapping, layer naming), while other options are 'overdeveloped' (fluids, hair etc.). If one had to look at Blender's development history in sequence then there is only one word that comes to mind- 'weird'.

  37. (Sorry I am terrible at English)

    South Korea is almost no user blender3d

    Because of

    blendr 3D graphics, there is no office

    The reason

    By opening an office
    Recruiting staff because they can not do.

    Korea needs to do so
    decent Blender 3D community.

    If

    South Korea by using capital
    When opening offices in China Graphic

    There can be very effective ......

    GMP in the country, it is very low
    Open source software is very beneficial to be able to.

    But this
    Training should be done first, have a problem.

    In China and Southeast Asia
    Graphics education in order to

    To obtain the cooperation of the government

    This is not an easy problem.

    The easiest way to conventional 3D users (Max, Maya) to recruit

    Maya, Max software is used without permission.

    This
    In order to reduce labor costs
    Is the most effective way.

    If free open source blender
    would be possible to resolve the problem looks.

    The reason is easy to education.

    I can assure
    If
    the Monetization Blender
    In Asia, nobody will not be used.

    The reason
    Unauthorized use of software

    More fundamental reason
    GMP is low.

    $ 100 in China
    Huge money.

    In China and Southeast Asia is very large $ 10

    In this case

    Does not require additional training Structure software(MAX, MAYA)
    Regardless of the price
    Because the answer.

  38. I would like to propose a different method to fund Blender. As we know, many many people use Blender. Why not set a ridiculously low monthly recurring cost. For example $3 a month. Most could afford that. At the same time, have Blender Foundation commit to an Open Project every year. During the creation of a Project, produce tutorials and release them to the people paying. In addition they could also receive the DVD either free or at a discount. As aways the Open Project content would eventually be posted for all.

    What do you think?

  39. Lots of professionals would like to contribbute with subscrition. That´s a good Idea.
    Users who are willing to pay a subscription will have a say on what gets priority in development.

  40. Blender has to be taken more seriously on the market and I think this would be a step in the right direction. That and the ability to communicate with other software is very important.
    If someone is making money with blender it would be in his interest that the coders be financed through a monthly, yearly subscription.

  41. @ Germano : I'm in agreement with you about that, I don't think it's moving commercially away, just looking for more funds to accelerate the development process & enlarge the team I 'suspect'.

    I can't see this NOT being open source but there must be discussions/brain storming as to how to source more funds for new features and [more] fulltime coders. Think about it, local grants and low level financial support will only go so far.

    I'll complete this later, tis a bit of a mammoth list, also will the results be published in future? Just curious.

  42. People need to learn that a program can be open, free, and commercial all at the same time. "Proprietary" is the evil word. "Proprietary" means closed, locked, and no freedom. Although proprietary can still be free (free as in money cost, NOT free as in freedom).

    The talk of a subscription doesn't sit well with me. I'm not worried about Blender becoming costly or inaccessible, but I worry that there will be an elitist group who have more access to Blender than other because they have money. Perhaps most concerning are those who would gladly pay money for special access to Blender at the expense of others.*

    Blender is currently released under the GPL, but the actual copyright holders of Blender change the licenses couldn't they? Software can be released under multiple licenses by its owners.

    * - I'm making a lot of assumptions here, and reading a lot into just a few words. Still, I am worried, but welcome any response which might ease my concerns.

  43. Funding this way unfortunately creates a two tier society - those who fund and those who don't. There has to be more than an altruistic feel-good factor to motivate the former. Therefore the funder needs to feel "nurtured" a bit more than the rest. There would have to be a tangible link between money spent and benefit received especially long term.

    Also, those who make a living selling tutorials/books etc. on the back of blender should pay a tithe to the foundation!

  44. @ extensor:
    NO no no! This will (hopefully) never happen. Blender would completely lose its status if there was an obligatory payment for everybody, however small. "Most could afford that". Well, then the price should be adjusted to each part of the world, so that it's stays "ridiculous" everywhere. Even $3 is a completely different amount in the US and in some parts of Africa. But that's really beside the point. Blender just wouldn't be Blender, the whole legal status would have to be redefined. Not to say it would completely lose its current "PR".
    As for the subscription, it seems that most people here push for it strongly. I personally don't know what to think. GIMP or Inkscape people don't come up with such ideas. But then, Blender development probably requires more input than either Gimp or Inkscape. And it's faster, hopefully. Ton (to my knowledge) has never suggested any form of payment. But if this idea were to be realized, it would have to be thought out VERY carefully. As someone has suggested, what if someone pays $5 and another $100? How are their wishes evaluated? It would require a very carefully researched business model.

  45. Many software in Asia

    Non-profit group (Student gureup) and for individuals to use the software for free

    Schools and commercial groups (companies) who are paid to use the software.

    Even if Blender
    Normal price ($ 200 ~ $ 400) to set

    Blender 3D is making a profit through
    To individuals and groups
    Sell software

    For students and non-profit groups
    If we go for free

    Now while keeping the user
    Users can receive more
    Would not generate revenue?

  46. Mugwah: As I understand it this subscription club thing will pay a separate set of developers, those developers will fulfil the wishes. The rest of the people that contribute to Blender will keep contributing as per usual.

    As for Inkscape and GIMP, as cool and competent as those softwares are, they just can't compete with the speed that Blender is moving at and might benefit from a similar business/development model that BF is employing.

  47. I think one very important thing for Blender is to have a good documentation. I know we get a lot of tutorials on the web, and I myself subscribed to a website producing a lot of very good ones, but I think documentation for new users as well as old users learning the new 2.5 is a major step to stabilize our favorite 3D application.
    I guess it's an enormous amount of work and as well as we see that supporting financially the open movies produced incredible progress for Blender, I agree it's a very good idea to have a more organized funding for developpers.
    On whatever basis , monthly or occasional, according to the wish or possibility of everyone.
    Certainly monthly basis helps organize projects at the foundation, but it should not be the only way to sponsor blender's developpment.
    And one last point, I don't think that who can afford paying more should have his priority targets taken more into consideration than the developpment targets choosen by people having a lower budget.
    ( short answer to Mugwah: some education sites already give some money back to the Blender Foundation and I think it seemed to me the most coherent way to support their educational work and BF at the same time )

  48. Blender is on course to be the main 3d program on the planet, free in schools, colleges, all homes, research labs etc... Therefore it is going to be an international institute/ universal 3d language- free for all humankind. We need a blender ambassador to get funding from the European education funds, USA sponsorship, Blender DVD introduction training course should be on sale in every book & computer shops all over the world. Long Live Blender!!

  49. This is my first post.
    Blender is my every day software and I want to stay it like that. I enjoy work in Blender.
    I used it till now, two times for getting payed for my work.
    And off course I plan to use it for earning money in the future too. And I think it is right to support Blender developers and with that the whole community. I am from Serbia. Really don't know how to pay and support from my country but when I found the way I will surely do that as much as I can.
    Beautiful software! We need it. I think if somebody can help the development it should do that.
    Thanks for the software!

  50. As long as Blender stays as good and as accessible as it has been so far I'm okay.

    Consider the subscribers as a boon, not as a sign of consumerism, quite the contrary.

    * Subscribers paid to liberate Blender source code.

    * Subscribers paid to help the BlenFo make Blender bigger & stronger than ever.

    But most of all,

    * subscribers gave to keep Blender free of charges for the rest of the world.

    The day this last point changes, then we can talk about consumerism.

    I'm willing to give up one venti frapuccino a month to keep Blender as free as possible (yup, it's 5$/euros a cup where I live...)

    And you? Will you heed the call? Or will you be a drama queen? (Because... you know... you can too. It's your right :D FREEEEEDOM!)

  51. GAME ENGINE! GAME ENGINE PLEASE! MAKE IT AWESOME! Ready to pay for that improvement right away!!! Make it like Unity game engine!!! It is awesome, just have a look at it!!! Add simple things like: Deferred rendering, terrain editor, real-time shadows, make a good FPS or even FPS RPG like Morrowind or Oblivion or Fallout 3.

  52. Completed the survey, thanks for it! May be interesting to see results, especially input from 3d professionals...
    Hrs per week is not always good measure, but its ok.
    Like to take a opportunity to bring up my 'dev roadmap ideas' or just wishes :)

    - Finish (G)UI (make it consistent, stable, more standard) and then don't touch it!
    like to se; presets, radial menues, drag 'n drop, intelligent toolbars, outliner scene management...
    - Modeling upgrade (bmesh and all tools that will evolve after)
    for most jobs modeling is 'base', essential. and it's part in the pipeline with other app's
    - Material refractor (think that plan about it already exist - by brecht :( )
    - Render improvements (now with new material shaders, GI...)
    - in the mean time, GE, python API, fluid, smoke, sculpt will naturally evolve bit by bit

    Also community wiki documentation sprint with prizes would be idea to consider (as durian modelling sprint was successful),
    maybe BF should pay one of many blender educators to make a ~10 official 'Welcome to Blender video tuts'.

    Cheers
    tommy5

  53. Like I said some weeks ago, I'm absolutely for "across the board funding" for Blender, but ... only for a defined period. A surge effort, only for 1-2 year maximum to really, really get development going. I think that the Sentinel experiment proved that. Moreover, Blender is really at a tipping point, ready to really become user friendly while being incredibly powerful in so many areas.
    The program has built up an immense amount of mass, both in code and tools. But it hasn't jelled completely.
    As such I'm for a subscription for all hands, a mandatory amount, but as I said ... for only 1-2 years.
    After that, the Blender developers should have tons of funds to work with for nearly a couple decades. Consider that the user base for Blender is approximately 4,000,000. (That's a minimum figure by the way) With a given of 60.00 per year, that tallies to $240,000,000.00 in one year! That ... is a lot of beans. A lot!
    All taken, I would agree to mandatory subscription, though only for 2 years. I would do this to ensure and see what results flourished. However, I think an enforced subscription after 2 years that would be taking advantage.
    Me, I can always work with C4D and Silo as I care to. I would love to see Blender REALLY become a Giant Killer. A program that could crush 3DS Max in terms of ease of use, power, and really important, training and support. However, at the same time, not at the cost of Blender turning into them in the process.

  54. Vladimir,

    "Deferred rendering, terrain editor, real-time shadows, make a good FPS or even FPS RPG like Morrowind or Oblivion or Fallout 3."

    Yeah, 3 noob Blender users will make AAA games...

    I think BGE is a very good game engine and it is possible to make very good games with it, even _big_ games.

    But of course I am happy when new features coming. But I can use and I _already use_ BGE for serious works.

    Noobs always wants new features but does'nt make anything.

  55. What I think would be a good idea is to offer programmers for a fee to studios that want this and that feature. Instead of training their own programmers blenderinstitute could have programmers in their stable and rent them out on project basis to different studios.

  56. Blender developers should not focus on the game engine! There is a boat load of game engines out there for free or small price. A lot of them have web players, advanced features, and everything you could ever want in a game engine.

    It would take away a lot of effort that can be put into Blender itself.

    BGE should just focus on being the 'interactive engine' of Blender. Like my example above, Hardware accelerated Bullet OpenCL would be great for scientific simulations.

  57. Subscription based ownership is a terrible idea. Otherwise, if I can always use Blender no matter the level of subscription, I might be willing to pay to upgrade to the most recent version.

    Much depends upon what it means in terms of what we are getting in return for our money.

  58. tyrant monkey on

    I am highly skeptical that something like this would work. It is not really hard to donate to the Blender Foundation at the moment there is even a link to the donations page on the splash screens of the 2.50 beta builds. But yet we have so few for paid developers working on Blender at the moment. If there was money Ton could pay for more people to work full time on Blender. Imagine what he would do with five or six fully paided people working for him.

    I suspect you will get a flood of feature requests but few actually willing to pay up.

    [sorry if I go a little off topic here.]

    I would love to give money to the Blender Foundation but seriously who ever is in charge there needs to sort out 3 things that are major pain in the butt obstacles for some people in different countries.

    1. pay pal please keep in mind that not all countries work with pay pal, I have a credit card but we are not legally allowed to use pay pal where I come from. When clicking on payment methods even when you choose credit card I still get sent to pay pal.

    2. Not all countries use zip codes; so making this a required entry field in a form is ever so frustrating, I usually put in a bunch of zeros and hope for the best

    3. Some of us still use postal boxes hardly any thing mail gets delivered door to door, unless you use something like DHL, ups etc.

    [end of off-topic]

    it would be interesting if you asked when the respondent last made a donation to the Blender Foundation either as a direct donation or from purchasing something in the e-shop it would give a far better indication of just how much financial support one could get for this which I seriously call into question.

  59. If you really want something added or fixed, a bounty paid upon completion would provide more incentive than paying a monthly fee for each month that it goes unfixed.

    With the subscription idea they could make more money by _not_ fixing things, though I doubt they would do so intentionally.

  60. [email protected]
    I’m sure – it’s possible but I can imagine only one mean for this now:
    Averaging priorities from all people.
    For ex.: 9 of 10 checked “Mesh modelling” – highest priority but 1 checked “Rigging” for the highest. Then it will be “Mesh modelling”.
    But I can be wrong easily! It can be some system about dates and aims and paid guys whose getting these threads accordingly to their capabilities.

    It’s possible but the way “how to do this” isn’t obvious because we don’t know any details. And we will don’t know this until some decision :)

    So… I’m ready to pay for about 20$ per month via VISA. It’s better than to wait somebodies' “service packs” or “year versions” to upgrade to and to pay every time some money those aren’t set by me.

    Fast updates and newest hot features those are suggested by users - who don't want this, eh?

  61. "privitization = corruption" i think we should evaluate the long term future as well you know for my potential kids and stuff the more commercial something becomes the more it becomes greedy we must remember that organizations are living entity's we wouldn't want to push blender in the wrong direction would we perhaps it should make a few child organizations (reproduce) before it becomes inefficient and messed up like this web site http://pymol.org/ this website only provides source code unless you pay or lie and say your a student (when your just a geek having some fun) is this what we want :( (crying) if you really want to go ahead with this i want to know that fully compiled builds and source code will always be available not just source-code also i want it so People with low income can add features too and most of all i want to see some kind of vetoing of what gets in enemy's might want bad stuff in blender thank you

    i am Matty 686 a blender artist and an open source fan
    "all cells eventually have to much volume and become inefficient and must reproduce that is what dna is for"
    "all software eventually gets to big and must reproduce that is what source code is for"

  62. and by the way i have donated ten us dollars on ton's birthday and bought 4 books for like 30 dollars apiece witch will soon need replacing because of all the new features and i will buy the new ones (who's with me ) may blender live forever don't do anything stupid yes developers this means you remember what brought Rome down it got too big if your getting to big to fast start fostering baby foundations

  63. Moolah,

    yes basically the plan is that each user picks 3 to 6 priority areas - and then for each priority area they can assign points to the feature that they want.

    So say we have one 50 dollar a month contributor, and 5 10 dollar a month contributors. For each dollar contributed that month the individual can allocate points.

    The 50 dollar contributor picks say

    Caustics - 5 pts
    Layers for Sculpting - 15 pts
    Selective Bevel - 30 pts

    Of the 10$ contributors each put 5 pts to Caustics and 5 pts to Layers for painting

    Caustics - 5*5pts = 25 pts
    Layers for painting - 5*5pts = 25 pts

    Thus the total points would be

    Caustics - 30 pts
    Selective Bevel - 30pts
    Layers for painting - 25pts
    Layers for sculpting 15pts

    Since caustics and selective bevel have tied points, but more votes are for caustics - it would get highest priority, then selective bevel would have second priority, layers for painting would get third most priority, and sculpting layers would have fourth priority.

    Of course in reality the top 10 priorities for both donors who can afford higher donation rates and donors who can afford very small donation rates has a lot of overlap - probably 8 of the top 10 items for most people are the same.

    So with a a few big donors, and a bunch of smaller donors what happens is that those 8 items are accomplished faster than if just the big donors or just the small donors were donating.

    This would actually be tweaked a little bit - with features being ranked on estimated difficulty in terms of man months - and features that are known to require a bigger investment in time needing a larger point threshold minimum. Also some features might be delayed if an appropriate developer isn't available during that month to implement the highest priority feature.

  64. Tom, although I can understand your eager to make Blender the Hollywood star is gained to be, I don't think calling 'dollars' points and use a 'pay-per-view'-system will get us there 'the Blender-way'. A Blender-way which might serve everyones goal is that Ton setup a program, after calculating the cost of a programmer, so you take part in hiring him, just as you can take part in projects like Durian. Ergo one pre-orders a Blender Foundation programmer (until he arrives). Than we have don't have the regular worldly money talk system, but users need system, this guided by the Blender Foundation.

    Niels

  65. @admin; I tried Opera and Firefox, but edit a message seems impossible at this stage... It states 'Loading' and thats it...

  66. Yes. Just take some survey and place a donate button somewhere around is a lot simpler and easier. People can do both with their free wills. Or we can request if user's earn $ by using Blender than we encourage them to donate a small percentage from it.

  67. Slobodan, speech being inherent in beingness is frequently debated in the philosohpy/psychology world. I fall somewhere in the camp of "owning a hammer" - ownership does not equal ability, ergo, freedom requires responsibility.

    Because I do not have to pay, I have championed Blender for many years, despite the terrible docs and NEVER being able to figure out all of pre-2.5 menus.

    Funded projects are the best that can be done; to hire Blender as a tool developer is great. But I would rather pay for Lightwave because it works better.

    So how does Blender's business model work? Ton, bull-headed as he is, has never compromised his vision nor has he let others take over that vision, and he has the drive to keep it growing.

  68. How about you have a huge list of features in a table (row by row). And a donate button in each row (a donate column). That way people donate to features they want the most.

    This is good from the developers end, because they get to set the features (i.e. it prevents people from requesting 'crazy' off-track features. And it lets people actually vote with their wallet on features they are passionate about.

    You can list the total donate amount ('total donation' column) for each month. And then every month you reset the money column and have people 'vote with their donations' again. Until a feature/or bug is knocked off the list.

    It's hard to implement but hey just thought I'd share the idea. But it has some benefits:

    1) it would let us see how much money is being donated for certain features.
    2) it would let third parties get involved by adding their features in (but with the official green light from BF)
    3) Donation system would supplement the Open Movie Projects (i.e. it becomes just a separate revenue stream for development/bug fixes only).

    4) Like I said above, it lets the BF set the features and keep focused. But still let people give input to the features they want, like through surveys OR form submissions, etc. If the feature is reasonable then it gets added to table.

    5) Don't make guarantees! i.e. features can take time, might need maintainers, etc. So just let people know ahead of time.

    It sort of like the "feedback" feature that Unity has on its website. Except its with real money instead of 10 votes limit.

    So here is an example of what the table might look like (sorted by total amount (i.e. importance of feature)).

    feature | feature desc | donate | prev month(s) amount | this month's amount | total amount | feature completed (yes/no)

    Of course if there is a lot of money going into one feature, it doesn't mean it can't be used for other features.

  69. South Korea and I'll say it like graphics studio

    First,
    the poor technician
    Call other poor technician

    Other technicians
    Max or Maya is the most used.
    Where Max and Maya are used illegally.

    If they fail
    End

    If successful, they
    Company, which opened

    The company is the target of a government crackdown of the software.
    That's why Maya and Max are buying.

    If the company is not
    The software is free for all.

    In South Korea
    3D Software Training
    Only Max and Maya

    Companies except
    Free software for everyone

    Price / performance that what does not.
    Only performance ratio
    This is because all the software is free to individuals.

    The strength of Autodesk's piracy.
    Practically all of the Autodesk software is free to individuals
    This is possible with the dictatorship of Autodesk.

    In this situation,
    the strengths of open source
    .........
    Conscience

    Blender 3D is not a job.
    Blender 3D is not the office

    The strength of the blender
    Feature is not free.

    The strength of the blender
    That is his conscience.

    For conscience to go the hard way is to use open source.

    If you commit an illegal

    I will go the easy way.

  70. @Pawel Aug 9th, 2010 at 8:51 am

    I didn't say everyone is obligated. You need to work on your reading comprehension skills.

  71. Hello :)

    I am very concerned and disturbed by reading this post. Blender must keep his emotion, his pleasure, his energy, his creativity, and I have the unpleasant impression that money we could all lose. I'm not sure what I'm saying, but I'm afraid ...

  72. IMHO I have a few words to say about this topic :)

    If you look at successful open source packages, many of which have now been purchased (OpenOffice, mySQL, jBoss) you will see that they are funded through consulting of their services and support contracts, not by charging for their products. The "company" as such in these cases are really a support and services company that happens to direct the outcome of the software only through arbitrating and coordinating the development needed by the community, while using a portion of their income to help with dedicate development. Though slightly different, this is exactly what Blender already does, and does well, through sales of it's project DVD's, T-Shirts and all things available in the Blender store.

    Development for projects like Eclipse (A development tool) is donated from commercial companies and the community. An open source project like Blender would benefit from having code donated to it, however I have seen several open source projects crash and burn when an outside agency starts dictating what does and does not get worked on (Jahshaka is a classic example).

    In reality it is the enthusiasm of students, educators, and the million users of Blender that creates the next generation of code. As I have seen Ton state in IRC - Blender users grow in skill, then they become the next generation of developers. They find Blender is missing such and such, then they decide to try coding a bit in Python, often with spectacular results. From that many pick up what is needed to move these things into Blender's core. These are the people creating code, Blenders users.

    Blender is by it's very nature inclusive, not exclusive. There should never ever be a charge for the efforts of millions of peoples dedication and love. What is it then that we are asking then?

    If I understand the intent of the survey, it is this: If there are a million people, with a million different objectives, how do you decide what priorities are made? What code gets added next?

    The answer in this is that there are many people who want to help, and do not have the skills necessary to submit patches, or create features. They are willing to donate money to see that it happens, because they wish to help Blender. Perhaps they see some things as stumbling blocks to Blender's adoption, or they want Blender to compete with such and such product. The best way to see this through would be full time developers to work on Blender. Or is it?

    A lot of the development happens in part because someone somewhere wants to try something new. By asking the community for help, they learn the ins and outs of Blender, they become part of the community. Eventually they want to give back. The community helps them: Perhaps to become developers, or to help test new features, to document, or to work on open source projects like Durian. This feeling of comradeship is what drives development, not financial gain.

    So where do the people who can't code but want to help come in?

    By documenting what you can, writing tutorials on what you have learned, by helping people in IRC, by organizing people in an open movie, or getting coders together to share ideas. Learn to submit a detailed bug report, and help track down bugs. Leaving positive feedback, giving back where you can, and learning Blender. Every moment spent helping others creates new users, more potential coders, a sense of being part of something bigger and frees up the time of the core group to code even more features and fix more bugs.

    A survey like this one can be a great tool to help focus people on a particular area they might be interested in helping with. I don't think forcing people to work on something they have no interest in is really an answer. Showing them where they can make a difference and helping them along the way can. Does it mean the highest priority items can and will get coded? Not at all, only if the community includes people who get excited by that feature. Some people really do enjoy tracking down bugs or love the challenge of a great piece of code. Perhaps they like rooting for the underdog. Whatever it is, don't believe it's about the money.

    At the same time there is a clear demand for learning materials and dedicated support. Blender itself could bring on people to do this, but I think it would change the nature of the Blender Foundation. There is nothing stopping any of you from creating a dedicated company to fill this gap; In fact I believe it is actively encouraged. This would grow the community, help people who need more help getting started, and make it easier to adopt Blender in commercial projects. This company could then contribute code back to Blender and help make it better without dictating what Blender is as a whole: Blender remains as the product of the Blender Community.

    It is clear to me that Blender is very special, and so are it's users.
    What is the best way to help Blender? This also is very clear.

    Learn Blender, give back where you can, be creative, and inspire others.

  73. Sorry, maybe it will be a bit crude...

    For all "pay-haters" and "true open source" [email protected]

    Why you don't think in a direction that this program can really stimulate a huge progress for Blender?
    It's said that it will be still free. Nobody is forced to pay for the development or for the program.
    And it's not a privatization! What a strange analogy? Privatization means "the transfer from the public sector to the private sector". And it's about sole rights... But we all know that any of the people can suggest an idea. If it's good then it will be implemented in some time. And it not depends on the payment.
    If I can pay but I can't really help to improve Blender in other way (I'm not a programmer) - then I'll better pay. And a possibility to suggest or choose some priorities is the best stimulus for me than finding my name in some "Hall of fame" :)
    I'm still for the open source by my hands and legs :))

  74. ok now were talking blender must stay open-source forever and about that silly quot "privatization = corruption"
    i found it in a veterans home lol

    but i am into philosophy and used as part of my speech because it fit

    you clicked the link to the web page i gave you right?

  75. the thing i like about blender so far is that i feel it is a big neural net (metaphor) a sort of idea pot were artists suggest features developers make them or even better artists become developers (if they can figure out python)and make features i firmly be-leave that this non exclusive nature has potential for success for example if people had to pay subscription fees it would cause a sort of in crowed to develop people who felt they had higher status even worse these people might opt to increase membership fees and even restrict the public from access to executable builds this would be the artistes nightmare because not all artist's are smart enough or enough to compile the idea behind open-source is a true democracy one person should not be worth more than another just because they pay more perhaps we could instead instill a social pressure to pay if you can by putting up a banner that said have you made your monthly donation and things like that so if you cant afford it you still get equal say but if you can afford it but don't pay it you feel guilty until you pay up i mean let's get creative people you could even put a ticker saying how many days it was since your last donation let's face it if your opensource it's usualy because things like software activation drive you nuts (try reinstalling the os a few times and your software wont activate ) so your doing this instead of piracy or maybe you like to code (most coders are in collage) so most people want to donate shay just forget or in the case of students can't afford it

  76. @Moolah

    i get your point

    it makes sense

    just please make sure this is fare for student's
    and low income people

    i can afford it but some people may not be able to

  77. @matty 686

    OK, I get that nobody wants to stay aside and look that others paying and "making orders".
    So, it's a good idea about sell section! I should use it definitely if I were student now.
    BTW if Blender will be good to succesfully export to .obj format then this model base will be popular for many people who want to buy models.

    @Joolme!!

    We have almost the same situation in Russia! All major firms wants only those people who knows Maya or 3dMax well. And even more - some russian Autodesk's managers practice blackmail against some well known firms. It happens b'coz our country is highly corrupted. You can feel it from our latests events around forest conflagrations.

    So, I'm highly interested in Blender's robust development and it's "penetration" to our scene.

  78. @moolah

    you hit the nail right on the head (idiom = got it perfect) with your last post if we (the people ) want any say in blender we can't have even the remotest possibility the it will be pushed around by people with more money than us it is like the ballot box tax they had in America along time ago it stopped low income people from voting

    matty out :)

  79. @ matty - Is it better to have all those people without money to miss out on many of the features they want because it couldn't get funding? Remember it's never going to be the case that all rich people want feature abc and poor people want features x y z. Bmesh anyone? Most of the time, most people are going to want *roughly* the same features. If poor people can have most of the features they want paid for by richer people (even if the features chosen "only" match 70%, not 100%) isn't that better than them getting 0% of those features? Even as things are this is largely how it already works. The largest feature improvements recently have been the kind of features that help produce Sintel. Why? Because those features help Blender make a product that people with money are buying. Now *all* of us (poor people included) get to enjoy those features that wouldn't exist right now without project Durian.

    The argument above is like someone offering you free money, but turning them down because you don't want them to have more say than you on how much you get.

  80. How about making noob twats like me pay to post inane requests on forums like this and BlenderArt? Perhaps I will stop asking for extra features I'll never use, perhaps even force me to save up for a decent 3D software package and become a real professional. Slobodan dude, have mercy on us dyslexics. Those caps really hurt and please resist the temptation to punctuate like a stenographer on crack. Stick to shorter sentences using only commas and full stops?

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