As you’ve almost certainly have heard by now, Autodesk have laid off a huge number of their staff due to a reduced sales forecast. This has had the unfortunate effect of losing some familiar Softimage faces from the Autodesk team, notably Stephen Blair (keen blogger of the excellent XSI Support website) and Guillaume Laforge who had incidentally already departed to support the Maya team. We’d like to wish them both well in their future careers, and thank them for their dedication and contribution to the Softimage community.
Unsurprisingly, this news has brought out the usual rumours about how Softimage is going to be dropped. Err…. nope. Not according to Chris Vienneau, Director of Media and Entertainment at Autodesk who posted this on the 3DPro forum:
…the rumor that the eol of Softimage and 3dsmax is upon us is totally false. I run the team of Pms responsible for all three products so you can twitter it out that this is a false alarm. Although thanks to the beauty of the internet because it was posted here it is being re-posted as the truth on other forums. Thank god it was not posted on Facebook. Both teams were affected but are fully staffed and the products are awesome. Cory Mogk is now also responsible for Softimage and we have been working with the team on the future of the product with lots of key customers. When your product is used on Metal Gear Solid (still one of my favourite games) and you put out stuff like this (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L5IVOs5Pxh8&feature=youtu.be&hd=1) or the final fantasy games and trailers there is no questioning that product can still deliver world class results. For 3dsmax, we have brought on Frank Delise who was one of the original product designers and managers after ten years of making games like Homefront. Max has hundreds of thousands of users and 3dsmax Design is now part of most every Autodesk design suite and there you are talking millions of users. Max has a more challenging role because it literally plays in 5-6 industries but a good balance, some XBR, and a focus on stability and performance is a good recipe to follow.
The key here is that we are only going to address the anxiety that people have about their favourite products by making them more stable, add more features, and make sure they always have enough hooks for people to get their way out of production jams. You can always ask for more of all three but we are not stopping any of them. In 2007 when the boards were alive with the Autodesk killing Maya rumors we knew that they would not stop for years until we continued to show our commitment to the software. We understand people make their living from this software and that they make huge decisions about their projects and companies and we take that responsibility very seriously.
Well I guess that’s about as official as it can get. Yes, it sucks that people have been let go, and you won’t get any arguments from me when it comes to saying that they’ve probably made some bad choices, but it doesn’t mean the end of Softimage as we know it. There’s still a strong team behind the future development and every year so far Softimage has progressed further than any of the other packages. Keep reminding yourself of that… it’s one good reason that us Softimage users can still feel quite smug.
To make it easier for you to connect with other Softimage Users, and for employers to find new talent, we’ve created a brand new Softimage Creatives LinkedIn Group.
The results of the first part of the Softimage Development survey have just been published. We’ll be passing this along with the raw data to the Softimage developers at Autodesk for their initial response. We’ll let you know how it goes.
Until then, click here to see an overview of the results.
We’ve just added a new section to the website for telling you about other Softimage events that are happening around the world.
The first one to be announced is the Softimage Über Tage event that’s to be held in Siegen, Germany on 28th September 2012. For full details on where it is, who’s going to be there, and how to register, please check out the dedicated Softimage Über Tage page.
Welcome to the Softimage Creatives blog! We’ll be using it to keep you up to date on everything that we’re up to, as well as general Softimage related news and information.
If you have something that you’d like to post on this blog, then why not get in touch with us? We can either post it for you or give you access to be an official Softimage Creative blogger.