It should be illegal to be able to buy and then kill a program

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Old 03 March 2014   #16
It's their software and it's their prerogative to discontinue it if they wish. When you buy a software license, you're buying just that - a license to use that version of that software. You're not buying a ticket to a perpetual software future. When the software is discontinued, your license doesn't magically disappear in a puff of smoke or stop working.

Your comparison to food safety laws has absolutely no relevance here.

XSI being discontinued sucks but you can't reasonably expect to live in a world where the freedom of an enterprise to discontinue a product is regulated by law.
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Old 03 March 2014   #17
My problem is not with a company buying software and discontiuning it, it is that they bought out their 2 biggest competitors (Maya and Softimage) and then killed off Softimage. This stinks of trying to corner the market by controlling which products are available. It is a kind of monopoly and is part of the reason that governments should break up companies that try to buy out an entire market.

Have they even tried to sell the Softimage to another developer? Nope. Plans on integrating core features into other apps, nope.

Surely if they were going to have problems developing 3 top software products they would have known before purchasing Softimage. It looks like this was the plan all along.

If you can image a decade or two ago, Microsoft buying Apple, releasing a few updated Macs, then killing the company to get rid of competition. Where would we be? This kind of thing is not illegal, but it should be.
 
Old 03 March 2014   #18
Quote:
Originally Posted by leigh
It's their software and it's their prerogative to discontinue it if they wish. When you buy a software license, you're buying just that - a license to use that version of that software. You're not buying a ticket to a perpetual software future. When the software is discontinued, your license doesn't magically disappear in a puff of smoke or stop working.

They can stop regenerating your license if you change computer parts (happened before on SI acquisition)
And yes the softimage license automagically disapperears if you keep the AD subscription.

Quote:
Your comparison to food safety laws has absolutely no relevance here.

XSI being discontinued sucks but you can't reasonably expect to live in a world where the freedom of an enterprise to discontinue a product is regulated by law.


There are zillion things regulated by law in so called 'free market' so I can guess one more thing won't make a difference...
Of course forcing anyone to cointinue developing software is pure stupidity, its more about who let them buy softimage in first place (anti trust laws)
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Old 03 March 2014   #19
To be fair to Autodesk, (and I am not one of their biggest fans BTW) everyone does this.


Apple has done it,
The Foundry has done it.
Microsoft does this left and right.

From the point of view of a business, keeping 3D apps is something that showed to much duplication of efforts.

Is this a shame?
Hell yes.
XSI is a fantastic program, and most people dont have a clue of its true power.
And to user of other apps, stop saying to XSI users "Jump to app X".

It is not the right moment, since frankly they are still mourning (yes mourning) right now.

And to be fair to XSI users, most people don't have a clue of the ease of use and power of Softimage.

They just lost a significant tool, and they will need time to reorganize.
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Last edited by RobertoOrtiz : 03 March 2014 at 03:11 PM.
 
Old 03 March 2014   #20
Anti Trust?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sherman_Antitrust_Act

I think a case could be made that Autodesk has bought the competition, effectively killing the market...What is the competition for Maya? 15 years ago, it was a a very diverse market for 3D software, but no longer... When it was down to only a few major players, Autodesk bought them, absorbed them, and created practically a monopoly...

There are a few options for 3d software left, such as Animation:Master, Blender, etc... However, because the "Industry" uses Maya, there isn't really much choice for someone who wants to work in it, is there?
And as everything moves to the subscription-based model, the studios (who now have no other option) are locked into an annual software cost that is pretty significant.
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Old 03 March 2014   #21
Sorry but this is dumb. If a person or a corporation does not want to update their software they are free to do so, and rightly so. What you are suggesting is like making it illegal for authors or publishers to stop producing a tv show or book series, or since these are tools, forcing black and decker to make new drills. That's a form of slavery.

The software is still there, it just won't be updated anymore.

You can be mad at autodesk, but then you should also be mad at the people who sold softimage to autodesk in the first place.

I don't like it either but only thing you can do is avoid dealing with autodesk.
 
Old 03 March 2014   #22
Quote:
Originally Posted by RobertoOrtiz
To be fair to Autodesk, (and I am not one of their biggest fans BTW) everyone does this.

Apple has done it,
The Foundry has done it.
Microsoft does this left and right.

You're 100% right. I honestly don't see the problem, at least not from a business standpoint. If you can't beat `em, crush `em. If there's promise, wipe `em out before they become a threat. That's just how it works. Business is cold and cruel. As they say, this is just how sausage is made. At least Avid got paid for XSI and not simply turned into dust.

Should it be illegal? No. It's the business food chain. Big companies gobble smaller ones all of the time. Honestly, even if they have all of the big apps, Autodesk doesn't have a monopoly. There's still competition out there. There are more markets that they haven't conquered. They're fine in doing what they're doing. That'd be like complaining that Microsoft is to blame because Linux isn't in every home.

Like you said, it's not unprecedented. Go as far back as Thomas Edison. The man was less of an inventor and more of a businessman. Where he couldn't innovate, he'd use the power of money. He wasn't prolific so much as he had the money to but patents. When you do it for the love of the craft, you become a Nikola Tesla. When you "sell out" and play the game, you become a Thomas Edison. (Not a perfect analogy to be sure, but I'm sure that you get my point.)

As a lot of you "old timers" here know, good apps sometimes die. I lament the loss of innovators like Softimage, Mirai, and so on, but that's just how it is. The only thing constant in this industry is change. We float from app to app as the trends change. Ask yourself, "How many 3D tools do YOU know?" If you don't know a lot, hang around a few more years. You will.
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Old 03 March 2014   #23
A few facts from past experience as well as current talk with my AD Sales rep about how this will work.

You change hardware? If there are issues with installation of your license contact support for the company. It is common. All software companies will support your move to another machine as you upgrade hardware.

So no your Softimage license will not stop.

If you choose to you can simply upgrade for free to any of the software AD is offering as a replacement. If/When you do this you will have 2 software you can use. Softimage and on the same computer with Maya or Max. The Softimage license exists for Softimage and you also have your new software, if you choose running as well. So effectively you have gained Maya or Max for free.

A lot of people are jumping on that offer I have heard.

But you don't have to. Just stop paying and use Softimage, save your money and look for another platform.

And also. This bit about killing the techlology and thus the competition and free market is not at all accurate.


It is far too early to say that Autodesk, having discontinued Softimage has killed the technology.

But even so, Softimage did not have a large part of the market. It was a smaller part of the market. It was not a threat to Maya. I believe it was an honest attempt to increase the offering with more diverse set of tools. And because of that. I and many other people have benefited. I got Softimage, Maya, MotionBuilder and Mudbox, at a mere fraction of the cost.

AD has the right to take the time to port some of this technology over to Maya if it is possible or simply use the talented team to write new technology into Maya.

Over the next few years it will be interesting to see what happens. But it is far too early to start making claims that are being made here.
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Old 03 March 2014   #24
Cineartist lets agree to disagree on XSI being a threat to Maya.

It feels too much like the victor of a software War rewriting history.
Soft and then XSI was the nemesis(and I dont use the words lightly) app to Maya.
And this was the norm for a LONG time.

Blow by blow Soft could do what Maya could.

And some might say that it has superior scripting and animation tools.

It is when it got bought that the app got buried..
So lets not downplay how powerful this app is.
EDIT
I meant to say, was.
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Last edited by RobertoOrtiz : 03 March 2014 at 04:21 PM.
 
Old 03 March 2014   #25
Life's not fair. Great products fail all the time because of market forces.

The basic sad truth is XSI was losing money. It was losing money when AD bought it, that's why SI was selling the company for so cheap in the first place. AD didn't have a grand plan to buy them, they just couldn't pass up the opportunity to do it. The way I'd look at it is, instead of XSI dying in after 2 years and going bankrupt, AD bought them and carried them onward for 6 years. A lot of people saw that buyout and jumped ship early which also didn't help XSI sales, but they probably were wise to do so in the end.

Businesses can still use XSI to earn money, it just won't be developed further. Some people continued to use Alias Power Animator for years after Maya had taken over. One of my colleagues still mostly uses Macromedia Freehand for vector work instead of Illustrator because of certain tools.



Quote:
Originally Posted by sebastian___
EDIT: In the context of this discussion a better phrasing would be "What if Company X buys Windows from Microsoft and then 6 months later they kill it because they will introduce their own operating system"

Does Windows have a history of losing money to the point that a company would want to drop the product? Has this new operating system pretty much already taken over the market and absolutely proven it has superior sales and is more profitable?

Last edited by sentry66 : 03 March 2014 at 05:37 PM.
 
Old 03 March 2014   #26
not dumb at all...

I can't find any the thread starters initial thoughts dumb.
What one can see all over the place in the reflection of this recent EOL announcement is people who have been in the digital business for a long time and who express their understanding of how the world and business works. What some put between the lines and others express quite openly is: "What happened may suck hard for the individual but I agree to that system and I don't question it".
If a person suggests reconsiderations of business practices then calling him dumb and instead repeating what current business practices effectively are hardly can be an adequate or even intelligent answer. We all, including the thread starter know what firms currently are allowed to do, but that's not the point of this thread as I understand it.

Software of the degree of refinement and power as Softimage by no means is products which can be compared to typical consumer goods. Washing machines or a hairdryers, Shampoo or cookies don't require customers to spend years of time to use them adequately, they don't require a dedication which can be compared to studying at a University, they don't become highly specific development platforms for people with very diverse talents. Ordinary products don't cause further branching and man years of time spent for extension-development. The discontinuation of a particular car model will not cause anyone who once acquired a driving license* the slightest problem. One may be pissed a bit, but can sit down on the driver seat of the next best vehicle and is up and running right away.

In my book it is high time to treat complex software different from typical consumer goods. Manufacturers should get forced by law to act responsibly with the immense investment of time, intelligence and money of their customers. Autodesk in the past not only discontinued Software but it also actively hindered further use of legitimate perpetual licenses by simply turning off licensing servers, this will without any doubt sooner or later also happen with this last version of Softimage**.


* a pretty moderate investment of time and intelligence, in comparison


**Doing such should already today be illegal - at least in Europe. Here one effectly owns the license... one can safely ignore the "you may only use this product but never own it"- text in the Eula.


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Last edited by Hoja : 03 March 2014 at 05:06 PM. Reason: typos
 
Old 03 March 2014   #27
This is funny and stupid
 
Old 03 March 2014   #28
As a student learning Max and Maya, I have to say, I has to see what the fuzz was about. It looks like XSI is quite the software.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CGIPadawan
3) Further off-topic: The practice of buying a firm and then ripping it to pieces is legal and has been the "Darwinian" practice of the last few years. (see: WWE over WCW, UFC over WEC/PRIDE-FC). Same thing with discontinuing product lines.


The day UFC bought Pride FC broke my heart. Irrelevant, but sharing. Pride died, but it lives in my heart.
 
Old 03 March 2014   #29
It's OK for software companies, to aquire or sell software as long as they don't intent to build up a monopolizing patent pool that blocks competition. And it's certainly not OK if they lie along the way and mislead their customers.

That's exactly what ADSK has done, and will probably continue to do. They're no software developers, they've become a faceless patent troll.
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Old 03 March 2014   #30
If memory serves me correctly, AD bought it for 30ish million, down from its last exchange price of 300ish million $US

If they are killing it, maybe a "Softimage foundation" can buy it. Given the value trajectory, maybe 3 million USD would actually make a difference, and that is a kickstarter-imaginable amount.
 
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