I really think you are wrong, however I understand what you mean.
You have to check the Blender source code to know that it’s very easy to disable parts like CUDA or Eembree, it does not matter if Nvidia wants to stop supporting Blender.
Why? because Blender is built upon the same open standards foundations as videogames or other 3d apps, there is nothing proprietary there, it’s OpenGL, when you hear that there is a Blender specific bug in the drivers, well, that’s not the case, usually are Blender developer who fixes the bug, ir it’s a driver bug that affects the whole driver, so videogames are going to be affected too.
Regarding Optix support, again, that’s not an specifi Blender support, and no, if they put any kind of “bomb” there it will be avoided, to provoque this they should be actively and purposedly be programming some super specific things against Blender specifically.
- Do you think Nvidia cares about this? No they don’t, have you noticed that there are no specific drivers for Quadro cards that works better with specific softwares? In fact not even the studio drivers are specific, in words of someone from nvidia, the studio drivers are LTS drivers, stable enough to be trusted, but nothing special about them right now, all the changes made in those first studio drivers are not in the game drivers.
I don’t know of any specific arrangement between other companies that forces Nvidia to anything, in fact that would be unfair competition and market managemen, and at the size of those companies those are crimes, so when and if they commit those crimes they try to go as low profile as the can, I won’t be launching accusations without knowledge or proof.
Also when you say “We are working to resolve the problems, but I mean it is free software what do you expect?”
Well, that has been already the case for years, and will continue to be, you know that Nvidia and Autodesk certify certain drivers for certain software, like Maya for example, while there is no certification for Blender, why? they don’t care.
But in any case, do you really think Nvidia will put in risk all their customers that right now are purchasing Hardware (the real and only Nvidia business) for Autodesk?
Nvidia is way more powerful than Autodesk, the part of Nvidia we know it’s just a super tiny small part, very visible because it’s consumer oriented, but really, their business is hardware and goes far beyond rendering with Autodesk software or any other software, and even Autodesk has nothing to say about anything to Nvidia, they don’t have enough power for it.
Now, the real question of “fear” I see here: can Blender stop developing for Nvidia? Yes, no problem with that, but why?
I mean, you know that Blender 2.81 comes with Optix integrated in Cycles, do you know who created that patch? I’ll leave that question without answer, it’s not hard to find the answer
Blender development process is very different from any other company, there is no need for big companies supporting it, it’s scalable, now there is more money, great more devs, as soon as the money goes down, well, slower development pace and less developers, that’s the reality.
Blender development fund has been receiving between 5000€/month to 7000€/month for YEARS, how do you think they survived?
Blender is not company dependant, Blender is higly driven by a community of users/developers that donate their time to the app, by studios that donate a lot of development, Blender is not developed by the Blender Institute, it’s maintained and organized, and part of the development comes from there, but not all the development.
For example all the improvements in the sculpt mode started by a guy in his home, a small genius, Pablo Dobarro, that started improving the sculpt tools for him because he is both, programmer and artist, so he decided he wanted something better with a better behaviour, after having done several developemnts he was hired by the Blender Institute, but he did a lot of improvements way before the B.I. knew him.
Blender development is very different, it’s a different way of evolution, it don’t depends on Nvidia, or Epic or AMD, those are great supports, but not the basis of the support, in fact, in the medium/long term AFAIK, and I may be partially wrong, the idea is to support Vulkan for viewport AND for rendering, and to try to even odds with the GPU’s, but that’s now a problem for Nvidia, CUDA is still needed for MANY MANY things, like photogrammetry, there is no photogrammetry software that runs over OpenCL or Vulkan, they use CUDA, Blender is a tiny spot for them, and they won’t bother trying to undermine Blender.
Now, all this pose is filled with both, facts and opinions of course, but that’s how I see things, and I think fears are completely unfounded, regarding the behaviour of bigger companies:
Autodesk: M&E is the only part that is under “menace” from Blender, do you know how big and profitable is that part of the business for them?
Maxon: well, they are still king of the hill in some areas, and users are more or less happy, some disliked the licensing changes, will see where the future goes, but if they want to be kept king of the hill they will have ot continue improving things, Blender does not give the same ease of mograph creation as C4D, mainly because in C4D there are many super useful presets and that are easy to use and modify.
Foundry: no idea, but Foundry has never been a “competitor”, Modo is great but it’s hard to have modo as the center tool in the pipeline, or at least I don’t know any studio whose center app is Modo, there is evolution, but there is also fear, Foundry is a very agressive company and many don’t want to work with their software because of that, others don’t care about the pricing or bahaviour, they just want to work with Nuke, but it’s not because of Modo, it’s because of Nuke, Katana and others, and mainly in big productions, not small to medium productions.
SideFX: right now there is no competition out there, not a fully real complete competition, and Blender won’t be a direct competitor, not even with everything nodes, they really evolve on each version, and they really invest in R&D, it’s not possible for Blender to compete with Houdini right now, and maybe not even in the future, because Blender is designed towards all the production levels, not just FX or animation (that they seem to want to target now)
Pixologic: no matter what, Zbrush is the king in sculpt, I’m not sure about the future, but right now and in the near future Blender won’t be competing with Zbrush at the same level, again, Zbrush is specialized and their 3D engine makes it useless for many other things, while in Blender your sculpt abilities are more limited (right now more in the supe-amount-of-polys part than on tools, because improvements have been amazing) but Blender has a different type of 3D engine, which gives less in that area, but more in others, it’s a matter of balance.
Substance Painter: well, they will turn fully compatible as soon as they fully embrace Material X open standard and Blender implements Material X open standard, and that will happen sooner or later, Material X is very similar to Substances, but in Open Source flavour
I really don’t see anything to fear about, we can be as conspiranoics as we want, and we can see the sky as dark as we want, but right now I don’t see that black possible future some of you fear.
BTW there are several animation studios shifting to Blender, for TV series, others working in features with Blender, and that fear is like if some studio that adopted Softimage could make the company owning Maya before autodesk sue that studio, or the softimage owners becaue it was more used, that’s not what happened.
And IF that black future happens, well, we will cross that bridge when the time comes, I never thought we would be “throwing to the trash” all our precious Autodesk licenses and changing all our pipeline to Blender, and here we are
To finalize this, the strenght of Blender is that as much users it has, much development comes, better evolution, and don’t be mistaken, no matter if there is a commercial addon, Blender will integrate new functionalities no matter if there is a commercial alternative out there or not, because their target is to avoid a third-party ecosystem of commercial addons.
You want proof?
Flip Fluids Addon: Blender market addon
Mantaflow: Main blender integration developed has just been hired in the B.I. to accelerate the implementation of Mantaflow (theoretically a direct competitor to flip fluids + also smoke sim, so more powerful in some cases)
Addons won’t limit the evolution of Blender, unlike 3dsmax or other Autodesk software that thinks that since you already can rent Thinking Particles, why would they speed the evolution of particles inside max? (even now, Bifrost Graph is not yet inside max).
If Blender remains for some freelancers and hobbyists I agree that it will stay free. However if film, game and commercial VFX studios begin adopting the app I believe they will go commercial to reap the financial benefits of being an industry leader and to avoid being cornered in indefensible positions against companies that are better suited to operate LEGALLY in a commercial market.
I think you still don’t understand a thing, Blender WILL ALWAYS STAY FREE, no matter what, it may die (it’s very hard that that happens, but who knows XD ) but IT WILL ALWAYS BE FREE
Please, stop fearing that