A whole bunch of off-topic stuff about Amazon

If it is only for AD and you dont wish people to reply - then maybe post it as a private message to him.

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Therein lies one potential concern with this new engine. Unlike existing FOSS solutions, they do not have a Ton or a Reduz who works to ensure the project stays on track on being completely free with no strings attached (such as data collection, paywalls, and do on). The website also does not give a clear indication of an independent foundation, it is more a coalition of some of the biggest names in tech. than anything else.

That is not to say that large corporations can’t be generous enough to produce a project that is FOSS and it stays that way, but it is rare for a billion dollar company to invest in something without the anticipation of it generating at least some revenue. Then there is the fact that we have seen many cases where things start out completely free, but only the purpose of building a community (after the community reaches a certain size, monetization is introduced).

I responded publicly because the message was public, and just so you know, I mainly added the disclaimer in an attempt to keep you happy!

Exactly, so this stuff really needs ironing-out while Ton is still chairman. Btw, good to hear Dalai Felinto is steadfast too. I’d hate to be Ton when put in the position of choosing a new chairman further down the line, but it’s something Ton should do with no input from anyone. Ton has proven himself and therefore needs to follow his heart (not anyone else’s) when the time comes. If Dalai shares Ton’s mindset, he might be the next chairman for all we know.

Anyway, I hope the time for Ton to retire as chairman is decades away yet!

You mean something like this?

Also the foundation has a mission statement:

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Lol dang !

Something like what?
I don’t see such a statement at the link.

Lol, no dang, it ain’t there :grinning_face_with_smiling_eyes:
What I mean is we need a statement adding to this lot (taken from the Blender website):

Privacy and Internet access

Blender respects your privacy, no registration is needed, no connection to the internet is made if you decide to install and use Blender. Blender does not need internet to function properly.

Some add-ons bundled with Blender may access the internet for additional services. These add-ons are not enabled on installing Blender. These add-ons are not required to be enabled for proper functioning of the software, nor will any Blender function ask for enabling such add-ons.

Add-ons that require internet will ask a user explicit permission to use internet while or after enabling the add-on.

Note: this applies to the official version provided via blender.org. We always recommend you to use the official releases.
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Absolutely brilliant, isn’t it? You can really tell from the wording that they understand such concerns, and that’s fantastic news! But there is nothing in there about protecting the openess of open source Blender with some sort of mission statement regards clouds and software as a service. There is nothing to state that “Blender will remain 100% locally installable forever”, and unless it does, you can effectively wave goodbye to Blender as being “open” and trustworthy if ever they started integrating remotely-served code, because there is no such thing as “openess” if even the slightest bit of Blender code were pulled from the cloud, which in turn means you have no idea or control over what it’s doing, which in turn would make it untrustworthy by default.

This is why I think they should update their statement. It is already admirable, but it does need updating to address such concerns.

It is true that a lot of statements, especially in the corporate world, tend to not be permanent (remember when Lightworks was supposed to be this big solution for FOSS video editing)? However, I think you might just be getting a bit paranoid at this point, because for starters ,unlike Open3D, Blender is far away from being beta software looking to create a community.

I include that last point, because what often happens is that up and coming software is completely free while in beta, but things like paywalls start going in soon after the application hits 1.0 and is seen as production ready, Blender is quite far away from that.

Unfortunately, there’s no “because” when it comes to software as a service. The moment something becomes, or even includes, software as a service, the ability to audit that code disappears and you lose control of the product. You might well think me paranoid, but bearing in mind some of the companies that are now funding Blender, I think there is reason to be!

Regardless of the distrust some of those sponsors instill in the userbase, there still needs to be a statement made regards this stuff anyway.

While some of Blender’s donors are certainly as untrustworthy as you believe (I respect and agree with your cynicism), I don’t think we have to worry too much about Blender going cloud SaaS or locking features up like Epic. They even say no internet is required to install and use blender, and while they don’t explicitly say “and it never will” it seems that’s their intent. It’s a European nonprofit, for the foreseeable future I trust they no interest in becoming beholden to American corporations that want to siphon up everyone’s data. When Ton retires, I can’t see the Blender Foundation appointing a new head with values that go against the core values people embrace FOSS for (I’m talking true FOSS like Blender and Linux, not pseudo-FOSS sponsored by corporations for PR credit and marketing). (Of course some people just like FOSS being free, but I digress)

The only sensible and justifiable cloud integrations for blender are render farms, online collaboration, and online asset repositories (or storage for people who want to access their own assets remotely), and I would expect all of those to remain optional, probably add-on based or at worst requiring the user to configure and approve some kind of connection to these services. Admittedly, these are services that some of these companies could conceivably offer, but official Blender endorsement for any one of them seems like a long shot.

Plus, true FOSS tends to attract a lot of us tinfoil hat folks who want to keep the evil megacorps out of our data, software, and computer (particularly among Linux users), so letting Google, Amazon, or anyone else who just sees FOSS as a cool marketing method to attract consumers takeover could be a costly mistake. Any perceived corporate takeover would not be well received, and unlike many some other FOSS (especially the corporate FOSS), Blender has a fairly active DIY dev community so we’d probably end up with multiple cloudless forks that are kept up to date.

That said, as someone who was surprised other people were surprised by the Snowden revelations, I respect your cynicism, and agree Amazon et al. are up to no good.

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So nice to receive such a well-considered and sensible reply, cheers! And just to address what I quoted here, exactly, and this is exactly what I hope we can avoid. The last thing I want to see is Blender being diluted into multiple ‘forks’ due to some bad move brought about by one or more of those sponsors.

This is why I said way back, that if they ever start talking about SaaS, you automatically know it’s time to fork, and I would personally crowd-fund a professional fork of the product, rename it, and make damn sure that the community around my own fork are given a statement of 100% local installation, forever, and no exceptions. So for me personally, I’m not worried about ever being forced into that stuff, cause it can never happen, it’s open source and as you say, it can (and will) be forked if necessary.

I’d much rather things never came to that though, so it would be nice to have a statement to that effect added to their already admirable privacy statement.

If we all are quite honest Blender is one of the very few FOSS projects that not only have a continuous development and that with a high degree of competitive results.

If somebody today would ask me for a free vector or image editor I would not suggest gimp or Inkscape but send them towards affinity or “just forgot the name” because while commercial the cost of 50$ is meager.

Blender foundation while FOSS is also not operating with air - they have funding secured.

I agree that it is quite frustrating when a free app turns commercial but that’s also part of real life - people need to eat.

Or you have the luck of a company making more money with the cutting hardware so they can give the lite software version away for free : da Vinci resolve

That app is bomb

When it came out I looked into lighthouse but their price model is still fair

Much more fair than dobe and Autodesk

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You are a typical user. This is something Ton himself discussed in that interview he gave with Andrew where he exposed some of Autodesk’s behaviour. You form part of the majority of people who don’t use FOSS for the reason it was created, so the importance of it remaining completely open is of no concern to you. The fact that you’d be prepared to recommend a closed-source product over an even more capable open source product, speaks volumes.

Affinity is a nice program, very fair on the pricing to, no disagreement on that front. But the difference between yourself and one who appreciates the true nature of FOSS and that the product is out in the open, is that even if GIMP and InkScape cost as much as Affinity, I would much rather buy GIMP and InkScape than Affinity.

Ton himself said in the interview, pretty much that the majority of those using Blender are not doing it out of appreciation of the FOSS movement, they’re using it because it’s free and accessible to them.

Take a look at the end titles of Sintel for example and you’ll see both GIMP and InkScape listed in the credits. That’s beautiful, that’s how it should be, those with the right ethics supporting others with the right ethics. And you know what, this is just a personal peeve of mine but you know what really grinds my gears?

It’s those types who set-up Blender tutorial channels, give a tutorial on Blender and prop-up A-holes like Adobe by using Photoshop instead of GIMP for any 2D bits’n’bobs it might involve. I’m being perfectly serious when I tell you that I click away from any tutorial where I see Adobe’s products in the taskbar instead of GIMP etc.

Really grinds my gears that does :grimacing:

Maybe that’s just me, but anyway here’s the thing, because you see even if 1,999,999.99 people were ok with open source being fudged into a cloud system thereby making it no longer open, guess what?

It is the 0,000,000.01 person left in the minority who retains the power to turn their world upside down and reverse any evil and stupidity. That’s the real reason FOSS is licenced in the way it is, and why using FOSS like Blender without the right ethics behind you is fine, just as long as you realise that ultimately, the whole point of the FOSS licencing structure is to prevent those who haven’t a clue, from ever being able to destroy the freedom it permits in perpetuity to its users.

Love FOSS, and the man is a rock for placing Blender under such a licence. I think people would do well to understand the title better when he says “money doesn’t interest me” :wink:

The posts here were split from this thread because they were distracting from the main topic of that thread. Rather than hide those posts, they’ve been moved here. However, because the discussion in these posts is still kind of all over the place, I’m keeping this off-shoot thread closed.

You’re welcome to discuss any of the topics brought up in these posts in a new thread (even link to specific posts so others have some context). They’re certainly all worth discussing (and a few already have threads of their own). Just please stay on topic.

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